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Julie Schwietert Collazo

#IBuiltThis: Latino Entreprenuer Goes Back to His Roots

Alejandro Velez and his business partner, Nikhil Arora, were undergrads at University of California, Berkeley, so the story goes, where they were taking a class in which they learned that mushrooms can grow on coffee grounds. It was, perhaps, an unlikely “A-ha!” moment; at an age when many college students' experiments with growing are limited to yeast cultures required to make beer, Velez and Arora were experimenting with mushroom farming... in the kitchen of their frat house.


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Semana Santa around Latin America
Semana Santa around Latin America

This year, Holy Week, or Semana Santa if you're in Latin America, spans April 13-20. People who observe this important event on the religious calendar by upholding Catholic tradition likely spent the Lenten season that leads up to Easter abstaining from meat on Fridays and giving up something–coffee, alcohol, chocolate, or some other treat typically considered an indulgence–in an act of spiritual self-discipline.

 


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It's Party Time! How to Plan a Puerto Rican Parranda

"Van llegando... la fiesta va a comenzar..."


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Opening Soon: J. by José Andrés at W Mexico City

When W Mexico City started undergoing renovations in late 2013, the changes made in the hotel's guest rooms and public spaces were occurring largely beyond guests' view, done in a way to minimize disruptions.


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How Much Do You Know About the Mineral Water You're Drinking?

Do all those bubbles really mean better water?


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Sticker Shock: The High Cost of Making Tequila

A decade ago, you might have been hard-pressed to find anything other than a $20 bottle of Jose Cuervo at your local liquor store. Back then, there probably wasn't even a shelf dedicated to tequila. The dominant perception of Mexico's signature spirit was that of tequila as “firewater,” a cheap liquor best reserved for budget drinkers, college partiers, and those who generally cared less about mouthfeel and artisanal production methods than about, well, getting drunk.  


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I Pledge Allegiance to Pegao: 7 Reasons to Love Burned Rice

A Latin guide to the rice at the bottom of the pot.


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Olive Oil 101

Not all bottles are made equal.


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5 Places in Queens to Check Out During the U.S. Open
US Open Restaurant Guide: 5 Latin Spots Worth Leaving the Arena For

New York City's 7 train hurtles out of the tunnel at Court House Square, the third stop in Queens, and from that point on, shuttles on an elevated line above neighborhoods dense with diverse Latin communities. Get off at any stop along Queens Boulevard or, especially, Roosevelt Avenue, and you'll find Latin specialties—from mole poblano to spit-roasted cuy-- at sit-down restaurants and grab-n-go panaderias. As you gear up for the annual trek to Flushing Meadows, just one stop before the end of the 7 line, to watch the U.S.


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