Seven Common Misconceptions about Tequila and Mezcal

A pile of agave cores, ready to be roasted for mezcal.

Tequila and mezcal are made from “cactus juice.” Agave is not a cactus, but rather a member of the botanical order Asparagales, which includes asparagus and narcissus. (Native to the New World, the genus Agave is exceedingly diverse, with well over 100 varieties in Mexico alone.) Mezcal is a type of Tequila. If you want to get down to brass tacks (and I think you do), Tequila is a variation on mezcal, or distilled agave spirits. Mexican laws about the […]

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Back in the Big Enchilada: I Try a New Hotel

editor’s note: This post is by Tina Rosa, a veteran travel writer and adventurer who now lives in San Miguel de Allende, Gto. She is the co-author of “22 Days in Mexico” and “The Shopper’s Guide to Mexico.” She blogs at Open Salon. Since my beloved Hotel Isabel Catolica upped its prices, I decided to give another abode a try. I like the historic district so cruised the net and settled upon Hotel El Salvador on Republica del Salvador, a […]

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Awesome Photos of Motorcyle Trip Across Mexico, Circa 1981

Illustration of restaurant from vintage edition of The People's Guide to Mexico

    We recently received an email from a reader, who politely requested to use an original illustration from The People’s Guide to Mexico in a blog post he was writing about his 1981 motorcycle trip from Canada to Mexico. Carl wrote back and told him “sure” and asked him to send us a link to the post. I must admit that I didn’t expect to have my mind blown by an awesome trove of photographs. As some of you […]

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Historical Images of the Week: Mexico City by Hot Air Balloon

This is the title page of a book, published in 1869, called “Mexico y Sus Alrededores,” or “Mexico and its Surroundings.” The book includes illustrations by C. Castro, G. Rodriguez and J. Campillo. The book contains a number of fantastic images. For instance, check out this 1875 map of Mexico City: Or Castro’s aerial lithograph of Mexico City: Or there’s this lush image of the Palacio de Iturbide, a building I have peered into many times (in the Centro Historico […]

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Excerpts from Steve's Travel Journal: 1995

editor’s note: When I was in high school, my mom got a job and an apartment so I could go to school in town. Those winters, my dad, Steve Rogers (co-author of People’s Guide to Mexico) went down south on his own for the first time since he and my mom got together. In 1995, my mom gave him a journal to record his travels for us.  I know other people out there miss Steve as much as I do, […]

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Flashback Mexico Travel Journals 1992-2013

Dec 31-Jan 10, 1992  Tenacatita, Jalisco (age 13) We traveled through the dessert (which was kind of boring) and then we crossed the border. We then drove down to visit our friends the Huichols. Guillermo had just left for the sierra! Too bad. We had an OK time with the Huichols and I once again tried tortilla making and failed. I can do it with a press, but patting it out by hand is beyond me. (Mine always are full […]

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New San Miguel Art Center Honors Jon Schooler

A painted dog by artist Jon Schooler

Gentleman rancher Hugo Granados is opening a contemporary art museum, the Casa Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, on former ranch lands just outside San Miguel de Allende, Gto. Described as a “handsome international playboy with a great eye for art, ” Granados combed local galleries and museums to create a standing collection of art by San Miguel artists, including work by  Mario Cabrera, Jeffrey Brown, Martin Cramer, and Keith Keller, as well as 26 paintings by our own Jon Schooler. Schooler, […]

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Mexico Travel Advisory: Hysterical or Legit?

The US State Department recently issued its latest Mexico travel advisory. The preamble is remarkably reasonable, and contains several points that support my own point of view on the subject of Mexico travel: “Millions of U.S. citizens safely visit Mexico each year for study, tourism, and business, including more than 150,000 who cross the border every day. More than 20 million U.S. citizens visited Mexico in 2012.”   “The Mexican government makes a considerable effort to protect U.S. citizens and […]

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Historical Photo of the Week: Palacio

A vintage postcard of the domed Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City's Centro Historico.

                              I’m not sure exactly when this was shot, but a love the vintage postcard look of this photo of the Palacio de Bellas Artes, one of my favorite buildings in Mexico City.

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A Rhode Islander in Mexico

Erik Loomis, who usually writes at one of Rich’s favorite blogs, is currently in Mexico and blogging about his trip. His first post  begins with a charmingly reasonable statement: “Mexico is a pleasant and safe place to be if you are not part of the drug trade. There are regions that are more safe than others, but by and large, there are no real problems for visitors, and I don’t just mean in the areas that are basically the United […]

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