Archive for September, 2009

Rancho La Puerta

Oh my.  Where in the heck have I been?  Yikes.  Well, I’m back.  Again.

Waaaay back at the end of June, I was graciously invited along with a group of San Diego food/gardening enthusiasts to visit Rancho La Puerta in Tetate, Mexico.  It was a true getaway, the kind of one-day trip that feels like a full vacation.  The lovely folks at Rancho La Puerta were promoting their new Saturdays at the Ranch program, where San Diegans can be whisked away for a one day mini-ranch experience.

We were picked up in Old Town and driven to the Tecate border – the ranch itself is very close to the border, but once within its gates I felt like I was in another world.  Lush native landscaping, beautiful architecture and sensual sculptures dot the property (3,000 acres if you’re counting), and each winding path leads to something special.  I had a spa treatment (first things first!), then took a cool shower and set out to explore the property.  If you stroll in almost any direction you’ll hit one of the spa’s numerous pools or gyms, all dotted with extraordinary sculptures – just a beautiful landscape:

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After searching for a while to try to find the running track, I realized that I was standing right in it – an oval-shaped vineyard!  I took a few laps, then went straight back to relax-mode.

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After I searched for a hide-out spot where I could stow away (Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler-style), I met up with the rest of the group for a trip to La Cocina Que Canta, the cooking school and organic garden.

The school is located off the main grounds (there went my whole stow-away plan – foiled again), about a 5-minute drive away.  We explored the gardens with Chef Michel Stroot and I geeked out in my head, naming all the vegetables by their foliage.  After collecting some of our dinner ingredients, we headed back into the kitchen to prepare and enjoy a lovely meal.  Before long, our day had come to an end, and we climbed back in the bus to America.  Sigh.

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Chris came to pick me up at the Old Town Transit Stop, and as I jumped to see him and rush back into project mode, I was left with one hope – that I’d take some of this bliss back with me, that I could return to this magical feeling often.  I still think of this statue on the ranch grounds when I’m having a particularly stressful day – brings me right back.

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Such a fun getaway – big thanks to my generous hosts for this fabulous day!

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