After joining the network in 2018, Tucson invited all Délice Network partners to discover the uniqueness of the local food culture and the dynamic of the community. 35 participants from 14 members cities gathered in the Sonoran Desert to discover this city of 4000 years of history, attracting today thousands of new inhabitants every year thanks to the quality of life.
During the 3-day program, the participants were invited to discover the various trendy eateries of the city, the agricultural & social projects developed by the native tribes and the close collaboration that Tucson community had with the Mexican neighbors.
This meeting allowed the various partners of Tucson to discover the dynamic of Délice and to start developing close collaborations with some members. Hosted during the Agave Heritage Festival, the Délice gathering was the occasion to organize the first Mixologist Pairing of the network.
Would you travel to Montreal without trying poutine?
Would you go to Barcelona and not experience a tapas night?
Would you admit going to Kobe without a taste of the Beef?
Would you not want to stop for a Dim Sum in Guangzhou?
Around the world, most destinations are known for the “must-sees” and “must-tastes” that reflect their culture or define their sense of place. A superstar food might get its title from history, from a local legend, from a celebrity, or for reasons long forgotten. In all cases, its fame on the international scene can only spark the development of interesting marketing initiatives.
In the heart of the Sonoran Desert, Tucson has understood the opportunities linked to the production of the ancient agave plant for the distillation of tequila, mezcal, and other agave-based liquors. Délice members have looked at their own superstar food and considered how it could be used as a strong marketing tool.
Agave Heritage Festival is a city-wide, ten-day event that spotlights the sustainability of the southwest region through the lens of the agave plant. The event explores and celebrates the cultural, commercial, and culinary significance of the agave across borders with seminars, trade shows, and world-class culinary events. An occasion to see the great potential of a product-based event.
After chefs, time to pair mixologists in Tucson!
Member cities were invited to bring along their best cocktail expert. A special program was set-up to discover all about the agave-based liquors, from the plantations to the distillation as well as the tasting of unique brands. Guest mixologists were paired with a traditional smallscale mezcal producer and with a local mixologist to share techniques and propose to visitors a unique international "MEZCrawl" on May 2.
Participating Mixologists from Délice Network cities:
Brussels: Pierre Millour (Chez Ta Mère)
Cali: Carlos Alberto Gaitán Salazar (Sadud a Ragul)
Lyon: Marc Bonetton (L'Antiquaire)
Mérida: Diego Valencia Dominguez (ARCA)