Lives with Flavor: Monica Patiño & Carlos Gaytán

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Mexico | 2019 | 94 minutes | Ruth Zachs Babani, Pablo Gasca Gollás

Ruth Zachs Babani and Pablo Gasca Gollás’ documentary series spotlighting world-renowned Mexican chefs continues with looks at restaurateur and TV host Monica Patiño (World Premiere, 47 min) and Chicago-based Michelin Star-earner Carlos Gaytán (US Premiere, 47 min).

This year, SIFF brings you two delectable episodes of Lives With Flavor, a documentary series on the biggest names in Mexican gastronomy. The first follows Monica Patiño—television personality, savvy businesswoman, a pillar of Mexican cuisine—who grew up in Mexico City at a time when the only "real" cuisine was French. Driven by her desire to show that Mexico was every bit the culinary powerhouse that France was, Patino opened her first restaurant at age 22 before going on to establish a series of acclaimed restaurants that helped bring about a global appreciation for native Mexican cuisine—and being an original farm-to-table restaurateur before the term existed. (World Premiere, 47 min)

The second episode focuses on Chicago chef Carlos Gaytan. In 2012, four years into a highly successful run with his Mexican/French restaurant Mexique, Gaytan was facing an economic downturn. Having emigrated in 1991 from Huitzuco at age 20, he worked his way up to assisting chef Dominique Tougne at his celebrated Chez Moi and eventually opening his own restaurant. Now faced with a moment of crisis, a quiet plea to the heavens is answered the very next day: his first Michelin star. Yet despite being not only the first Mexican chef, but the first Latin American one, to win the prestigious award (and earning another the following year), Gaytan remains at his core a humble cook. (US Premiere, 47 min)

Hebe Tabachnik

Director Biography
Pablo Gasca Gollás studied at the Cinematographic Center of Mexico (C.C.C.) Among his productions are four short films and seven documentaries. Pablo was a participant in the Berlinale Talent Campus 2006 in Germany and is a grant recipient of the "Young Creators" program of FONCA, Mexico's National Fund for Culture and Arts.

Ruth Zachs Babani studied philosophy at the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. She has worked as a director, producer, writer, and cinematographer for the documentary series Lives With Flavor and The Secret Ingredient.

Sponsored by Princi, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates

  • Original Language Title: Vidas con sabor - Monica Patiño & Carlos Gaytán
  • Director: Ruth Zachs Babani, Pablo Gasca Gollás
  • Principal Cast: Chef Juan Carlos Gaytan, Chef Monica Patino, Chef Dominique Tougne, Chef Alex Ruiz
  • Premiere Status: US Premiere
  • Country: Mexico
  • Year: 2019
  • Running Time: 94 minutes
  • Producer: Ruth Zachs Babani
  • Screenplay: Ruth Zachs Babani, Pablo Gasca Gollás
  • Cinematographers: Pablo Gasca Gollas, Ivan Morales
  • Editors: Pablo Gasca Gollás
  • Music: Various Artists
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Filmography: Lives with Flavor: 1 Culinary Investigation Ricardo M. Zurita (Doc., 2017)
  • Language: Spanish
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP