Lauren Mowery: author, Forbes.com contributor and Travel Editor Wine Enthusiast tells us what happened at the 3rd annual “Taste Of Mexico Festival” in Tulum, check it out…
The weeklong Taste of Mexico Tulum Food, Spirits and Wine Festival (TOM) concluded on Sunday, February 10, 2019, leaving a group of food lovers tired, sated and marking their calendars for 2020.
Tulum is one of Mexico’s hippest destinations, especially for the yoga/bohemian set and Instagram/influencer models and their groupies. It’s also an appealing retirement destination for American expats; outside the tourist-crazed beach zone, cost of living eases into the manageable realm. Curiously, those communities didn’t collide throughout the week.
Though the festival held events in several of Tulum’s Instagram-friendliest hotels, starting with the brutalist/concrete blocks of Casa Malca, a former Pablo Escobar property, to the Hip Hotel, site of heaving beachfront crowds devouring tacos by day, the patrons of the festival were largely well-behaved expat retirees who had never heard of Friday nights at Gitano’s.
This information proves relevant only if you’re hoping your dinner crew will carry on until 7 AM at Papaya Playa. Of course, you’re welcome to go after but not likely with your festival companions.
But those dinners…that’s a key – the key – reason for alighting on Tulum during Taste of Mexico week. Enjoying regional dishes reinterpreted through the lens of star chefs, beats the overpriced beach hotel joints any day.
The festival was started three years ago by Diane DiMeo, who continues to serve as TOM’s founder and executive director. “I created the Taste of Mexico experience to bring Mexico to the world so that the world can learn and understand the artisanal culture of this amazing country through food, culture, spirits, wine and beer,” said DiMeo. “Our third edition for 2019 promises more chefs, more booze, more culture and more excitement for our guests who come to Tulum from around the globe to savor our unique caliente style of life.”
Intrepid festival attendees could also opt for a six-course Cannabis tasting menu in a secret, password-required location. Tulum serves as a rather ideal spot for such an event given the wide availability of cannabis products.