International Gourmet Festival, a gathering of flavors in Puerto Vallarta

When thinking about Puerto Vallarta, one reflects on its beaches and nightlife, but also on its varied gastronomic offer. There are various culinary events in Puerto Vallarta each year, and among them, the International Gourmet Festival, which this year started on November 17 and will continue until November 20.

The central axis of the event “is to invite an average of 30 restaurants, although this year there are 33, we broke a record,” explains Carlos Guzmán, member and producer of the festival; The idea and the heart of this project is that each participating restaurant extends the invitation to a celebrity from the culinary art scene.

“Each restaurant becomes a high-level gastronomic venue, where the local chef proposes his local restaurant menu, and the guest chef offers a limited menu to complement the restaurant’s flavor and style. Thus, both the gourmet tourist and the local gourmet enjoy two options within the same restaurant”.

The inauguration of the event was in TierraLuna Gardens, where the chefs presented themselves and 33 gourmet islands were set up, from the 33 participating restaurants. There each chef proposed a brief dish; In this edition, which is the 27th, some tapas were prepared. In addition, there were invited vineyards to pair menus, mixology, and drinks from festival sponsors.

In 1995 the journey through flavors began. In Puerto Vallarta, chefs Thierry Blouet and Heinz Reize thought of promoting and increasing the culinary level of this destination, and this is how the International Gourmet Festival arose, a gastronomic gathering backed by the creativity of highly qualified chefs. In the beginning, six hotels and six independent restaurants participated, but year after year the figures increased. Today there are 33 who participate.

“More than 70 chefs joined this year to cook in Puerto Vallarta, including local chefs and guests, in these 10 days of the event,” said Carlos Guzmán.

Among the chefs participating this year are Juantxo Sánchez, Fernando Martínez, Óscar Segundo, and Martín González, among others. In choosing the chefs who participate, says Guzmán, “each restaurant chooses its chef.”

But how do you get access to those events? “You have to make reservations at restaurants or through OpenTable; they are reserved at their normal times and the menu is normally offered for dinner, and there are two menus: there is a special menu for the Gourmet Festival, where the local chef’s menu is, and the guest’s menu, and you choose if you want to enjoy delicacies from the local chef or from the kitchen of the guest chef.

In this edition, there will be an unmissable activity: a one-on-one between Pujol (Jesús Durón and Daniel Núñez) and Cafe des Artistes, “where they will prepare an eight-course menu, with a spectacular pairing, in a dinner entitled ‘The night of stars’”.

Regarding this latest edition, “the challenge comes with the theme of reinventing ourselves: we have to ensure that not only do people want to come and enjoy the festival, but also that it is an icon at a national level, and be in the top 10 of the most popular gastronomic events”, concludes the organizer.

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