One of Southern California’s oldest and most important wine regions, the Inland Empire, particularly Temecula Valley, is filled with winery venues and wine-related activities for groups.
“A lot of our wineries get really creative with setting up meeting and event space,” said Annette Brown, public relations director for Visit Temecula Valley. “You can have atmospheric dinners in the barrel rooms or be outside among the vines.”
During the August and September harvesting season wineries such as Wilson Creek Winery & Vineyards offer groups the chance to engage in old-fashioned grape stomping, awarding a bottle of wine to the first team to fill a bucket with juice.
The Temecula Valley winery also offers an array of event spaces, including a Tuscan-themed ballroom, barrel room and the Garden View Terrace Room overlooking the vineyards.
Accommodating groups up to 500, the South Coast Winery Resort & Spa includes not only 30,000 square feet of meeting space, but an on-site resort hotel, restaurant and spa. Event spaces at the winery include a grand ballroom, rose arbor, amphitheater, barrel room and a vintner’s garden.
Set among citrus trees and the backdrop of the Santa Ana Mountains, Lorimar Vineyards and Winery is known for its live music on weekend nights.
The winery, which can accommodate up to 300 people outdoors and 75 indoors, offers a full program of wine-pairing dinners, wine education seminars and other events.
One of the largest Temecula wine venues, the Mount Palomar Winery can host events for up to 1,000 guests. It offers the Annata Bistro, a restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the vineyards and a variety of outdoor spaces that include a garden terrace shaded by olive trees.
In Rancho Cucamonga, where winemaking dates back to the late 19th century, Joseph Filippi Winery & Vineyards offers a charming tasting room and outdoor picnic grounds with redwood tables, rose gardens, horseshoe pits and black walnut trees.