5.01.2008

Cinco de Moron

Because I am on basically every restaurant mailing list in the entire city of New York, but notably because I am on the mailing list of Essex, which is (omg) on Essex street, I just got an emailed invitation to an upcoming wine tasting dinner. Restaurants do this a lot. A fancy tasting menu in the price range of a factor-of-ten birthday dinner, generally built around a region or theme or wine purveyor. I've never actually gone to one, largely because I have neither the financial nor social wherewithal to arrange weeks in advance to go to a hundred-ish-dollar dinner celebrating, like, The Rare Alsatian Chartreuse Beet Prepared In Twelve Courses or whatever.

Anyway I get these emails all the time, not because I am special but because I am overly trusting and give out my email address to anyone who asks. And this one is particularly, spectacularly stupid. The menu looks nice and the price, at $75, is not entirely ludicrous. But:



So ok. Um. Short of the fact that they do in fact have a cinco de mayo in Spain, by virtue of the fact that el cinco de mayo is the day that comes after el quatro de mayo (fun fact: I had to count up to four in my head in Spanish, and started out doing it in Hebrew and got confused), there is absolutely no connection between Spain and the celebration of Cinco de Mayo. Cinco de Mayo celebrates a battle between Mexico and France. Cinco de Mayo is an American celebration of Mexican-American heritage and identity. Spain? Is not Mexico. Not all people who speak Spanish are the Same. Freaking. Nationality.

So why, genius party planners at Vinous Events, and presumably intellectually functional managerial staff at Essex, did you not choose to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with wines from, I don't know, Mexico? Is it because Mexico does not make wine? OH WAIT NO. They acknowledge on the menu, in an ungrammatical and weirdly informal way, that Mexico does!

I do not get it. Jesus H. Christ, folks, this is completely moronic.

On another critical and hyperfoodsnobby note: the part of the invite that I didn't crop out (which is here), lists the menu. The menu includes a mini-paella served in a tortilla shell. I am willing to bet the cost of this dinner* that by "tortilla shell" they do not mean the Spanish version of tortilla, which is a potato-and-egg tarty-omelety-esque thing (which is, as it happens, included in the next course), but that rather they mean one of those fried bowls that help make the Taco Bell taco salad tip the scales at close to 2000 calories, and which are not a Spanish food but are in fact a Mexican food.

I am in fact almost tempted to go to this dinner to find out, but it costs the same as the swan shirt plus shipping, and the swan shirt does not make me want to punch people for failing to use wikipedia in a time of need.

*I will, in fact, bet the cost of this dinner. If anyone has any way of disproving the corn-or-flour tortilla hypothesis, I will buy you $75 worth of the Mexican foodstuffs of your choosing.

6 comments:

Marcin said...

In fairness, wines from Mexico may be skanky. Wines from Spain can be pretty awesome. It is possible that they are coveted in Mexico.

Also, I believe it is possible to get maize flour in Spain.

Mace Elaine said...

Hm. Sounds like you need this: http://flickr.com/photos/maceelaine/53225798/

RW said...

Oh just go and get a bottle of a nice red from Rioja and quicher bichen!

-j. said...

So...does this mean you're NOT coming to my Bastille Day luau?

EL said...

My first objection to the invitation was the not-all-Spanish-speakers-are-the-same one. But my second objection was the weird grammar (or ~grammar) and informality of the side note wherein they try to acknowledge, if not rectify, an unforgivable cultural gaffe. And you addressed this beautifully, amongst other objections, and for this I salute you.

TP said...

I knew the exact shirt you meant. It is awesome. I want the one with the flames on the shoulders in silver sequins. Shiny.