Dia de Los Muertos
The only thing better than Halloween is the next day. In Mexican culture, Dia de Los Muertos honors loved ones who’ve passed to the other side. It is not a sad holiday but rather one which celebrates the colorful art of living.
I was in downtown LA, this weekend, and maneuvered the crowds on Olvera Street, one of our historic neighborhoods. The Mexican settlers who founded a pueblo in this spot, in 1781, helped shape the identity of Los Angeles.
Today, twenty-seven buildings (including the oldest house in Los Angeles) house shops selling traditional crafts, and restaurants serving enchiladas, margaritas and other typical specialties.
Strolling Mariachis set a festive mood along the street, while folkloric dance performances take place in a Mexican-style plaza on the weekends. These Indian dancers livened up the crowd.
Across the street from the plaza, people lit candles and paid homage to the deceased in an old church dedicated to Our Lady. And, I was excited to catch a glimpse of one of the famous murals painted by local artists on the side of old buildings.
One of the most popular attractions was the juice guy selling watermelon, pineapple and other fruity delights.
In honor of Dia de Los Muertos, I’ve created a cocktail called La Muerte:
1 ounce rum 2 1/2 ounces Horchata (milky rice drink) 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon splash of Kahlua Fill a tall glass with ice. Add rum and horchata, then top with a splash of Kahlua and a sprinkling of cinnamon.