I do love a good festival. And iFest has never disappointed. I know it’s a tall order, but this really is a phenomenal experience. And the focus is the Caribbean this year!! Hello?!!? In another life, I think I actually was a tropical island.
But I just love how worlds collide here. One giant embrace for every language and culture. Color and sound saturation. Acceptance and love. People eager to know and experience and share and grow. It’s such an open, beautiful environment, and every time I’m there I let this feeling pull me into its current where I can float along in my own bubble of happiness.
Drawing me out this year was Ozomatli, closing out Saturday night’s lineup. You may remember them from such films as Never Been Kissed. If you don’t know their music, it’s “a notorious urban-Latino-and-beyond collision of hip hop and salsa, dancehall and cumbia, samba and funk, merengue and comparsa, East LA R&B and New Orleans second line, Jamaican ragga and Indian raga” Kind of awesome.
But we headed in early to see Moodafaruka – a brilliant blend of flamenco guitar, Spanish and Middle Eastern sounds. Love!
Oh and Barry was there.
Moodafaruka’s energy and sound was intoxicating. It’s clear how much this 8 piece band loves their music. Plus, I was happy with the intimacy of the setting. Small stage, kicking back in a couple of chairs with our thimbles full of wine (it was a pour fit for a baby), under the shade of a lovely tree. Bliss!
Ozomatli’s entrance. Tried to post the video but it didn’t work 😦
We rounded out the weekend with brunch. Is it embarrassing to say that I haven’t done a proper brunch/Sunday Funday for 2010 yet? Don’t condemn me. I’ve been….busy?
Anywho, we tried for Tiny Boxwoods, but that operation got postponed. Sad. So we moved on to Benjy’s, drawn by their Blood Orange Mimosas. A whole carafe please. No, for each person. Pinky’s up!
…then you have Richard’s lame ass getting cranberry juice. No – no, no vodka. Just….juice.
Raul and Richard opted for the Beef Arepas, which were scrumpdidillyuptious! It’s a word – look it up.
However I was only allowed one bite so I am unable to describe them in their entirety to you. But, I do have something to confess. And I’m ashamed. I ordered meat. Yes, factory farmed meat in a restaurant. I’m not happy about it, but I read so many reviews on Yelp to try the “chicken stack” and I admit, my curiosity was piqued. Don’t judge! You stumble too, friends.
Here it is, in all it’s aesthetic glory-
Pretty, ain’t she? Well let me tell you – mama was not impressed. FIRST OF ALL, the description on the menu clearly states avocado. You see that tiny sliver of avocado on the side there? Mmhmm. That was it. That’s the “avocado”. I do not like restaurants who are stingy with it! Now let’s get to the meat of the matter. (love puns!) The chicken was full blown awful. And not just because every time I took a bite I felt my morals being chewed up and swallowed with it! The consistency was rubbery and old. It tasted like it was fake. Fake meat. How does a chicken pull that off? It was an odd sensation. I regretted my choice immediately, and subsequently picked the meat away from the rest of my meal. FAIL.
But dessert was a sweet ending. (again) We ordered the bread pudd’n and then the lovely Gary sent over an extra banana treat for us. Thanks Gary!
Adieu for now my lovelies…
what is iFest??
I believe that is one of my pinky’s in the photo!