Julian Station is housed in former apple-packing facility and cider house. Cider still plays an important role at the present-day facility, enjoying a dedicated tasting room alongside those for beer, mead, and wine and chocolate pairings. However, today’s Julian Station goes beyond swirling and sipping. It's a cultural compound, with multiple buildings that house everything from marial arts to weekly concerts fueled by barbecue. Guests can shop with friends, peruse local artwork, and munch at Mr. Manitas Taco Bar & Fruteria, but just as many visit for the covered back patio, which provides a majestic view of the Volcan Mountains and live music every Sunday from 1 pm to 4 pm.
Orfila Vineyards and Winery sits on a picturesque hill 15 miles from the Pacific Ocean. That means ocean breezes and morning fog, ideal conditions for growing wine grapes. Since 1994, the team has been harvesting fruit for an array of Rhone-style wines that has racked up more than 1,000 wine-competition medals and at least 3 deep nods of approval. Current vintages run the gamut from merlots to grapefruit-pink roses to summery whites.
Visitors can sample the wines at the winery's onsite tasting room—just outside San Diego, en route to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park—or stop by the second tasting room in the historic small town of Julian.
Looking to add some more culture into your life? Check out Julian Apple Days Festival in Julian.
Parking is plentiful, so visitors can feel free to bring their vehicles.
If exploring different traditions and cultures is right up your alley, head on over to Julian Apple Days Festival and enjoy a great visit.
Nature plays a central role in the lives of the
McClellans. As avid gardeners, they relish plunging their hands into the dirt and planting new seeds, especially those for Rhone grape vines. Yet even as the owners of Highland Hills Winery, tending the vineyard isn't their only means of communing with nature. Local coyotes and
birds of prey from the on-site lake help to keep rodents away from the vines and occasionally feed on the grapes, giving the signal that everything is ready for harvest. As a gesture of thanks, the coyote and the surrounding Ramona Grasslands are featured on the labels that adorn Highland Hills' six wines. These barrel-aged styles range from a rich, fruit-forward petit syrah to a bright and citrus-tinged blended white. Every Saturday and Sunday, they're available for sampling in a climate-controlled, ADA-approved tasting room that's furnished with
iron cafe tables and cushioned chairs.
Principe di Tricase Winery translates to "Prince of Tricase" in English, so it's only appropriate that their wines are fit for royalty. While the winery is firmly rooted in California, its award-winning wines are some of the best in the world. Read on to learn how the about a few of the grand numbers this winemaker boasts:
3 grape varieties—Aglianico, Nebbiolo, Aleatico as estate grapes—are planted across the winery's 4-acre vineyard overlooking Ramona's Highland Valley
3 wine-club options; Athena members receive 1 bottle each month, whereas Zeus members get 2, and those with the title of Baccus receive 3
2014—the year their sulfite-free wine, the 2012 Aglianico, took home 4 of the 18 medals they won until today.
Tucked away in the sunny and picturesque Ramona Valley, Lenora Winery bottles beautiful wines in an equally beautiful setting. Amongst a wide range of varietals crafted from the eight types of grapes that flourish along the vineyard's sun-drenched hills, Lenora boasts a number of award-winners, including their 2012 Lenora Estate Sauvignon Blanc. Visitors can enjoy samples of the wines at the 22-seat tasting room, or drink in the views on the outdoor grape arbor with seating for 44 people. During tastings, guests sample white, rose, red and dessert wines as well as blends procured from several vintages. Winemakers lovingly hand-craft each elixir, with many bottled into fewer than 25 cases.