Vacationing and Wine Tours in San Diego
When it comes to vacationing in San Diego, and the rest of the Golden State better known as California, there is plenty to do and see; California prides itself ‘on living life to the fullest’ according to California’s official tourist board website. Attractions range from the famous attractions of San Diego Zoo, to the kids' favorite Disney Land and the stunning Yosemite National Park, but tasting and experiencing world class wine has also become a must-do on a trip to California.
San Diego as a Wine region
The wine region of San Diego is able to grow the perfect grape due to its mild Mediterranean climate, resulting in the mild yet crisp California wine everyone knows. California actually ‘produces some 90% of US wine, although there are wineries in nearly every state of the USA’, according to Dennis Grimes from Wine Tasting San Diego. Although other areas of California are more associated with wineries, such as Temecula towards the north of San Diego, this allows for San Diego’s vineyards to be real hidden gems. San Diego’s wine region has plenty of events throughout the year too, teaching wine lovers how to pair certain wines with different foods. Many of the different regions have very different wines too, meaning visiting more than one is a good way to become a real wine connoisseur.
Where to visit
While in San Diego on vacation, don’t miss out on Old Town San Diego, better known as the birthplace of California. Take a look back through the past via the many museums and historical sites and discover the area’s beginning roots from 1769. The area is also busting with modern culture in the form of theaters, boutique shops, art galleries and excellent Mexican eateries.
There are also plenty of beaches to visit in this area. Head to La Jolla Cove and watch the sun set over the ocean, which is named as one of the best natural settings in the world. This is also a popular scuba diving area, as it offers some of the clearest waters in the whole of California. Mission Bay Park is also another place not to miss, people flock here to the wide open spaces famed for kite flying in the 4,600 acre park. A great way to see much of the coast and experience it at your own pace is by hiring a car and driving it yourself. There are also plenty of walking trails here covering more than 20 miles of scenic paths, perfect for relaxed walks. Of course, taking a wine tour is almost obligatory whilst in California – if you’re over 21 of course.
Why take a wine tour
Wine tours are a great way to really relax on holiday and of course, taste local wines where they are actually produced. Many wineries are family owned business, passed down through the family, and thus provide a really down to earth experience. There is no better way to enjoy wine than in the warm Mediterranean climate that California is so well known for, where it was made with views over the vineyards where it has come from. Many people choose to take a wine tour as a day trip in the many different stops of their cruise; as Iglu Cruise explain, expert wine tasters are on-hand to guide you through grape varieties and teach the art of wine tasting ’. This way, you get to learn much about the process of wine making and how different wines are made as tours are given by the experts of the business in the different regions visited on the cruise, expanding your wine knowledge.
When taking a wine tours, there are different types to consider, these are either private wine tours which consist of smaller more intimate and personal groups which can be organised at a time more convenient to you, or public wine tours within larger groups. Most of the best wineries in San Diego will be able to offer both of these options.
The best wineries in San Diego
California alone is 'home to more than an astonishing 3,500 wineries – and is the fourth leading wine producer in the world' according to visitcalifornia.com's website, so picking the best to visit whilst on vacation may seem a little overwhelming initially. The original wine region to find fame in California is Napa Valley; of course this region is great, but with that comes its huge popularity, meaning lots of people, if you don’t mind that and want to see where it all began, then head on over. If you want something a little more relaxed, then visit Fallbrook Winery, which is a family run winery. Lindsey Pomeroy from San Diego Magazine describes it as nestled ‘among the avocado orchards and stands of cypress trees’, offering excellent views whilst you relax with an excellent glass of BDX or Sangiovese which are highly recommended.
Mahogany Mountain View Vineyard and Winery is another family run vineyard not to miss. Located in Ramona, which is known as the Valley of the Sun, specializes in Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Muscat Canelli, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot, Zinfandel and Syrah. The family owning the vineyard claim, their wine making techniques include ‘hand-picked and organically grown grapes, small bin fermentation, hand punch-down of caps, hand press and aging in small oak barrels’ to release the best possible flavors from the grapes. So when you are in California, or San Diego, don’t deny yourself the chance to experience such amazing wines from where it all comes from; it’s certainly the best way to enjoy wine as it was meant to be.
Coming back from Valle de Guadalupe this past week was an incredible experience that went beyond my senses. I visit about four artisan wineries which included Tres Valles, Tres Mujeres, Santo Thomas and Adobe Guadalupe. Each was superb with a beautiful backdrop setting of vineyards and grapes. The best wines in Latin America all around with dedicated wine makers flourishing in their fruits. I really enjoy a seafood lunch at Hacienda Guadalupe! I love Baja Wine and encourage everyone to discover this unexplored region of Mexico!
Ramona Valley is one of San Diego's true wine valleys. Named in 2006 as an American Viticultural Area located 28 miles (45 km) northeast of the city of San Diego in San Diego County,California centered around the city of Ramona. It was designated the 162nd American Viticultural Area in January, 2006 by the United States Department of the Treasury Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, which recognized the area for its distinctive microclimate, elevation, and soilattributes. Approximately 89,000 acres (360 km2) in area and centered around the town of Ramona, California, it is 14.5 miles (23.3 km) long and 9.5 miles (15.3 km) wide. Geographically, the Ramona Valley is described as being a broad, flat valley ringed by hills and mountains that isolate it from the surrounding areas. The valley has an average vineyard elevation of 1,400 feet (430 m) and an annual average rainfall of 16.5 inches (41.9 cm). ( From Wikipedia)
San Diego Winery Tours can take you to visit over twenty wineries that make up the Ramona AVA.
Some of our favorites are:
Nestled in the sky-lined hills of Ramona California, Kohill Winery is just 40 minutes north of San Diego. A family dream built from the ground up, Kohill Winery overlooks Ramona’s majestic Valley of the Sun and is surrounded by three acres of vineyard. From our vines to your table, it is our deepest joy to create a magnificent collection of boutique vintages. At less than 1,000 cases per year, every bottle receives personal attention to ensure you are getting the highest quality wine. Our estate wines include Cabernet Sauvignon, Barbera, Refosco, Sauvignon Blanc, and Semillon plus other locally grown varietals.
Milagro Farm Vineyards
Milagro Farm Vineyards and Winery is a boutique winery located at 2400 feet elevation in the rolling mountains of Ramona, California. All of our wines are produced entirely from fruit grown on our property. Our vineyards are planted and managed to produce low yields and are watered completely from spring water wells on the property. These farming practices, the unique nature of our high altitude micro-climate, and the rocky granitic soils in our mountain vineyards allow us to produce exquisite fruit. Our wines are representative of the exciting potential of this historic and emerging wine growing region.
Hilland Hills Winery and More
To check out more information, please visit the Ramona AVA website at:
San Diego Winery Tours is proud to annouce that we are adding several new wine country experiences to our tour line up. Its been a while since I fell in love again with wine in San Diego we are becoming more of a craft brew kind of snob however no other place captures your heart like any wine country especially the one in Southern California. We are adding monthly tours to Temecula AVA and Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California AVA because of all the popularity of them.
Summer time is the best time to come out and do winery tours. Come out and begin your tours with white wines because they are so refreshing in this hot and dry California sun. The white wines like Chardonneys will always be appealing to a thirsty mouth. Afterwards, proceed to some Roses and then proceed with tastings the dark reds... My favorite. No matter how you like to drink wine... Come and tell your friends about our winery tours. We are offering group discounts for people that sign up with more than six people. They will receive a $ 10.00 off all tours.
For information, dont hesitate to give us a call at 619-232-5040 and ask for the Wine Expert!