|Puerto Nuevo "Lobster Village"
Puerto Nuevo is internationally renowned for its restaurants which
feature local lobster, cooked to perfection and served with steaming
bowls of rice, beans, and fresh tortillas. Thousands of lobsters are
served each year to the visitors who come here from all over Baja
But people don't come only for the extraordinary food. There's also a
delightfully unique atmosphere that puts everyone at ease while
enjoying their meal. Musicians wander in and out of all of the
restaurants, and will serenade you with romantic ballads, upbeat
norteño rhythms and even mariachi music.
More than one hungry soul has driven down here from Southern
California just for such a treat, and habitués have their favorite
places in which they believe they are enjoying the best lobster in the
|But the development is really fairly new, as is so much that is
interesting in Baja. Nobody knows exact dates, but sometimes in the
40's the cove was discovered by fishermen from Lake Chapala, which
is just south of Guadalajara in Jalisco state in Mexico. Gradually the
word got around, and an entire colony from Chapala gathered at the
little cove on the Baja coast, providing daily catches for their families
and sometimes to the nearby restaurants.
By the 50's there were people who were appearing to purchase the
fresh fish as they came off the boats, and the fishermen sold lobster
and other delicacies from their front porches. Finally, some of the
fishermen were taking tourists with them out to the fishing grounds,
and upon return, the tourist was often hungry. It was then logical to
serve an simple meal in the fisherman's beans, tortilla, and rice. But it
wasn't long before the homes became too small, and larger facilities
In the early days, the turn off from the libre was marked by a sizable
building with a big 7-up sign painted on its side. That landmark had
been a rest stop for Tijuana-Ensenada buses in the 40's, but everyone
seems to agree that its menu was too quick and informal to include
lobster. And it was closed before the real development began in the
The first really commercial lobster restaurant was started in 1955 by
Rosario Grana, and it still is serving Lobster Puerto Nuevo in the same
spot, which is on the very first southwestern corner of the main street
of the town. Rosario is still presiding over her kitchen, and original
customers will still feel right at home there because the general layout
of the place and the food has not changed, though facilities have
much improved over the years.
It wasn't long, though until other families were also moving out of their
home kitchens and into areas where they could handle large crowds.
Among the first of these were the Ortega and Plascencia families.
At most of the restaurants the lobsters come out split and cooked,
with the halves stacked on a platter, served family style. The
traditional way to cook them is deep frying, but they are available
grilled or steamed upon request. At the last lobster meal this writer
enjoyed in Puerto Nuevo, nine halves were served for three of us.
Beans, rice and tortillas are also served from bowls on the table, with
drawn butter and salsa also to be passed around. Plenty is available
for refills of the supplemental delight, and the price runs about $ 13.00
per serving unless larger sizes are requested. For parties, enormous
specimens are available for a specified price.
When the fishermen first went out from Puerto Nuevo, there were so
many lobster that they were often used for bait, but the size of the
catch has greatly diminished in recent years. There for the scarcity,
poachers being the most common. Anchovy fishing for the fertilizer
plant in Ensenada is also blamed for the scarcity of, not only lobster,
but also other fish in the kelp beds just off the coast here, but all
agree everything possible is being done now to protect the fishing
At any rate, most of the lobsters served in Newport and Rosarito today
are from farther south on the peninsula, south or Ensenada,
Restaurateurs feel certain that the supply is not in jeopardy there,
citing its protection by a fishermen's syndicate and the concern and
attention of the Mexican coast guard.
Puerto Nuevo has grown from a quaint, primitive fishing village to one
of the most popular spots on the Azure Coast. Weekend evenings, the
town is filled with exuberant seafood lovers, and the many restaurants
are supplemented with tourist businesses of all kinds. Time
condominiums are being built to the south of the cafes, and a first
class hotel has also been added to the tourist scene there.
The streets just off the highway have been paved, and the restaurants
and shops are now shoulder to shoulder in an area of about four
square blocks. But drive to the end of the main street, walk down the
dirt road to the ocean, and you will see the same tranquil cove that
brought the original fishermen to the area. If you arrive between eight
and nine a.m. you will see the boats coming in with the day's catch. If
you are there later, you will see the boats beached for the day, but the
fish is being prepared in the various restaurants up on the hill to
please your particular palate.
The ocean still laps the shoreline in its gentle rhythms, carrying the
fishermen in and out its tides to harvest the succulent seafood. It is
indifferent to the delights it provides for the marisco lover at the top
of the cliffs and to the prosperity it has created for the fishermen of
Puerto Nuevo has become famous for its sea food restaurants, not
just with locals and American tourists, but on a national level within
Mexico. A fame that's well-deserved and hard-earned, Puerto Nuevo is
a place not to be overlooked by travelers heading down the road to
Ensenada. The main gourmet specialty that has made Puerto Nuevo's
restaurants famous is their unique preparation of lobster entrees in
an outstanding Mexican style. A rare gift to your taste buds!
Once lobster season is on (October thru March), Puerto Nuevo
celebrates its annual Beer and Lobster Festival and the Steak &
Lobster Fest. Those lively, not-to-be-missed events will take place on
Avenida Rentería, (Puerto Nuevo’s main street) which will be shut
down to traffic for the day.
The best folklórico dancers, mariachis and live music bands from
Tijuana and Rosarito, will compete to see which one's are the most
talented. There will be a contest to see which restaurant makes the
best tortillas, which has the most festive and colorful decorations, and
ruffles with great prices such as accommodations, cellular phones,
wine bottles, dinners, etc.
Visitors will be able to buy a ticket for a lobster dinner and several
samples of Baja beers. It's a celebration not to be missed, so mark it
on your calendar and come on down!
|Transportation Tours include pick up from San
Diego Hotel or Airport:
Beginning in Tijuana, Fox Studio tour, Lobster
Village, Puerto Nuevo,
Rosarito, Ensenada and La Bufadora includes
$125.00 per adult
$50.00 per child (2 - 14)
|Call toll-free for rates
1 (866) 322-2561 or