Connect to Peru

Where Americans and Peruvians Living Abroad Connect to Peru

Posts Tagged ‘peru

Back On Track!

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writing1Hi everyone!

Well, it’s been some crazy busy February work weeks and an awful flu I finally battled and went through before getting back on track to writing again.

I’m sure more than one reading this post has been working or somehow thinking on how they could be affected by the Economic Stimulus Package — the main reason for my several nights of insomnia and long hours working in my main job as a publicist in the Washington, DC area.

Also, I want to thank my BFF the Nyquil bottle for helping me successfully battle the worst point of a week and a half long flu working (whenever I wasn’t drowsy) from my bed.

Anyways, “Connect to Peru” and this humble writer of yours is back on track and ready to continue giving you the most exciting and fun things about what Peru can offer for your next big trip to my beloved South American hometown.

Thanks for all the wonderful feedback and comments, and for coming back every day to read our daily updates! It has just been three months since launched, and a wonderful journey!

Cheers to you all, and let’s get back to the show!  🙂

Written by Catherine Castro

February 23, 2009 at 10:25 pm

Posted in General, News

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The Specially Designed Riedel Crystal Glass Exclusively for the Peruvian Pisco

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Worldwide Introduction of the Peruvian Pisco Glass by Riedel Glass Corp.

Worldwide Introduction of the Peruvian Pisco Glass by Riedel Glass Corp.

Just as the white wine, the red wine, the champagne, etc. have their own glass design to correctly appreciate and savor their kindness to the taste, the pisco has its own specially designed glass designed and produced by the world renowned Austria house Riedel.

Chosen among 29 final prototypes, the exclusively designed crystal glass for Peruvian pisco was presented in Vienna on May 11, 2006, and shipped to Peru on July 24, 2006. It is a tulip-shaped glass.

Click here top watch a video that walks you through the Riedel headquarters in Vienna, Austria and how they produce their unique designs, including the pisco glass. Although the video is in Spanish, it includes an interview in English with the Riedel’s House President George Riedel at the beginning of the video, and then further comments on minute 6:50.

If you want to learn more about pisco, click here for a great website in English (click each of the yellow icons on the bottom of the site). Click the icon with the glass image in the middle bottom row to get the specs/measurements of the Riedel glass.

Written by Catherine Castro

February 8, 2009 at 11:12 pm

Cherry Piscotini, Recipe Exclusively From Las Canteras Restaurant

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Cherry Piscotini by Las Canteras (Washington, DC)

Washington-DC based Las Canteras co-owner Gary Lee shares with us another one of his innovative pisco-based drink recipes exclusively with “Connect to Peru” in celebration of “Pisco Day”.

So here is the recipe, and hope you have fun trying it at home!

Cherry Piscotini
Ingredients (1 serving): Two and a half ounces of cherry-infused Pisco, one half ounce of blackberry schnapps, a half ounce of cherry juice, juice from 1/2 lime, a splash of soda, a scoop of ice.

To make the drink, mix all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake well until nicely chilled. Serve in a chilled martini glass.

Optional decoration: sugar around the rim of the glass.Garnish with a cherry.

Enjoy!

Written by Catherine Castro

February 8, 2009 at 10:49 pm

The Origins of the Pisco

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piscoInstead of writing a post about pisco and its origins, here is a two-part video named “Pisco, cultural heritage of Peru” that walks you through the origins of pisco, including locations where it is produced in the south coast of Peru, official documents from centuries ago proving pisco is authentic from Peru (and nowhere else — others claimed to be pisco are really a totally different liqueur not 100% from grapes — a key characteristic of the authentic pisco), as well as interesting recipes you can make with pisco. You might also want to take note of the locations mentioned in this video which are great places where you can visit and see how pisco is produced.

Part 1

  • The history
  • The old cellars
  • The name
  • Pisco tourism

Part 2

  • Bar and Kitchen — includes commentary from Peruvian top chefs Isabel Alvarez, Gaston Acurio and Pedro Schiaffino
  • Cultural Heritage

Written by Catherine Castro

February 8, 2009 at 9:21 am

How is Peru Celebrating “Pisco Day”?

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Tourists Enjoy Pisco Sours in Lima (Andina)

Tourists Enjoy Pisco Sours in Lima (Andina)

The Pisco Sour, the most symbolic beverage of Peru and considerd a “national cultural patrimony”, will be starring this weekend’s crowded festivals in Peru, with thousands of free tastings, contests and dances throughout the country, as the largest Peruvian newspaper El Comercio reports.

Many activities, such as free tastings, competitions and dances are taking place in the capital city of Lima, and throughout the nation since Thursday, February 5 thru tomorrow Sunday, February 8.

In Lima, the Municipality of Surco, Peru’s Ministry of Production and the National Commission of Pisco (Conapisco) will host the 6th National Pisco Sour Festival at the Parque de la Amistad in Surco district.

Andina news reports:

Visitors will have the opportunity to sample Peru’s flagship drink and enjoy a series of artistic and cultural activities. The festival will open at 12:00 (local time) with a Pisco Sour toast and thereafter local authorities will unveil a bust of Victor Morris, creator of the original Pisco Sour recipe.

At 15:00, several young students will participate in a Pisco Sour contest; while at 18:00, the “Pisco Sour: History and Tradition” book by Guillermo Díaz Vera will be presented.

Afterwards, Peruvian historian Luis Repetto, journalist Raul Vargas and deputy foreign minister Gonzalo Gutiérrez will comment on certain particulars of this book.

The Pisco Sour contest will continue on Saturday, Feb. 7, at 15:00 with the professional category and then Creole singer Cecilia Barraza will perform for the audience at 21:30.

The celebrations will end on Sunday, Feb 8, at 15:00 with the final of the Pisco Sour contest in the champions category. All these shows and activities are free.

The Parque de la Amistad (Friendship Park) is located in the Limean district of Surco, a block from the intersection of Benavides and Caminos del Inca Avenues.

In the provinces of Peru, many free demonstrations will take place this weekend, as well as dances and all kinds of activities to promote the Pisco Sour.

In the southern region of Ica, where the pisco originated, visitors will receive 3,000 free Pisco Sour drinks, and the Pisco Producers Association will elect its “Queen of the Pisco”.

Contests will take place where bartenders, chefs, students or fans will prepare their own recipes and look to win the prize for the “Best Pisco Sour”.

Written by Catherine Castro

February 7, 2009 at 3:52 pm

Posted in drinks, Events, News, Travel

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Update from our Argentinean Blogger Friend Seba on his Trip to Peru

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sebaWe just got a message from our Argentinean blogger friend Seba as he is back in Argentina after a couple of weeks vacation in Peru — a trip he just did following our posting about a northern Peruvian beach called Cabo Blanco where Ernest Hemingway got inspiration from to write his book “The Old Man and the Sea”.

Here is a translation of his comment posted this morning:

“Well, I am back in Argentina since yesterday, will be a week of reaccomodating myself to work but I promise a super post next week. Your country (Peru) is really beautiful, with things to discover in every single corner, and, as an extra gift, with prices really but really cheap. Hugs and thanks for everything!”

Looking forward to reading all the details about his experience in Peru next week!

Written by Catherine Castro

February 5, 2009 at 10:00 am

British Woman to Trek the Peruvian Andes to Raise Money for Mental Health Charity

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treking1Great to read that Peru’s geographic landscape will be witnessing such a nice gesture for mentally disabled people in the UK.

Sara Burden, a woman native from Belper, United Kingdom, will be treking the Peruvian Andes in September 2009 to raise funds for the Mental Health Foundation, a

Burden states in the article:

“The trek is seven days across the Andes. We will trek for eight or nine hours a day and will train for 16 weeks.”

How can you support her? If you are in the UK, you might want to stop by at her art auction at “The Little Gallery” on Bridge Street from February 7 – 21.

Good luck on your treking adventure in Peru, and congratulations on such a nice gesture!

Written by Catherine Castro

February 4, 2009 at 9:03 am

First Shipments of Peru-US Exchanged Goods Arrive to/Depart from Peru

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The first goods exchanged between Peru and the U.S. around the recently signed Free Trade Agreement arrived to Peru and were shipped to the U.S., correspondingly, according to an article in El Comercio.

In a historic celebration, the first shipment coming from the U.S. to Peru’s international port of Callao arrived yesterday Monday, February 2 including apples from California worth US$17,542. And the first shipment of Peruvian textiles to the U.S. left Callao.

The vast majority of goods coming from the U.S. to Peru free of customs charges include complementary and industrial goods, supplies, and machinery for Peruvian producers.

The U.S. is Peru’s largest commercial partner. In average, trade among both countries reaches nearly US$ 9.4 billion per year.

Click here to watch a news video on this relevant trade accomplishment for both countries.

Key US-Peru trade facts, according to El Comercio:

  • Since last Sunday, products imported to Peru from the U.S. are entering free of customs — in the past they included a 9% or 17% customs charge.
  • In 2008, 18% of the US$31,163 million of total Peruvian exports were shipped to the U.S.
  • In the following months, the Free Trade Agreements with Canada, Singapore, China and Chile will become effective.

Written by Catherine Castro

February 3, 2009 at 10:29 pm

How is the Economic Stimulus Package Going in Peru?

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As we expect news on the American Economic Stimulus Package in the next two weeks, Reuters writes about the status of the Peruvian’s stimulus package which will help Peru ride best the global economic recession with government estimates reaching up to 4-5% GDP growth in 2009.

The Reuters article reads:

Peru started the first part of spending under its economic stimulus package (…).

The first bit includes 4.5 billion soles ($1.42 billion) of price cuts and spending. It includes a 10 percent reduction in fuel prices, 3 billion soles in social spending, help for non-traditional exporters, and infrastructure projects.

The finance ministry said it also has been working to keep credit lines open and obtain loans from multilateral agencies.

Written by Catherine Castro

January 28, 2009 at 10:56 pm

Posted in News

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Associated Press Reporter Gives Travel Advice for Baby Boomers; Peruvian Amazon His Spring 2009 Destination

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elderhostelThere seems to be a Peru travel media boom lately…this time is the story of an Associated Press retired executive planning a trip to Peru following his retirement! If you are in that time where retirement is an option and looking to destress by taking an educational world tour, this article is a MUST!

Picked up by The Mercury News, Rick Spratling talks about his experience travelling with his wife under a non-profit organization’s travel program. Elderhostel was founded in 1975 on five college campuses in New Hampshire, based on the idea of inexpensive lodging and noncredit classes.

An excerpt of the article states:

By 1980, participation grew to 20,000 people in 50 states and Canada, and in 1981 Elderhostel offered its first international programs. Today Elderhostel says it attracts more than 160,000 participants annually to nearly 8,000 tour packages in more than 90 countries.

Elderhostel says the average cost of programs in the United States and Canada is a little over $100 per day, while international programs, not including airfare, average a bit over $200 per day. Elderhostel emphasizes a package price that covers meals, taxes, gratuities, lodging, lectures, excursions, activities and travel within a program, such as shuttles to various sites.

Participants provide their own transportation to domestic programs. For international programs, you can book the flights yourself or have Elderhostel do it.

Rates vary widely by destination and type of trip. My wife and I paid just under $10,000 to visit Israel. Our planned trip to Peru will cost around $11,600 for two. Both pricetags include roundtrip airfare from the United States.

Also on the high end is a 24-night study cruise of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands and a nearby island called South Georgia for around $14,000 per person. This price covers expert lectures, experienced group leaders, field trips, lodging, most meals, gratuities, taxes, ship travel, air shuttles and round-trip air fare from the United States to Buenos Aires. The cost varies by departure city.

But Elderhostel also offers programs for less than $600. You can study “The Cajun Experience” in Louisiana for $547 per person, including meals, five nights of hotel lodging and expert-led sessions ranging from how to dance the Cajun waltz to the history of Acadian migration from Nova Scotia to south Louisiana. You provide your own transportation to and from the program site in Lafayette, La.

While Elderhostel makes no claim to five-star luxury, we gave good marks in Israel to our hotels, food, guides and expert lecturers.

Sounds like an interesting option for baby boomers looking to travel and explore!

To read the full article, click here.

Written by Catherine Castro

January 27, 2009 at 12:09 am