Andrew Zimmern's Bizarre World

Season 1 Episode 1

Cuba

0
Aired Tuesday 10:00 PM Sep 01, 2009 on Travel Channel

Episode Recap

Andrew starts his journey with an overview of the island and it's history. During which he joins in a workers parade knows as the Mayday celebration. Next he goes to a gym to explore the boxing culture of Cuba and then he meets Jose Fuster. Fuster is a world renown artist who uses the whole neighborhood as a canvas. Andrew explains that due to the trade embargo that started in 1959 Cuba has a huge classic car culture. Next Andrew and guide Pamela Ruiz tour the city under the visage of Che Guevara. The two visit a local taxi and it's revealed that a taxi can't leave under law unless filled to capacity. From there Andrew has lunch with the Meo brothers. The meal consist of Hootia which is a form of rat and a freshly slaughtered pig. After the meal Andrew meets Pedro a local martial artist who can bend steal with his throat. He also demonstrates his ability to lay with his full body weight on a spear and drive nails into wood with his bare hands. From there Andrew heads to Vinales a Mecca for tobacco farming. On Nicolas Gomez's farm with his head worker Sergio we see the farming process being performed. The plants are divided among the low part which has the most tobacco and the high which has less but it's the mixture of high and low parts of the plant that makes the cigars so good. Also the leaves must be aged for a year and then dipped in a water bath before being ready for processing. From the farm Andrew takes part in a Santeria worship service. During which a live pigeon is rubbed on the worshiper and a cleaning spray of blessed water is applied. Next the pigeon is sacrificed and the worshipers rub themselves with flour. The Babaolorishas communicates with the spirits and then food and animals are sacrificed. During the ritual a rooster is slaughtered and the blood is poured over the worshiper. After wards Andrew visits the Hotel Nacional and is told stories of the famous people who used to visit there. It's also rumored that the ghost of Frank Sinatra haunts the hotel. Next Andrew head to the Case De La Music and meets manager Pablo Hadez. While here Andrew is treated to traditional music and dance. He is also introduced to Havana Racketan one of the most popular dance clubs. In the final leg of Andrews journey Andrew goes on a fishing expedition. Here he finds some of the purist fishing grounds in the world. The reason being Cubans aren't allowed on boats and the lobsters are reserved for government officials and tourist. In a comical turn Andrews boat stalls out and he is towed back to land by a group of British tourist.
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