California’s wine aficionados have no shortage of local destinations in which to indulge their love of the sweet nectar, with areas like Napa, Sonoma, Santa Barbara, the Central Coast and Temecula being prime places to sniff, swirl and sip at any number of wineries and tasting rooms. That said, the latest wine-drinking hot spot, while not technically on California soil, is only a few hours from the Golden State’s southernmost vineyards. It’s Valle de Guadalupe, on Mexico’s Baja peninsula, and it offers visitors a completely unique experience.
Valle de Guadalupe is in the city of Ensenada, well-known for its fish tacos, but since the 1980s, the village has increasingly become known as a great place to grow a number of varietals thanks to its warm, dry climate. Its offerings as a prime getaway have only increased as Michelin starred chefs and luxe resorts have settled in. Between extreme glamping, farm-to-table dining and organic wine-tasting, there’s a lot to do. We made planning your trip easy by putting together a few places to eat, drink and sleep—so all you have to worry about is keeping your wine glass filled.
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Take glamping to the next level by staying in one of Campera Hotel's state-of-the-art luxury bubbles (yes, bubbles). The eco-resort is smack-dab in the middle of a vineyard, which means you're totally immersed in the landscape from which the grapes are grown to create the wine you'll be sampling.
The primary function of Estacion de Oficios el Porvenir—more commonly known as La Escuelita, or little school—is for a select group of students to learn the art of wine-making. But visitors can also come and taste the fruits of those students' labor. The property itself (a creation of green architect Alejandro D'Acosta) is impressively made up of recycled materials including wine bottles and mattress springs.
A dinner at Malva finds you feasting on artfully plated dishes composed of local ingredients (many of which are grown right on the property) beneath a thatched roof as you peer out onto the Mina Penélope vineyard. Chef Roberto Alcocer's tasting menu changes frequently, but diners can always count on fresh, seasonal produce to be the star.
La Lomita is Valle de Guadalupe's first organic, biodynamic winery and continues to be a must-stop on any wine-tasting trip to the area. Favorites here include a fruity, floral rosé Grenache and a Sauvignon Blanc/Chenin Blanc blend.