Less than 60 miles north of San Diego and 90 miles southeast of Los Angeles lies Temecula Valley wine country, California’s largest concentration of wineries south of Santa Barbara.
Rolling hills covered with vineyards, expansive views reaching to 11,000-foot-high mountains, air swept by ocean breezes and world-class wines make Temecula Valley an exciting place to visit for wine lovers.
Twenty-one wineries produce award-winning wines, made possible by a unique microclimate and well-drained granitic soils. The 1,500-foot elevation makes for cool summer nights, and breezes come through the vineyards every afternoon throughout the summer – delightful for visitors, and beneficial for the grapevines.
Just about every type of wine you could think of is produced by Temecula Valley vintners. Baily Vineyard & Winery specializes in Bordeaux varieties. La Cereza Vineyard & Winery crafts one of California’s finest renditions of Viognier. Thornton Winery is known far and wide for its sparkling wines – not to mention its “Champagne Jazz” concert series.
And just like the Napa Valley and other more famous wine regions, there’s even a boutique estate that requires an advance reservation to visit: Briar Rose Winery. Also like other wine regions, Temecula Valley is home to stylish resorts (South Coast Winery Resort and Spa), gourmet restaurants (Cafe Champagne, Scarcella’s Italian Grill), and even hot-air balloon rides.