When you think of California wine, you naturally think of the Napa wine region in Northern California. Then you think of the Central Coast wine country around Santa Barbara. And when you think of Southern California wine, you think of the nearby Temecula wine country. Much in the same way that San Diego has become a hotbed of craft breweries, San Diego County has it's own community of wineries, making their own lovingly hand-crafted wines. Some have small vineyards, sprinkled throughout San Diego's backcountry. If you're a wine lover, you might want to discover some of these local wineries.
Located 25 miles north of downtown San Diego in Rancho Bernardo lies one of the best-kept secrets in the county. The Bernardo Winery is over 120 years old, the Bernardo Winery is still family owned and operated as a fully-functioning producer of wine made from the grapes from vines planted long ago. With more than 12 Village Shops, a coffee shop, a salon, an award winning cafe, and of course a tasting room, the Bernardo Winery is a must see. Wines Produced Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, White Riesling, Syrah, Petite Sirah, Pinotage, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Port, Sherry, Muscatel.Tasting Room: Open Monday - Friday - 9am to 5pm, Saturday & Sunday 9am to 6pm. $8 for 5 tastes.
Orfila Vineyards & Winery is an ultra-premium boutique winery nestled in the picturesque San Pasqual Valley, approximately 30 minutes from San Diego. Orfila produces award-winning Rhone-style wines from grapes grown on hillside estate: Syrah, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Viognier, White Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Rose of Syrah, Muscat Canelli & Tawny Port. The Tasting Room and Gift Shop are open daily from 10 am to 6 pm, where you can enjoy six wine tastings for $10 per person. Call (760) 738-6500 x 22 for more information.
Salerno Winery is small family-owned boutique winery in the Ramona. After planting over 4 acres of vineyard, beginning in 1998, our first vintage was 2002. The winery's historic adobe ranch house overlooks the rolling hills of Ramona at elevations above 1,500 feet. Salerno produces Petite Sirah, Pinot Noir, Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Lagrein, Merlot, Ruby Cabernet, Sirah. Tasting hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Shadow Mountain Vineyards is a third generation family estate grape growing & wine making business, which was founded by Agusto & Helen Mase, an Italian couple in 1944. The family continued to plant extensive vineyards in the 1960s and 70s. They are a limited production winery that specializes in premium white and red table wines grown from the grapes on the estate. Wines produced are Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Zinfandel, Grenache, Viognier, Muscat, Sauvignon Blanc. Tasting hours are Wed. - Sun. 10 am to 5 pm.
The J. Jenkins Winery is on 10 acres located 2 miles north of Julian in a picturesque valley with views of Volcan Moutain. The winery property includes a new wine production building and a tasting room in a rustic apple orchard and a vineyard with Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir grapes. Wines produced are Dolcezza, Viognier, Pinot Grigio, , Merlot, Syrah, Meritage, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Gris, Vin Gris De Syrah. Tasting hours are weekends, 11 am - 5 pm.
Mahogany Mountain Vineyard and Winery is a small, family-owned and operated winery specializing in limited production of handcrafted premium Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot, Syrah and Zinfandel. The vineyards are located on 43 acres in a picturesque and sunny high valley (1,500 ft. elevation) in Ramona surrounded by mountains.Tasting hours are Sat. & Sun. 1 pm - 4 pm.
A leader in California’s emerging South Coast wine region, Fallbrook Winery has the ideal microclimate for creating award-winning wines. Since its inception in 1981, Fallbrook Winery has focused on creating wines from a number of varietals that grow well in the local climate. Wines Produced: Cabernet Suavginon, Suavignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Syrah, Merlot, Blends, MalbecTasting and tours are by appointment, (760) 728-015.