Meet our local hosts, guides & chefs…


Getting an insider’s view is key to an unforgettable trip.

All Frutas y Verduras Plant Food Lovers’ Experiences are presented by independent culinary and tourism professionals. They know their communities well, and have a passion for sharing their knowledge of the foods, as well as their love for the place they call home.

Mission-driven, these local professionals aim to support local vendors and benefit the people of the communities that you’ll visit.

As you travel Mexico, connect with our locals  in some of the country’s most beautiful destinations.  Each tour or class is absolutely unique, reflecting the fresh food traditions of the region as well the creativity and perspective of the individual presenting it.

Get to know us…

Want to join us? Tell us more.



Born and raised in Mexico City, I learned from a young age to appreciate food for flavor of course, but I was also interested in the social perspective.

At 18, I enrolled in the the Escuela de Gastronomia Mexicana. After completing the program, I became the sous chef of the school and traveled to New Zealand  as a “culinary ambassador” to demonstrate traditional Mexican food.

My more than 6 years in the food tourism industry have included collaborations with companies like Eat Mexico, Intrepid Travel and AirBnB Experiences. I’ve also contributed in research and developing recipes for several publications and books, including:  Mezcal Nuestra Escencia, Eat Mexico Cookbook as well as blogs and websites like Eater,  The Globe and Mail and VOGUE.

I love sharing my culture with visitors, in tours and culinary presentations and I love the Frutas y Verduras concept for presenting fresh regional foods to people!

Check out my podcast at Culinaria Nacional (English and Spanish)



I was born and raised in the foodie Mecca of the San Francisco Bay Area, California, and am a certified Natural Chef with ten years experience in professional kitchens.  What I most love about living here in Merida is how integral food is to the culture and how willing locals are to share it with everyone who visits.

My Merida-born and bred husband and I moved back to his home city in 2014 and we now have two young children. I’ve spent the last four years learning about Merida, Yucatán and Mexico from everyone I meet here; be it what food to bring to a party, how to properly fry masa for panuchos, or how to drink your cerveza like a local.

I’m honored to collaborate with Frutas y Verduras Mexico in creating a tour that brings the proud plant food heritage of this region to a wider audience.



Suzanne Barbezat is a writer specializing in Mexico travel, culture and food. Her work has been published on many online platforms; she is a regular contributor to the Mexico Travel section on Tripsavvy, and she is the local expert for Oaxaca on She is the author of Frida Kahlo at Home (Frances Lincoln, 2016), a book that explores how Mexican culture and tradition influenced the artist and her work. She is also a licensed federal tour guide in Mexico and has made her home in Oaxaca since 1998.

Suzanne loves sharing her knowledge of the country and information for travelers about destinations, attractions, cultural traditions, food, events, and much more. As a vegetarian herself, she is delighted to be collaborating with Frutas y Verduras on a Plant Food Lover’s tour.



I seek a connecting point with people through the elemental art of cooking and the stories you can tell from it.

I was born in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico. My career developed growing up in nature, travelling and researching gastronomies and philosophies around the world. I gained professional culinary experience to give me a technical base and take my inspiration from international icons in food to develop my own style: rustic cooking with a play of the wild and local ingredients at hand and in season.

In 2016 I opened Querencia, an intimate space in San Miguel de Allende where we specialize in fresh, regional ingredients and natural fermentations. I also love to engage in collaborations on different projects for restaurants and festivals, including these experiences for plant food lovers.


We are grateful to the following chefs for their contributions in the creation of special experiences…


photo: Margret Hefner ©201
photo: Margret Hefner ©2018
photo: Margret Hefner ©2018

Chef Margarita Carrillo

Margarita Carrillo is a tireless champion of Mexico’s food traditions and global ambassador of Mexican cuisine. She is an educator, speaker, TV host, restaurateur and the author ofMexico: The Cookbook” (Phaidon). As a member of the Conservatory of Mexican Gastronomic Culture, she was active in the successful campaign to put traditional Mexican cuisine on UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2010.

Chef Alejandro Ruíz

Alejandro Ruíz is the acclaimed chef of Casa Oaxaca- ‘El Restaurante’ in Oaxaca City and Guzina Oaxaca in Mexico City. He is the leading culinary authority in Oaxaca, dedicated to the preservation of that region’s food traditions. He tirelessly mentors, educates and guides and is the creator and director of  ‘El Saber de Sabor’ –The Knowledge of Taste– the Oaxacan festival of gastronomy and literature.

Chef Alam Méndez Florián

Alam Méndez has restaurant life in his blood. As the son of Celia Florián (Las Quince Letras, Oaxaca) he spent his childhood in the kitchen. By the age of 11 he knew it was the life for him. His studies at the Culinary Institute of Mexico in Puebla were followed by internships at Michelin-starred Can Fabes and Arzak (Spain). Prior to returning to Mexico to head up the kitchen at Pasillo de Humo, he was head of production with chef Rosío Sánchez at the Hija de Sánchez taqueria in Copenhagen.

Tianguis to Table

Ubish Yaren (CDMX)

Erin Gomez Danielson (Merida)

Ana Paola Osuna (Mazatlan)

Esmeralda Brinn (San Miguel de Allende)

Suzanne Barbezat (Oaxaca)


Alam Mendez Florian

Alejandro Ruiz

Margarita Carrillo