Tequila, mezcal, tepache, aguas frescas, all of them traditional drinks in Mexico. But, what about wine? It’s easy to forget about the country’s vineyards, even though over the last decade wine consumption and popularity has duplicated both at a national and international level.
Currently, wine culture amongst the Mexican national population is far from the winegrowing tradition in countries like Chile, France or Spain. Even so, the growing interest in wine has put this country in the sector’s spotlight.
Baja California is the state where the biggest number of vineyards is, due to the favourable weather conditions, which are similar to those in the Mediterranean region and in California’s Central Valley (where 75% of grapes of the region grown), making this an ideal area for the growing of vines and the production of wine.
To be able to enjoy some wine tasting and visit a few of the wineries in the area there is the so-called ‘Wine Route’ in which you can appreciate the Guadalupe, Santo Tomás, San Vicente and Ojos Negros valleys. These are some of the biggest wine-producing areas in the country.
An ideal place to start the route is the city of Rosarito, just 30 minutes from the border with the US. A place where you can also savour some of the culinary specialities of the region before you begin with the oenological route.
Mexico currently has some 4,000 hectares of vines for wine production, a figure comparable to the size of one single winery in some of the big wine-producing countries. However, the country has thousands of hectares in regions such as Chihuahua, Aguascalientes, Guanajuato, Querétaro o Puebla where weather conditions are perfect to continue growing a high-quality grape.