Three Temecula Wineries You've Never Heard Of (but you should have)
newly planted vineyards at first light in Temecula Valley

Sure, you've probably heard of venerable Callaway Winery, whose wines first gained national attention when served to the Queen of England at a White House Dinner. Maybe you've toasted a new bride and groom with Wilson Creek's ubiquitous Almond Champagne. And surely you know something about all-encompassing South Coast Winery Resort and Spa, a three-time California Winery of the Year. 

But few know the full diversity of Temecula Valley Wine Country. It's difficult to keep up. During the past decade, the number of Temecula wineries has increased by an average of two per year, and now you can sample the vinos of more than 40 wineries who produce in Southern California Wine Country.  


Here's a quick glance at three Temecula wineries you've probably never heard of, but you'll be glad you did.  


Vitagliano Vineyards and Winery

In the tiny coastal village of Santa Maria, on the Italian island of Salina near Sicily, wine enthusiast Guy Vitagliano dreamed of bringing the passion and richness of Italy's finest winemaking traditions to America. Three generations later, the Vitagliano family is fulfilling Guy's dream with a line of Super Tuscan style wines carefully crafted in Southern California Wine Country. Tastings, by appointment only, are on location on the fairytale grounds of the family's wedding venue, Lake Oak Meadows, along Glen Oaks Road between the bustling Rancho California Wineries and the emerging De Portola Trial.    


Lorenzi Estate Vineyards & Winery

Don Lorenzi, widely known for publishing the region's premier lifestyle magazine, Inland Empire Magazine, is less known for his family's heritage as Southern California wine country pioneers who planted Zinfandel vines in the early 1900's. Since the early 2000's, Don has followed the traditions of his forefathers. He produces small lots of acclaimed wines that are worthy of the premier lifestyle espoused by his monthly journal. Hurry down seldom-travelled Monte de Oro Road to acquire one of the few remaining cases of 2008 Heritage Red before the $450 per bottle wine sells out completely.  


Gershon Bachus Vintners

Wine Enthusiast rated three different Gershon Bachus Cabernets. All three scored an atmospheric 93 points. The 20-acre estate winery perches above hillside vineyards, overlooking Temecula's DePortola Wine Trail, and few visitors ascend its inconspicuous driveway. Visitation hours vary, but are more limited than those of most Temecula wineries  At the time of this post, tastings are conducted during limited hours on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. But call ahead, as this boutique winery - sought after by brides as a popular wedding venue - often closes for private events. 


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