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Their new pop-up burrito shop in Portland, Ore., managed to kick up a buzz around town.With French fries tucked inside the tortillas with eggs, cheese and guacamole, and served with neon-colored salsas, the burritos were Instagram-ready. Then on May 16 the Willamette Week ran a story explaining how a trip to Mexico in December inspired them – and things quickly went south.“This business recently made waves in the news, which often means that people come to this page to post their views on the news,” says a message on the page. “How you feel about the attitudes reflected in the article will depend on who and to what degree you bestow the benefit of the doubt.“While we don’t take a stand one way or the other when it comes to these news events, we do work to remove both positive and negative posts that appear to be motivated more by the news coverage itself than the reviewer’s personal consumer experience with the business.” The brouhaha has led to a bit of soul-searching in the food world. “And who and to what degree you bestow the benefit of the doubt to will depend on all sorts of factors connected to how you were raised, what culture you were raised in, feelings of marginalization, and your personal take on the notion of food appropriation.” The thing about culture and race, wrote food writer Vince Mancini, “is that it’s blurry, and always has been.From the way they described it, the locals were not eager to share.
“The day after we returned, I hit the Mexican market and bought ingredients and started testing it out,” Connelly told the Week.
“They told us the basic ingredients, and we saw them moving and stretching the dough similar to how pizza makers do before rolling it out with rolling pins.
“They wouldn't tell us too much about technique, but we were peeking into the windows of every kitchen, totally fascinated by how easy they made it look.
“Appropriation scrubs all of that meaning, all of the importance, all of the history, and all of the story that is attached to these recipes.
“If anyone stole the recipes my grandmother passed down to me, I wouldn't just be furious, I'd feel deeply sad, because they'd be stealing a part of my abuela from me, they'd be stealing the memories I have of her and of her cooking.” Another newspaper, the Portland Mercury, weighed in too, writing that “Portland has an appropriation problem,” “This week in white nonsense, two white women ...