Sunday Posts – New Mamut + 1994 Turns Three – Reddit Meeting

 

There was no tour this week.

I’m not posting about a tour this time.

Instead, I am doing what I envisioned for the website, minus my shitwriting.

I’m going to talk about my Tijuana Adventures. I have invited other writers to do something similar. I have been getting great reactions when I tell people about what TJ Adventure is turning into. And other people have shown interested in writing. Of course, the writers I invited still have deliver nothing, but I haven’t either, so I can’t ask for much. I also haven’t change the site as much as I would like.

Let’s talk about beer and reddit.

I missed tap Tuesday this last week. I ended up having a few caguamas over at Nelson’s Bar late at night instead. The intention was to post every Tuesday, but I’ve come to the realization that Sundays work best (I’ll post on my other blog on Mondays, work the rest of the week).

On Wednesday I had a few new beers I haven’t had before in Plaza Fiesta. I also ate a Torta Ahogada from El Jerezano which is connected to my least favorite brewery. The torta was outstanding though. It wasn’t drowned like the name ahogada suggests, but happily swimming over a sauce with stout and mezcal (or so it claims).

I posted the Reddit Alien inside Border Psycho for the next /r/Tijuana meetup on May 27th, 7:00 pm. This should be a fun time with fellow redditors, last meeting went great.

Now let’s talk about beer. I need to talk more about beer, but also learn so much more.

I had the Mosaic IPA by Cerveza Urbana inside Legion tap room. Surprisingly good for a brewery I never tried before. More hoppiness and some citrusy flavor would have been ideal for me, but the beer was a well balanced IPA that sits well.


It was followed by Simcoe De Mayo IPAs by Insurgente. This brewery never disappoints (or very rarely). Simcoe is a type of hop hailing from Washington and has a piney taste. The beer was similar to their famed Lupulosa but with different hops (and a denser yellow color). At Insurgente I ran into this little puppy, whose owner is the beertender at Norte.


After that, my night and the pictures I took are blurry. Only good picture was sausages hanging inside Voodoo Stu’s kitchen.

The other TJ Adventure I had was on Saturday, though it was short-lived. I ate a Champi burger at Indie inside Colectivo 9 and had a Lycan Lupus from Fauna (easily on the top 5 IPAs in Tijuana). I followed by three IPAs in Norte (that’s usually enough to get me to bed). I was on the list as media for the event in Mamut Brewery, but I wasn’t very interested in going (I prefer to avoid huge crowds). I ended up inviting a female friend and we went together.

Mamut had a show to inaugurate their new space with Ruben Albarran (of Cafe Tacuba), DJ Chucuchu, and Sonidero Travesura. An incredible line-up to dance all night.
mamut 2The place was FUCKING PACKED. The menu read that they had Lupulosa, fuck yeah, way better than having a Mamut brew, especially priced at 60 pesos. OH FUCK. There was a huge line to order in their actual bar. Decided to go for a mezcal in the bar in the back instead. The two bars in the back were serving mezcal or a Stout or Farmhouse (Saison). The mezcal was not such a good idea. It was delicious (I don’t know shit about mezcal though), but it also made me very drowsy.
mamut 3The new area of the Mamut Brewery is very cool and very big with art by Teak and El Norteño. Mamut has expanded like crazy and I heard that they have a 4th location already. Unfortunately all the expanding has left the quality of beer behind. For the past months, Mamut has served beer that is barely drinkable. At least they were selling it for 30 pesos in Pasaje Rodriguez, but still, beer had the texture of mud and the smell and taste of fermentation through dirty tanks. They started picking up, having slightly better brews, but still not to the level they once had. Mamut is a complete roller coaster, you never know what quality you are going to get.

With all this said, I said fuck it, I’m going to have a Farmhouse brew. I had a taste of my companion’s Stout, it tasted like soapy water. The Farmhouse had the same taste, except with a bit more of a yeasty after finish. I finished my beer and went home before midnight (Sonidero Travesura was still playing, didn’t see anyone else).
mamutMamut is definitely a great place in downtown Tijuana, with great parties and food, but their beer at the moment… I rather drink Tecate (which is what I’m drinking as I am typing this!)

Ok. I already wrote a lot. And I hope my blog posts to be way shorter than this. I should probably post more than just Sundays but whenever I feel like it except like a ¼ of the size of this blog post. I should just write a mini blog every time I go out for new craft beer or food in Tijuana. That will probably work… right?

Oh shit! I forgot to mention. 1994 had their third year party! I wasn’t there, but I wish I at was. It was probably the beer party of the night.

—Matingas

Changes Are Coming – Tijuana Adventure Is Not About Tours No More

So….

I haven’t posted in this blog in ages. I have been posting on my regular blog of Matingas.com every Monday of every week. The idea now is that I will post in Tijuana Adventure every Tuesday of every week and also maybe make a weekly podcast. What am I going to post about? Well… about my Tijuana Adventures! I have invited other friends/writers to do the same.

I also created a couple logos yesterday. I am not a designer or a webmaster, so bare with me as changes to the page are made slowly.
Option 1:
new logoOption 2:new logo?

^or something similar. I might talk to friends to make an actual new logo.

Now tours…

I’ve been doing a lot of tours and I am a bit tired of them. Not because I do not enjoy them, but because my inability to run a business. I never like to charge my clients, because most of them turn to friends a short time into the tour. I always feel like I am robbing them, even though I know I am providing a service. It happened the same way when I was teaching guitar, I had a few students, and I always felt weird charging them since I had fun teaching. They always paid me extra (even gave me gifts), but felt so strange to make money from something I enjoy.

I am also very bad at organizing events and trying to make a large group happen. I always knew I didn’t want to do large tours anyway, I hate being a shepherd of drunks. I rather know everyone personally and give more than just follow me to random places. Also, I hate cancellations. They ruin my plan for the day. If I am not doing tours in Tijuana, I am working on freelance writing mostly for the San Diego Reader.

For that reason, tours are going to be sidelined. The intention of this page is to act like a guide for those that do not know Tijuana. Not only for foreigners, but for locals. New places open every week and there is almost no one covering them (especially for beer). I know there aren’t many outlets out there for me to write about beer, so I decided to make this blog active and for the tours to be secondary.

I will still be giving tours, I’ll just be way more picky. New rule as well, $100 gets you my attention for 6+ hours, everything else is extra. I will try to get this as a paypal or other sort of payment, to make sure cancellations don’t become the norm.

This summer the webpage and myself will be doing a lot of changes.

Expect this page to become more active as a blog. Sharing information of new breweries, restaurants, concerts, culture, border life and more!

—Matingas

Two Years of TJ Adventure – Brewery Tour Every Saturday

So….
I’ve been neglecting this webpage.
I’ve been neglecting my tours. I’ve been busy with my other blog about my life, Matingas.com and on furthering my career as a writer.

I still get a bunch of views and emails, resulting in several tours throughout the year. But not enough or in an orderly fashion.

It’s been two years of Tijuana Adventure and I’ve been doing a bit of everything. All the tours have been awesome. With wonderful people, eating and drinking amazing food and getting all merry. However, it is time to grow as a tour guide and as an individual. I have figured out that my best bet is beer and food. I still take people to other places in Tijuana, but now, every Saturday, will be a brewery/street food tour. Check out my poster for the first edition, September 26th.

Beer tour

This is a walking tour of Tijuana, going through the local hang out spots, visiting hidden breweries and street food gems that only a city expert knows about (not even locals find these places). The tour includes a flight of beers in each brewery or a full pour (your choice). Two food stops  on your own expense but I promise it won’t go over $10.

To book the tour, contact me via email!

My tours will still be SMALL of no more than 10 people per tour. But I am proud to announce that I am finally getting around to setting up an actual tour. I will start paying attention to my website, doing some advertising and looking for more customers AND posting on the blog! Expect a post every other Friday.

This is all for now!
Hope to meet more wonderful people soon,

Matingas (as Tj Adventure)

One of The Best TJ Adventures So Far

This is an excerpt from my other blog, Matingas.com where you can read more about not only as a tour guide, but my present life as a writer/journalist and my past life as a paparazzo.

“Not only did I have success on the writing world, but after a few weeks of email planning, I had one of the most amazing Tijuana Adventure ever. Compared to June, where many tours were planned but all ended up being canceled, this one actually happened and it was amazing. It actually started wrong, since one of the tourists crossed to Mexico by accident, the other two made it in time, but the other two were 3 hours behind, making the beginning of the tour.

After we all finally found each other in La Cevichería Naiz, the adventure was well under way. I reserved the restaurant Mision 19 for dinner, the fanciest place in Tijuana, since the tour was a bachelor party. Dinner was beyond excellent and like always, I befriended every single client on my tour (and like always, they were all very awesome people to hang out with). After fancy eatings, we went to La Mezcalera for some mezcal shots, and what happened after that will remain in the dark, not only because we were already wasted, but because what happens in a bachelor party is not meant to be shared.

The TJ adventure did not end until breakfast…. but mine continued until Monday morning.

I did not sleep all of Friday and was a zombie on Saturday. I met with the guys to see if they wanted lunch before going to America, but they decided that they were too tired and it was time to go home. I had a blast with them and then got paid (which always makes me feel guilty, but hey… it is a business!)”

I have been concentrating much more in my writing career than promoting or caring about my tours, but finally, there was an awesome Tijuana Adventure. It was a bachelor party, but it involved much more than just XXX. No doubt more bachelor parties will occur after this one, if people keep recommending me.

Soon the Brewery and Street Food tour will be setup! Please be patient as I still work my other life before I give more tours. In the mean time, if you want a personal tour/hang out or need anything from Tijuana, shoot me an email through the contact page.

Always wanting to give more tours and show the amazing city of Tijuana!
Matingas!

There’s more than just XXX! New tours coming soon!

I haven’t posted on the Tijuana Adventure blog in forever that it seems like I am not even giving tours anymore…

Quite the opposite. Since the last post, I have had more than 10 tours. Many involving Zona Norte (XXX tours), in fact, many of the emails I receive are inquiring about that though I deleted the tour from my webpage. Tijuana is much more than just a place to get naked girls. But I need to give people what they want, the XXX tours are back, but we don’t go directly just there, I’ll show you the whole city before is sinning time.

I had several one on one tours that were a blast and customers keep telling me I charge to little. I had a bachelor party that went pretty wild. I had a couple of brewery tours and a few international tours. Apparently a hostel has been recommending my service and it has brought me people around the world.

Here is one of the many tours I had… and the only one I took pictures:

hostel inhostel beach hostel pasaj

I got really busy between my part time job, freelance writing and giving tours that I simply had no time to update this blog. But I have quit my part time job to dedicate more time to giving tours!

Not only that, I will introduce a new tour every Saturday! Brew hopping and street food!

Introducing The Brew Hop and Baja Med Tour:

8 to 12 people – Saturdays from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm $40 will get you:

  1. Walking tour of the city visiting landmarks, art galleries, street art, cafes, shops, etc.
  2. 4 breweries wtih a free flight of beers or a full pour in each stop.
  3. 2 street food stops
  4. Ride back to the border

Poster of this and more updates on the page will come soon.

Also, I had a brief talk with Uber, so I might be getting my own promo code and will be using UberXl to move around the city!

In the meantime, my friend from college, Drew, is visiting. And we are having Tijuana Adventures of our own.

drew

Book your tour now here:
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Follow Tijuana Adventure on Instagram here:

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It wouldn’t be an adventure if I knew where I was going… VEGGIE TOUR

Of course I know where I am going… but Tijuana has changed so much in so little. Seriously… just at the start of 2015, new breweries and restaurants opened up, that my tours sometimes end up in places brand new even for me!

This time, fellow SDreader writer, Vanessa Horne, emailed me for a tour of vegetarian and vegan restaurants in TJ, inspired by Chad Deal’s column on the Reader “Veggiejuana.” The tour was going to be a present for her boyfriend, Gavin, and another couple would come join the tour. Little did I know that the other couple, Courtney and Derek, had already visited Tijuana 7 times in 2014. They have also visited the places I had in mind to take them. So like many times, I improvised and took them to places I have never been. After all, it wouldn’t be an adventure if there was some unknown frontiers in the mix.

We started at Mamut brewery, were we had 2 beers each though it was just over 1 pm. We also had vegan food delivered from Raices and Happy Vegan.  Of course Derek and Courtney had been there before, being one of the most popular spots in Tj at the moment. That’s when I remembered about this tiny brewery no one knows about in a different alley nearby. Azteca brewing served us one of the best IPAs I’ve tasted in Tj.veggie tour
3 or more beers in and it wasn’t even 4 pm. We had to slow down and the plan was to go to Veggie Smalls over at the Food Garden, but again, it would have been a repeat. That same morning, a friend told me about a new place called Bresca, with plenty of vegan choices. So we headed over there instead. We had some coffee and a delicious vegan mac and cheese that they wouldn’t believe it was vegan. Luckily, we ran into the chef on our way out and he told us the secrets behind the recipe.

After that we were set for more drinks. They requested to go to Dandy’s del Sur, the cantina where Anthony Bourdain was at, and then to La Mezcalera. On our way there, I noticed TJ China, an art gallery that is rarely open, was in fact… open!

vegige tour 2
We had plenty of beer, tequilas and mezcales in both Dandy’s and Mezcalera, all before 7 pm. From there, we ventured to new Telefónica Gastro Pub, where unfortunately many places were closing because it was near 8 pm. However, they had the chance to order a vegetarian Pho and again, more beers. And not to sound like a broken record, but again, they said it was one of the best they ever had.

From there we cab to Plaza Fiesta to a new brewery by the name of Paralelo 29. By then I was pretty drunk but we kept drinking until around 11 pm when we called a cab and they headed back to the border before they missed the last trolly.

I wanted to go home after that and sleep…. but somehow I was awake until 2 am after stumbling into more parties in downtown Tijuana.

This post was longer than I intended…. Anyway, more Tj adventures coming up since more emails come my way!

Tijuana Adventure for 2015…. Sorry, I’ve been busy

My last post was back in September….

I was going to post that I was taking a break in October, but that never happened. My college roommate from Minnesota visit me at the end of the month and we hung out for a week straight in Tijuana. We had plenty of adventures, but we also learned that we can’t drink as much as we did in college.

This happened on Halloween night in Tijuana:

I’ve been very busy, no time to party all night and write about it the next day. I got a regular job in retail at a soccer store in San Diego to have a more steady income and to get a van for the tours.

I keep getting emails for Tijuana Adventures… I’ve been having all sorts of adventures but no time to post about it and I keep forgetting to take pictures.

I had an important tour some months back with a group of 10 (5 married couples). Before meeting them, I took a nap in a co-workers car in the parking lot outside work.

I’ve had plenty of 1 on 1 tours all over the place. All very much fun, I even received this email thanking me for the tour:

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And in 2015 I have already had two adventures!!!

I had one booked since last year for a Veggie and Brewery tour that is coming up next Saturday (will post about it later). But out of nowhere I got two last minute tours that ended up being really awesome.

The first one of the year had to be an XXX tour with a programmer from Los Angeles. We ate at Cevicheria Naiz, drank at Mamut, talked about videogames and then headed to the XXX world for unrated fun…. Haven’t done those tours in a long time… they uhh.. renovated some areas of the clubs, the usual dirty business remained the same. He emailed me the next day:
Mark review Through the tour he kept thanking me, it was a wonderful time.

The second one was with friends of friends. A guy from Alabama (Ed) and one from Minnesota (Chris) were roommates in France, Chris visited Ed to Los Angeles where he currently lives and they came down to Tijuana. We went on a classic Tj Adventure party blender with live music shows by Innerds and Octagrape at Mous Tache, street tacos and plenty of drinks.

Here we are eating at Cevicheria Naiz before partying until 4 am:
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And we had breakfast tacos at the king, Tacos el Rey, before saying our hungover goodbyes:
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2015 seems promising for a lot of tours! If I am lucky, I might be able to quit my job and party with tourists for a living…. make my dream come true… come party… come have a Tijuana Adventure!

It’s been a year of Tijuana Adventure and there’s much more to come!

Tijuana Adventure turns one year old
It has been a wild ride. I have met people from Canada, Australia, UK, Argentina and all over the USA. I had 5 adventures for the past two weeks and I am booked for the next weekends. Apparently I’ve been recommended on TripAdvisor which has helped on getting a few more adventurers. I haven’t really made money from my tours and I don’t really care. From the start my tours have been heavily improvised, going to places I like and having a lot of fun with incredible awesome “clients,” many that have become friends (and now I have a place to stay in several cities).
Don’t be a tourist, party with a local.

With Aussies
With Aussies at Playas

I spent Sunday and Monday (of the last week of August) with 3 Australians going from taco shop to bar, rinse and repeat. It was awesome times. I’ve been spending every weekend with a different group of people for the past month or more.

My main focus has always been to get people comfortable with Tijuana so they can come back without any assistance. This is a huge complicated city that many fear, but in reality it is one of the most fun and diverse cities (if you know your way around). The direction of TJ adventure is changing, not sure what to, but it has to evolve.
Tours will be free of charge as long as the group is paying for my food/drinks, I’ll take you anywhere your heart desires (tipping your tour guide is encouraged…). Events will happen once a month if possible. With many side jobs besides being a tour guide, I am keeping TJ adventure as casual as I can.
TJ adventure is your opportunity to tour the city with a journalist for the San Diego Reader, who also happens to be a musician and a photographer (that’s me). Contact me to set up a tour and let’s have fun!

3 Day TJ Adventure and Valle de Guadalupe (new Instagram!)

I got an email on June 9th from Jillian, a student at SDSU and redditor who saw a post of mine, saved it and decided to contact me. For weeks we emailed back and forth planning a Tijuana Adventure and a Valle de Guadalupe winery tour for her, her boyfriend and other friends. The group ended up being the most diverse I’ve tour around and also the longest tour I’ve done.
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We met up on Friday afternoon for a classic TJ adventure that ended up before midnight. We walked a lot and did some light eating and drinking, saving our energy for Saturday morning. I dropped my group at a quaint and old hotel in the downtown area where they got two double rooms for cheap.
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By 8:30 am on Saturday morning we were all eating a quick breakfast of tacos varios in one of the best Mexican restaurants (especially for breakfast) in downtown. We met our tour guide, who I nicknamed Hectour, from Baja Viajes right outside the restaurant who had a nice van waiting for us. I previously have spent days trying to get my own van and driver, but I did not succeed and had to succumb to another travel agency. I didn’t have to join them in this tour, but felt like learning more about the wineries myself that I spent half of what they originally paid me to go on a tour with them. It was a wondrous tour going through 4 different wineries with samplers included (I’ve been to one of them before).
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The ride back to Tijuana was quiet that some of us took a quick nap. Though the plan was to spend all night of Saturday partying, everyone was too tired so we decided to eat in an Argentinean restaurant and call it a night.

We met up on Sunday to close the tour where we had breakfast at the same place. Then we went to Mercado Hidalgo to experience a classic picturesque Mexican market. From there we did a quick visit through the museum near the border, CECUT (Centro Cultural Tijuana). And finally back to the border, where a painful 2.5 hours awaited to go back to America.

Tijuana is the only place where you go on a ride and then have to wait in line.

– Your tour guide in Tijuana, Matt (Matingas)

Tijuana Adventure gets an Instagram! Follow here:
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Independence Day in TJ: Fifth wheeling an adventure during America’s birthday

“It might be a little odd, but my girlfriend and I are coming down to TJ on July 4th, maybe with a couple of friends.”

I received an email from a client that saw a post of mine on Reddit asking for a tour. This was right after dealing with another TJ Adventure that will involve the wineries on Valle de Guadalupe (for July 19th and I’m so excited about it!)

“Got nothing going on this Friday, if you want to play it by ear, let’s do this! A friend of my roommate and his girlfriend (that has never been in TJ) are staying in my apartment, you don’t mind if they come over do you?” – I replied to the email.

I met the redditor and his girlfriend (who met on Match.com) on the border  a bit after 11:30 am after some mix-up about the meeting spot. His “maybe” friends never made it, they told me that their friends think they are crazy for visiting Tijuana.

We headed to La Corriente Cevicheria Naiz for some fish tacos and ceviche tostadas where we met with the other couple. A cute couple moment happened when both the guys ordered the same thing and the girls did the same almost in a mirror image.

From there, we did the classic TJ Adventure downtown walk around, which involves Zona Norte, art walk, breweries, stopped by some of the oldest bars in Tijuana (where we watched the World Cup) and other destinations.

The cute couples walking through Pasaje Rodríguez
The cute couples walking through Pasaje Rodríguez

We walked back to the border at 5:30 pm to a very busy border crossing line. After spending the day drinking in Tijuana, they still wanted to make it back in time for the fireworks to celebrate America’s birthday. I, in the other hand, went to pass out from all the day drinking and all the fun.

Tijuana Adventure is getting more emails everyday, but my other jobs keep me very busy. This page will be updated, reformatted soon and will be getting more action!