We hope you’ve packed your appetite. This month, we’re finishing our Hit the Road series with a wine + foodie foray into Temecula, California. Our neighbor to the north is home to ~50 wineries — many with food and lodging options. 🍷
Whether you’re interested in taking a tour of Peltzer Winery, trying the comfort grub at The Goat & Vine (those breadsticks, though), or checking out the specialty food shops in Old Town Temecula, this driving-distance destination is every wine enthusiast’s + foodie’s dream.
Before you start packing your bags, here’s everything you need to know about the area + our insider recommendations.
Drive time: ~1 hour, 10 minutes from downtown San Diego, via Interstate 15
Est. population: 110,846
Avg. high in August: 89°
🍇 Things to do — visit these wineries
Wilson Creek Winery, 35960 Rancho California Rd.
Gorgeous vistas, guided wine tastings, or just casual sipping at one of the sprawling property’s many bars make this a classic spot in Temecula Valley Wine Country.
Pro tip: Given its popularity, Wilson Creek can get pretty busy. Carve out a few hours and take it slow by having lunch at one of the on-site restaurants: Creekside Grille or Courtyard Bar + Grill.
Altisima Winery, 37440 De Portola Rd.
Newer to Temecula’s wine scene, this Spanish-inspired spot is poppin’ — even mid-week. Find a DJ spinning tunes on the patio, a taco truck on Tuesdays, and rotating food trucks + sangria specials on Thursdays.
Pro tip: The view is incredible; once you’ve scored a seat on the patio, the vibe is quite relaxing.
Peltzer Winery, 40275 Calle Contento
This 25-acre vineyard has amazing wines — from Syrah Rosé (perfect summer sip) to endless whites + reds. Take a wine tour guided by an expert educator, enjoy events like Wine Wednesday with specialty food trucks + live music, or the Food Truck Alley at Crush House Tasting Room.
Pro tip: You’ll also find craft beer on tap here. Oh, and don’t sleep on visiting in the fall + winter — Peltzer is known for its Pumpkin Farm and ice rink.
Callaway Vineyard & Winery, 32720 Rancho California Rd.
Founded in 1974, this was one of the first wineries to open in Temecula Valley. Enjoy a walking tour of the lush estate + learn about the winemaking process, then kick back and sip.
🍷 Psst: We know this is just a sample of the vast selection of wineries in Temecula. When you’re ready to visit, download this app — Temecula Life Wine Country Guide — for the down-low on all things happening in this region.
🍲 Memorable eats
Havana Kitchen, 41955 5th St.
House-roasted coffee + casual Cuban cuisine are king here. Don’t miss traditional dishes like Arroz Con Pollo (a savory sautéed chicken bowl) or the Cubano Sandwich stacked with Cuban Mojo roast pork, sliced ham, Cubano sauce, pickles + swiss — pressed to perfection.
1909 Temecula, 28656 Old Town Front St.
A solid brunch spot, go for the bennys with house-made biscuits, the Rib-Eye Hash, and a Bloody Mary. This restaurant is a tribute to the Machado Building, a historic structure rebuilt in 1909 that served as a trading post, church, and — most famously — a bar called the Long Branch Saloon.
Small Barn Modern Bistro, 28535 Old Town Front St.
Here, the menu is all about carefully crafted, artistically plated fare inspired by wine country. This cute, modern eatery is also housed in a historic building in Old Town Temecula.
Old Town Temecula specialty shops, locations vary
If you’re in the mood to graze, pop into the specialty shops around Old Town Temecula and gather goodies to make your own snack board.
- Temecula Valley Cheese Company, 42072 5th St., Ste. 101
- Temecula Olive Oil Co., 28653 Old Town Front St.
- Olivedipity, 42072 5th St., Ste. 104
- Temecula House of Jerky, 28655 Old Town Front St.
Our Matcha Place, 42072 5th St., Ste. 105 (below The Gambling Cowboy)
Come for the selection of wellness-focused matcha beverages, stay for the chic atmosphere — and treat yourself to one of the fresh-baked cookies in the display case.
🏨 Toast-worthy accommodations
Inn at Churon Winery, 33233 Rancho California Rd.
This luxurious inn features 24 suites with panoramic views. The winery features wines by the flight, glass or bottle, plus live music on Saturdays. The on-site eatery, Cafe Churon, serves breakfast + lunch.
South Coast Winery Resort & Spa, 34843 Rancho California Rd.
This resort features villas + suites with luxe amenities — plus direct access to the vineyards from your patio for a truly immersive wine country experience. Oh, and the tasting room — we’ll toast to it any day.
Ponte Vineyard Inn, 35001 Rancho California Rd.
Offering a host of accommodations + stunning views of the estate’s vineyards, TripAdvisor ranks this hotel No. 1 in Temecula. In 2016, TripAdvisor named Ponte Vineyard Inn No. 6 among its Top 10 Travelers’ Choice Hotels in the US — and No. 2 in California. The wine + dining options here are also on point. Meanwhile, the winery tasting room showcases the small-batch brand, note by note.