Once upon a time, Temecula Wine Country was a little known secret. In the 70’s, 80’s and into the 90’s, one could drive down Rancho California Road amid many acres of vineyards and stop at all the tasting rooms along the way, all in one afternoon. Not so much today. Our once little-known southern California wine region began releasing excellent wines, building more tasting rooms, offering rooms to stay and – boom – we became a bonafide destination. Today, with 35+ wineries and tasting rooms to choose from, Temecula Wine Country is officially on the map. Visiting every single property in one afternoon is nearly impossible. What guests will benefit greatly from in 2014 is a plan of attack, a general idea of what wineries they’d like to visit if they have a day or two to spend in Temecula.
The Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association has put together an excellent list of suggested wineries for anyone who wants to visit multiple tasting rooms in the valley in a day or two. Even well-seasoned wine country visitors will appreciate these themed suggestions, especially if they are entertaining out of town guests or wish to discover wineries they are not familiar with. Here are a few examples:
Mid-Week Visit – If you like one-on-one time with your wine server and enjoy a more quiet, leisurely atmosphere, visit the following Monday through Friday: Ponte Winery, Danza del Sol Winery, Falkner Winery, Miramonte Winery, Monte De Oro Winery, South Coast Winery, Wiens Family Cellars, Wilson Creek.
Rancho California Trail East – Located past the Calle Contento Wine Trail: Ponte Winery, Chapin Family Vineyards, Doffo Winery, Maurice Car’rie, Monte De Oro, South Coast Winery, Wiens Family Cellars, Wilson Creek.
Old World/New World Temecula Style – These wineries tend to favor the varietals of their relative ancestry: Ponte Winery, Cougar Winery, Doffo Winery, Europe Village, Masia de Yabar, Robert Renzoni.
You can view the entire list of suggested self-guided wine tours here.
Lots of touring and tasting requires a great meal and a place to sit down and relax. When you’re ready for lunch, head over to The Restaurant at Ponte or Bouquet for sensational, seasonal dishes with expert wine pairings. Learn more and reserve your table here. Daily breakfast and dinner at Bouquet, as well.
–What is your favorite group of wineries to visit in Temecula?