If you haven’t heard yet, local visionary Jeremy Horwitz is hoping to open a Mercado like nothing Buffalo & WNY have ever seen. Jeremy has teamed up with Chef Scott Kollig of Washington’s minibar by Jose Andres to create a highly anticipated project that will bring a social element to food that we’ve been longing for in WNY for a long time. To hear more about the initial details unveiled this Tuesday by the Mercado Revolution team, see our breaking story.
The information they came out of the gate with was exciting, but we wanted more. We asked Jeremy to fill in the big picture for us as much as he could. The following is a Q & A – just a few more pieces to the intricate jigsaw puzzle that will be Buffalo’s first Mercado.
Q & A:
Can we have a hint on some of the local food establishments/chefs that you are getting your inspiration from? Has anyone signed on to be part of the 15 yet? Possibly Lloyd?
We are only announcing three right now: the Spanish tapas bar, the Chinese dim sum spot, and the breakthrough breakfast and lunch destination. I can tell you that we have all of the concepts finalized and have verbal commitments for most of them. There are still a few vendors that we’re speaking with and reaching out to — only so many hours in the day.
Pintxos – Tapas from San Sebastian, Spain
What kind of Spanish tapas will the Mercado offer? Will they be from a specific region?
The ones we were most inspired by are the pintxos of San Sebastian, several favorites from Barcelona’s Boqueria, and spots in Madrid. We’re planning to do some of the ones that are expected (e.g. gambas al ajillo and patatas bravas), as well as some that emphasize the natural flavors of fresh ingredients. We also hope to offer the tortillitas de camarones we loved from the Sherry Triangle region, inc. Sanlucar de Barrameda.
If you had to pick one, what is your personal favorite market in the world?
I would most often want to return to the Mercado de San Miguel in Madrid. While it’s nowhere near the largest of the markets we’ve visited, it has the best overall look, concept, and balance of vendors — as well as a fantastic collection of experiences.
Can you give us a hint for location? Are the suburbs even a possibility? Or are you only looking at different places in downtown Buffalo?
The suburbs are definitely a possibility. We’re considering all options, emphasizing accessibility.
Can you tell us one of the things that you will be including in the Mercado that you are most excited about?
Right now, my answer would be the cross-pollination between vendors. We are already in the midst of some collaborative discussions that would multiply the already impressive output of top local vendors. Imagine what happens when some of the area’s best artisanal providers and chefs work together to blow minds — it’s going to happen.
End Q & A
This will be one of many updates we will bring you on the Mercado Revolution in WNY. I know – it’s just BARLEY holding you over, right? Us too. As we learn more we’ll be sure to share.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Mercado or funding the Kickstarter campaign, visit their website, watch their video and help make this food experience become a reality for Western New Yorkers.
>> Read our breaking story on Mercado Revolution
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