Vina de Liceaga is a winery and restaurant located in Valle de Guadalupe on the Ensenada-Tecate highway. It was founded in 1983 by Don Eduardo Liceaga as a retirement project. He had always dreamed of having his own personal vineyard, initially he considering not selling his wines to the public. However after a very positive response from friends and family he decided to create a business.
The winery produces four different varietals of grape, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Grenache and Merlot. With these grapes the seven different labels of wine are created. These include a rosé, five different labels of red, three of which make up their premium line, and a sweet red wine with a touch of grappa. Grappa is a traditional distilled spirit produced by the wine makers for many centuries. For many years, Viña de Liceaga’s Merlot was considered “The Best Merlot in Mexico”, and has won many national and international prizes.
All their wines are blends of up to three varietals, making them uniquely different from other wines on the market. Their expert oenologist focuses on bringing out the fresh, fruit forward flavors in the wine. Using both modern technology and traditional methods. The result is a modern, yet artisan process that fits the winery perfectly, producing few, yet very high-quality wines.
This picturesque winery offers wine tastings, an outdoor restaurant which serves breakfast and brunch, and a large area for events called “El Bosque” or “The Forest”. El Bosque is perfect for weddings and is typically booked solid from the end of May until August.
This outdoor area is also where the famous paella competition takes place, usually around the third weekend of August. This event is organized by Baja’s wine committee and hosts around 60 wineries and paella cooks. Food and wine samples are served to the 8 to 10 thousand guests who attend.
After the founder’s passing in 2007 Vina de Liceaga was taken over by his wife Myrna Liceaga. Thus making it one of the few Baja wineries run by a woman. Her two children, Melvin and Sofia, after whom their famous wines are named, are also a big part of the family business.
In the tasting room’s gift shop, you can also find other regional products such as olive oil, tapenade, and beef jerky. Artisanal products such as coffee and hand embroidered hats from Chiapas are available as well. The tasting room also serves as a gallery for artists, jewelers, and local craftspeople, all close friends of the Liceaga family.
Viña de Liceaga also offers tours to their underground wine cellar, where the aging process of their wine takes place. Depending on the wine, this can take anywhere from 3 months to 2 years. All their wines are aged in French and American oak barrels, which give them their unique flavors and aromas.
Viña de Liceaga is a wonderful stop along the Baja wine route, offering their clients a relaxed and homey atmosphere, friendly people and only the best wine and food carefully prepared in their gourmet kitchen.