I’m sitting on a hilltop overlooking the rolling hills of Temecula Valley @robertrenzoniwinery
Robert Renzoni Vineyards is a must-stop when you’re in Temecula. The location, off the secluded De Portola Road, provides a Tuscan feel and picturesque views. It’s usually very crowded pre-Covid, but I lucked out and had almost the winery to myself that day! Even when full, the winery has plenty of seats to enjoy the vineyard views as you sip and dine at the Italian-inspired villa.
Admittedly, I didn’t expect much from Temecula wines since my previous tastings over the years at other wineries weren’t very memorable (the wine that is). But, I’m happy to say I’m WRONG and this tasting changed my perception of Temecula wines. The Tempranillo and Blend were complex with powerful tannins and smooth vanilla notes throughout.
What’s changed with Temecula wines? I learned that winemakers began to tame the pH problem with improved farming methods: canopy management, proper vine balance and better irrigation practices. They also began planting more Italian, Rhone and Spanish varietals suited to Temecula’s Mediterranean climate. This makes sense since Robert Renzoni Vineyards estate is naturally suited to grape growing. Seven of their 12 acres are planted to the classic Italian grape varieties: Sangiovese, Brunello and Barbera.
You’ve heard of six degrees of separation, but have you heard of two? A few days ago I featured @robertrenzoniwinery
Today, let’s talk about @leonesscellars an estate winery that also sits on a hilltop overlooking the Temecula Valley located on De Portola. The connection between these two? Robert worked at Leoness Cellars before opening his own winery in 2008. There may be a lot of wines in the world, but the wine world is small.
Opened in 2002, founders Mike and Gary, pride themselves on being farmers first and all the grapes used in the Leoness Cellars’ are estate grown. In fact, the vineyards they farm produce many of Temecula’s most respected wines.
With better selection of grapes, this definitely impacts the quality and I can taste the difference in their Cabernet Sauvignon versus other Temecula wines. Out of the ten wines I tasted, I found their Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Rosé to be nicely balanced with the right amount of concentration and flavors. They also produce Viognier, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, White, Merlot, Muscat Canelli, Cinsault Port and Chardonnay.