The story could be from a movie, one of those with a happy ending that we love. She is Brazilian and he is Mexican. Both share a common passion: art of cooking 🇧🇷
Lucky for us, they both dropped everything in their countries to venture into the cosmopolitan New York , in the United States. That’s where this partnership begins – which went beyond the stoves.
They met at the renowned Cosme , a contemporary cuisine restaurant inspired by Mexican flavors, but which emphasizes local ingredients. Eduardo, originally from Oaxaca, had never thought about living in Brazil until then, but together with his girlfriend they started to develop the idea of bringing home Sao Paulo something that united the nationalities of both – here is the cliché phrase: what do we not do for love?!
So, after about 3 years, they left for São Paulo with an idea: to open the metzi a house rooted in Mexican flavors and traditions, but which praises Brazilian ingredients.
The main challenge, in the minds of the young chefs, would be great: practically presenting São Paulo’s authentic mexican food – which has nothing to do with tex-mex, full of cheeses, sour cream, industrialized seasonings and fried foods. But, amazingly, bringing an almost unknown cuisine to the so-called gastronomic capital of the country was easy compared to what they faced.
In February 2020 they rented the property in Pine trees , but even before the works began came the pandemic that stopped the world. Along with this, which would be enough reason to give up on the dream, the bureaucratic difficulties of opening a business, the language and customs barriers that Eduardo faced and the lack of familiarity of the team with what they would prepare and serve were some of the of the “perrengues” faced by the duo that had left stability in the United States.
In tune with the same purpose, they moved on and with little time at home – and age, she is 26 and he is 33 years old – they have already flown high and entered this year in the select list of 50 best restaurants in Latin America, in 27th position.
Visiting Metzi, named after the goddess of the moon according to Aztec mythology, is to feel the synergy and lightness of the couple with each bite of the menu that prioritizes each raw material in a sublime way, takes you away from the sameness and surprises: whether in the presentation , in the combination of ingredients or in that taste that you have never tasted, but that quickly conquers your palate.
With a team made up of attentive servers of various Latin nationalities and an elegant atmosphere, with objects brought back from trips to Mexico and which tells, in the smallest details, the history of the house, the menu wanders through emblematic dishes, such as guacamole, which is prepared with big chunks of avocado and seasoned with feta cheese and trout roe; cochinita pibil, with pork marinated in annatto and other spices, and cooked inside plantain leaves; Esquites, a dish of ripe corn kernels seasoned with Brazilian nuts and topping of Mexican crickets; and the churros with dulce de leche mousse and tonka bean, among others.
O soft, a traditional Mexican preparation, also appears in different versions: green, accompanied by tatemated broccoli and cashew nuts; black, made with more than 70 ingredients, including miso, chocolate and nuts; and the incredible lemon sauva ant mole, which goes with the soft crab tempura with Creole corn meal.
The tortillas and tostadas are an art in their own right. The basis of Mexican cuisine is corn, and chefs look for Brazilian ingredients that are close to Mexican culture and flavors. The creole corn grains, which has this nickname because it does not undergo any chemical treatment or genetic modification in the laboratory, are ground in the house to become the flattened masses that surround several of Metzi’s dishes. Coming from Fazenda Vista Alegre, Metzi’s corn comes in black, red and yellow cobs, and they make up most of the menu.
Diners can opt for the tasting menu. (R$ 240), with 5 steps, or à la carte🇧🇷 Dishes may vary according to seasonality, but some classics remain forever. This is the case with cauliflower with tamarind chamoy and chamamanteles, the octopus tostada, and the oaxaqueña tlayuda with ancho tasajo, house favorites.
In addition to the dishes, they offer signature cocktails such as Amarguita, with passion fruit, tequila and campari, and El Güero, with tangerine, turmeric, tonic, gin and lillet. Classics such as margarita and michelada are also present on the drinks menu. The bar is run by Eduardo Teixeira former bartender at Tuju.
One spoiler of the winning couple’s next steps: soon they will open a taqueria – still unnamed – also in the Pinheiros neighborhood.
metzi: Rua João Moura, 861, Pinheiros – São Paulo – SP / Opening hours: Tuesday and Wednesday, from 7 pm to 10:30 pm; Thursday and Friday, from 7 pm to 11 pm; Saturday, from 12:00 to 15:00 and from 19:00 to 23:00; Sunday, from 12:00 to 17:00.
Source: CNN Brasil