Dining

Guac Epoch

Chefs upgrade the tried-and-true dip

Guacamole may not be broke, but that hasn’t stopped chefs from fixing it up.

The usual crush of ripe avocados, lime juice and salt has always been reliably delicious. But unexpected ingredients and ingenious techniques have turned this magnificent mash into a show-stopping item on menus around the country.

ABC Cocina: At the latest venture from Jean-Georges Vongerichten and ABC Kitchen chef Dan Kluger, seasonal ingredients fuel every dish. Springtime guacamole gets an injection of sweetness from fresh peas, which are smashed with charred jalapeño ahead of time to extract more flavor, then mixed in with avocado (see the recipe).

Tinga Santa Monica: Guacamole is charged with porky flavor at the newest outpost of Tinga in Santa Monica. Chef Jerry Baker adds smoked bacon to his blend of avocados and tequila-laced tomatillo salsa, then tops it with a crown of crisp chicharrones.

Taco Bamba: Chef Victor Albisu’s forthcoming taquería, located just outside of Washington, D.C., has been two years in the making, and there’s a reason why locals are in fervent anticipation mode. The BLT Steak alum fuses his grilling experience with his Latin American roots; instead of using the grill for ribeyes, he scatters avocados, tomatoes, onions and limes over the fire, charring them slightly before creaming them together for his smoky guacamole.

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