Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Winery Report: Grape Collective - Adobe Guadalupe

So, I'm hoping these interviews with the wine makers of Valle Guadalupe by Grape Collective continue because they are very well done.

Tru Miller and Daniel Lonnberg of Adobe Guadalupe

Travel Tips: Pacific Inn - Wineries in Valle de Guadalupe

If you ask 10 different "experts" to name their favorite wineries in Valle de Guadalupe you'll probably get 10 different answers.  

With that in mind, here are the Pacific Inn and Suites' suggestions:

Monday, March 30, 2015

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Restaurante Costa Oeste Reopens Saturday, April 4

Chef Erick Alcazar first opened his campestre last summer on the grounds of Viñas Erre.  This year he has moved his kitchen a few miles to the west to the lovely patio next to Rondo del Valle.  They will start serving food at the new location on Saturday, April 4.


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

New restaurant Alert: Alcocer Cocina Propia

Chef Roberto Alcocer (Malva @ Mina Penelope and Tahal @ Baron Balch'e) is a very busy dude. 

He posted the picture (posted above) with the hashtags #comingsoon and #ValledeGuadalupe.  I will certainly post more details as they become available.  

Picture credit: @alcocerroberto on Instagram

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Travel Guide: Nylon Magazine

Shout Out: San Diego Magazine - Troika's Lechon

The lechon at Troika is quite possibly my favorite thing to eat in Valle de Guadalupe.  Just imagine our disappointment last Saturday when we found that Troika was closed to the public due to a private party.  

Oh well, I guess it gives us a good excuse to head back down to El Valle sooner than later.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Valle de Guadalupe, No Hay Otro

Sometimes El Valle welcomes you with open arms, and sometimes it can be a little coy.

Last weekend we went to Valle de Guadalupe with our regular traveling compadres, Marc and Valarie and also brought some first timer's, Val's sister, brother and his wife.

The goal of the visit was to regale these Midwesterners with some our favorite places. However, El Valle had a different idea. It needed to remind us that occasionally you need to be patient and let the valley reveal its charms in its own way, in its own time.

We rolled into El Valle around noon on Friday and thought we would visit a winery before a lunch. The plan got off to a rough start. We discovered that our first two choices, Vinedos de Garza and Mogor Badan, were closed.  Not to be we deterred, we continued down the road to Lechuza which also displayed a cerrado sign.

At this point there was nothing to do but park, pull some beers out of the cooler and enjoy the perfect weather.

Our patience was soon rewarded when Adam and Kristin who operate the winery drove up and asked how they could help. We told them about our predicament and they explained that Drew Deckman was getting married that weekend and that many people in the valley had closed up shop so that they could attend the festivities.  Our conversation continued and before we knew it we were sitting around a table, sharing a bottle of Lechuza's wine, and gushing over the cuteness of Roy, the couple's two month old baby boy.

Kristin and Roy are incredibly nice and extremely gracious hosts.  I highly recommend dropping an email to Kristen before your next trip to the valley and arrange a tasting at Lechuza.


On Saturday our frustrations bubbled up once again.

After visiting a couple wineries we started craving the lechon at Troika.  Our salivary glands were operating in overdrive when we approached the foodtruck and saw and smelled whole pigs roasting over coals. However, our excitement turned to extreme disappointment when we learned that Troika was hosting a private event and was closed to the public. Arrgh!

We then decided to return to the place we were staying (El Parral) and snack on some of the bread and cheese we had bought on their lovely patio.

Great idea but made difficult by the fact the shortest return route was closed due to the Rosarito to Valle de Guadalupe bicycle race. We backtracked and took the long route to El Parral only to be delayed even further by a crew filming a television show.  Double Arrgh!

Nerves were a little frayed, but not for long.

After we finally arrived, I noticed that Albert the owner of El Parral was on the patio with some of his friends. They had just completed the 40 mile bike ride (the same one that blocked our quick return) and were enjoying a well earned beer and grilling something on the BBQ.  Our group was immediately welcomed and invited to share in the festivities. We gladly accepted

The beer was cold and the tacos delicious.

Valle de Guadalupe, no hay otro.


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Life & Food - Valle de Guadalupe: Travleing With Kids

Lots of great info here:

Baron Balch'e Hosts Taco Kokopelli on April 25

Tacos Kokopelli is a real success story.  They started a couple years ago with a taco cart in Tijuana. It was immediate hit and now their empire includes brick and mortar restaurants in TJ and Chicago.

Baron Balch'e will host the Tacos Kokopelli cart at the vineyard as part of their Primavera en los Vinedos celebration on Saturday, April 25.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Trip Report: Adventures to Nowhere

Google works in mysterious ways.  

In the last year I have typed "Valle de Guadalupe" into the Google search bar hundreds of times.  If like me you thought that I would have surfaced just about every article and blog post written in the past couple years about the Valle, you would be wrong.

Tonight's search revealed the following link from 2013.

Monday, March 16, 2015

El Pinar de 3 Mujeres Reopens on Saturday, March 21

Via Facebook:
Y luego de las lluvias llega el caloricto que anuncia la llegada de la primavera, y con ella nuestro regreso. El Pinar de 3 mujeres reanuda su servicio en esta nueva temporada a partir del sábado 21 de marzo, los esperamos con gusto!
We really like El Pinar and the chef Ismene Venegas, so this is very good news.

El Pinar de 3 Mujeres - Facebook

Life and Food's Review


Annotated List - Restaurants of Valle de Guadalupe

Friday, March 13, 2015

Shout Out: Refinery 29

This is your basic click bait slideshow post.  However, if you haven't traveled to the Valle before it might contain some useful information.

I believe they have defined the word "adult" as a person with a decent paying job. 

Top Chef in Valle de Guadalupe??

Right now this doesn't have much to do with the Valle, but I certainly could envision Padma on the deck of Hotel Encuentro telling a sous chef from Nashville to go pack her knives because her pulpo was rubbery.

Anyway, here's the 411.

Eater San Diego reported that the Bravo network's chef competition show, Top Chef, was rumored to be returning to the west coast and that the San Diego Tourism Authority was in negotiation with the shows producers to make it happen.

So, given the fact that the shows producers were in San Diego this week meeting with Javier Plascencia and other local chefs, I think we're close to getting an official confirmation.

Will Valle de Guadalupe be featured in an episode (or three)?

Stay tuned.   

Cool Picture: Valle de Guadalupe

Photo credit: @elliott__taylor on Instagram.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Concert Alert: Chayanne @ Vinedos San Gabriel - September 26

Update: May 18, 2015

The information below is old and incorrect.

I seem to have stumbled onto this info before the links to purchase tickets have been posted.  I'll post an update with the link when it becomes available.

3/16 Update:  Here is the only link to information about the concert I have found:

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Restaurant Report: A Gringo In Mexico - Deckman's En El Mogor

Deckman's is certainly in the top tier of the Valle's restaurants. Part of what sets it apart is having Dan Deckman on site everyday cooking something delicious. 

A Gringo in Mexico, W. Scott Koenig, filed his report here: 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Lodging: Baja Grand Estancia Campground & Tours

Campers and RVers visiting the Valle should check out Baja Grand Estancia.  Looks like they offer guided tours as well.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Zen Girl's Baja Yoga Soul Retreat - April 17-19

Good works, yoga, and wine - sounds like a winning combination.


Zen Girl, Mandy Burnstein, has also written a terrific guide to Valle de Guadalupe.  You can find it here:  Mexico's Baja Wine Country