On Sunday night, 16 September 1810, Catholic priest, Miguel Hidalgo, rang the church bell in Dolores, in central Mexico to call the villagers to mass. After a moving speech, Hidalgo took up a banner of the Virgin of Guadalupe (the name of the Virgin Mary who appeared to a Mexican indigenous man named Juan Diego in the early days of the Spanish colony), and made the first outcry of independence. That moment commemorates the beginning of the struggle for Mexico’s independence that lasted 11 years and 11 days, finishing on 27 September 1821 when the country finally became an independent country from the Spanish Empire.
Every 16 September, Mexicans all around the world celebrate their national day. And to commemorate it, every year the incumbent president honours the legacy of Father Hidalgo by performing a re-enactment of the outcry of independence on 15 September, from the central balcony of the National Palace, where he rings the same bell believed was rang by Father Hidalgo. The same ceremony is carried out by every governor and every mayor around Mexico, and by every Mexican ambassador and consul abroad.
The ceremony of the outcry of independence is a festive and colourful occasion where all the people go to the streets to celebrate with fireworks, Mexican flags and—definitely—delicious Mexican food festivals. In the same way, every year, the Embassy of Mexico in Indonesia celebrates the national day with the Mexican community as well as some guests of honour.
Raffles Jakarta will once again be the venue to host Mexican Food Festival, from 14 to 20 September where the Embassy of Mexico hotel will collaborate to bring an entire week of special and authentic Mexican menu which guests can enjoy with family and friends for lunch and dinner. Guests can feel the festive Mexican vibe with special colourful decoration and the flavours of the cuisines, which are considered an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO since 2010.
One of the most important symbols of Mexico is tequila, and the Tequila Party will be the highlight of the food festival. On 19 September at 6 PM guests are allowed to take different kinds of tequila cocktails, as well as taste Mexican dishes.
Before the party, guests are welcomed join the webinar in Zoom on 15 September at 8PM with the theme Tequila: A Gift of Mexicoto the World, which allows people to learn about the legend of the plant that became the origin of tequila, how tequila is produced and also the story of the origin of several cocktails, such as Margarita and their original recipes.
Right on 16 September at 11AM, the embassy will share the live broadcast from Mexico City where the President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will give the cry for independence from the National Palace. Also, at 5PM there will be an online celebration presenting marimba music concert by the most prestigious marimba players in Mexico, Mario Nandayapa Quartet and a dance performance by the most acclaimed Mexican dance ballet called Ballet Folklórico de México de Amalia Hernandez.
Due to the pandemic, the embassy has to reinvent the way to celebrate such special occasions.
“The pandemic caused by the Covid-19 represents a huge challenge to promote culture, but at the same time, it allows us to innovate in that field. We were thinking how we could celebrate our national day without making a mass event, safe for everyone, and that could be broadened to any person who would like to have Mexican food; it was in that moment when we came up with the idea of having the Mexican Food Festival at the Raffles Jakarta,” says Ambassador of Mexico to Indonesia, H.E. Armando Alvarez.
Considering the current restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, any person who is interested in participating in this festival must make a reservation at this Whatsapp number: +62-855-8155-888. Through the same number, guests may also get information regarding the price and available menu.
Raffles Jakarta will screen the temperature of every person who will attend the festival, and the venue will be occupied up to 50% of its capacity. If the Jakarta government issues new measures, such measures will be informed when the persons make the reservation. The Raffles Jakarta has informed us that they have a certificate on safety measures issued by Bureau Veritas.
Also, guests can join the inauguration ceremony on 14 September at 12PM (limited seats, suggested for immediate reservation).