Deemed too labour-intensive to put on the menu, Irving thought that serving the banquet classics as a staff meal would be the best opportunity to share one of his favourite Mexican dishes. Tonight, he’s stuffing them with zucchini and beef short rib before neatly wrapping them in leaves and giving them a good steam.
To add some freshness to the meal, Irving doles out bowls of crunchy jicama kimchi. It’s mixed with ancho chilies to give it an even greater vernacular twist. He has one of his cooks drop yuca fries into the fryer (soon to be eaten with big dollops of chipotle aioli).
As the tamales finish steaming and the fries are tossed with a pinch of salt, co-owner John Cooper and the staff begin to set the table. When the tamales are finally set on plates, staff sit and gently unwrap them like gifts, digging in with generous servings of salsa verde. The night’s special is soon all gone; well before any customer