After brunching in Baja at least once a month for the past 7 years, I've finally found my dream Sunday spot! Conveniently located only 24 kilometers (about 15 minutes) south of the border, Mi Casa Supper Club is my go-to place to take yoga retreat groups, bachelorette parties, and my own family and friends. Everyone I've ever taken leaves feeling so relaxed, well-fed, and overall impressed with the quality of service, attention to detail, creativity and love poured into every dish.
This past Sunday, I celebrated my 30th birthday with a beautiful brunch here with 12 of my closest friends. Handmade bloody marys, fresh-squeezed mimosas, local oysters, smoked salmon dishes, and delicious locally grown summer salads were happily circulating the table. Possibly the thing I love most about Mi Casa is that every detail is intentional. The minute you walk in, you feel like a Queen. The oversized luxurious Balinese furniture mixed with relaxed, oceanfront Baja energy is the perfect combination. Owner and Head Chef Bo Bendana Sein has a way of fusing worlds together that just works. She takes her Moroccan roots, mixes in some European flair, and pays tribute to her new home of Baja Mexico in a way that can only be understood if you feel it in person. Put this place on your Summer 2016 Bucket List! In the two short years since the restaurant's grand opening, they've received so much buzz that this place won't be a secret much longer.
Chef Bo has created such a beautiful, welcoming space and inspiring, innovative menu that keeps drawing me back month after month. Something was tugging at me to learn more about her and the journey she's taken to get to this place. Read my interview with Chef Bo Bendana Sein below...
|Celebrating my 30th birthday brunch at Mi Casa - June 2016
|Smoked Salmon puff pastry, fromage blanc, flying fish caviar, pickled red, pink and golden beets, capers,
cornichon pickles with an apple celery salad and home made vinaigrette
|San Quintin Baja Gigamoto Oysters with Chili Ginger, Seaweed Salad, Champagne Vinegar sauce & Flying Fish Caviar.
Meet Head Chef, Founder, Creator of Mi Casa Supper Club, Bo Bendana Sein!
1) Where are you from and what did you do in a past life? (before Mi Casa)I was born in Morocco and grew up mostly in Casablanca before moving to New York City to pursue a career in Interior Design where I attended the Fashion Institute of Technology.
Mi Casa Supper Club was born as a private underground club where members would make reservations to a monthly dinner at my ocean front home in Baja. I would create and cook a 7 to 8 course menus for 30 to 50 people inspired by Moroccan and Mexican cuisine we call Moroxican.
2) When did you decide to open Mi Casa and why?
My intention was to create a social gastro club for our friends and people like us who crave a place where they are treated like royalty, surrounded by fine furnishing and unique art while dinning on a cuisine that captures the essence and flavors of Baja while fused with Moroccan recipes. When we started getting phone calls and emails from people in Vegas, Arizona and Europe asking how to join our club, we realized that Mi Casa Supper Club was no longer a secret! To keep our privacy but keep our members happy we closed our home to the public and build Mi Casa Supper Club in July 2014. We tried to duplicate our living room and keep the same warmth and the feeling of dinning in a home verses a restaurant so we went back to Bali, Indonesia and found the same artist we used in hour home and brought back a container of carved stone, tile, wood carvings, sculptures, light fixtures, etc. So the restaurant reflects our love for Baja, Bali and everything eclectic and coastal!
3) What 5 words would you use to describe your unique restaurant?
Eclectic Elegance, Moroccan Mexican Fusion
4) What is your biggest challenge AND what is your biggest joy of living and working in Baja, Mexico?
Being creative is what keeps my body moving and my mind focused on what brings me joy verses my daily battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Many mornings, I struggle with getting out of bed due to inflammation and joint stiffness. I am 43 years old with energy of a 23 year old but often my body feels like a 70+ years old, LOL! :)
Living in Baja is a very laid-back style of living where you don't have to ever feel rushed. There is less pressure and less expectations. People come down to northern Baja to rejuvenate, to heal, to escape the hustle and bustle of US living and Dennis (my husband) and I are a perfect example. We could open our restaurant 7 days a week and probably make a fortune but that would mean we'll have to sacrifice our time with our kids, family and friends so instead we chose a more moderate life style, with a lower cost of living, so we only open the restaurant 4 days a week. We close one month a year so we don't miss out on living a fun, balanced life.
5) Speaking of balance, how do you juggle being a wife, mama, creative artist, and business woman? Any tips or tricks you've learned along the way?
I delegate and I am not shy to ask for help! I have a nanny that's been with me since the birth of my children who allows me to spend quality time with my family instead of time spent cleaning the house or squeezing oranges for my kids everyday. My husband loves being a dad and he has a tremendous amount of patience for our little ones but when I need ME time, I ask. I don't wait for him to offer and he does the same!
My husband and I love our independence, he loves to write and I love to cook and garden so every morning we discus our plans for the day and how to work around our kids schedule because time with our kids is priceless and irreplaceable, so they always come first.
Currently, Mi Casa is nominated for the prestigious 100 Not-to-be Missed Restaurants in Mexico and is a key contributor to the highly-anticapted annual event, Sabor de Baja, happening August 31, 2016 where Chef Bo hosts her famous all-white party. To keep up with their seasonal menu and special dinner parties, be sure to follow Mi Casa Supper Club on Facebook.
For more on my BAJA MEXICO adventures, check out these past posts --