Wines, Vineyards, and Baja (oh, my!)

My last post about the elotes vendors on the Copper Canyon train made me think of another interesting corn-related dish in yet another location: huitlacoche in Baja, Mexico.

In 2003, I had the distinct pleasure of attending the annual Society of Wine Educators Conference in Anaheim, CA. They also offered a truly glorious pre-conference field trip–an overnight hop through some of the vineyards and wineries of Baja, Mexico. Sign me up!

We departed Anaheim on a bus to Baja, driving down the coast past San Diego and Tijuana and farther along the Baja peninsula. We had lunch *somewere* on the coast at a neat little spot with amazing views. Our guide (a wine expert) said all the new construction in the area was based on second homes for SoCal residents.

Our brunch destination, overlooking the Pacific
Restaurant exterior

Our first wine-tasting stop was Casa de Piedra; a boutique winery specializing in a few fabulous vintages and a very appealing shooting star logo. Then we traveled to Mogor-Badan for an outside tasting in the vineyard–all windy, flapping tablecloths and a wonderful white Chasselas that I never forgot. (It’s a grape of Swiss origin, believe it or not, and I still have a bottle that I can’t bear to drink it because I’ll probably never have another. Yes, that’s a stupid reason.)

On to another family-owned winery whose name I cannot remember, but there was a friendly black dog in the tasting room. Then we fetched up at Adobe Guadelupe*, which combines its vineyard and winery with an amazing guest house/bed & breakfast-type accommodation. The place abounds in primitive angel forms, from the light fixtures and the hardware to an enormous metal angel sculpture in the vineyard itself. (I should add my photographic evidence to flickr.com.) I don’t remember the wine as much as the setting: enormous baskets of bougainvillea spilling over the walls; shadows of angels and arches falling on tiled floors; the sunsetting sky stretched overhead and burning down to ashy grape and pewter colored-clouds…fabulous!

 

Beautiful bougainvillea at Adobe Guadelupe
A huge metal angel, out standing in the field (quite literally!)
 
You know what? I think I’ll save the next part of the story for the next post. I want a glass of wine before I continue…
 
*They’ve added more sculptures at Adobe Guadelupe–including flying horses!–and there’s a wonderful video of the place at the link I shared above.

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