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“Disappointing Winery on a Cruise Ship Excursion”

La Casa de Dona Lupe
Ranked #5 of 60 things to do in Ensenada
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed 7 April 2014

This was a cruise ship excursion during a port call in Ensenada. John, I and 45 of our closest friends were bused to two wineries: one very large and one very small.

As we left the port, our guide (Gloria) strongly hinted that we should be tipping her and the driver (Jesus) at the end of the tour. During the 40-minute drive, Gloria gave us some information on the history and economic conditions in this part of Mexico but admitted that she did not know much about wine (she prefers whiskey) or the wineries we would be visiting. As we approached the first winery, Gloria informed us that she would handle the tips there but we should tip at the second winery. John and I have toured and tasted at over 100 wineries all over the world and this is the first time there has been any suggestion that the wine pourers were expecting us to tip them.

The second winery, La Casa de Dona Lupe, is an extremely small wine operation. In addition to wine, it produces liquors, herbs, jams, spreads, filled breads and pizzas. We were encouraged to taste the jams and spreads on our own; Gloria had a couple of the stuffed breads and pizzas cut up so that we could each have a small taste of those. Each of us received a card that entitled us to four small pours of wine. No descriptions of the wines were offered by the pourers; in fact, they never spoke at all and Gloria was naturally of no help. I did not see a tip jar but no one there was doing anything that deserved a tip anyway. The wines were non-vintage and of uncertain variety. They were at best drinkable but only marginally. The food was better. At one point, we had a brief glimpse of Dona Lupe herself and there was a costumed dancer doing native dances and selling jewelry. At least there were clean bathrooms.

The other winery was L. A. Cetto. Altogether this was a decent way to spend a port day in Ensenada. However, we would not seek out any of the wines we tasted to purchase in the future.

1  Thank Carolyn_B_27312
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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53 - 57 of 115 reviews

Reviewed 16 March 2014

We visited this winery as part of a cruise ship tour and are going to go back on our own!! We loved it. First, the wines. All wines are organic and are quite flavorful. I'm not a wine expert, but heard from others visiting the winery that the wines are good. They are a little pricier than some of the larger wineries but well worth the additional cost. The honey wine is more like a mead (sweet like ice wine) and I love it! Beyond the wine, do not miss the salsas and breads. They are both delicious and reasonably priced. Toss the tabasco, kids! These sauces are amazing. The bread is fresh and tastes great. You can grab some Mexican cheeses, sauces, bread, and wine and have a really fun dinner. We also got to taste the pizzas, which are most on a whole grain thin crust. Very good. One tip: if you're headed here as part of a cruise ship visit and you're going to La Cetto first, save some money and room for Dona Lupes!

2  Thank ocdizneygirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 February 2014

We recently did a shore excursion wine tasting through our cruise line. This was our second stop on the tour. We found it to be a great experience. I have a picture of one of the most beautiful sunsets I have every seen. There was a fire dancer on the grounds adding to the experience. The wine was good but the jalepeno bread and the pizza were even better. This is definitely a place that I would come back to as everything is organic. I was most impressed with the habenero and chili sauce available for sale and brought those back with me. This trip was without my hubby...but the next trip I go to here will be with him! Highly recommend!

1  Thank ChrisMiss04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 December 2013 via mobile

The best excursion the owner dona lupe come out to greet us to her home, we are welcome to her backyard, were we are served delicious honey wine, chesse, salsa and the best pizza I have ever tasted. The added bonus in an aztec dancer dancing as you are enjoying the winery views.

3  Thank chatyo01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 November 2013

We did this as an excursion to wine taste, the snacks they served, pizza and cheese and jalepeno stuffed bread was very tasty. They also had some awesome olive oil combinations and some fabulous hot sauces. You can sample till your hearts content. I think I ended up purchasing 4 bottles. The wines themselves were not very impressive, but we still had a fabulous time and the staff was very friendly.

1  Thank rcjetskier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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