The picturesque and friendly Temecula wineries are what makes the Temecula Valley a beloved wine-making region of Southern California.
People often think of the northern Bay Area of California–Napa Valley and Sonoma County–when they drink a California wine.
From the grapes yielded by this rich soil, the valley’s wineries produce more than 50 varietals, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and many others.
Besides the charming wineries and delicious wines, you’ll also find restaurants, inns, resorts and, of course, beautiful vineyards.
The area is easy to navigate. The main road through this wine country is Rancho California starting from the town of Temecula.
Many of the wineries are located along this route. There are also trails off Rancho California with more establishments, such as Calle Contento and De Portola.
If you prefer not to drive, there are plenty of guided Temecula Wine Country Experience tour options by private car, limousine or motor coach.
With all the choices, how do you know where to start? We’ve taken the burden of researching Temecula wineries for you (you’re welcome).
So now you can do the fun part of learning the best that Temecula Valley has to offer and make plans for the vacation you deserve.
Our list was compiled using real reviews of Temecula wineries based on tours offered, onsite dining options, accessibility and services.
All of the wineries are happy to pack and ship the wines you’ve bought from them for you. Major credit cards are accepted for your wine purchases and dining.
Temecula winery hours vary, but generally, they start pouring at 10:00 am until 5:00 pm daily.
There are also shipping centers in the area that can take what you’ve collected and pack and ship it for you for a fee.
An extra tip: If you’re flying into California, you have two choices in airports. But either one is an opportunity to round out an unforgettable vacation.
Coming from the Eastern or Midwestern US? Plan for a layover or two on the way. A nice way to spend this time is in an airport lounge.
They’re in most major airports and can offer a quiet oasis for a freshen-up before boarding again.
Now, on with our guide. If you love wine, your next fantastic wine country vacation starts here.
Table of Contents
Best Wineries in Temecula for Tasting Rooms
The main purpose of visiting Temecula wineries is to hang out in the tasting room to try out all the great wines at a good price.
These Temecula wineries have the best tasting rooms in the valley.
1. Hart Winery
One of the oldest boutique and family-run wineries in Temecula, CA, Hart Winery was founded in 1980 and sits 1500 feet above sea level.
This elevation creates the perfect micro-climate contributing to the high quality of their grapes.
Expect exceptional blends made from Syrah, Roussanne, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Tempranillo and Merlot.
They offer both a small indoor room for a unique perspective into a working winery and an outdoor space overlooking the scenic valley for tastings.
Picnicking is welcome as there is not an onsite restaurant. You’ll also find friendly, knowledgeable hosts and reasonable prices.
Call or email for a reservation and some pre-tasting advice.
Hart Winery is the first place you’ll come to on Rancho California Road as you make your way into the Wine Country.
Hart Winery, 41300 Avenida Biona, +1 951-676-6300, [email protected]
See Related: Best Things to do in Temecula
2. Baily Winery
Baily Winery is one of the many dog-friendly wineries Temecula has to offer and it has a lovely tasting room, as well as an outdoor space.
No reservations are needed and there is plenty of parking. The staff is friendly and helpful.
The owners of Baily have been in the wine-making business for more than 30 years. All their wines are made with grapes grown on the property.
Baily is known for their Bordeaux–Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, Malbec and Semillon.
You can also browse their Chardonnay, Sangiovese, Reisling and Port.
Carol’s Restaurant is open for lunch and even welcomes dogs on Sundays with a special doggie menu.
The Main Tasting Room is on Rancho California Road, the main thoroughfare through the Wine Country.
Baily Winery, 33440 La Serena Way, +1 951-676-9463, [email protected]
3. Falkner Winery
Falkner Winery is one of the top wineries in Temecula because of its wonderful valley views and tours.
The owners are passionate about wine-making and enjoy sharing their knowledge with visitors.
Their specialties are Tuscan and Mediterranean-style varietals. They also make an excellent Super Tuscan called “Amante.”
That’s not all. Settle into their inviting tasting room to take in the sheer beauty of the winery’s vistas.
There you can experience all their wines, including Viognier, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Reisling and Syrah.
Guided tours and private tastings are available. Sign up for classes to expand your knowledge of wine production in Temecula.
Make reservations 48-hours in advance over the phone or by email. The tours and tastings are about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
You’ll have a private tour host to tell you the history of Falkner Winery and Temecula Valley.
You’ll also learn about the different methods used in the vineyard and their wine-making.
Tours start at $20 per person. Tastings can be added for an additional fee.
This is a popular winery, so a tour with personal attention will make the experience more intimate.
For onsite dining, The Pinnacle Restaurant serves Mediterranean cuisine with the same incredible views. Open for lunch, five days a week.
Falkner Winery, 40620 Calle Contento, +1 909-676-8231, [email protected]
4. Fazeli Cellars Winery
Fazeli Cellars Winery is one of those incredible Temecula wineries off the main road and found on the De Portola Wine Trail.
This grand-scale winery offers more than 20 varietals of their award-winning wines such as Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Mourvedre.
Unlike other Temecula winery restaurants with Mediterranean dishes, Baba Joon’s Kitchen fuses Persian ingredients and recipes for a unique dining experience.
Their grand tasting room offers gorgeous views of the rolling landscape too. Knowledgeable staff will guide you through the tastings of boutique choices.
Deluxe tours and tastings are available for $55 person to include a 90-minute winery tour, wine tasting and a special pairing from Baba Joon’s.
You can make the required reservations online. A minimum of 2 people is required.
Fazeli Cellars Winery, 37320 De Portola Road, +1 951-303-3366,
Best Temecula Wineries for Sparklings and Champagnes
A few Temecula wineries with food also have something a little festive to serve with it. These wineries are known for their special sparkling wines.
Elevate your wine country experience with some bubbles.
What makes Thornton Winery unique among Temecula wineries is that it was established in 1988 as a Champagne House.
Their sparkling wines are still proudly made in the traditional champagne method. They offer brut, brut rose and sweet varietals.
Other of their premium wines you’ll want to try are their reds, whites and even chocolate. And don’t miss a visit to their Cafe Champagne.
The award-winning Cafe Champagne serves fine French cuisine that is fresh and contemporary.
The cafe’s excellent staff is always ready to offer a pairing suggestion for any of their wines, particularly the Champagne.
Local musicians as well as some names you’ll recognize entertain guests most weekends.
Thornton Winery, 32575 Rancho California Rd, +1 951-699-0099,
6. Oak Mountain Winery
Oak Mountain Winery is the cave winery Temecula visitors crave. They are also famous in the valley for their fruit-flavored sparklings and champagnes.
But don’t overlook their over 30 or so award-winning varietals served in a relaxed venue overlooking beautiful valley vistas.
Oak Mountain Winery is another one of the dog-friendly wineries Temecula offers. And visitors enjoy free wifi, as well as live music Sundays.
The story of how the wine caves began is an interesting one. The winery owners needed a way to expand their tasting room without taking valuable vineyards.
They constructed the caves as a way to maximize vineyard acreage while taking advantage of ideal underground conditions for aging wine.
Wine cave tours are available for $45 per person, including a comprehensive visit inside the caves, charcuterie tray and tasting.
Call or email for reservations.
Find Oak Mountain Winery and wine caves off the De Portola Wine Trail.
Oak Mountain Winery, 36522 Via Verde, +1 951-699-9102, [email protected]
Best Temecula Wineries for Outdoor Spaces
Are Temecula wineries picnic friendly? You bet. Here are some fantastic options.
7. Vindemia Estate Winery
One of the best wineries in Temecula is a family-owned estate winery perched on a hillside giving you Old World ambiance mixed with SoCal good vibrations.
The family of Vindemia Estate Winery makes quality wines from the grapes lovingly coaxed from the surrounding vineyards.
The beautiful views coupled with a retreat-like feel are the perfect place to spend the afternoon on a blanket with a basket lunch.
Some of the handcrafted options are Viognier, Cabernet, Syrah and the crowd-pleasing “More Cowbell” Zinfandel.
They have an outdoor tasting room for sampling. In fact, the whole place is outdoors.
So pick a nice day and bring your favorite cheese and other goodies for a relaxing day at the winery.
Vindemia Estate Winery, 33133 Vista Del Monte, +1 951-760-9334, [email protected]
8. Mount Palomar Winery
Many wineries in Temecula, CA, claim incredible views. Established as one of the original wineries in the valley in 1969, Mount Palomar Winery says no different.
But Mount Palomar Winery’s 315 Tuscan-esque acres are scattered with statues and picnic areas, making for a sublime vineyard experience.
The owners pride themselves on their high-quality grapes in the surrounding vineyards and the wines produced from them.
They also have a lovely restaurant with entree salads, flatbreads, sandwiches and more.
If you are looking for a cave winery, Temecula delivers here too. Mount Palomar’s Cava di Vino is the oldest one in the Valley.
No reservations are required for tastings.
Mount Palomar Winery, 33820 Rancho California Rd, +1 800-854-5177, [email protected]
Best for Temecula Winery Restaurants
Temecula wineries with food give you the best of both Southern California worlds: great food and perfectly paired wines.
9. South Coast Winery
The South Coast Winery Resort and Spa is also one of the best wineries in Temecula for several reasons.
One is their Vineyard Rose Restaurant famed for their food paired with their marvelous wine.
The Tuscan-inspired restaurant offers a wine bar, as well as a romantic terrace. They serve contemporary California dishes made from local ingredients.
Favorite menu items include scallops and steaks. The service is also highly rated. Reservations are recommended.
Don’t miss the tasting experiences offered at South Coast Winery daily to sample their estate-grown wines and shop your favorites.
Luxury villas on the winery property make the perfect couples getaway or girls’ weekend.
South Coast Winery Resort & Spa, 34843 Rancho California Rd, +1 855-862-6263
10. Avensole Winery
Another one of the wineries open in Temecula with a fantastic restaurant is Avensole Winery, located on Rancho California Road.
The estate feel of the winery is so luxurious, you’ll feel like you’re on a televised match-making reality show–but better because you’re not.
You’re in one of the most scenic top wineries in Temecula. For 40 years, the owners of Avensole have created some of the best wines in the region.
Using traditional methods in both the winery and in their famed restaurant, they’re committed to providing an excellent dining experience with both food and wine.
The menu is seasonal and eclectic and they offer gorgeous desserts.
Patio seating is available so patrons can enjoy the views and breezes as they dine and can enjoy live music on weekends.
Private tours and tasting are available with reservations made through the website. All can be customized to suit your tastes and interests.
Avensole Winery, 34567 Rancho California Rd, +1 951-252-2003, [email protected]
See Related: Best Travel Tote Bags
11. Leoness Cellars
Our final choice of the best Temecula winery restaurants is on the De Portola Wine trail at Leoness Cellars.
Spectacular views and high-quality wines are the hallmarks of this estate vineyard. The Restaurant is the perfect way to experience all Leoness Cellars offers.
Voted number one winery restaurant by USA Today readers for four years in a row, their al fresco dining showcases cuisine made in their scratch kitchen.
Diners enjoy fresh seafood entrees, flatbreads and pasta dishes paired with Leoness Cellars’ spectacular wines.
The Leoness vineyards were started in the 1990s to grow grapes for other wineries. But their ultimate goal was to develop their own wines.
Several high-scoring wine yields later, they are known throughout the world for fine grapes and wines.
They offer private tours and tastings and reservations are highly recommended for groups of 6 or more. Email or call for more information.
Seating in The Restaurant is first-come, first-served and is entirely outdoors, so dress accordingly.
Leoness Cellars, 38311 De Portola Rd, +1 951-302-7601, [email protected]