Sunday, July 7, 2013

Another Saturday Culinary Trip

Saturday, July 6, 2013 - We decided to visit the Municipality of Ciales, Puerto Rico. It was the result of a day before planned Saturday Trip. We wanted to repair 2 chairs bought a couple of years ago at an Ad agency where my wife worked. When the agency was moving to another building they decided to sell their current furniture and change their décor. She was told that our chairs  were made by someone from a family in Ciales, a local artisan. The chairs have a wood frame with the back and seat made with a knitted bulrush. Searching for someone skilled enough to repair them, we found Master Artisan Mr. Guadalupe Villalobos who carries his Puerto Rican Family tradition of making furniture made from wood and bulrush in the Municipality of Ciales; a family legacy for over 100 years. We met him at his workshop and brought him the chairs to repair, he talked to us about their tradition, family history and even gave us a brief class on how to make the bulrush knitting. Talking about our chairs, he remembered that these were made by his brother who died a few years ago. Also, he told us that these chairs were a reproduction based on the 1940's Architect Henry Klumb's Easy Chair, he even confirmed to us that he collaborated in the restoration of the Henry Klumb's Chairs that were used for Architect Klumb Exhibition at the MAPR (Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico)a few years ago. Talking to him was really an enriching experience.

Following our visit to Mr. Villalobos workshop, we began our culinary trip, beginning with a quick stop at "El Colmado Bar La Ultima Copa" for a cold beer, as always, and continue through Route 149 South to a local Smokehouse called "Asao". Route 149 is the route to take South to the Municipality of Ciales from the Municipality of Manatí, which is located at the Northern Cost between the Municipalities of Florida and Barceloneta at the east and Vega Baja at the west. Our final stop was at the Historic Coffee Museum (Museo del Café), as we were told the address is as follow: "drive to the center of town, pass the town's Plaza and the Town Hall and you will find it at the right before Banco Popular".

Enjoy some pictures of our Saturday Culinary Trip and some helpful links.

Talking with Mr. Villalobos about the process of drying bulrush.
Mr. Guadalupe Villalobos' Workshop

Master Artisan Mr. Guadalupe Villalobos
Architect Henry Klumb Biography
ASAO Smokehouse, Ciales, Puerto Rico
Museo del Cafe de Puerto Rico

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