Casa de Piedra’s Wines and Shellfish in Valle de Guadalupe


How Casa de Piedra Captures the Essence of Baja California’s Wine and Cuisine

We are thrilled to be here on the estate of Hugo D’Acosta, one of Mexico’s most renowned oenologists.

He has a hand in many wine projects, and he also founded La Escuelita, a leading training center for the wine industry.

His name is always mentioned sooner or later in any conversation about Valle de Guadalupe.

Casa de Piedra Wines

“Welcome to Casa de Piedra!” Abimael greets us with a sparkle in his eyes in the tasting room.

For the next hour, he will not only guide us through the tasting of Casa de Piedra wines, but he will also teach us a lot. He talks passionately about the vines, the terroir, and the identity of Baja California.

He pours the first glass and tells us that Casa de Piedra is a relatively small vineyard of 1.8 hectares.

The Chardonnay grapes for the Piedra del Sol white wine and sparkling wine come from here. The other grape varieties are sourced from producers who are part of the Vyva cooperative, which he belongs to.

We start with Espuma de Piedra Rosé, a sparkling wine made with the traditional method.

It has a bright, elegant pink color, a fruity aroma, and abundant, fine bubbles. It is fresh and easy to drink by itself, but it would also pair well with seafood.

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Espuma de Piedra rosé, from Casa de Piedra. Photo Karla Acosta
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Espuma de Piedra rosé, from Casa de Piedra. Photo Karla Acosta

As we continue with Casa de Piedra’s red wines, especially its two “Contrastes”, I realize that there is a lot of reflection and experimentation behind them:

The Contraste Continental is the result of a collaboration with a Napa Valley vineyard to produce a wine that combines the features of both a cold and a warm climate.

Similarly, the Contraste Intercontinental is a collaboration with a vineyard in the south of France. Here, the contrast is not about temperature, but about the aromatic differences between old vines and new ones.

We also taste the Vino de Piedra 2014, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo: it has a beautiful, clear garnet-red color, a nose of red fruits with a hint of chili, smooth tannins on the palate, and it goes well with red meat or cheese.

Conchas de Piedra

Leaving Abimael, we walk down a few stone steps to reach an open terrace. It overlooks the estate and the surrounding area like a lookout point. The view is magnificent!

This is Conchas de Piedra, a place that offers the best of the land and sea of Baja California: sparkling wines from Casa de Piedra and shellfish from chef Drew Deckman.

We come here to enjoy quality products from the region, in a spirit of sharing, as the long wooden tables suggest.

We have the pleasure of sitting at the table with the Casa de Piedra family: oenologist Hugo D’Acosta, his wife Gloria Ramos who is in charge of wine marketing, and their daughter Daniela D’Acosta who handles public relations.

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Gabriela D’Acosta, Hugo D’Acosta, Gloria Ramos, the Casa de Piedra family. Photo Karla Acosta

Indeed, even though the small family estate that it was over twenty years ago has become a major player in the high-end Mexican wine market, it is still a family story today.

After several years working for Santo Tomas, Mexico’s oldest bodega in the region, Hugo and Gloria bought this land. She points to the distance and says “it was to build our house, which is over there.” So this really is their home, which explains the cozy atmosphere of the place!

A few years later, they decided to launch their own vineyard, already armed with solid experience in the field.

Then the dishes of oysters, mussels and clams are brought to the table.

And not just any clam, but the famous almeja chiluda or almeja generosa, a large, phallic-shaped mollusc.

Here, the geoduck is finely sliced and presented without any trace of its original shape.

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At Conchas de Piedra. Photo Karla Acosta
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Oysters at Conchas de Piedra. Photo Karla Acosta
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At Conchas de Piedra. Photo Karla Acosta

Since we’re near the end of the rainy season, we jokingly tell them that we almost got stuck on the roads with our little car.

That’s when Hugo replies with a phrase that will stay with me as the most symbolic of tourism in the region: “bad roads make good tourists”.

Indeed, Valle de Guadalupe has avoided mass tourism. Here, you’ll find lovers or small groups of friends exploring the region to discover and share quality products. You don’t come here by bus.

Would they like to see the roads paved for easier access?

The answer is clear: “No. That would be a pity, because we want to keep our identity, preserve our authenticity.”

As I sip my sparkling wine against the landscape, I get lost in my thoughts for a moment. Valle de Guadalupe is certainly one of the most beautiful places in Mexico.

And when I ask about their future plans, Gloria laughs out loud: “he says he wants to retire to make wine!”

Vinicola Casa de Piedra

Website | Facebook | Conchas de Piedra

  • Address: Carretera Tecate Km 93.5, San Antonio De Las Minas, Baja California, Mexico
  • Conchas de Piedra wines are also available from La Contra
All photos belong to Karla Acosta

Car rental in Valle de Guadalupe

To visit Valle de Guadalupe, you need to rent a car, because public transportation is very limited.

And trust me: it’s better to choose a good car, because there are many dirt roads and I’ve already been stuck in a huge puddle with a small car!

To rent a car, personally, I always use, for a few reasons:

  • You can easily compare the rental cars prices between all the agencies: for sure the easiest way to find the best rate!
  • Cancellation is often offered free of charge: no need to worry if you change your mind
  • Rentalcars offers full insurance coverage at a lower price than the rental companies, so it’s an instant saving with no effort

Simply click on the green button to find your rental car at the best price:

How to get to Valle de Guadalupe

First you need to take a flight to Tijuana (e.g. Aeromexico, Interjet, Volaris, VivaAerobus, etc.). You can also reach Tijuana airport by bus from downtown San Diego.

To find a cheap flight to Tijuana and the best flights within Mexico, I recommend using our flight comparator in partnership with Skyscanner. You’ll get the best price guaranteed!

From Tijuana to the Valle de Guadalupe (1h30), there are two main routes:

  • Escenica Tijuana-Ensenada/México 1D (which runs along the coast), then the Carretera Transpeninsular/Rosarito – Ensenada/México 1
  • Mexicali-Tijuana/México 2D, then La Ruta del Vino/México 3
Book your trip now and save money!

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I have created this blog to give you all my best tips to plan your next trip to Mexico, regardless of your budget. I share detailed itineraries, advice about places to visit as well as recommendations for transportation, hotels and restaurants. I hope I will also help you to discover amazing off the beaten path destinations in Mexico!

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