I was born in France but was raised in Mexico City. I started cooking at a young age because my Mom, being a single mother with three kids, was mostly not around, so many times I had to cook for myself. Around the age of 17, I started as a dishwasher at a French restaurant, and because I was a French speaker. I was rapidly moved into the kitchen and that was where I realized my passion for alchemy, perfecting flavors and pleasing others through the act of cooking.
I kept cooking in restaurants for a couple of years and eventually found myself working for chef-researcher Ricardo Muñoz Zurita as an executive culinary researcher, I helped to create an updated edition of the Encyclopedic Dictionary of Mexican Gastronomy as well as eight other titles including one devoted to Mexican Salsas.
Fast forward to my life in NYC: as a Chef and Culinary Consultant I have more than 18 years of experience in the local food industry. I helped launch La Superior in Brooklyn and created the menu for Pulqueria, in Chinatown. I have worked as a consultant for Starr Restaurants, developing dishes and menus for El Vez in the Goldman Sachs building. I have brought Mexican flavors to the public by teaching Mexican cooking techniques, including a salsa-making course at the Brooklyn Kitchen.
Teaching the world about Mexican flavors and culture is important to me because, as an immigrant, I have seen, first-hand how Mexican food is often misunderstood, misrepresented and even diminished. I want to share my appreciation for the complex and bold preparations that sometimes take days or weeks to prepare and replace these misconceptions with the dynamic realities of traditional Mexican cuisine. To me, authenticity means maintaining respect for a product’s true origins and honoring lasting traditions and techniques.
This loan is special because:
More about this loan
XILLI is a collection of authentic, traditional and artisanal Mexican Salsas, Moles, Escabeches and Adobos. These preparations have been staples in Mexican kitchens for centuries. Now we’re making them by hand here in Brooklyn using traditional recipes and fresh ingredients while keeping conscientious methods in mind and heart.
Our flavors call to mind that favorite dish your Mexican Abuela used to make, regardless of whether or not you’ve ever had a Mexican Abuela!
Our recipes are centuries old and we try to improve them only by adapting classic techniques to our modern knowledge. In so doing, we achieve a product that is simple, delicious, authentic and unique.
Our products are universal, easy to use, easy to pair, even customizable! They’re appealing to locals, foodies and industry level consumers. Our salsas have already graced the menus of several New York restaurants. People who have tried them before know and love them. Now they can take them home or use them in their own restaurants.
There are many salsas on the market, but none that will bring back memories or transport you the way ours will. It is our mission to educate and elevate people’s understanding of Mexican food. We want to raise awareness about Mexican culinary traditions and flavors and evolve that understanding into a new knowledge. We want to create, build and leave our own positive footprint on the legacy of Mexican cuisine.
What is the purpose of this loan?
We plan to use this $10K loan to continue growing our brand and to bring it to a sustainable level.
$1,500 will be spent on designing and printing a bar-code label that will be added to our current packaging. This will help meet Whole Food’s standards, who recently approached us about selling our product
$1,500 will be spent on redesigning our packaging in order to make it more attractive on the shelves.
$4,000 will be used for operating capital as we need to continue approaching potential distributors with samples. We need to continue positioning, marketing and promoting the brand and our current products, by participating in markets, fairs, tradeshows and events.
$3,000 will be used for growing our production capacity by adding inventory: ingredients, jars and labels, as well as marketing collateral (or materials) such as business cards, shelf tags and customer facing educational material.
Years in operation: 1 year – 3 years
A loan of $10,000 helps Nacxi a Kiva Zip loan helps me to upgrade our kitchen,.