Ceviche has never been lacking in descriptives such as “light” or “delicate” but this version is so refreshing it will surprise you.
I spent some time with a good friend of mine Carol on Saturday, cruising around Brooklyn.
During the subway ride out there, Carol told me a very sad ceviche story. She and some friends had gone out to dinner earlier that week at a fairly well respected restaurant in the city. Based on the recommendation of the waiter, she opted for the Ceviche- Sea Bass I think it was… She described it as lackluster and disappointing. No chunks of fish, just shredded bits, and just.. well… eh. Which, naturally, got me to thinking.
The first time I had ceviche was in 1981, when I was 17 and a Freshman in college. During Winter break my Father and I loaded up his Chevy Van and drove from San Francisco, down the Baja, to La Paz. From there we took a ferry to Puerto Vallarta, where I spent another week, and he the rest of the cold winter months. I’ve not been down those roads since, but in those days it was pretty desolate and rough. Miles of scrub and cactus with the occasional oasis of a gas station or hotel-motel.
My Father, known to be a character, packed a case of Freixinet sparkling wine in the back of the van, along with our clothes, items he needed for this 2 months stay, and a mattress that lined the floor. The drive down took a few days, and in exchange for one of those matt black bottles of wine, he would convince a lowly hotel night clerk to let us stay overnight in the parking lot- where we would proceed to sleep out in the back of the van. The rest of the wine, by the way, would be used to seduce and dazzle pretty, young “Chulitas” in Puerto Vallarta to go out dancing with him. As I said, Dad was a character.