It has been years now since the travel warning has been lifted from Mexico by the US Government, and downtown Rosarito is finally showing signs of bouncing back.
Once a mecca for all ages seeking sun and fun this gorgeous destination, located just south of the border below San Diego, California, welcomes tourists with so much to offer.
On the drive in I always stop at my favorite taco stand at K-38 called Taco Surf. Even though it is not much to look at, and misleads onlookers and passersby, the food is incomparably delicious. “Don’t judge a book by its cover” has never been truer than here. I always go for the Carnitas and Carne Asada Tacos. It is also inviting that the gents who barely speak English have no qualms about my protein style preferences. But I do bring my own fork since they do not have utensils as their menu does not require them.
After some asking around I have come to find that Taco Surf is a crowd favorite beckoning Mexicans and tourists alike! No wonder the counter is always crowded. Good news travels fast apparently.
The first night is spent at Ollie’s Pizza, adorably named after the owner Richard Cargill’s Portuguese Water Dog named Ollie. Their brick oven turns out the most amazing pizza. Their Caprese Salad is served with tomatoes roasted in the pizza oven. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday the menu is expanded to include fresh roasted baby veggies fired up in the brick oven!
A sum total of $40 American dollars bought a beautiful bottle of wine, two specialty pizzas, and an appetizer. It is quite the bargain for a romantic date night with gourmet pizzas and candlelight. It also helps that the location is walking distance from where I stay and allows my little dog Trigger to sit under our dining table, and why not when Mr. Ollie is himself comfortably situated either beneath the bar or in the corner on his dog bed.
Waking up to nothing more than the sound of birds and the breakwater is just a primer for what comes next, brunch. A short drive puts you in downtown Rosarito and the place to go is Los Arcos, another eating establishment that welcomes Trigger. I always order eggs scrambled with homemade ranchero sauce, avocado, and beans along with fruit and a bottomless cup of coffee (and even one to go if you so wish). My honey always orders chorizo and eggs. Let’s not forget the two kinds of house prepared salsa they serve, comes in “hot” or “hotter.” The bill came to a whopping $11 USD.
The afternoon is spent reading and writing with a view of the playa, then back to Ollie’s for dinner. Basically this place is a little slice of heaven.
Where to stay: If you have any reliable source for a personal recommendation then I suggest finding a condo to rent. Many places are ocean front/ocean view, and very safe. If you are at a loss on this front then check out Rosarito Beach Hotel. It is an historic place with a reputation for delightful hospitality, and the view is surreal. As an alternative, take a peek at Puerto Nuevo Hotel and Villas, also a beautiful property with stunning views.
Yes, there are more posh places one can visit. But Rosarito is highly underrated and without a doubt a foodie’s dream.