You’re never too far from the ocean in Baja California, one of the world’s longest peninsulas. In recent years, the cuisine in this region of Mexico has secured an international reputation, with “Baja Med” becoming a buzzword in chef schools across the globe. With the Guadalupe Valley producing some of the best wine in the Americas, there’s no better way to sample Baja seafood than with a glass of local wine in one of these excellent seafood restaurants.
A premium destination for champagne and oysters, Conchas de Piedra is a laid-back eatery that is never far from the top of any local’s recommendation list. Expert chef Drew Deckman runs the kitchen, and the restaurant collaborates closely with Hugo D’Acosta’s Casa de Piedra winery, offering a range of his méthode champenoise wines. This is a great place for a light seafood lunch before you tour the local wineries.
Troika is a food truck and terrace overlooking a small lake outside of the Vena Cava vineyard. Along with an impressive setting – surrounded by a winery made from salvaged boats – the venue offers excellent food and wine at accessible prices. Seafood lovers should opt for the tostadas de pulpo (octopus tostadas). It’s advisable to wash your meal down with a smooth cabernet sauvignon; Vena Cava’s wines are celebrated throughout the region.
In the valley of Guadalupe, nestled under a 200-year-old oak tree, are a few dozen tables where your fine-dining Baja Med journey begins. Animalon offers a tasting menu and wine pairing to ensure you experience what the restaurant has to offer; chef Javier Plascencia creates gastronomic dishes that pay homage to local producers and the lifestyle of Baja. The menu highlights are seared sea bass with sea urchin cream, mussels served in false shells made from charred potatoes, and the box crab curry gets rave reviews.
Chef Miguel Ángel Guerrero’s passion for fishing, hunting and the countryside is apparent throughout this culinary experience. As the creator of Baja Med cuisine, chef Miguel Ángel Guerrero is internationally recognized. His best dishes served at La Esperanza are the oysters, tuna tacos and sashimi; there is also an array of vegetarian options. The atmosphere is friendly and comfortable, making it the perfect place to sit back, relax and enjoy the amazing cuisine and generous portion sizes.
Additional reporting by Vanessa Gainford