Just outside Ensenada Mexico is the wine region Guadalupe Valley. This area is about a two hour drive from San Diego in Baja California. On Saturday, September 15 the village is transformed into the third annual Guadalupe Valley Wine, Food & Music Festival.
I attended a preview night at Executive Chef Louis Tikaram’s E.P. & L.P. in West Hollywood, and learned 10 Facts about this one-of-a-kind celebration in Guadalupe Valley –
- The festival creator & founder, Alejandro Franco, is thrilled to produce an artfully curated culinary, music, and wine festival in the heart of Mexico’s fastest growing wine country. The area is a bit slower, more low-key and unpretentious than Napa Valley, but this wine sanctuary in Baja, California along “Ruta del Vino” offers exciting tasting experiences.
- The lively evening in the Valley is for only 1,500 festival attendees.
- This year the festival falls on the Independence of Mexico. Doors open at 12 p.m.
- A sleek 20-acre family run winery Decantos Vinícola will host this year’s event. Perched with breathtaking views of the entire Valle de Guadalupe, this winery uses an innovative process that combines tradition and modernity from selecting grapes to the final bottling.
- Curated group of chefs include Michelin-starred chef grilling grass-fed meat a few feet from your table. This year’s event includes Australian-Fijian Executive Chef Louis Tikaram, Alfonso Cadena, founder of La Leche in Puerto Vallarta, El Hueso in Guadalajara and Carbón Cabrón in Cabo will help spread the vegan philosophy through a spectacular presentation of raw vegetable dishes paired with organic regional dressings. L.A.’s very own Bricia López (Guelaguetza) along with Rodolfo Castellanos will evoke an expression of traditional Oaxacan food in two dishes, the origin and essence of Mexico. Baja’s very own culinary super star: David Castro Hussong of Fauna at Bruma Valle de Guadalupe, will be uniting forces to share their skills with a display of locally-sourced fresh seafood. Tikaram will be presenting wood grilled Baja Kanpachi with green mango, lemongrass, cilantro salad with a jalapeño, lime & cashew nut dressing, while local chef Hussong will present his famous shrimp aguachile.
- Dante Ferrero—known as the “Chef of the Cow” cooking & honoring a whole 750-lb. cow captivates his audience with live-fire roasting in the purest gaucho style, while Chef Luis Moreno will serve a delicious local lamb prepared the traditional way, alpongside seasonal grilled vegetables by Alfonso Cadena. To top off the culinary festivities, local Chef Adria Marina will serve up sweet creations, inspired by the local farms and neighboring countryside.
- This year a stellar list of musicians will perform under the stars. Bob Moses will lead the line-up of the event, as well as Titan, Museum of Love—together with the legendary Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem—DJ Tennis. Eclectic sounds and fusions of funk, house, R&B, and electronic beats will close the night.
- Over 15 different wineries including national labels are participating this year. They include Casa de Piedra, La Lomita, Pijoan, Emevé, Monte Xanic, Aborigen, among others. Festival goers will have the opportunity to chat with winemakers during tastings.
- For those looking to stay, eat and drink there are some boutique hotels, B & B’s and villas with pools overlooking vineyards. The next day, go on a private wine tastings in a cave, and visit more of the area’s 100 wineries.
- The festival’s Creative Director, Samantha Archibald shared “The festival is another great reason to visit Mexico’s bewitching and lesser known wine country. The area appeals to all the senses.”
Ticket Prices in August is $160 per person and $200 in September. Each ticket includes food + music (wine/mezcal pairings are additional) and can be purchased here: https://apmproducciones.boletosenlinea.events/orderticketsarea.asp?p=203&a=472