Everybody loves Mexican food, but hardly anyone really has a clue about it. Almost universally, Mexican food is thought of as bargain cuisine, heavy on grease and beans.

But Mexican cuisine is ancient and complex and as sophisticated as any continental cuisine. Salt Lake has several local restaurants–Frida Bistro and Alamexo, particularly–that serve refined Mexican food.

This week, Carlos Gaytan, chef-owner of a Michelin-starred Mexican restaurant, Mexique, in Chicago, will be in town to demonstrate modern Mexican cuisine and promote Artes de Mexico en Utah.  Gaytan has become famous for dishes like tequila-braised rabbit, seafood mousse tamal and escargots sope. Ingredients range from goat to duck confit and Gaytan uses classic and Mexican techniques.

Learn all about it  on Friday when you can watch Chef Gaytan cook and (better) taste his cooking at Harmons Cooking School at Harmons City Creek. There are still a few places left for the two-hour class which starts at 11:30 a.m. Cost is $75 per person.

Email artesmexicoutah@gmail.com to reserve your place at the table.

Or, if you'd rather eat than eat and cook, make a reservation at Frida Bistro where Chef Gaytan will  will create an extraordinary meal for a small group of guests for 3 nights only at Salt Lake’s Friday Bistro. The event was organized by the Consulate of Mexico in Salt Lake City.

A ffundraiser will be held on August 16th at 7 p.m. at Frida Bistro. Educational Opportunities, a Utah nonprofit organization, will be receiving funds and distributing them as scholarships to Latino students in pursuit of post-secondary education. Sponsorship opportunities and dinner tickets are still available.

Contact Claudia Benitez at 801-521-8502 x113 or email cbenitez@consulmexslc.org for more information.

Additionally, Chef Gaytán will prepare a 6-course tasting menu for Frida Bistro patrons on the 2 evenings prior to the fundraiser, Thursday August 14th and Friday August 15th. The menu will include cobia ceviche, seafood mousse tamales, chipotle/tamarind duck breast, braised pork belly, and a pistachio sponge cake. The cost is $85 per person or $125 with wine pairings.

Call Frida Bistro at 801.983.6692 for reservations.