In Search of Flavor is a podcast hosted by Liz Caskey, co-founder of Liz Caskey Culinary & Wine Experiences, a travel design firm, crafting culinary, wine, and design journeys in the Americas from California to South America. Passionate about all things food, wine, travel, and design, each episode features an industry trailblazer who brings their passion and journey to the table sharing insights and stories in a relaxed style. Get ready to dial into your wanderlust and be inspired!
Episode 26: Food Stylist Mariana Velásquez on Colombia's Cuisine of Generosity
55:38With Caribbean and Pacific coastlines, rain forests, jungles, great valleys and rivers flowing from the Andes Mountains, desert, and fog forests, Colombia is a country with deep regionality and distinct food, culture and customs. As the country exports more and more talent in music, innovation, art, design, fashion, and now food, today we are going to introduce you to a brilliant tastemaker, chef, and food stylist, Mariana Velásquezz, a native of Bogotá. She’s spent the past two decades residing in New York and cooking in restaurant kitchens, food styling, and writing/collaborating on cookbooks and published her own cookbook called Colombiana, which she says brings it all full circle. Mariana shares why Colombia's culinary philosophy means ‘more is more’ and the inherent joy and generosity present in its cuisine, and culture, which anyone traveling to the region will immediately savor.In this episode we talk about:Mariana’s childhood memories of her grandmothers and the strong women in her family who modeled for her how to ‘dress’ a table.How she followed her passion in food abroad, honed her skills and eventually meshed her love of aesthetics into food styling.The diversity of Colombian cuisine, understanding its pillars, and how to make Colombian cuisine translatable at home.Her cookbook creation journey, the challenge faced when the pandemic hit, and how she pivoted.The stories behind the recipes and why she featured whole menus evocative of different regions of the country with hosting tips, suggestions for setting the scene, and playlists.Just to whet your appetite: here are a few examples of delicious dishes from Colombiana: empanadas (need we say more)... Cuchuco de Papaya y Camarón Tostado (Spicy Papaya and Charred Shrimp Gazpacho); Lomito de Cerdo al Tamarindo y Menta (Tamarind Pork Tenderloin with Mint). Resources:Instagram: MarianaVelasquezVWebsite: www.marianavelasquez.comCasa Velasquez HostingWare: https://www.casavelasquez.co/
Episode 25: The Cilantro of the Wine World
24:31If you are considering traveling to Chile in 2022, it’s a great time to start planning as the country has the most complete and aggressive vaccination in South America (over 85% of the adult population is fully vaccinated and there is now zero cases in Patagonia!). Contact us to plan your tripIn Episode 22, we talk a little about the possible forecast for travel in South America in 2022, although the pandemic is always a moving target Listen here.
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Episode 23: Trailblazing a path in Biodynamic Viticulture from Chile to California
1:18:54In this episode we talk about: Rodrigo’s background and why a summer job in a restaurant was the beginning of his curiosity about wine.The uncanny timing of an unwanted thesis on organic agriculture opened the door to lifelong learning and working with biodynamic agriculture.A glimpse into the world of wine in Chile in the early 2000s, and then mid-2010s, as he worked with trailblazers Matetic Vineyards and Veramonte.His fascination, and love affair, with California, brought him to LA, then Mendocino, Sonoma, and finally landed him in Napa.The importance and influence of key biodynamic mentors in his life like Alvaro Espinoza and Alan York shaped his path.His knack for coming into wine projects and transforming them, with biodynamic viticulture, to finer wines.Chile & California’s geographical similarities from coastline to weather, and even soil. Culture is another story, though.Resources:Matetic Vineyards (Chile)Benzinger Winery (Napa)Veramonte Winery (Chile)Quintessa Winery (Napa)Follow Rodrigo on Instagram
Episode 22: Insights on How to Travel to South America in 2022
30:37In this episode:The current situation as of early July 2021 in South America and a country-by-country “reading” of how we think it will evolve into 1Q 2022 and beyondOur philosophy on how we work with our clients and advise them on planning travel in this new era--just like you work with a financial or legal advisor.The metrics we use to evaluate how safe a destination can be and how to approach planning any trip using themWhy Chile is your safest travel destination for holiday travel and in early 2022 Our suggestions for being an early entry traveler to the region from travel style to specific destinations Why now is the time to plan the bucket list destinations and holiday travel for 2022 (pent up demand is real)And much more!Resources:We are proud to be recommended by Condenast Traveler as a top Travel Advisor in 2020 and 2021. You can read our review and more about our approach here.Explore our destinations in South AmericaContact us to discuss your tripRevisit these episodes to spur wanderlust in: -Chile & Uruguay: From vineyards to beaches-The Peruvian Amazonian-Ecuador: The Galapagos, of course!-Argentina: Mendoza for wine lovers
Episode 21: The Argentine Wine Revolution with Laura Catena of Catena Wines
1:01:40In this episode we talk about: Laura’s family background and growing up in an Italo-Argentine winemaking family.What led her to become a medical doctor and when she felt called to join the family business.How her father, Nicolas Catena, saw the potential for Malbec as one of the great wines of the world.The story behind Catena Zapata and how it conquered one consumer, one wine shop one by one.The scientific, and cultural basis for terroir, how it applies to Malbec and clonal material, and why Laura founded the Catena Wine Institute.Her own project, Luca Wines, was an effort to preserve the small grape grower traditions in Argentina and how that has evolved.Sharing her love for her country through writing and books published on Argentina and wine culture.Resources:Luca WinesLaura’s Instagram accountCatena WinesVino ArgentinoGold in the VineyardCatena Institute of Wine Malbec Terroir Study
Episode 20: What is Terroir, exactly?
39:32In this episode:The definition of terroir and its limitationsWhat products are considered terroir products and whyHow artisanality and quality are the backbones of terroirWhy the human touch and families are also part of the equationWhat we all bring to the table in our terroir experienceA mash-up of four of our favorite episodes from Season One that bring this point homeResources:Episode #1 with Santiago Achaval of Matervini WineEpisode #2 with Jake Standerfer of Coffee Culture RoastersEpisode #13 with Guiliana Furci of Fungi FoundationEpisode #15with Mark Gerrits of Obolo Chocolate
Season 2 is coming!!
4:47Are you signed up for our newsletter? If not, after subscribing first here on iTunes (if you haven’t already), head on over to lizcaskey.com and get on it, amigo(a). Every Thursday when episodes drop, Liz shares an accompanying story that’s only for our newsletter readers. Join us now!
Episode 18 (Part 2 of 2): Olive oil as a way of life with Carola Dümmer
40:17You can follow Carola on Instragram at @olivalovers. You can also follow us on Instagram at @lccwe where we share many travel, wine, food, and design inspo.Don't forget we also have an upcoming bean-to-bar chocolate tasting on March 18, 2021 with the founder and chocolate maker of Obolo Chocolate with three full-sized bars of chocolate delivered to your front door. You can sign up here. Spaces are limited to keep the group intimate.
Episodes 17 (Part 1 of 2): Olive oil as a way of life with Carola Dümmer
41:01In this episode we talk about:On how Carola became an olive oil taster and honed her palateThe history of olive oil in Chile and other regions of South America where it’s produced like Mendoza, Uruguay, and even BrazilThe varieties and origins of different olives, attributes in each variety (hint: it’s similar to wine!), and why culturally they are planted in different areasThe best way to practice tasting at home and recreate a professional tastingHow to identify freshness in oil, when it’s gone rancid, and how to select your oils from a producer or in-storeHow to pair your olive oil with a cooking method or specific recipeHow to store olive oilMany other tips and [email protected]