September may be all about the harvest, but we wouldn’t get through the busiest time of year without our furry friends
While it’s no doubt the crisp whites, toasty bubbles, juicy rosés, and robust red wines that lure us into Temecula Valley wineries time and time again, there are some other winery residents that have captured our hearts as well – Temecula’s beloved winery pets. From cheerful golden retrievers to mysterious barrel room cats, to all kinds of other furry friends, it’s hard to resist these friendly Wine Country ambassadors.
As anyone with a treasured family pet knows, these animals add a unique dimension to our working lives and often become cherished members of our winery families. Their roles range from welcoming guests to keeping pesky critters at bay, and they do it all with a level of charm that elevates our daily routines. In this special edition, we profile some of the standout pets from various Temecula Valley wineries, giving you a glimpse into their lives, preferences, and even their quirky habits.
Meet Daisy Dukes, Russel T Longfellow, and Franke Sinatra of Gershon Bachus Vintners
Favorite Snack: People food
Favorite Activity: Barking at the guests
Fun Fact: These adorable greeters let everyone at GBV know when visitors are approaching the tasting room. Though they can be quite vocal, they’re irresistibly cute, not to mention totally food-motivated—just have a chip in hand when you say hi!
Meet the dogs of Peltzer Farm and Winery, Duke, Finn, and Butch, and the newest members of the family, donkeys Carlos and Garters
Favorite Snack: Morning carrots for the donkeys, delivered by staff who love to stop in before work for some morning donkey pets
Favorite Activity: Duke is a budding soccer pro, booping the ball around with his nose, while the other pups serve as the winery’s unofficial welcoming team.
Fun Fact: Carlos and Garters are gearing up to debut at the Peltzer Pumpkin Farm Petting Farm this Fall.
Meet Dahlia of South Coast Winery Resort & Spa
Favorite Snack: Anything that’s all-natural
Favorite Activity: Walks in the vineyard
Fun Fact: Dahlia is a three-year-old mixed breed who adores strolling through the vineyards.
Meet Cilie of Cougar Vineyard & Winery
Favorite Snack: Chicken
Favorite Activity: Protecting the office from strangers not bringing dog biscuits
Fun Fact: Cilie is a rescue from Tijuana through the Tragic to Magic rescue organization. Owners Rick and Jennifer Buffington did DNA testing and not only found his 3 siblings, but also learned that he’s 30% Cattle Dog, 15% equal parts Boxer, German Shepherd, Doberman Pincher, and Super Mutt. His photo is featured on Cougar’s newly released Estate Ciliegiolo.
Meet Nixon of Falker Winery
Favorite Snack: Anything
Favorite Activity: Greeting all the guests
Fun Fact: Nixon is incredibly mellow, loving all guests and most other dogs. His favorite pastimes include eating, hanging out at the winery, sleeping and…more sleeping.
Meet Brut of Wilson Creek Winery
Favorite Snack: Turkey
Favorite Activity: Getting all the pets and pats from wonderful guests
Fun Fact: Brut is among the most iconic winery dogs in Temecula Valley! No one can resist his gentle demeaner. He has a unique swagger and makes rounds to each office before settling in his corner…usually right next to owner Bill Wilson.
Meet Liberty of Frangipani Estate Winery
Favorite Snack: Roasted Pork Chomps from Tractor Supply
Favorite Activity: Sleeping late and running the vineyards for hours
Fun Fact: Liberty is an 18-month-old Great Pyrenees. She is a big hugger and loves to greet guests at the door as well as walk them out to their vehicles, a habit she adopted from Frangipani’s late winery dog, Frannie. What a great tradition to carry on!
Meet Red Dog of Palumbo Family Vineyards & Winery
Favorite Snack: Rabbit
Favorite Activity: Mooching Salami and Cheese
Fun Fact: A straight-up farm dog, Red Dog is indifferent to humans without food.
Meet Bordeaux of Baily Winery
Favorite Snack: Bordeaux is on a strict diet, so no snacks
Favorite Activity: Serving as the winery’s Rodent Control Officer
Fun Fact: When this grey tabby cat isn’t chasing down winery pests, he delights in his role as Chief People Greeter.
Meet Sherlock Holmes of Fazeli Cellars
Favorite Snack: Salmon
Favorite Activity: Scaring vineyard intruders and chasing rabbits
Fun Fact: Despite his serious, mystery-solving name, Sherlock Holmes is very social. He loves to be petted and made a fuss over.
Meet Teddy of Doffo Winery
Favorite Snack: Leftover charcuterie
Favorite Activity: Laying on the cold warehouse concrete
Fun Fact: As the newest member of the Doffo Winery family, it remains to be seen how Teddy will fare on the back of a motorcycle with the rest of the MotoDoffo crew.
Next time you find yourself sipping a fine Temecula Valley vintage, take a moment to toast these marvelous pets. They’re not just adorable; they each play a unique role in making our wineries the magical places they are, surprising and delighting our visitors every step of the way.