El Sur was started by Marianne Despres, a classically trained chef and mother of two. After graduating from the Cordon Bleu in Paris, she continued her culinary training in some of the world’s best kitchens including Potel et Chabot and the French Laundry.
After running a successful catering business in the Bay Area specializing in fine French cuisine, Marianne realized she most enjoyed cooking and sharing the food she grew up with from Argentina and Peru. Empanadas remind her of being together with family and friends, eating and sharing them at special occasions and casual celebrations. Marianne wants to preserve the way empanadas are made in the sleepy towns across rural Argentina, from estancias where everything comes from the same land where it is eaten.
The ingredients for El Sur’s empanadas are sourced from Northern California’s best purveyors. The herbs, olives and many of the vegetables are grown and harvested from the Despres’ family property in Sonoma. We hope you enjoy eating them as much as we enjoy making them.