San Diego wineries are places of beauty and grace and are surprisingly common both in the urban areas and those set further afield on sprawling estates.
But before we dive into the best wineries in the region, let’s find out more about the wine industry in the area.
How Many Wineries Are In San Diego?
San Diego wineries are plentiful, and while it’s hard to pinpoint an exact number since they change yearly, it’s safe to say that there are well over 115 wineries in San Diego at present.
What Is The Largest Winery In San Diego?
The largest winery in San Diego is Orfila Vineyards which boasts not only a 70-acre estate, but it also comes with around 40 acres of highly prized wine grapes. It is found within the San Pasqual Valley.
What Is The Oldest Winery In San Diego?
The oldest winery in San Diego is Bernardo Winery – which was established in 1889. The winery’s not only a top place to enjoy sipping on chardonnay, but it also offers a large variety of attractive village shops. They are located at 13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte, San Diego, CA.
What Wine Is San Diego Known For?
There are numerous acclaimed grape varieties that thrive in the San Diego County soils. Some of the top ones you’ll come across include Zinfandel, Chenin Blanc, Grenache, Cabernet Franc, and Albariño to name a few.
The Best San Diego Wineries
The following wineries within easy reach from San Diego are well worth visiting, especially for the atmosphere that is provided to patrons, the top-notch wines available, and the outstanding experience that is on offer.
- Opening times: Thursday 4–9pm, Friday 3–9pm, Saturday, 1–9pm, Sunday 1–7pm
- Best view: Mountains
- Must-try wine: Cabernet Sauvignon, Reserve Pinot Noir and special Sangria Mead
- Address: 6242 Ferris Square, San Diego, CA 92121, United States
Named after the slang term for early skiers, 2Plank Vineyards is a perfect first choice when it comes to San Diego Wineries since it combines the beautiful mountain scenery of Fallbrook with an artisan wine experience. The tasting room is open for bookings from Thursday to Sunday, and the red earth hilly terrain combined with the brilliant green of the vineyards make this a photo-worthy spot. Not to mention the palpable love the vineyard owners, staff and winemakers have for this San Diego winery make coming here a special experience indeed.
Orfila Vineyards and Winery
- Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 11am – 7pm for Escondida
- Opening times: Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 12– 8 pm, Thursday, Friday, Saturday: 12– 9 pm for Oceanside
- Best view: The vineyards
- Must-try wine: 2015 estate Montepulciano and the 2014 Pinot Noir Element 119
- Location: 13455 San Pasqual Rd, Escondido, San Diego County, CA
Set on a picturesque estate that covers 70-acres, Orfila is quite possibly the most acclaimed winery in all of San Diego. There are a huge variety of wines available here thanks to the different grapes grown – such as Sangiovese grapes and floral Viognier ones, and they have over 1000 awards to date for them.
Free wine tours are available daily, and a trip to the tasting room in Escondido, found in historic Julian, San Diego’s gold rush town, will provide plenty of charm. They have a second tasting room on a different property known as Oceanside, which entices many since they offer artisanal cheese and charcuterie boards. There are numerous picnic spots on site, and visitors will enjoy making special memories in this truly gorgeous setting. Their ability to focus on passion and follow wine industry trends ensures they’ll stay a classic choice for decades to come.
Robert Renzoni Vineyards
- Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 11am – 6pm
- Best view: Rolling hills, vineyards
- Must try wine: 1886 TRA AMICI, 2020 Viognier, MOSCATO DI ASTI
- Location: 37350 De Portola Rd, Temecula, CA
With over 100 years of winemaking experience, this San Diego winery, created by the family of Robert Renzoni, offers ten acres of vineyards that consist of classic Bordeaux and Italian grapes. They have over 21 grape types that have received awards, and their Italian-serving restaurant, Mama Rosa’s Trattoria, is a perfect backdrop to experience a one-of-a-kind, authentic dining experience which pairs beautifully with their wines.
Milagro Farm Vineyards and Winery
- Opening times: Saturday and Sunday: 11:30am – 6pm
- Best view: Vineyards, lush gardens, hillside
- Must-try wine: 2019 rosé or 2018 Pinot Gris
- Location: 18750 Littlepage Rd, Ramona, San Diego County, CA
With beautiful orchards, vineyards, and an organic farm to boot, Milagro Farm Vineyards and Winery is undoubtedly one of the top wineries in San Diego. There are live music days, a top-notch tasting room, and visitors can enjoy more than just wine with an organic farm to see, horseback rides available, and can even stroll through the scenic hillside with their pups – since the winery is pet friendly too.
- Opening times: Saturday and Sunday: 12 – 5pm
- Best view: The interior tasting room
- Must-try wine: 2016 Sunrise Ranch Grenache Blanc and 2013 Highland Hills Alcala
- Location: 298 Enterprise Street, Suite D, Escondido, San Diego County, CA
With a passion for winemaking in the San Diego area, the variety on offer at Vesper Vineyards is pretty astounding. Working closely with local winemakers, Chris Broomell and Alysha Stenly founded Vesper Vineyards in order to make wine more accessible to those in the area and to show that the wineries of San Diego County can be considered as part of the greater wine-growing region of the state of California.
They’ve certainly earned themselves a place in the county hall of fame and their wine varieties offer everything from rosé wines to blended reds and a tie-dye lollipop that their wine club members rave about. Try these and more single-vineyard wines from the top San Diego vineyards at their Escondido tasting room.
- Opening times: Wednesday – Sunday: 10am – 5pm
- Best view: The vineyards
- Must-try wine: 2017 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
- Location: 1 hour outside of San Diego at 35053 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA
Founded in the 1980s, Ponte Winery is a top winery in San Diego. With a small team that focuses on quality and sustainable farming practices, the 300-acre vineyard is certain to win a place in your heart. Their wine tasting room offers not only a stylish space to sip but beautiful views and the opportunity to dine amongst the lush foliage of the garden at Ponte Restaurant – a top 100 TripAdvisor and OpenTable restaurant. The menu has delightful pairing opportunities such as the pan-seared diver scallops and green pig pizza.
Gershon Bachus Vintners
- Opening times: Monday – Thursday: 12–6pm, Friday – Sunday: 11am–6pm
- Best View: Both mountainous and hillside scenery
- Must-try wine: ‘Hesperus’ The Evening Star Grenache
- Location: 1 hour outside of San Diego at 37750 De Portola Rd, Temecula, CA
With a distinctly Tuscan feel to their San Diego winery, Gershon Bachus Vintners are a location for those who seek an authentic winery experience. Tradition is at the fore of how everything at Gershon is run, and with outstanding mountains and rolling hills as the backdrop, you’re certain to consider returning to this winery time and again.
All their wine varieties are aged in Hungarian Oak or French Oak barrels, and they also cater for events such as weddings and special occasions.
These are the wineries in San Diego that we think are well-worth stopping in to visit – do yourself a favour and try them!