California is one of the most famous wine-producing states in the US, and the Temecula Valley is where much of the best stuff comes from.
There are several old wineries that have been there for many decades – and there are also a few notable newcomers in the area. Many of them are more than worth a visit, so here’s our guide to the best wineries in Temecula to help you choose which ones to see.
Best Wineries in Temecula, CA
1. Callaway Vineyard & Winery
The history of this venerable Temecula winery can be traced back to the end of the 1960s when the first vines were planted there, setting the ball rolling and helping to put Temecula on the wine-producing map.
The wines from this vineyard quickly met with acclaim, and an estate-bottled white Riesling was chosen for a state banquet attended by Queen Elizabeth II of England during a visit to the United States in 1976.
Since then, the wines from this winery have continued to collect awards, firmly establishing it as one of the finest wine producers in the region.
The winery offers vineyard tours and vineyard tours with tasting. Attending one of these will give you a glimpse of the winemaking process at the vineyard – as well as offering a chance to taste a selection of six of their wines if you choose the tasting option.
You’ll also find an excellent restaurant that serves a range of carefully prepared seasonal dishes, and the winery is also available to host events such as weddings – check the website for further details.
Address: 32720 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591
2. Miramonte Winery
Compared to Callaway, Miramonte Vineyard is a relative newcomer to the area, having started operations in around 2000.
However, they’ve wasted no time in establishing themselves as one of the region’s premium wineries, producing many excellent wines each year, mostly based on grape varietals usually associated with Spain, Portugal and southern France.
Furthermore, this winery was also one of the local pioneers in providing entertainment such as live music nights to go with the wine they make, an idea that many other local wineries have since adopted.
Miramonte offers the chance to taste a selection of six wines guided by one of their highly knowledgeable staff members. Reservations for this option are possible – and recommended at weekends – but not necessary since walk-ins are welcome too.
Alternatively, they also run a more intimate personal two-hour tasting session that includes eight wines. For this option, reservations are required.
While there, you’ll also want to visit the on-site bistro that serves a range of enticing meals that includes such delights as pesto mac and cheese or pan-roasted Norwegian salmon crushed with sumac.
Address: 33410 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591
3. Mount Palomar Winery
Mount Palomar Winery was another of the first to begin growing grapes and producing wine in the Temecula area, and their 55-acre operation has been responsible for a number of award-winning wines over the years.
In fact, this winery has claimed the accolade of “Best Wine of the Southern California Region” awarded by the California State Fair no fewer than five times.
When visiting, you’ll notice a strong Italian influence, with the rolling vineyards more than just a little reminiscent of the hills of Tuscany.
You can taste the produce of the winery underground in the oldest wine cave in the Temecula Valley, choosing six of the wines from their menu. Reservations are not possible for groups of six or fewer – but for larger groups, you should contact them in advance.
Mount Palomar also runs a wine club with various options, all giving members special benefits and discounts along with shipments of fantastic wines several times a year.
Address: 33820 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591
Email: Contact via website
4. Europa Village Wineries & Resort
Europa Village Wineries & Resort offers a whole new take on the wine-tasting experience. On-site, you’ll find three themed villages based on the kind you would find in France, Spain and Italy.
There’s accommodation there, so you can spend a few days soaking up the atmosphere of the idyllic countryside where the wine grapes are grown, and you get to sample the winery’s produce, with tasting packages available that include six different wines to appreciate.
This winery perhaps more than any other in the region offers a complete experience rather than just the opportunity to taste wine, so for any wine lover looking for something a bit different to try, this is a destination that should live up to your expectations.
Address: 41150 Via Europa, Temecula, CA 92591
Email: Contact via website
5. Lumiere Winery
A winery set in a particularly lovely setting, Lumiere has been growing grapes since 1980 – and has belonged to the Kleiner family since 1987.
They focus on producing high-quality Bordeaux-style wines, and grape varietals grown in the vineyards include merlot, cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot, malbec and cabernet franc, five of the six grape types permitted in French Bordeaux wine.
The winery has a tasting room where wine can be bought by the bottle, by the glass or in sets of three wines for sampling. The tasting room is currently open from Friday to Sunday, 11am-6pm only. Reservations are not required.
Address: 39555 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA 92591
Email: Contact via website
6. Longshadow Ranch Winery
For a great day out with wine, a visit to the Longshadow Ranch Winery is a fun option to consider. They regularly organize events, including barbecues with live music on Saturdays and Sundays, and they even have animals like horses and llamas that love interacting with visitors.
In terms of the wine itself, there’s no need to book ahead for a tasting for groups of six or fewer, although for larger groups, you should let them know in advance.
Unlikely many places this winery is kid-friendly – and children are sure to love the animals in the petting zoo – so Longshadow is also a possibility for a family day out as well as just for adults interested in wine.
If you like the wines on offer, you can also join their wine club and receive regular shipments of wine along with other members-only benefits at the winery.
Address: 39847 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA 92591
7. Akash Winery & Vineyard
A family-run business operated by a father, mother and son team, Akash winery is the result of a dream that was turned into reality through hard work, determination and a great love for the fruit of the vine.
A modern winery that has collected an impressive number of awards for its wines, it’s also an exciting place to visit since there always seems to be something going on.
The new patio opened as recently as 2019, and as well as being the venue for wine tasting, it’s also used to host yoga, wine club parties and more.
There are food trucks selling food on most days, so you won’t lack a bite to eat to go with your wine, and for those who prefer something a little more unusual, Akash Winery also gives you the chance to dine at a table out in the vineyard surrounded by vines.
In short, if you’re looking for a great atmosphere, friendly service and delicious wines, this is an option that should be near the top of your list of places to visit.
Address: 39730 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA 92591
8. Peltzer Winery
More than just a winery, Peltzer offers a range of entertainment and attractions that make it a fun day out for the whole family.
They organize events like the ever-popular pumpkin farm featuring pumpkins, pony rides, a petting zoo and more that keep people coming back year after year. They even have an ice rink, which is due to reopen in November 2022 after a period of enforced closure.
However, despite the other draws, what most people come for is the wine.
Tasting takes place in the Crush House tasting room, a rustic building full of charm and character. It’s filled with old farming paraphernalia, so have a good look around while you’re there because it’s like a museum.
They often organize events with live music. Certain days in the tasting room are family-friendly while others are 21+ only – check the website for further details.
Address: 40275 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA 92591
9. Bel Vino Winery
One of the first things that strikes you when you visit Bel Vino Winery is the stunning location it enjoys. Perched on top of a hill that’s one of the highest points in the area, it offers spectacular views down over the classic wine country scenery below.
If you want to taste the wine they produce here, the warm and friendly Barrel Tasting Room is the ideal place to sample the best they have, all while learning about the winemaking process at Bel Vino.
Even better, on Saturdays and Sundays, there is also a bistro serving a range of light meals that pair perfectly with the wines on offer.
For something extra-special, they also organize a wine and chocolate private tasting experience, which would make the perfect Valentine’s or birthday gift for the chocolate and wine lover in your life.
The winery can be booked to hold events such as weddings too – check their website for further details.
Address: 33515 Rancho California Rd, Temecula
10. Vindemia Vineyard & Winery
At Vindemia, they promise “European style with California vibes”, and that’s a pretty accurate description of what you can expect if you decide to give them a visit.
Set against the exquisite backdrop of Temecula’s vine-covered hills, you can sit on one of the winery’s patios and simply bask in the surroundings as you sip on a glass of one of their deliciously characterful reds or their crisp and refreshing whites.
Something else that sets this winery apart from the others is the lack of crowds and bustle. Although it’s a rightly popular destination for wine buffs visiting the area, the fact that they don’t accept groups of more than six helps give the experience a much more personal feel.
This is also reinforced by the fact that this is a small-scale operation that concentrates on making limited batches rather than mass-producing large quantities of wine. This gives you the impression that you are privileged to have the chance to sample their goods.
If you like the wine they make there – and there’s a pretty good chance you will – you can also sign up for the Vindemia wine club to receive all the members’ benefits – as well as regular deliveries of their excellent wine several times a year.
Address: 33133 Vista Del Monte Rd, Temecula, CA 92591
Email: Contact via website
11. Hart Winery
Founded in 1980 by Joe Hart and still owned and operated by his family, the Hart Winery produces premium estate-grown wines from a range of different grape varietals.
In addition, they also source grapes from other Temecula vineyards to produce a range of other high-quality wines.
You can visit the winery to taste a selection of four different wines under the guidance of one of their experienced staff members. The shop also sells some fantastic wines by the bottle, including some very special reserves.
All of which makes this another winery that’s well worth a visit.
Address: 41300 Ave Biona, Temecula, CA 92591
Email: Contact via website
A winemaking region well worth taking time to explore
If you love wine and you find yourself in the Temecula area, you can’t leave without visiting at least one or two of the excellent wineries there.
However, with a few days to spare, you could organize your own mini tour, taking in several of the wineries and comparing their produce to gain a much better idea of the kind of quality wines that can be found in the area.