New tequila bar adds spice to San Jose’s San Pedro Square market
Tequila is all the rage these days, and you can see why if you visit the new Market Bar in San Pedro Square in downtown San Jose. The craft agave cocktails served at Alma Tequileria are a far cry from the days when drinking tequila meant making shots of Jose Cuervo with salt and lime.
You have spirits like the sweet cinnamon Matador San Pedro and the Oaxacan Beet Down one-two punch, which features both tequila and its smoky cousin, mezcal, plus a beet liqueur. The Lady Peralta – and I love localized cocktail names – is like a spicy strawberry margarita. (Cocktails are $13-$14, and there’s also a selection of premium tequilas and mezcals served by the glass, as well as beer and sangritas.)
Drinks aren’t Alma’s only draw, either. It occupies the corner that was once the Blush Raw Bar and provides a desperately needed anchor for the Market Hall building, which includes newcomers Hyland House of Sushi and Mochinut, as well as a revamped Market Beer Co.. from the exterior mural bursting with colorful flowers and plants by artist Lila Gemellos to the woven basket light fixtures hanging from the ceiling and wooden alcove seating.
Although it’s been open for a few weeks now, Thursday was its official grand opening and it drew a diverse crowd, including a few residents of the Centerra apartment building across the street checking out the new neighbors.
ANNIVERSARY EVENT: The past few years have been challenging for the Chinese Performing Arts of America. Founder Ann Woo died unexpectedly and tragically in 2017 following a confrontation outside a bubble tea shop in West San Jose, then the COVID-19 pandemic halted her programs two years ago.
But the San Jose-based nonprofit — which isn’t a touring band but promotes ethnic arts and culture through live entertainment, community service and education — is back with a gala du 30th anniversary scheduled for April 16 at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts.
“An Ode to the Golden Tangs” celebrates China’s Tang dynasty, which lasted from 618 to 907. CPAA executive director Lihong Zhang said the era was known for its booming economy, its flourishing arts and multicultural society. The four parts of the show celebrate the poetry, theatre, dance and music of the time. “Our production is driven by the rich arts and inclusive culture of the Tang Dynasty,” she said.
Tickets for the 7 p.m. show are available at www.cpaasv.org/2022.
RETURNS FROM THE FLOWER FESTIVAL: After a two-year absence, the Saratoga Blossom Festival returns on April 9 at the Heritage Orchard and surrounding area. The free event, based on the original festival that started in 1900 and has lasted 40 years, celebrates Saratoga’s agricultural history with a number of small-town touches including vintage cars, orchard tours and a zoo for children.
Of course, there will also be music, and it will be everywhere, from the ragtime sounds of Parlor Tricks and the Spirit of Sunnyvale Dixieland Band to more modern covers played by Dolce Musica. People dressed as Saratoga historical figures like Isabel Stine and Olivia deHavilland will wander around from noon to 2 p.m., but if that’s not quite the conversation you’re looking for, you can chat with authors such as Tim Stanley (” Last of the Prune Pickers”) and Lisa Newman (“For the Love of Apricots”).
It all runs from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and parking is available in the Civic Center parking lot, as well as in Lot 4 at West Valley College. If you need more details, you can find them at www.saratogahistory.com.
WALK FOR A CAUSE: Another event that’s back in action this year is the PanCAN PurpleStride, the big fundraising walk for the Silicon Valley affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. It’s scheduled for April 30 at Discovery Meadow at Guadalupe River Park in downtown San Jose. This month marks the 10th anniversary of the event at Discovery Meadow, a decade that has raised nearly $3 million for pancreatic cancer research.
The fundraising goal for the event this year is $257,000 and it was 88% of the way there Friday afternoon.
“By acting locally, we have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of pancreatic cancer patients nationwide,” said Diane Borrison, President of Advocacy for PanCAN Silicon Valley and herself a survivor of pancreatic cancer. pancreas. “We are committed to continuing to raise vital funds and awareness to support the pancreatic cancer community and we look forward to meeting in person this year to do so.”
The main sponsor of the event is the Kenney family of San Mateo, who lost their daughter, Carol Fitzgerald, to pancreatic cancer at age 51 in 2016. You can register for the event or get more information at www.purplestride.org/siliconvalley.