Updated: Jul 18
The traditional Tamales from Mexico and the Hallacas from Venezuela. For the last 3 years, the Hispanic community in Jacksonville, Florida has grown more than 70%, reaching the 10% of the entire population. Searching Latin flavors in town is exciting; we have a story behind our hallacas, voted best in town.
In 2020 in a Venezuelan Whatsapp, Lille asked "who made the best Hallacas"? (Tamales -from Venezuela) because she missed this very particular dish. The group chat was flooded with responses; ranging from “my mom makes the best ones” to “I can’t make them, but I can try them and tell you if they’re good” and a few “I make them, let’s get together”.
Hallacas (or Tamales) are very elaborate, so it’s a family tradition to make them for Christmas and New Year, and in this spirit, and with the response of the group chat, the festival de la Hallaca was born.
A group of 8 Venezuelans with a deep love for their land, a commitment to the Venezuelan and Hispanic community of NE Florida, and eager to eat Hallacas decided to step up and organize an event that would help their people offer and taste the flavors of home.
People wanting to offer their goods and be part of the camaraderie started to reach them, and Danmary Brito, our Succulent Jax Food founder, was ready to share her experience as a restaurateur and chef.
Succulent Food Jax was among the first to support the festival, and helped their fellow entrepreneurs, sharing her know-how, and great ideas for the event.
In 2020 more than 500 people voted for the Best Hallaca, and Succulent Food Jax won the 1st Prize that year, becoming the 1st Festival de la Hallaca Winner.
In 2021, the organizing committee decided to do it all over again, and this time over 1800 people attended, and Succulent Food Jax won the “Popular Choice Award", where over 500 people voted for the “Hallaca Popular” making Danmary Brito from Succulent Food Jax a 2 times winner of the festival.
Succulent Food Jax is making the Best Hallacas in Jax, voted by judges and people alike, 2 years in a row. If you want to try these award winning hallacas, and enjoy a full Venezuelan Christmas dinner, do not hesitate to call. We’re taking orders for Christmas and New Year’s Eve, we can deliver statewide.