San Felipe Shrimp Festival 2011

I recently attended the 2011 Shrimp Festival in San Felipe. It has been a good 15 years since I was last in San Felipe and that was for college break where I roughed it at Pete’s Camp with a couple hundred SDSU students. While my college experience was certainly fun in it’s own way– we never actually visited the town of San Felipe–instead merely enjoying beer and the beach. I am happy to report this visit was a much more adult adventure focusing on the delicious foods of San Felipe and of course a few margaritas at the 19th annual San Felipe Shrimp Festival. Known as the shrimp capital of Baja, this three-day festival is always held the first weekend of November. The event is reminiscent of a street fair with lots of booths offering everything from huarache sandals, Mexican style chotchkies, tequila tastings, to local artists showcasing their paintings and of course lots of booths featuring shrimp. Along with the booths and food, there are three days of serious entertainment from music groups and dancers from throughout Mexico. The three day event celebrates the region’s famous, giant, naturally grown blue shrimp. Baja California chefs present their best shrimp recipes to a panel of Baja’s most notable chefs and competed for the 2011 best shrimp recipe. This year’s winner was the Hacienda Coral Restaurant. I enjoyed tasting a few great tequilas from Tequila Los Tres Tenos and Azcona Azul and of course sampling the variety of shrimp–a local favorite is the bacon wrapped shrimp. My only complaint is that is wasn’t clear which booth’s serving shrimp were entered into the contest. Of course that wouldn’t dissuade me and I tried my fare share of shrimp and yes, the bacon wrapped shrimp will always be a winner in my book. Getting There: San Felipe, known as the gateway to the Sea of Cortez, is located 130 miles south of Mexicali and draws sport fisherman from around the world to its famous crystal clear waters.

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