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Jan 14, 2008 08:22 PM

3 Days in Ensenada

My boyfriend and I are driving down to Ensenada this weekend and would love some suggestions on where to eat. I'd really appreciate recs for everything from yummy taco stands to anything else that is can't miss great food! (FYI: one of us doesn't like seafood but the other does). I've done some research on the board and would love to hear more about Laja and Manzanilla (I love places that use local produce and ingredients). I also know that there is great wine and wineries in the area that I don't know much about. Basically, if you had just a few days in Ensenada, where would you eat?

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  1. Hello there is plenty in Ensenada the first recomendation would be" Birrieria Guadalajara" and order the paleta de borrego asada its lamb shoulder that is first cooked in the broth and then it's crisped on the gridle served on a plate with the broth on the side and you add it to the meat i'ts served with home made corn tortillas that are fantastic. They also have great tongue tacos , the place is famous for the Birria
    Birria comes from the central state of Jalisco and it's originaly a type of barbacoa / stew with different chiles and spices . Birrieria Guadalujara has beef, goat and lamb birria all of them good but the lamb shoulder that i recomend is a winner . The ambiance is mostly locals many from central Mexico totally low key very relaxed it's located between first st. and second st. in front of a small dive shop called Almar I can't remember the name of the street but it's one block north from Riveroll where Manzanilla is located it's painted orange and has a big sign.For carne asada tacos there are two places that are terrific different styles first one would be Sonora style " Asadero rancho el 17 " they serve carne asada, tripe , rib the meat comes from sonora from a great producer called Rancho el 17 ( it's the purveyor I use for my Rib Eye in Manzanilla) great quality meat They have a big table with diferent salsas, sliced cucumbers and radishes it's located on boulevar costero wich is the street you come into Ensenada it will be on your left after passing the Riviera the brige and the new center for the arts. They have tables . The other one is called "El Paisa" these one no tables you have to stand the tortillas are made there it would be a tipical Ensenada taqueria the tacos come with guacamole, red salsa, onion, cilantro it is super popular with the locals so could be very crowded during certain hours . To get there find out where the other exit north of Ensenada is , I think it's on ninth street there you will see a gas station take a right and it's on the left almost in front of the gas station. My favorite street car or Carreta as they are known here is "La guerrense " Seafood tostadas all time favorite The sea urchin tostada with pismo clam on top !! I have dreams of that tostada when I'n not in Ensenada . Many other great things Bacalao tostada Bacalao is Cod , Ceviche is great they make great salsas in many diferent styles Sabina and Lalo are the owners I have eaten in their house where all of the prep. is done and beleive me it's super clean so no worries they take a lot of pride in their job. It's one block south of Rveroll st. on first st. there is a big store called "El palacio del perfume" I think.Another very popular Carreta among locals is Navolatos on the corner of Riveroll and the boulevard. The best fish tacos are at el Fenix wich has been reviewd here before.The best place to see the sunset and drink the best Martini Punta Morro. To try Abalone there is a place called Haliotis kind of old school try the ceviche de abulon very good. Manzanilla has the farm raised kind that comes from Erendira two hours south of Ensenada. If you call Laja ahead of time telling them you want to try abalone I'm pretty sure they will do it. As far as the wineries most of the small ones you have to make an apointment the two big ones are Cetto and Domecq they are open every day If you go to Cetto tell them you want to see the bullring the view from there is one of the best views of the valley. Monte Xanic is a very good option Karola is in charge of the tours. Casa de Piedra is one of the best in the area. I don't have the numbers of the wineries here with me but I will post them later . Don't miss Laja . The hotel Coral marina has a sunday brunch where they make a great menudo blanco o rojo kind of a tripe soup amazing .
    Hope you have a great time in Ensenada !

    1 Reply
    1. re: bigotes

      Thank you so much for so many wonderful suggestions! I am looking forward to our stay in Ensenada!

    2. This reply is a little late, but just in case you ever go back you have to go to the Ensenada Beach House Hotel, in Estero Beach - a few miles south of Ensenada. They have a restaurant called Mario's located within the hotel and this place has the best and most authentic chilaquiles on the planet. Too good:)