Exploring the Culinary Culture of Madison, Wisconsin and Surrounding Area

Spotlight on Chef Esmeralda Bascones of Inka Heritage

By on February 1, 2010 in Events, Flavors of Madison with 0 Comments

Chef Esmeralda Bascones of Inka Heritage will be participating in the 2010 Flavors of Madison event, benefiting the American Liver Foundation.  This event brings Madison’s top chefs together to create a very unique culinary gala.

Inka Heritage has been in Madison for three years, introducing many Madisonians to Peruvian cuisine for the very first time.  Chef Bascones and her husband Daniel Rodriguez settled in Madison in 2006, having moved from Miami.   “We were working in Miami and we came to visit one of our relatives in 2002.  We thought at that time Madison was a good place to raise children.  When we had our first daughter we moved here.”

Most people associate Peruvian cuisine with the more common Mexican cuisine served around the city, but in reality, the two cuisines can be quite different.  “Peruvian cuisine is considered one of the best Latin American cuisines.  It is a healthy food.” 

In fact, Inka Heritage has played a role in educating the dining public.  “It was hard when we first opened.  Some customers thought that we were Latin fast food, and expected to be served in five minutes.  We had to introduce the food, and explain that everything is from scratch.”

In reality, Inka Heritage delivers a sophisticated menu based on the melting pot of culinary influences that go into Peruvian cuisine.  Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, Italian and Inca flavors and techniques turn up often, and often in the same dish.  The Ceviche is a specialty on a menu that changes often. 

Another unique item that can’t be missed is the Chicha Morada – one of the most unique, refreshing non-alcoholic drinks to be found.  It is made with purple corn that has been boiled for hours.  The liquid is then mixed with pineapple, apple water, cinnamon and key lime juice to produce very interesting results.

One of the top Peruvian chefs in the world, Chef Flavio Solorzano will be an honored participant in the Flavors of Madison event, cooking alongside Chef Bascones.  “It is an honor to have Chef Solorzano with us.  We are excited that he is spending time with us.”

For those who are not able to attend The Flavors of Madison, you still have the opportunity to experience a meal prepared by Chef Solorzano.  He will be the honored guest chef at Inka Heritage March 2 – 4, 2010.  Reservations are required and can be made by calling (608) 310-4282.


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