Cartoon illustration of Aramael Pena-Alcantara, co-founder of The Mac & Cheese Affair, framed by a bottlecap
Cartoon illustration of Simone Getty, co-founder of The Mac & Cheese Affair, framed by a bottlecap

Hello Friends,

We’re Aramael and Simone, co-founders of The Mac & Cheese Affair.

We’ve been friends for five years: built a bar together; lived on each others couches; and have a history of imagining and producing new ways to transform every day spaces into something magical. As long as we can remember we’ve been experimenting in our kitchens, and taken immense joy in sharing the fruits of our labor.

At the start of quarantine in March, we optimistically dove straight in taking advantage of the great deal of anxious energy to burn, to cook and bake some of the most elaborate dishes possible in an attempt to substitute culinary labor for emotional labor. But we realized pretty quickly that, some days we have the privilege of fresh produce, and others the privilege of time, and other days none of the above. And instead of managing the sisyphean effort of upholding our pre-pandemic standards; we realized that the circumstances demand flexibility; but also that neither time nor money were correlated with tastiness.

So we turned to old standbys, grabbing that box of mac and cheese on the shelf, reaching out not only to save time but also revisit a simpler time. And all of a sudden we fell back in love with this simple and easy-to-make meal; for a brief moment it was even a buffer against the isolating effects of cooking hundreds of meals for one. Better yet, it was perfect for trying to squeeze a fast lunch after a meeting that ran late and before we had to rush to FaceTime our therapists or yoga/meditation groups.

So we wanted to start with Mac and Cheese because of its quintessential feel-good food status; loved by all. Now this isn’t for folks who like to watch water boil or paint dry, but for the other 99.99% of us, we made The Mac & Cheese Affair: a radio play with a culinary twist. This isn’t your average box of mac and cheese; once you open the box you are thrown into a black and white world, choc full of Romeo and Juliet romances and elite private investigators. The Mac & Cheese Affair lets your mind wander as flavors and stories come alive in your very own kitchen.  You’ll have the chance take a time machine to your childhood, and listen in on a noire detective’s adventures, with all the nostalgic satisfaction of neon-orange cheese.

We are focused on audio stories because we, and we suspect you, have some serious screen fatigue. The Mac & Cheese Affair will manage all your interactions with characters in the show with a unique call-in system (yes, real phones!). Our story takes place in Los Angeles, and in order to participate you will be making and receiving phone calls to phone numbers with Los Angeles County, CA based area codes, so please be aware of any fees which may be charged by your phone carrier.

Now put on your apron, crack open a bottle of beer, get cooking, and give us a call. Because we are about to tell you a story, all while your dinner is cooking.

Aramael + Simone