Thousands of foodies flocked to Baja this past weekend for the third annual Baja California Culinary Fest, a deluge of inspiration for the senses. Of the many events held throughout the four day festival was the Tijuana Curbside and Craft Beer Outing hosted by the street savvy power couple, Antonio and Kristin of Club Tengo Hambre. Club Tengo Hambre, a roving supper club dedicated to the exploration of great food and beverage in and around Baja California, celebrates the social aspects of food by bringing together a group of strangers to embark upon a foodie adventure curtailed to their preference. Due to our undying love for street food and beer, we were eager to jump aboard.
Kristin, Antonio and the rest of our crew shoveled into the van, immediately cracked some Funes Baja Beer, cheers'd our fellow adventurers/newfound friends with a smooth shot of Mezcal, and commenced our tour through the wild and scent-ridden streets of TJ.
|Our hosts Antonio & Kristin|
|One tasty torta!|
Food Garden where the tagline is "Keep Tijuana Tasty," and that they do. The mastermind behind this new format food venue handpicks each vendor to fill the ten or so stands, ensuring that authentic, quality and delicious food is offered in this culinary enclave, creating a social setting wherein patrons can choose their preferred meal and mix and match as they please. The smells of charred octopus, freshly pressed tortillas, sizzling meats and grilled fish poured out and mixed together in a Fantasia-like symphony, tickling our noses and piquing our appetites. We indulged in a super flavorful, savory shrimp and New York Strip taco from La Taqueseria, the innards encased in crispy fried cheese, accompanied by a freshly pressed orange and ginger juice from neighboring stand La Barra (topped off with a bit more of that delicious Mezcal!).
Tacos El Franc, a popular late night eatery. The delicious scent of the gigantic, skewered tornado of meat, marinated in a red chili sauce wafted through the air, instantly prompting a drooling desire to indulge in the rotating spit of swine. The pork was moist, flavorful and delicious - a simple, yet satisfying curbside delicacy. Served with guacamole, onion and cilantro, these tacos are some of the most delicious we've had.
To top off our bellies, our next stop was the Baja Craft Beer Tasting Room, better known as BCB. This architectural masterpiece is hidden, unassumingly on a little traversed side road of TJ, boasting over forty tap beers and more than 300 bottled varieties. We sampled a couple of their own brewed beers, and enjoyed a pint of one of our newfound favorite local TJ beers - Insurgentes' La Lupulosa, an American-style IPA.
For more information on Club Tengo Hambre and to book your own tasting tour of Tijuana, visit their website at clubtengohambre.com, and be sure not to miss next year's Baja California Culinary Fest.