I loved my recent day trip to Jaral de Berrio. It is located in the state of Guanajuato, near the town of San Felipe, between Dolores Hidalgo and San Luis Potosi. It takes about 90 minutes to drive from San Miguel de Allende.
The highlight of the visit is the Hacienda San Diego del Jaral de Berrio which is a grand hacienda that was build in 1774 by Miguel de Berrio y Zaldivar, one of the wealthiest Mexicans at the time. You can tour the hacienda for a small fee. It is basically in a state of decay and has not been renovated, but you can enjoy exploring the large number of buildings and visiting the main rooms with its frescoes and grand staircases. I loved seeing the aging decorations, wall coverings and paintings.
I just heard that in the past few years, that there has been some tension between the current owners and the ancestors of the original owners. So make sure that your guide and driver has the connections to set up a tour. The mezcal producer onsite can be helpful in getting you in as well.
Mezcal Marqués de Jaral de Berrio: Today the hacienda is used in the production of its local, award-winning mezcal. You can see the white oak barrels throughout the property. Make sure to pick up a bottle in the store to the left of the entrance. I bought the Mezcal Marquês 1764 for my bar in San Miguel.
Make sure to walk around the main square of the small town and stop in at the Our Lady of Mercy church that was built in 1813.
I would recommend stopping for lunch at Los Adobes Restaurant on the outskirts of town. They feature a breakfast buffet or an arrachera buffet of grilled meat.