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Community Table with Chef Juan Pablo Cruz of Gema

July 28 @ 6:00 pm - 9:30 pm

Chef Doug roasting vegetables over a grill fire

Join us for an edible conversation between a farm, a chef, and the community.

Our Community Table series continues into the Summer with a new class of world-class chefs and a seasonal palette of fruits, vegetables, herbs, berries and flowers. By bringing these culinary artists back to the source, we give them an opportunity to connect with new ingredients, find fresh inspiration in our bioregion’s historic foodways, and discover the rewards of relationship with the land.




Portrait of Chef Juan Pablo Cruz


Chef Juan Pablo Cruz, Executive Chef at Gema, showcases authentic Mexican gastronomy that heightens traditional flavors and indigenous ingredients to create innovative dishes. Chef Cruz has created a menu that focuses on the integrity of every ingredient – just like our approach to food at The Ecology Center.

With every dish at Gema, Chef Cruz brings a seasonal menu that praises the rich culinary history of Mexico while reflecting the high-level techniques and refined presentations that one could expect to find at the country’s top restaurants. Because our farm is situated within a similar bioregion as Mexico, we grow crops that are staples of Mexican cuisine with the height of harvest during the Summer months – right when Chef Cruz will be joining us for an unforgettable dinner inspired by the season’s freshest and most local ingredients. We hope you can join us for this special evening!



Community Table dinners are fixed course, family-style meals. As such, we cannot accommodate every dietary restriction. Please email us with any dietary needs.  We will try to accommodate for vegetarian/vegan needs, gluten intolerance, and seafood/shellfish allergies but let us know if there are any specific dietary restrictions for any of your guests.  We will do our best to accommodate anything beyond the 3 listed. If there are any life threatening allergies we recommend emailing before purchasing tickets.

Community Table Dinners begin at 6pm, when we’ll start with drinks and a farm tour. We appreciate timeliness as the dinner is coursed intentionally with just one seating. Dinners typically end around 10pm.

We can offer refunds up to one week before the dinner.  In the case that you need to cancel last minute, we would be happy to work with you to pass along your tickets to friends or family members.


July 28
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Event Categories:


The Ecology Center


The Ecology Center
32701 Alipaz Street
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, CA 92675 United States
(949) 443 4223


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