Taking a Walk on the Wild Side

Food Adventures in Los Cabos worth making the time for

BY HELGA AND CHARLIE BOGUE 

On many trips to Los Cabos as vacation visitors and now as year-round permanent residents, we have always enjoyed finding new and exciting things to do in this amazing part of the world.

One of our favorite outings is to create our own “Food Adventures” by exploring the many of the off-grid food offerings that are available from corner taco tiendas to full restaurants with sit down family-style local fare.

There are three requirements we use when setting out on a “food adventure” all of which can be modified to your own budget and taste. The first, and what creates the excitement, is to seek out a location that we have never been to before. The selected location might be a tip from a local, a drive-by sighting or an online review that captured our interest. The second requirement is that the destination is likely to be owned by a local family who is passionate about the food they create and the experience you will have. Thirdly, we look for an establishment that is located outside of the hotel and tourist zones and has a heavy local Mexican following.

Much to our surprise, we discovered just such an opportunity right under our noses in San Jose Del Cabo. Who would think that you could find amazing food at incredible prices under a tiny palapa just a block off the beach on the Boulevard Mijares across the street from the Barcelo Gran Faro.

This favorite neighborhood gem, Jugueria La Manzanita, has a steady following of local workers and residents. This little palapa “juice stand” is far more than just a jugueria.

For the past 7 years, the Celis family has been providing the best “fast” food in the area. Adolfo and his wife Sandra, their 3 sons, Sergio, Mehari and Serafin, along with 2 other employees, run the entire operation.

Sandra cooks the meals, manages the kitchen creating the most amazing super burritos (70, small ones are just 20), tortas (70) and full breakfasts (65), all prices in pesos.

She’s always smiling while cooking on her plancha, and you can enjoy the food onsite at the bar or the side tables in the shade. As well, you take your dish home or have Serafin deliver it to your home or workplace.

The fresh fruit smoothies (35) and milkshakes (35) are a local favorite, and from 6 a.m. on you’ll always see two coffee pots brewing on the counter for the morning crowd.

The portions they serve are large, as we often share a large burrito or torta between us. It’s such a relaxing place to have breakfast, practice your Spanish, and feel part of the community as the locals drop by for their morning cup before heading off to work.

Often it is standing room only at the Jugueria, but a small delay is well worth the wait. Next time you want some really delicious “fast” food at a great price or a fresh fruit smoothie, stop by the little Palapa and treat yourself.

As an adventure, a visit to Jugueria La Manzanita may not compare to hanging from a parachute over the Sea of Cortez or bobbing on a glass-bottom boat ride to the arch, but it will give you an unanticipated entry into local foods and local life. A click on Wikipedia states an adventure to be “an exciting experience that is typically a bold and sometimes risky undertaking”.

A different language, a different currency and the unique warm culture of Mexico make every experience an adventure. In Los Cabos, you have every opportunity to create your own “food adventure” that will satisfy your hunger and give you an experience and a memory more valuable than any souvenir.