Mexico is known as the Land of Enchantment, but it can also be referred to as the Land of Secrets. One of those little known secrets is the beautiful wine country in the State of Baja California. This area in the Valle de Guadalupe (Guadalupe Valley) is known by the locals as la “Ruta del Vino” (Wine Route). Wine connoisseurs all over the world have been familiar with the excellent quality and incredible tastes of wine from this area for years. La Ruta del Vino is to Baja California what Napa´s Wine Country is to Northern California. The wonderful thing about La Ruta del Vino is that is it less than one hour’s drive from Southern California.
The perfect Mediterranean weather has blessed Baja California´s Wine Country with the ideal climate for grape growers. It has also become a HOT spot for property buyers interested in their own dream in paradise. The super low prices for properties in La Ruta del Vino make this a favorite location for foreign nationals.
The laid back attitude and easygoing mentally that Mexico is famous for can be seen in the stress free days enjoyed in Baja´s Wine Country. You are almost stepping back in time when you visit La Ruta del Vino. Old world charm is abundant in the various boutique vineyards, beautiful and historical mission style haciendas and the French inspired Inns and Villas. If you’re looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life, then spending time in the Guadalupe Valley is exactly what you need.
Mexico is more recognized worldwide for the tastes of its delicious drinks, such as tequila, beer, rum and mescal. The brand names of Corona, Don Julio, Tecate, Jose Cuervo, just to name a few, can be found in supermarkets and liquor stores around the globe. However, the art of winemaking has been going on for hundreds of years. It is a little known fact that Napa Valley wineries owe much to the wineries in the State of Baja California. It is from the Baja Wineries that Napa Valley wine growers originally got their seeds and grapes. In the last 100 years, the Valle de Guadalupe has started to be recognized as one of the premier wine growing areas in the world. The climate in Baja makes for ideal conditions to grow some of the best tasting wines found anywhere.
The early Spanish settlers were very impressed with the quality of wine coming from Mexico. They were so impressed, that in the 17th Century, the government of Spain felt so threatened with the wine makers in Mexico, that they banned all vine planting. This ban in essence halted wine production in Mexico. We are thankful for the monks for their continuing to plant and grow grapes in opposition to the mandate. If it wasn´t for the fact that they did not obey the ban, we would not be lucky enough today to enjoy such tasteful wine from Mexico. Wine production in Mexico on a mass scale began in earnest in the early part of the 1900´s.
You may be wondering how the Guadalupe Valley area came to produce such delicious wines. It is actually a natural anomaly that gave this area such rich and perfect climate conditions for wine growing. The Baja Peninsula has a semi-desert climate, but combined with the cold marine currents coming from the area of the City of Ensenada, gives the Valle de Guadalupe its Mediterranean-style weather. The warm summers and mild winters, as well as the sunny days and cool nights during the growing season, make for superb grape growing conditions. This then translates into some of the tastiest wines in the market today.
Wines from the Valley of Guadalupe have earned international acclaim and recognition. They are currently exported throughout the world, and it is not uncommon to find them in wine stores in the United States, Canada or Europe.
The largest wineries in Mexico are all located a short distance from the picturesque port city of Ensenada and Rosarito, Baja California. Three valleys in particular stand out in the area; those are San Antonio de Las Minas, San Vicente Valley and Santo Tomas Valley. The wineries in the Valley of Guadalupe are all located in San Antonio de Las Minas. The Valle of Guadalupe and its small and large vineyards are an ideal place to get away for a day or two. When visiting this lovely wine country in Baja, you will discover over a dozen boutique vineyards, along with several large-sized vineyards.
The Guadalupe Valley boasts over sixteen world-class wineries and in Ensenada you will find four more. The exquisite taste of their red and white wines continues to earn the area awards and prestige year after year. These quality wine makers of Baja currently produce over 80% of all the wine made in Mexico.
The largest producer of wine in Mexico is the world-class winery of L.A. Cetto. The L.A. Cetto winery has stamped their name in the wine industry as a principal player in wine making industry after winning awards on a continual basis. Their numerous awards and accolades have been responsible for Mexican wines gaining notoriety as premier wines throughout the world. The excellent flavor of their wines, in conjunction with their ingenious marketing, has made them a recognized name among occasional wine drinkers and wine enthusiasts. Their popularity has not stopped them from remembering their roots. A visit to their winery is an intimate and pleasurable experience and well worth the short drive from Southern California.
Also well worth the visit are the many charming family-owned wineries in the Guadalupe Valley. Many of these family establishments have stylish guest haciendas available for their guests who wish an overnight stay. Others have super rates on Bed and Breakfast style rooms and restaurants.
The following establishments have four star ratings: Monte Xanic, Vinicola Sueños, Dona Lupe, Chateau Camou, Bibayoff, Vinos Fuentes, Baron Balché, Mogor-Badan, Tres Mujeres (Three Women), Vinisterra and Adobe Guadalupe. Some wineries, such as the Dona Lupe Winery, has a super selection of premium organic wines, jellies, natural jams, salsa, herbs, cheese and many more delightful treats.
There are many scheduled and non-scheduled activities for visitors and residents in the Valle de Guadalupe. You can take a wine tasting tour of the top wineries throughout Baja. Activities and wine related seminars are common events on the weekends.
Come on down to Baja and tour the Guadalupe Valley wineries for your chance to taste some of the world´s best tasting wines. Relax in Old World charm and surround yourself in a beautiful and picturesque landscape. What are you waiting for? Visit the Guadalupe Wine Country TODAY!!!
Hotels and events all book early. Contact us for more information on accomodations and activities. The festival lasts for 10 days and offers a wide variety of attractions, including wine tastings and constest, winery tours, fishing tournaments, cook-offs, goourmet food and concerts, all sponsored, organized or subsidized by local wineries.
So if touring the "wine country" is on your list of must do travels, don't forget Mexico's splendid wine country.