Try Something New! Essential Baja Wine Tasting in LA

on 11/11/10 at 5:33 pm

Booze News

Save-the-date: Sunday, November 21, 3 – 6p. Here’s a great opportunity to taste an array of wonderful Baja wines from the Guadalupe and Calafia valleys. Details here. Boozenews.com is co-sponsoring this tasting with Splash Productions.

BAJA WINE:  A SENSE OF PLACE

Mexico has a privileged region for the cultivation and breeding of great wines, which is the northern end of the Baja California peninsula, just about half hour from the beaches of Ensenada.  Between Ensenada and Tecate, are the famous valleys of Guadalupe and Calafia. This area is well situated inside the wine producing zone of the northern hemisphere. Then, about ninety minutes south of this valley, the newest appellation of Ojos Negros is exploding with Gold Medals.

The rather cold Pacific Ocean waters rule the coastal weather. Evenings are cool and the  average temperature is much lower than that of other coastal regions in neighboring California. This gives a Mediterranean climate with winter rains and a dry spring and summer — which corresponds to some premiere wine regions in France such as the Rhône and Southern Burgundy.

New world wine arrived to Baja California along with the missionaries. A Jesuit priest, Father Juan de Ugarte, took charge in 1701 of the Loreto mission, and it was he who planted the first grapevines on the peninsula. This began a rich legacy that today attracts winemakers from around the globe interested in teasing out the flavors representative of the terroir that makes up the Valleys of Guadalupe and its environs.

Recently, the wines of Baja have been able to establish an award-winning reputation around the world. Large production wineries such as Bodegas de Santo Tomás and L.A. Cetto, produce fine wines and maintain a high standard of quality.  The goal is to make food-friendly, lower alcohol wines and to create blends that can only happen here. Small boutique houses, such as Vinisterra, Bodegas San Rafael, Vena Cava and Emeve make very fine, small production wines. These are highlighted today and are but a sampling of among 50+ bonded wineries in the region.  Together, they have attained a level of excellence never before seen in Mexico. And quality is paying off.  These wines are exported to the US and Europe, including France.

Now, you have the unique opportunity to sample a taste from this vibrant region.  You’ll quickly understand that this is not your Daddy’s wine.

Stacie Hunt & Tash Rahbar   | Splash Productions |  (www.splashpros.com)