Photos Courtesy Michelle Mears-Gerst
Warm days, cool nights and vineyards as far as the eye can see. With an ideal coastal climate and pristine growing conditions, the state of California is known for having harvested some of the best vintages throughout the western world.
Coastal breezes sweep though the rolling hills of the state, but what many may not realize is that when it comes to California wine, there is in fact life beyond Napa Valley. And while there is no denying the fertile bounty of Northern California, you might just be surprised at how satisfying a daytrip down south might be to your palate.
Located just 90 miles southeast of Los Angeles
, the Temecula Valley is considered to be one of Southern California’s most prosperous wine growing regions. Comprised of 1,300 planted acres and an additional 5,000 acres of “protected” land known as the Citrus/Vineyard Zone, the region is one of only 107 federally recognized American Viticultural Areas.
Temecula Valley is home to more than 30 wineries – some well established, others up-and-coming – and each with as much character as you’d expect from an award-winning blend.
On a recent visit to the Temecula wine region
, I was not only introduced to a wide selection of varietals, but was also greeted by an unexpected frenzy of four-legged friends.
While each vineyard offers something unique, as it turns out, most have one thing in common: a winery dog. So without further ado, here's some of our favorites among the pack.
Meet Mojo of Miramonte Winery...