“Casa Kantuta, an immersive and inclusive modern underground bar inspired by Bolivian culture” now open at Adams Morgan
inside sPACEYcLOUD, located at 2309 18th Street NW courtesy of Casa Kantuta
They will celebrate Dia de La Paz today (Friday):
“Come and celebrate the Día de La Paz with us this Friday 07/16 at 7 pm. We’ll have DJ @urdjsfavdj_ spinning all your favorite Bolivian hits, cumbia villera, 90s hip hop and reggaeton! We will also have Cholitas walking around for you to admire and take photos. We encourage our comrades to show up with braids to honor the beautiful chola paceña! Our mixologist @luivindc will present a new cocktail in honor of La Paz called “Collita”.
Extract from a press release:
“Sibling duo Carla and Juan Sanchez bring their Bolivian heritage to Washington DC with Casa Kantuta, a pop-up experience inspired by their upbringing in the Bolivian capital of La Paz.
Casa Kantuta is an immersive cultural environment inspired by the Bolivian way of life. It’s the brainchild of duo Sanchez, both of whom immigrated from Bolivia to the Washington DC area in the 1990s. Memories of salteñas, Bolivian street food similar to empanadas, and lively celebrations back home collide with cultural aspects of their formative years spent in the United States to bring this unique pop-up concept to Adams Morgan. They brought in fellow Bolivians and other immigrant-owned businesses and BIPOC to create an inclusive space on the lower level of sPACEYcLOUD, the only woman-owned vegetarian skate shop and restaurant in the United States, to get together, eat, drink and shop. .
“I am very excited and honored to provide a market space for Carla and her team to incubate their business concept and bring Bolivian street food to Washington DC,” said Tati Kolina, owner of sPACEYcLOUD.
From Thursday to Sunday, 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., guests will be transported to a modern Bolivian-style underground bar upon entering Casa Kantuta. Carla will transform the lower level of sPACEYcLOUD over the next few weeks, documenting the process on @casakantuta as she has done with other spaces on her personal blog, @spicycandydc. The spirit of La Paz is represented in the details of the decor; like the strategically placed ekekos, the small mustached ceramic figurines that represent luck and prosperity, and cholita accessories like bowler hats, as well as gold accents throughout that are a nod to Bolivian mines. The private outdoor patio is a tribute to Juan and Carla’s beloved Nana, Petrona, and her love for roses.
“I put all my heart and soul into this project,” says Carla. “And I hope the DC community embraces and admires my culture like my brother and I do!” From Bolivia with a lot of love.
The Casa Kantuta soundtrack is an eclectic mix of music that inspired Juan and Carla as they became the successful young entrepreneurs they are today: 90s hip-hop and R&B, a snap to the siblings’ early years in the United States, Bolivian Music, Reggaeton, and Cumbia Villera, a subgenre of Cumbia music that showcases Latin American folk rhythm and dance traditions.
To further enhance the Casa Kantuta experience, Luis Aliaga, who is half Bolivian and known to many as Director of Beverages at Roy Boys, has created a menu of Bolivian craft cocktails some of which include Rujero Singani, a magnificent brandy in small quantities at base of 200 year-old vines and one of Bolivia’s most famous exports. Each featured cocktail is consumed across the country and each name offers guests a bit of Bolivian history. For example, Pachamama, named after the goddess who in Inca mythology is worshiped as a “Mother of the Earth” and a fertility goddess, is a drink with more earthy ingredients like cinnamon bark syrup.
Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Casa Kantuta operates as a mercadito (or market) featuring local artists, designers, vintage boutiques and small business owners from the BIPOC community, including Sarah Christie (Bolivian designer) , Spoken Spanglish, SunGods and more. On Sundays there will also be salteñadas (Bolivian-style brunch) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with salteñas by Maria Helena de Saya, also from Bolivia. Salteñas are authentic handmade Bolivian street food, prepared in a subtly sweet and tender shell that envelops a rich and flavorful stew filled with melting potatoes, olives, eggs, Andean spices and chicken or beef, if you prefer.
Casa Kantuta debuts Thursday, July 8 at sPACEYcLOUD, located at 2309 18th Street NW. The opening hours are as follows: Thursday to Sunday from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. for bar service only and from Saturday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for mercadito and brunch.“