Ponte Winery Review
Address: 35053 Rancho California Rd. Temecula,California 92591.
Phone Number: 951-694-8855
Tasting Hours: 10:00-5:00
Region: South Coast and S. California, Temecula Valley AVA, California
Reviewer: Tara Torres
Review Date: 7/8/2013
Reviewer: Tara Torres
Ponte Winery offers numerous amenities, a great restaurant and a hotel. Grab a glass of wine and enjoy a stroll through their gorgeous grounds.
The Place:  At first glance Ponte Winery seems to have an architectural identity crisis with its barn-styled tasting room and its Spanish-influenced barrel room and restaurant. While it lacks an architectural cohesion, its all tastefully done and inviting. The outdoor restaurant in the back of the tasting room is a great place to enjoy the almost always gorgeous Southern Californian weather. It was a bit warm on the day of my visit, but the misters kept us comfortable. Ponte doesn’t provide the hillside views that can be found as several other Temecula wineries, but it makes the best of what it does have by maintaining a lovely garden complete with fountains and impeccably manicured hedges that only end when they meet the vines. The garden is a match made in heaven for those with cameras or those who want to enjoy nature with a glass of wine in your hand. The mountains behind the rows of vines also provide a dramatic and picturesque backdrop. The tasting room hosts a relatively large marketplace, and the Ponte Vineyard Inn offers rooms and suites with vineyard views.
The Experience:  Our first stop at Ponte was to fill our bellies before indulging in the wine tasting, so we headed to the restaurant where we were promptly greeted by a friendly hostess. During our lunch, the service was prompt and pleasant and the food was pretty good too. While we could have ordered a flight of wines with lunch, we opted for the traditional tasting experience inside the tasting room. After lunch the garden was beckoning, so I couldn’t help but be distracted by the winerys spectacular garden. After lunch, we went inside and purchased our tasting ticket. It wasn’t crowded that day, but there was a significant lag between pours. Fortunately, when the wines were being poured, the service was polite and knowledgeable. While we found the wines to be average, the overall experience at Ponte Winery was very enjoyable.
The Wines:  At $15 and $20, the tasting fee at Ponte Winery is one of the more expensive in the area, but it does include a “free” Ponte wine glass. Ponte offers an extensive selection of wines, fifteen reds and eight whites. Bottles prices range from $15 to $75. The Beverino is Ponte’s most popular, but I found the Vermentino to be my favorite.
Insiders Tip:  Ponte Winery wine club members enjoy a wide variety of discounts. Discounts are offered at the Restaurant at Ponte, the Ponte Vineyard Inn, the Cellar Lounge (located in the Inn), and of course on wine. Wine club members also receive a discount on special events and access to the Members exclusive Reserve Room on the crowded weekends.