Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Mexican wines on Mexicana flights

Mexico's national airline is aiming to capitalise on a growing number of British visitors to the country, with the launch of direct flights to Mexico City from London Gatwick Airport.

Flights from London, which will be on a Boeing 767-200 aircraft, will begin to depart from January 18 at 10.30am and arrive in Mexico's capital at 17.35pm local time.

Mexicana will fly twice a week - on Thursday and Sunday - between the two destinations until February, when two additional flights on Friday and Monday will be added.

Isaac Volin, Mexicana chief commercial officer, said: "This new route forms part of our expansion strategy and is intended to meet demand for better travel alternatives to and from London."

Passengers on these flights will enjoy bed seats, an exclusive in-flight meal prepared by Mexican chef Enrique Olvera and a select list of handpicked Mexican wines.
Mexicana began its operations in 1921 and now operates a fleet of 86 aircraft serving 50 international destinations.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bottled Up in The Baja

In this issue, we’ll plug you into two of the small, artisanal producers of the good juice from Mexico Lindo. Both have their operations in the Ensenada area in the Baja Norte.

Roganto Winery (officially, “Vides Y Vinos Californianos”) is located in downtown Ensenada in a most unlikely place. As a matter of fact, we got lost trying to find them. After driving up and down a busy main drag, we finally found them in a small building behind a water well services business. Seems the winery is located behind the water pumps! Go figure! (Owners are the same….vineyards are out in the country south of Ensenada). “Roganto” takes its name from the first few letters of the first names of the partners, Rogelio Sanchez and Antonio Luis Escalante.

Continues here:

Friday, November 14, 2008

Savor an Ensenada Winery Tour

Wine Tasting in the Vineyards of Baja California's Ruta del Vino

The wine route, or the Ruta del Vino, can be traveled from Tecate in the north to Ensenada in the south, or vice versa. In either direction the acres of vineyards, quaint wineries, and friendly locals will urge you to stay in this undiscovered stretch of wine country that rivals the growing conditions of Napa Valley

continues here:

The Grand Old Man of Mexican Wines -- Casa Madero

In 1575, the Spanish Crown appointed governor of then-to-be state of Coahuila, and the founder of San Luis Potosi, his Excellency, the estimable Francisco de Urdinola. The good governor founded the first winery in the Parras (“grapevines”) Valley, and produced the first commercial wine in the Western Hemisphere. Although not Mr. Popular among the local indigenous population, we can raise a glass to ol’ Francisco for getting the ball rolling in Mexico.

Shortly thereafter, in 1597, Felipe II of Spain deeded a land grant to Don Lorenzo Garcia who founded the Hacienda de San Lorenzo. In the late 19th century, Don Evaristo Madero Elizondo bought the wine production of the Hacienda from its then French owners, and Casa Madero, the oldest surviving winery in the New World, was born. Today, Jose Milmo, the great, great grandson of Don Evaristo, continues the tradition. Happily, the hacienda and wine cellar structure have been preserved in their original beautiful condition.

The Parras Valley, (reputed to be one of the hideouts of Poncho Villa) sits at an elevation of about 5000 ft., and has the ideal climate for grape cultivation. Quite arid, with cool nights, and warm days, its mountain spring water creates an oasis for man and vine. Primarily red wine country, with low rainfall (only about 11in.annually, and only in the harvest months of June, July, and August), superb Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, and Merlot are produced, and in the right hands, and with careful handling, delicate, delicious whites such as Chenin blanc, Chardonnay, and Semillon can wet your whistle nicely.

Continues here:

Friday, November 07, 2008

Terrific Mexican Wine........Who knew?

As a fairly recent transplant from north of the border, I was seriously concerned as to how to satisfy my wine habit here in my new home. After all, who’d ever heard of a “good Mexican wine”? An oxymoron, to be sure!

However, a chance meeting in the lovely courtyard of an old house-turned-restaurant soon proved those fears to be unfounded. Oh, don’t get me wrong….there is plenty of Mexican plonk out there. It’s just that there is also world-class (NOT a typo) vino being made here if you know where to look.

A little background is in order. Just about everyone knows how grape rootstock was brought to the Americas by the Spanish missionaries, planted here, and that’s pretty much how things got started. But did you know Mexico is actually the oldest (450 years) wine producing country in the Americas?

Continues here: