It seems, sometimes, that Williamsburg is inundated with Mexican food, and this past year has only given us more with the opening of La Esquina at Wythe Diner and Rosarito Fish Shack. What’s a Mexican restaurant to do to stand out?
How about transcending restaurant status in a bid to become a cultural venue?
Cantina Royal’s back room had gone underused for some time, but it’s recently been reborn as La Sala. Owner Julio Mora has been using the space as a visual arts/performance/cultural/private event space, and it’s been paying off. “I think we have to push up the culture, the arts, so when I do shows I try not to charge anything to the artist. It’s almost free,” he said to us, before adding with a smirk, “When I have private parties, I always charge.”
He says he was inspired by the loss of Williamsburg’s Monkeytown, which closes last year. There was an absence in the immediate area of a cultural headquarters in Williamsburg, so Mackay stepped up to the plate. Weekly screenings of Spanish films make up the CineGazpacho series, and there are performances by Something in Spanish and Monica Lionheart (formerly of Zigmat, recently signed to Nacional Records, and who has created the classy trailer below) coming up soon. Keep your eyes on La Sala’s calendar on Cantina Royal’s website for burlesque performances, music, visuals, maybe even an aerialist performance or two, and gallery installations.
Oh, and Remezcla Musica has something special at La Sala to show you, soon, too.