Cocktails and tastings at Casa Velas and Vista Grill offered up little vignettes of Mexican cooking in some of the loveliest settings I have ever seen. The opening night of the NATJA conference on the grounds of Casa Velas, an exclusive adults-only resort retreat on Mexico’s Pacific Riviera,(http://www.hotelcasavelas.com/) brought me face to face with Frida Kahlo de Rivera, Mexican dancers and an array of others that were background for a variety of dish and wine samplings. The crown jewel for the evening was the Mariachi band.
During our trip we stayed at the lovely Velas Vallatra (http://www.velasvallarta.com/)which offered its own lovely views and beachside restaurant. One night we dined in and sat on the balcony of this hotel where peacocks and iguanas blend into the tropical landscape. The hotel is family friendly and offers an amazing all inclusive deal.
One evening before we headed to dinner at Trio we went to Vista Grill, a terrace restaurant that offered an astounding view of Baderas Bay and the city of Puerto Vallarta at our feet. The only other comparable view during my trip was from the sunset cruise on our way to the dinner and show at Rhythms of the Night.
During our trip, I tried tacos at Tacos el Cunado, a popular stand that has been in business for 48 years and tortilla soup at Gaby’s Restaurant (https://www.facebook.com/gabys.restaurantbar)/ where I spied pictures of Richard Burton and Liz Taylor taken during his filming of Night of the Iguana. The last night of our trip was at the Canyon River (https://www.google.com/#q=canyon+river+puerto+vallarta), where a Mexican feast was prepared and we were privy to a Mexican carnival with darts, basketball and the night ending in fireworks. This farm that 35 owners joined together to purchase and offer ziplines, river cruises and more is perhaps the best example I have ever seen of agritourism.
Dining included high end foods like the Trio (https://www.facebook.com/pages/TRIO-RESTAURANT/179671854809?sk=info&tab=page_info) where they had a hand carved caoba bar and a roof top with an amazing view. A small Mariachi band played and the setting offered great food and lovely art.
Perhaps my favorite meal while on this trip was at the hotel Villa Premiere, at their restaurant. The chef provided an amazing menu they titled From the Sea and Farm and it was capped off with a dessert they called “A Little Taste of Cuba” which looked just like a Cuban cigar. This boutique adult hotel is located within walking distance of downtown. (http://www.premiereonline.com.mx/).
Ah, the food, the wine and the views, pictures don’t do it justice!