Archive for February, 2014

March Winery Events in Temecula Valley

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Spring is almost upon us, which means more green! It’s great news for Temecula Valley since March signals bud break in the vineyards. There are also some new exciting events happening, and whether you’re a wine expert or beginner, there’s something for everyone. St. Patrick’s Day is only a couple of weeks away. Why not visit Temecula, CA where you can enjoy live entertainment, green sparkling wine and festive food! It’s a great way to welcome the springtime air.












Baily Vineyard & Winery
Dog Day Sundays
Every Sunday / 11:30a-2:30p
Bring your well-mannered pooch to lunch

Estate Club Private Wine Tasting
Thursday-Sunday / 11:00a-2:30p
Tours and vertical tasting of Boudreaux reds
Call for reservations: 951-972-9768.

Bel Vino Winery
Wine Down at Bel Vino with Live Music
Every Saturday and Sundays/ 12:00p-4:00p
March 1-Bruce Glover
March 2- Dominic Rocha
March 8-All In
March 9-JD Priest
March 15 – The Counterfits
March 16 – Bruce Glover
March 22 – Michael LeClerc
March 23 – Jason Weber
March 29 – Shoot 4 Tuezday
March 30 – Jim Fargo

Briar Rose Winery
Friday Night Sunset
Friday, March 21 / 5:30p-9:00
Live music by Buzz Campbell
Call 951-308-1098 for reservations. Seating is limited.

Callaway Vineyard & Winery
Prime Rib Fridays
Every Friday at Meritage from 5p-8:00p
Three-course Prime Rib dinner for $35 pp
Reservations are not required.  No cover.

Sangria Sundays at Meritage at Callaway
Every Sunday at Meritage from 4p-8p in the main dining room.
Watermelon Sangria &  live music from local musicians begins at 5pm.
No cover charge and no reservations required.

Cougar Vineyard & Winery
2nd Annual Temecula St. Patrick’s Day 15k
Sunday, March 16 / 9:00a
Race through country roads & finish w/ a glass of green sparking wine
21+ – includes a sparking wine tasting & glass to keep.
For tickets and to register, click here

Falkner Winery
Wine  Appreciation Class
Saturday, March 15 / 10:30a-2:30p
$65 pp; Members $60 pp; VIP Members $20 pp
For both wine novices and experts, 3+ hour class.
For registration, please call 951-676-8231 ext. 109.
For more information click here

Mount Palomar Winery
Laughs for Pawz
Saturday, March 8 / 11:00a-10:00p
Beginning at 11:00a, with a FREE Comedy Faire & featuring Laughs for Pawz
The Show at 7:00pm / $55 includes food, a fabulous show and after party.

Live Music
March 15 – Harmony Road
March 16 – Mariner
March 22 – The Barstow Prophets
March 23 – Dylan Jakobsen

Brides Against Breast Cancer Bridal Show, Gown Sale and Wine Tasting Event!
March 30 / Hundreds of designer and couture wedding gowns
Gowns range from $99-$3900, sizes 4-18.
Area’s top wedding vendors & enter exciting give-a-ways while supporting a great cause.

Oak Mountain Winery
Pet Fair
Sunday, March 2 / 11:00a-5:00p / Free admission
A furry fiesta every first Sunday of the month.
Adopt a dog, find a dog trainer, dog communicator, natural pet food & apparel.
Collection of dog wines available for tasting or purchase.

St. Patty’s Sizzlin Saturday
Saturday, March 15 / 5:00p-9:00p / Admission: $1
Tickets available on Caves of Oak Mountain’s Facebook page
Corned beef melts & Irish fries from Devilicious.

South Coast Winery Resort & Spa
“SHOW US YOUR BEADS” Fat Tuesday Tastings
Tuesday, March 4 / 10:00a-6:00p
In the Vintner’s Vault Tasting Room- sips and off-the-charts samples
Bring 3 Mardi Gras beaded necklaces & get a $5 off a tasting ticket!

Intimate Winemaker Dinner
Saturday, March 22 /$150 pp inclusive
Dynamic 7-course dinner
Limited in size so once they are sold out, they are gone.
Call 951.587.9463 or click here.

Blessing of the Vines Wine & Music Festival
Sunday, March 30 / 4:00p-7:00p
Kids can join in the fun w/ plenty of games & activities.
Louie Cruiz Beltran & his Latin Jazz Trio will perform
For tickets call 951.587.9463 or click here.

Go Green with Va Va Verde
Available March 1-31 /for discount of $105 pp
50-min full body ‘therapeutic’ massage
Receive a $20 spa voucher for one $85+ spa treatment on your return visit.
Book now 951.587.9463

Wine & Dine Chef’s Table at the Vineyard Rose Restaurant
Ccustom five-course menu just for you.
Winemakers then pair each course with wines
For 2-8 guests, $135 pp
Call 951-491-8077 to reserve your table today.

South Coast Winery Resort & Spa’s WINOS (Women In Need of Serenity)
Monday-Thursday / 11:30a-2:30p
Unique wine-themed items available for purchase
Half price Mimosas, Sangria & glasses of select wines
$2 off all appetizers / Call for Reservations 951-587-9463 x 2

South Coast Winery Resort & Spa’s Divas in D’Vines
Every Sunday during football season from 12:00 to 3p
Enjoy half priced mimosas, sangria & Spumante Diamante.
Reservations Recommended. Call 951-587-9463 x 2

South Coast Winery Resort & Spa’s Vintage Vantage Menu
Mon-Thur 11:30a -3:00p
$9.99 lunches -Vineyard Rose Restaurant, 55&over
Call 951-587-9463 x 2

Marvelous Mondays
5:30p to 9p each week
Half-priced bottles of select wines with the purchase of 2 entrees
Call 951.587.9463 today or visit here

Wine Down Wednesdays
Enjoy live music & half-priced select appetizers w/ purchase of 2 entrees
Enjoy with our Winemakers Reserve bottles of South Coast Wines.
Call 951.587.9463 today or visit here.

Thursday Night Mixers
Single and want to mingle?
Thursday Nights 6 pm to 9 pm.
Regular price $15; Thur Evenings $10. Click here.

Behind the Scenes Winery Tour
Daily / 11:00a and 1:00p / $40pp / Members $35pp
Stroll the vineyards and the winery
Private, plated wine & cheese pairing with a Wine Concierge.
Reservations strongly suggested:  Call 951.587.9463 x7219.

Thornton Winery
1st Annual “Grains & Grapes” Event
Saturday, March 8 / 6:30p /
Thornton Winery pairs up with Refuge Brewery
Meet and greet with:

  • Winemaker David Vergari,
  • Brewmaster Curt Kucera
  • Executive Chef Jeff D. Massey
  • President Steve Thornton

Hors d’oeuvres & a three course meal.
For reservations, please call 951-699-0099

Thornton Winery’s Chef’s Counter
Friday, March 28 / 7:00p / $125 pp
Interactive Chef’s Table in a private kitchen
Five-course meal /Seating limited to 10 people
For reservations, call 951-699-0099


Big Dreamers: Nick & Cindy Palumbo, Palumbo Family Vineyard & Winery

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Welcome to our new blog series: “Big Dreamers.”

Here you’ll read about the inspiring true stories of our Temecula Valley winemakers and winery owners. You’ll learn where they’ve come from before settling in Temecula, CA – and what keeps them passionate about the sometimes not-so-glamorous art (and science) of making good wine.

Nick & Cindy Palumbo have owned and operated Palumbo Family Vineyards & Winery since 1998.

1.  What were you doing before owning and operating your winery?

NICK:  I have done A LOT! I was an ocean lifeguard, a rock star in NYC, a chef and now – winemaker.

CINDY:  I was an insurance agent for 15 years prior to the winery.

2.  What inspired you to want to buy a winery and what were the circumstances around choosing Temecula Valley, CA?

NICK: I was just coming back to SoCal after time in NY and lucked into this emerging Valley.  I saw potential for better wine and vineyard quality than what was here before, so I took charge.

CINDY:  I was already living in Temecula Valley and met Nick after he purchased the vineyards. A few years later I encouraged him to turn the garage into a winery, to quit selling his fruit to other winemakers and to open up his own shop.

3.  What were your expectations of the winemaker lifestyle at the beginning?  Were they way off or right on?

NICK:  I only expected to have to work really hard.  I wanted to prove it could be done through hard work and sacrifice. I certainly didn’t expect to make any money at it. I was right! I knew what I wanted – and the rewards for making quality wine would come if I just kept my head down and proved it though doing it.

CINDY:  I had zero expectations of the lifestyle – and that’s probably a good thing. It’s not nearly as glamorous as most people think – but I wouldn’t change it!

4.  People might think winemaking is glamorous.  Would you like to set them straight?

NICK:  If you’re an authentic winemaker, the glamorous parts come when no one is looking. It’s a lifestyle that you can’t pretend to live. Working hard, raising children and farming for quality is the reward… not what people see in the magazines.

CINDY:  There are definitely some glamorous sides to the wine industry. Nick is so down-to-earth and he takes winemaking so seriously that we don’t really experience that side of it in our lives. A true winemaker is focused on just that – making good wine.

5.  What is your least favorite thing about running a winery?  What is your most favorite – the reason you get up in the morning?

NICK: There really is no part of what I do that is worse or better. If you love what you do for a living, then it’s all good!

CINDY:   Least favorite thing about owning a winery is probably the fact that we can never get away from it. We live there, we sleep there, we work there, we are raising our family there; it’s always our focus. Sometimes I think it would be nice to just be able to work 9 to 5 and leave the office at the office. My favorite part about it is the lifestyle. We live in the middle of a vineyard, we raise our own animals, our (four) kids get to grow up see what we make with our hands. Winemaking in Temecula is truly a labor of love that we are allowed to include our whole family in.

To learn more about California’s Big Dreamers, click here!

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Wine Country Recipe: Spring Quiche + Sparkling Wine

Monday, February 24th, 2014

Classic Quiche Lorraine

Recipe Courtesy of Lorimar Winery
Serves 5
6 oz diced bacon
1 oz butter
3 oz heavy cream
3 oz milk
2 eggs
4oz Emmentaler cheese
salt & pepper to taste
9’ Easy as Pie Dough (recipe below) OR frozen store-bought pie crusts


  1. Sauté the bacon in butter until browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and drain. Chef note: Discard the rendered fat into coffee can and use for another use (best way to cook eggs!)
  2. Whisk together the cream, milk, and eggs. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Scatter the bacon and cheese evenly over the crust. Add the custard mix gradually, stirring it gently with the back of a fork to distribute the filling ingredients evenly.
  4. Set the quiche pan on a sheet pan and bake in 350 F (40 – 45 minutes)  Chef note: insert a knife blade in center of quiche, when blade comes out clean it is ready.
  5. Serve warm or at room temperature.

*For a classy spring brunch pairing, serve with a well-chilled glass of Lorimar Winery’s gold label California Sparkling Wine; $21.

Recipe for Easy as Pie Dough

Makes 3 lb

1.5 lb all-purpose flour
1 lb butter, cut into pieces (cold)
1 oz salt
8 oz cold water

  1. Combine flour and salt thoroughly. Gently rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips to form large flakes.  Chef note: For extremely flakey dough mix flour with butter creating walnut sized flakes.
  2. Add cold water all at once and mix until the dough just comes together.  Chef note: you can never under mix, but you can always over mix.
  3. Place dough on floured work surface and wrap with plastic wrap and chill for 20 – 30 minutes.  The dough is ready to roll out or it may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for 4 weeks.
  4. Roll out the dough on floured surface and roll the dough into desired shape and thickness using smooth, even strokes.
  5. Transfer the dough to a prepared pie pan. The shell is ready to fill or bake.



World of Wine Weekend: Food & Wine Pairing Highlights

Friday, February 21st, 2014

Just one week away on March 1 & 2, Temecula Valley’s “World of Wine” Weekend offers gourmet food & wine pairings at 30+ wineries – all-included in one passport ticket price.  2-Day and Sunday-Only Tickets are still available here!

WoW 2014 Menu Highlights:

•    Baily Vineyard is serving 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon with Beef Bourguignon; plus Parisian Apple Cake with warm caramel sauce and late harvest Sauvignon Blanc-Semillon whipped cream.
    •    Bel Vino is serving 2005 Prima Port – a limited-production Zinfandel dessert wine – paired with chocolate mousse tart topped with raspberries
•    Callaway is serving 2012 Winemaker’s Reserve Roussanne (pre-release) with Sage Mountain Farms organic beef meatloaf topped with bacon & apple chutney; plus rock shrimp and leek-mousse stuffed mushrooms.
•    Danza Del Sol is serving 2011 Tempranillo with roasted chicken, topped with a seared lemon glaze over sun-dried tomato orzo.
•    Falkner Winery is serving 2009 Meritage with a surf & turf burger slider (Black Angus beef, sauteed lobster, Boursin cheese) and a grilled octopus greek salad
•    Masia de Yabar is serving Estate Syrah with Spanish empanadas
•    Miramonte is serving 2012 Bin 380 signature red blend with Moroccan-spiced braised chicken over saffron rice pilaf
•    Palumbo is serving 2013 Brezza de Mare (a Viognier-Roussanne blend) and 2012 Sophia’s Vineyard (Cabernet Sauvignon barrel sample) with thin-sliced cold roast beef on garlic toast points, California chipotle cream relish.
•    Ponte is serving 2011 Barbera with mini brie en croute layered with toasted almonds, Crasins and a dark sugar glaze.

Can you say WoW?!

This two-day/30+ winery passport event also includes live music at many winery stops and a “cork art” contest to help promote sustainability.  Come join us on March 1 & 2 and taste the best of Temecula Valley wine country.

Don’t forget to get your World of Wine tickets TODAY before it’s sold out!!



Temecula Wines Win in San Francisco!

Friday, February 7th, 2014





The 2014 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition results are in! One of the largest wine competitions in America, this annual wine event received 5,000 entries from 1,500 wineries all across the country.

We are pleased to announce several winners from Temecula Valley, CA:

  • Callaway Winery won 2 golds, 3 silvers and 1 bronze for their 6 entries: Syrah, Rosé of Sangiovese, Muscat Canelli, Roussanne, Profonde and Cabernet Sauvignon.
  • Falkner Winery won silver and bronze for 3 of their wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Meritage and Rosato.
  • Monte De Oro won 1 gold, 3 silvers and 2 bronze for: Petite Sirah, Simplexity, Congruity, Cabernet Sauvignon, Synergy 65 and Syrah.
  • Last but not least, congratulations to Vindemia for winning the gold for their Petite Sirah!


Check out the full list of winners here.


Come experience these award-winning Temecula wines firsthand – plan your trip today!


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