Taco tour and catamaran excursion make Mexico magical
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‘Vamonos, amigos,” quips Karina Rios Radilla with a wave of her hand and a snap of her head.
Our guide from Juan More Taco Tours is giving us the Spanish command of ‘let’s go, friends’ because we’re falling behind in this six-stop, three-hour, lunch-time culinary adventure.
That’s right, so many tacos and so little time.
Karina’s admonishment comes as me, my wife, Kerry, our son, Alex, and three other foodie tourists from Minnesota dawdle at stop No. 3.
It’s Taqueria Morelos, and the hold up is our deliberate savouring of brisket-in-sauce quesabirria tacos.
Our excited chatter and asking for seconds has put us behind schedule and Karina wants to make sure we don’t miss a single bite at any of the upcoming refuelling stops.
The tour started at MerCabo restaurant, the headquarters of Juan More Taco Tours and the Cookin’ Cabo School.
The kickoff dishes are expertly fried nacho chips with four different kinds of salsa and sope (like a little Mexican pizza) prepared by the smiling and non-English-speaking chef Angel Villazana.
We chose the Juan More Taco Tour from a myriad of things to do and see in Cabo San Lucas as much for its ingenious name as our love of tacos.
After all, tacos are the quintessential Mexican favourite of fried tortillas folded around a magical mixture of meat, cheeses, peppers, chilis and salsa.
“Mexican food is like a little taste of heaven,” Karina tells us.
“In Mexico we make a fiesta of everything, especially food and drink. So let’s have some fun.”
And fun we have, as Karina leads us on an escapade that’s as much a cultural, history and geography lesson as it is a culinary exploit.
The geography part of this equation is Cabo San Lucas, the tourist destination at the tip of the Baja Peninsula where craggy desert confoundingly meets the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez and tacos are a religion.
Juan More Taco is billed as a backstreet tour of downtown Cabo to discover the holes in the wall, dives and street carts you’d usually never bother with as a tourist.
As such, stop No. 2 on our foodie foray is literally a hole in the wall with a counter — Los Tacos May — where we’re served up steaming hot mole chicken, beef tongue and nopalitos (cactus leaf) tacos that drip down our chins as we eat standing on the sidewalk.
For stop No. 4 we join the line at Moy Ceviche’s street cart to get ‘the best tostadas in town’ — as the sign attached to the cart says.
Stop No. 5 is a palate-cleansing mango-and-chili popsicle at La Michoacana before moving on to Taquerias el Paisa for Pacifico beers and al pastor tacos made with a pork-pineapple-salsa-and-cilantro concoction from a spinning spit, donair-style.
We wrap up back at MerCabo for a tequila tasting and effusive good-byes, thank-yous and this-was-the-best-tour-ever compliments.
Although what we do next rivals our best-tour-ever declaration.
We boarded the EcoCat catamaran because delicious doesn’t just describe Cabo’s food scene, but it’s consistently beautiful, sunny weather and stunning location.
We cruise out to Cabo’s most famous landmark — The Arch (El Arco) rock formation at the Baja Peninsula’s Land’s End — before heading to Cabo’s most beautiful beach, Santa Maria, to snorkel amongst the angel fish.
On the way back to the marina, as the afternoon light fades, it’s margaritas on deck as Macarena by Los del Rio blares on the sound system and we count ourselves lucky to have revelled in such a decidedly delicious day in Cabo.
Air Canada, WestJet, Swoop and Flair fly to Cabo from a variety of Western Canada airports.
Check out JuanMoreTacoTours.com and CaboEcoTours.com.