Frida Kahlo-inspired restaurants are nothing new. Solon, Iowa, for example, has Frida Kahlo Mexican Restaurant & Lucy’s Bakery. Overland Park, Kansas has Frida’s Restaurant. But none of them can do it like La Cocina de Frida. The Mexican eatery is located inside an Ocotlán de Morelos market, and it’s run by Beatriz Vázquez Gómez – a woman who could take first place in a Frida Kahlo lookalike contest.
Vázquez Gómez’s mother, Doña Ana María Gómez Pacheco, opened the restaurant more than 60 years ago. When she took over, she didn’t intend for cosplay to be such a large part of her business model. But people continued to tell her that she resembled the famous Mexican artist. And it’s because of them that she changed the name of the stall 15 years ago. “I never met Frida, or knew much about her, but many people in the market told me I looked like the painter,” she told The Guardian. “So I read about her and she became my hero. It’s a gift to look like Frida.”
Growing up, Beatriz and her 11 siblings helped their mother run the mesón. Beatriz – the youngest of the brood – preferred to be out on the fields with her father and she initially didn’t really head to the restaurant. But after her father died, she became her mother’s full-time assistant, according to Oaxaca 3.0.
She didn’t always look like Frida. Beatriz said losing weight after the birth of her daughter made the similarities more obvious. She also dedicates 18 minutes daily to the full lewk. She fills in her eyebrows, wears bright lipstick, ties her hair back and adorns it with flowers, and she wears the traditional Tehuana embroidered skirts.
Even though people all over the world come to see Frida 2.0, the mole de almendra, chiles rellenos, and guías espesadas have made people fans of La Cocina de Frida.