Zarela Branches Out

Michele SanFilippo, September 26, 2005

Cumberland, Md. — Mexican restaurateur and chef Zarela Martinez is branching out from her kitchen textiles and table linens license program with the recent addition of blankets and throws.

The new home textiles, available at retail this fall, are being created with her most recent licensing partner, Biederlack of America.

“Our partnership with Zarela Martinez has given us a product that is authentic, attractive and true to its origins,” said Peter McCabe, executive vice president, Biederlack.

Martinez designed the line with the intention of making it an interpretation, as opposed to a recreation, of authentic Mexican designs, according to the company. Much of her inspiration comes from handmade rebozos, or shawls, long used throughout Mexico.

Martinez has owned and operated her Mexican restaurant, Zarela, in New York City since 1987. She also regularly consults many multinational food companies, including Frito Lay, Taco Bell and Unilever Best Foods as well as Marriott Hotels. And she is the author of three cookbooks — one titled “Zarela’s Veracruz: Cooking and Culture in Mexico’s Tropical Melting Pot”, which is a companion to her PBS series.

Martinez is currently developing a bilingual show with her son, Aarón Sanchez, also a chef and cookbook author.

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