By Ezra Klein
Sonia Sotomayor’s identity as a woman, a Latina, a judge, a professional, and even a single adult have all been front page news recently. But only Politico‘s Ben Smith has the courage to get at the core of Sotomayor’s persona: Her identity as a foodie. He heads back to her 2001 Olmos lecture — the same lecture where she famously said, “I wonder whether by ignoring our differences as women or men of color we do a disservice both to the law and society” — and finds a delicious digression into Sotomayor’s comfort cuisine:
For me, a very special part of my being Latina is the mucho platos de arroz, gandoles y pernir — rice, beans and pork — that I have eaten at countless family holidays and special events. My Latina identity also includes, because of my particularly adventurous taste buds, morcilla — pig intestines, patitas de cerdo con garbanzo — pigs’ feet with beans, and la lengua y orejas de cuchifrito, pigs’ tongue and ears. I bet the Mexican-Americans in this room are thinking that Puerto Ricans have unusual food tastes. Some of us, like me, do.
Sadly, Sotomayor will find Washington, D.C. a bit bereft of not only good Puerto Rican food, but good Latin food generally. As a native Californian, that’s done the most to slow my adjustment to District-living. But there are exceptions. Mt. Pleasant and Columbia Heights can occasionally taste of home. Pollo Sabrosa has wonderful Peruvian chicken, fried yucca, and Mexican-style tacos. Taco District Federal has a chorizo, goat, and pork skin tacos that will make you want to firebomb a Cosi, not to mention the outdoor grilling they do on weekends. And the delightful Taco Pepitos Bakery 2 stands in silent rebuke to the nearby Mixtec, which charges $12 for a couple of tacos and a handful of chips.
What say you, IFA-folk? Any other recommendations for Judge Sotomayor?