4 Wineries Near San Diego You May Not Know About

January 6, 2016








Luxury Travel Advisor & Founder of Passport To Friday. Follow along on my travels and let me help you plan your dream trip or honeymoon!

I'm Chelsea.


It’s Wine Wednesday y’all!

Something I want to start experimenting with is doing a feature related to wine on the occasional Wednesday. I love wine, you probably love wine, and I love writing about wine. Cool, glad we’re all in agreeance on this new proposition. I mean the blog is called Passport To Friday, right? Bring on the wine and weekends.

Just so you know, I really don’t drink that often. I’m not the type of girl who comes home and pours herself a glass of wine after work on the reg. Unless I have an event or dinner during the week, I prefer to stay healthy during the week but also not overdo it over the weekend. Ain’t nobody got time to be groggy because of too much wine the night before.

Wine tasting however is one of my favorite things to do ever. Like most things in my life, I don’t like to stick to just one thing. I’m the first one at dinner to suggest that we order multiple things and share because yes, we do need to try everything on the menu. I love ClassPass because I don’t like to do just one type of workout but instead constantly try new things and keep it exciting. I travel over 250 days a year for work because I like to always be somewhere new. So basically, my life is like wine tasting. I want a little taste of everything.

I spent my first 3 years of life living in Murrieta which is next to Temecula which is about 1 hour from San Diego. We then moved to San Diego but since we still owned and rented out our home in Murrieta, we would make the trek up there to check on the house and oh darn, get some wine tasting in too. As a child I loved accompanying my parents on these trips almost as much as I do now that I can actually drink the wine, mainly because of the cheese, crackers, and non-alcoholic grape juice the wineries would give me. The things you look forward to as a kid, I tell ya. I digress, but I guess what I’m trying to get at is that I have frequented the Temecula area wineries since kinder years.

When people think of Temecula wineries, I feel like their mind goes automatically to South Coast, Ponte or Callaway. But there are SO many great wineries in the Temecula area. What’s also exciting is the surge in wineries in the San Pasqual / Escondido area of San Diego County. No longer do you have to always drive to Temecula every time to get some decent wine.

Today I am featuring two incredible wineries in the San Pasqual area and two in the Temecula area. Each one is very different from each other and have their own charm. Cheers!

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego


Family owned and ran, you can taste the heart and soul that was poured into the making of the Espinosa wines. The outdoor tasting area makes you feel like you are hanging out in someone’s (very nice) backyard, and you can even bring a picnic and set up at any of their small tables or long communal picnic table. You are greeted by the friendliest family and taste some of the best wines during your visit here. Espinosa wines are only available at the winery so once they re-open this spring, come by and get them before they sell out!

My favorites:

  • 2014 Rosado: My new favorite rose style wine. Not too sweet, not too dry making it very well-balanced.
  • 2014 Pinot Noir: While staying true to the style of a typical Pinot, my parents (who are not Pinot drinkers) still absolutely loved it.
  • In The Black: I think this is my new favorite dessert wine, which is saying a lot because it is my favorite type of wine. It is 100% Syrah and 100% perfect.

Tasting Room Hours: Sunday 11am – 6pm

(Currently closed until Easter)

Cost: 5 tastes for $10, or free tasting with each bottle purchased

15360 Bandy Canyon Road, Escondido, CA 92025

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego


Known for their freshly made pizzas, pretty view, and amazing event space, Cordiano is a little slice of Italy in the Escondido hills. Their expansive patio is a great place to kick back, hang out, and drink some wine. As an events girl, I especially love Cordiano’s special events space and would recommend it as a wedding venue.

My favorites:

  • Veggie Pizza ($14): Fresh tomatoes, grilled zucchini, mushrooms, roasted red peppers (although the meat pizza was wonderful as well).
  • Trinity: 60% Sangiovese, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot makes it a well-balanced, lighter blend.
  • Duetto: Syrah & Cab Franc blend, so naturally I enjoyed it.
  • Moscato di Canelli: Sweet, white dessert wine.

Tasting Room Hours: Wednesday – Sunday, 11am – 8pm

Cost: 7 tastes for $12

15732 Highland Valley Road, Escondido, CA 92025

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego


I honestly don’t think I have ever had a bad wine at Wiens. My family has been a part of their Wine Club for a few years now, and I always look forward to coming home and having a glass of wine from their collection. Wiens really does all ranges of the spectrum well from their sparkling wines to their dessert wine. You can also bring a picnic and eat out on the patio!

My favorites:

  • Amour De L’Orange Sparkling: Probably in my top 3 sparkling wine favorites of all time. It has a slight orange flavor which would make it great for a brunch drink and you don’t even need OJ! This was my celebratory sparkling wine for my college graduation (ah, the memories).
  • 2013 Tempranillo: Brown sugar, watermelon, and strawberry. Light and a little dirty.
  • 2013 Reflection: A Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon blend featuring flavors of red plum, black cherry, and blackberry.
  • 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon: The flavors speak for themselves: dried cherry, black plum, coffee.
  • Ruby Port: I’m a Port girl, and this one does not disappoint. Mocha and plum jam deliciousness.

Tasting Room Hours: Daily, 10:30am – 6pm

Cost: 6 tastes for $15

35055 Via Del Ponte, Temecula, CA 92592

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego

4 Great Wineries Near San Diego


Red wine lovers rejoice because this is your new red wine destination. Monte De Oro pours some of my absolute favorite reds ever. There is a huge patio area that has live music often. There is also an on-site bistro selling food from salads to flatbreads to paninis, and bring-your-own picnics are not allowed on at this winery. Penny is my favorite staff member here!

My favorites:

  • 2014 Nostimo: Nostimo means “delicious” in Greek, and that’s what it is. 32% Pinot Gris, 32% Sauvignon Blanc, 24% Viognier, 12% Muscat Canelli.
  • 2014 Muscat Canelli: This is a very sweet wine, but perfect for a hot day hanging out on the porch (if I owned a porch).
  • 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon: 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc… add a little Cab Franc to anything and I’m there.
  • 2012 Simplexity: 36% Merlot, 31% Cabernet Franc, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Petite Verdot, 3% Malbec makes this blend simple yet complex.
  • 2012 Syrah: Just a really darn good Syrah.
  • Legato Red Dessert Wine: Once again, I’m a sucker for a good dessert wine. This one is composed of late-harvested Zinfadel grapes and is very smooth.

Tasting Room Hours: Daily, 10am – 5pm

Cost: 6 tastes for $13 (Mon-Thurs) or $15 (Fri-Sun & Holidays)

35820 Rancho California Road, Temecula, CA 92591

Safe travels y’all!


Chelsea Rose Martin


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Hi, I'm Chelsea Martin, Luxury Travel Advisor & Founder of Passport To Friday. I've been planning bespoke luxury vacations and honeymoons for almost a decade now. I can't wait to help you plan the trip of a lifetime! 

A true Cancer, hotel-slipper-obsessed gal whose IG Explore page is full of dogs.



California bred, NYC based, always en route
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