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Where to Eat & Drink in Temecula Valley

Culinary hotspots in Southern California Wine Country

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Named one of the 10 Best Wine Travel Destinations by Wine Enthusiast this year, Temecula Valley is not only home to more than 40 wineries – from pioneers like Callaway, Palomar, and Hart to newer spots like Doffo – but an up-and-coming culinary scene with artisan eateries helmed by local chefs whose menus showcase the excellent local produce on offer.

Whether looking for fine dining in Wine Country, a grab and go lunch in Temecula’s historic Old Town or cocktails in a hidden speakeasy, Temecula Valley makes an easy day trip or fun weekend staycation destination being just an easy hour’s drive from San Diego.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Bottaia Winery

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35601 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591
(951) 365-3388
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With its chic modern aesthetic wine country goes next-level luxe at BOTTAIA. While there’s a seated tasting of five premium estate-grown wines (there are 12 single-varietal wines and eight blends total) and accompanying charcuterie board in the Tasting Rooms, with its vineyard views the pool area might be the real star of the show here. Reserve a chaise lounge or cabine for all-day access to The Pool Café + Bar whose menu covers Italian-inspired small plates and entrées.

2. The Restaurant at Ponte

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35053 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591
(951) 694-8855
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Instagram gold Spanish Mission-style architecture, the photogenic Ponte Vineyard Inn also boasts multiple dining options. In addition to the Poolside Bar & Café, Cellar Lounge, and upscale eatery, Bouquet, the property is also home to The Restaurant At Ponte. Open for lunch daily, as well as dinner on Fridays and Saturdays; the menu has a modern Mediterranean-inspired focus: think knock-out plates of pasta, salads, and pizzas made with fresh ingredients, wild-caught, and sustainable seafood, and hormone-free meat. The vineyard and garden setting are hard to beat, and, should the mood (or wine intake) strike, the Four Diamond rated AAA property has 90 guest rooms for an overnight stay.

3. Pinnacle Restaurant

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40620 Calle Contento
Temecula, CA 92591
(951) 676-8231
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Specializing in Mediterranean style cuisine this spectacular hilltop restaurant at Falkner Winery is open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Helmed by executive chef Jason Barradas, who trained at the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in San Francisco, small plates include herb-encrusted Hokkaido scallops and a California shrimp Caprese, while entrées range from a grilled Spanish octopus to seafood Portofino. It’s worth noting that Falkner’s 2018 Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier both make for easy afternoon drinking. 

4. Avensole Restaurant

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34567 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92592
(951) 252-2003
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With its hilltop location, extensive menus, and excellent wines, the outdoor patio and restaurant terrace at Avensole makes a beautiful spot to post up for lunch or dinner. There’s live music every Friday and Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. and weekend specials, including the chef’s market catch and a 16oz prime bone-in ribeye steak. The charcuterie and cheese board (best paired with a wine or craft beer flight) is a firm fan favorite, although the seasonal fish and chips are also worth a mention.

5. Flower Hill Bistro

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33410 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591
(951) 506-5500
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With its hilltop location and lovely panoramic views, weekend brunch vibes are strong at this charming and farm-to-table focused bistro inside Miramonte Winery. Served every Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. dish options range from a steak and eggs Benedict, dubbed Friends with Bennies, and a YOLO Avo toast to the poached egg and corned beef Hash. Sheesh. Lighter fare, including a fruit bowl with yogurt, also features, as do the obligatory bottomless mimosas. 

6. The Restaurant at Leoness Cellars

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38311 De Portola Rd
Temecula, CA 92592
(951) 302-7601
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A well-regarded local fine dining favorite, The Restaurant at Leoness Cellars has been voted number one Winery Restaurant by USA Today’s 10 Best Reader’s Choice and Best Restaurant of the Inland Empire for four consecutive years. Led by chef Daragh Matheson, a seasoned professional with over thirty years culinary experience under his belt who has worked in kitchens around the world, from his hometown in Dublin, Ireland to Sydney, Australia, the seasonal menus here have a definitive French focus. Start with oysters and Champagne, followed by the venison and white bean puree and chimichurri; next a lemon sorbet and glass of the 2016 Lana Lisa Late Harvest dessert wine to finish.

7. Refuge Brewery

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43040 Rancho Way
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 506-0609
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Beer fans who want a break from wine tasting should stop by this brewery and tap room near Temecula’s Old Town. Specializing in Belgian style ales Refuge up to 20 beers on tap, many of which get aged in whiskey and wine barrels. Try the flagship Blood Orange Wit (a 2017 GABF gold medal winner), the just-released Crossroads IPA, which has a nice citrus pine aroma, or a flight (any four pours cost $2 each). Now and again, small batches are served to patrons during prototype tastings who then help decide which ones will make it through to large scale production. Happy hour runs from 3 to 5:30 p.m., and while there’s no on-site kitchen, a revolving roster of food trucks come by on afternoons and weekends. 

8. E.A.T Marketplace

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28410 Old Town Front St
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 694-3663
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Founder/president of Slow Food Temecula Valley, chef and owner Leah Di Bernardo’s chic artisan cafe has been a local mainstay since 2011. Called the “Alice Waters of Riverside County” she sources much of her fare from local and regional farms, including Sage Mountain in Anza – think hueveos rancheros with farm eggs and mighty bowls for breakfast, avocado toast served all day, to rustic soups, sandwiches, and a farmhouse chop for lunch. Open daily from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. the slow-bar coffee station serves everything from pour overs and paleo bullet to French press too – pair with one of EAT’s infamous donuts whose flavors range from pumpkin spice to lavender earl grey.

9. The Goat & Vine

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41911 5th St #100
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 695-5600
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The jalapeño lime carnitas pizza with slow roasted pork shoulder and secret recipe Mother’s Meatballs with house marinara, are two fan favorites at this Old Town gem. Specializing in elevated comfort fare, salads, and hot sandwiches all breads, doughs, sauces, and dressings are made from scratch daily. Open until 9 p.m. weekdays and 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday the drinks list covers seasonal sangrias, bubbles, wines, and assorted beers. There’s a cute outdoor patio but alcohol can only be served in the dining room.

10. ESPADÍN

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28544 Old Town Front St
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 216-7311
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Expect an extensive roster of small-batch mezcals, tequila-infused cocktails and regional Mexican cuisine at this buzzy, upscale cocina. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Espadín’s scratch-made comfort classics range from street tacos and empanadas to chicken mole with fried squash blossoms, and pescado Veracruz with mussels. On Taco Tuesday enjoy $3 street tacos, $3 Tecate cans, and $2 off Cadillac and Mezcal Margaritas.

11. The Gambling Cowboy

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42072 5th St
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 699-2895
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Fringed tablecloths, vintage lamps, and a saloon-style bar set the scene at this gourmet chophouse in Old Town. The suitably meat-centric dinner menu covers everything from classics - think filet mignon and traditional rib eye with add-ons like bone marrow - to St. Louis style pork ribs with a homemade white peach barbecue sauce. Save room for the homemade bread pudding, and, from the cocktail list, the Saddle Me Up Sangria or Reverse Cowgirl Martini with Absolut Peach Vodka and St. Germain. 

12. The Nightingale

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41923 2nd St #103
Temecula, CA 92590
(951) 506-9929
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Expect everything from rustic pasta plates to wood-fired pizzas at this modern Italian in Old Town. With its delicate shavings of Italian cured ham served alongside a generous dollop of whole grain mustard, the san Daniele prosciutto appetizer is a menu standout. During the daily happy hour (4:30 t0 6:30 p.m.) select classic cocktails and wines by the glass – local, New, and Old World varietals all feature in the vault – are just $8 alongside small bites, pizzas, salads, and signature items, plus half a dozen cold-water oysters for $9.

13. Apparition Room

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28693 Old Town Front St #105
Temecula, CA 92592
(951) 514-6332
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Access to this intimate and handsome bar – complete with spiffily waistcoat clad bartenders – can be found via a discreet passageway in next door’s Devilicious Eatery. Opened in 2017 by father and son team Bob and Kenneth Danko, Temecula Valley’s first speakeasy specializes in Prohibition-style cocktails with a top-notch list that currently offers both classic versions and new takes on storied drinks, including a French 75, Negroni, SideCar and Sazerac. The Campfire Sour made with house whiskey blend and pineapple syrup, and Mai Tai riff Dead Man’s Chest, are consistent bestsellers while launching this month ‘Sunday Rum Days’ will serve as a showcase for all-things tiki from 2 to 6 p.m.

14. Cork | Fire Kitchen

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44501 Rainbow Canyon Rd
Temecula, CA 92592
(888) 853-1580
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When not being sourced from the Temecula Creek Inn garden or nearby farms, executive sous chef Sterling King (a San Diego Culinary School graduate) forages ingredients locally for dishes across his rustic-American menus. Open for brunch, lunch, and dinner – the bar menu offers a cheese board with local honey, plus smaller versions of the poutine, and carnitas nachos, while standouts from dinner include the burrata with peach and sorrel pistou, a crab salad, and local halibut with chorizo broth. A good selection of local and regional California wines are available on tap or ‘by the stem,’ and there’s a great signature cocktail list too – try the gin-based blackberry bramble. 

15. Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar

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45000 Pechanga Pkwy
Temecula, CA 92592
(951) 770-8504
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Helmed by Tokyo transplant and self-taught chef Kiyokuni Ikeda (who worked under Iron Chef Morimoto in Philadelphia) Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar was voted second best casino restaurant in the country by USA Today in 2018. While raw bar selections, sushi, and sashimi are all top-notch — including the oyster shooters and hotate ceviche — don’t miss the robata street corn with kewpie mayonnaise and togarashi, or seafood steam pot – a winning combination of crab, shrimp, fish, mussels, clams, corn, and potatoes in a fresh herb white wine broth. 

1. Bottaia Winery

35601 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591

With its chic modern aesthetic wine country goes next-level luxe at BOTTAIA. While there’s a seated tasting of five premium estate-grown wines (there are 12 single-varietal wines and eight blends total) and accompanying charcuterie board in the Tasting Rooms, with its vineyard views the pool area might be the real star of the show here. Reserve a chaise lounge or cabine for all-day access to The Pool Café + Bar whose menu covers Italian-inspired small plates and entrées.

35601 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591

2. The Restaurant at Ponte

35053 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591

Instagram gold Spanish Mission-style architecture, the photogenic Ponte Vineyard Inn also boasts multiple dining options. In addition to the Poolside Bar & Café, Cellar Lounge, and upscale eatery, Bouquet, the property is also home to The Restaurant At Ponte. Open for lunch daily, as well as dinner on Fridays and Saturdays; the menu has a modern Mediterranean-inspired focus: think knock-out plates of pasta, salads, and pizzas made with fresh ingredients, wild-caught, and sustainable seafood, and hormone-free meat. The vineyard and garden setting are hard to beat, and, should the mood (or wine intake) strike, the Four Diamond rated AAA property has 90 guest rooms for an overnight stay.

35053 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591

3. Pinnacle Restaurant

40620 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA 92591

Specializing in Mediterranean style cuisine this spectacular hilltop restaurant at Falkner Winery is open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Helmed by executive chef Jason Barradas, who trained at the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in San Francisco, small plates include herb-encrusted Hokkaido scallops and a California shrimp Caprese, while entrées range from a grilled Spanish octopus to seafood Portofino. It’s worth noting that Falkner’s 2018 Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier both make for easy afternoon drinking. 

40620 Calle Contento
Temecula, CA 92591

4. Avensole Restaurant

34567 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92592

With its hilltop location, extensive menus, and excellent wines, the outdoor patio and restaurant terrace at Avensole makes a beautiful spot to post up for lunch or dinner. There’s live music every Friday and Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. and weekend specials, including the chef’s market catch and a 16oz prime bone-in ribeye steak. The charcuterie and cheese board (best paired with a wine or craft beer flight) is a firm fan favorite, although the seasonal fish and chips are also worth a mention.

34567 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92592

5. Flower Hill Bistro

33410 Rancho California Rd, Temecula, CA 92591

With its hilltop location and lovely panoramic views, weekend brunch vibes are strong at this charming and farm-to-table focused bistro inside Miramonte Winery. Served every Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. dish options range from a steak and eggs Benedict, dubbed Friends with Bennies, and a YOLO Avo toast to the poached egg and corned beef Hash. Sheesh. Lighter fare, including a fruit bowl with yogurt, also features, as do the obligatory bottomless mimosas. 

33410 Rancho California Rd
Temecula, CA 92591

6. The Restaurant at Leoness Cellars

38311 De Portola Rd, Temecula, CA 92592

A well-regarded local fine dining favorite, The Restaurant at Leoness Cellars has been voted number one Winery Restaurant by USA Today’s 10 Best Reader’s Choice and Best Restaurant of the Inland Empire for four consecutive years. Led by chef Daragh Matheson, a seasoned professional with over thirty years culinary experience under his belt who has worked in kitchens around the world, from his hometown in Dublin, Ireland to Sydney, Australia, the seasonal menus here have a definitive French focus. Start with oysters and Champagne, followed by the venison and white bean puree and chimichurri; next a lemon sorbet and glass of the 2016 Lana Lisa Late Harvest dessert wine to finish.

38311 De Portola Rd
Temecula, CA 92592

7. Refuge Brewery

43040 Rancho Way, Temecula, CA 92590

Beer fans who want a break from wine tasting should stop by this brewery and tap room near Temecula’s Old Town. Specializing in Belgian style ales Refuge up to 20 beers on tap, many of which get aged in whiskey and wine barrels. Try the flagship Blood Orange Wit (a 2017 GABF gold medal winner), the just-released Crossroads IPA, which has a nice citrus pine aroma, or a flight (any four pours cost $2 each). Now and again, small batches are served to patrons during prototype tastings who then help decide which ones will make it through to large scale production. Happy hour runs from 3 to 5:30 p.m., and while there’s no on-site kitchen, a revolving roster of food trucks come by on afternoons and weekends. 

43040 Rancho Way
Temecula, CA 92590

8. E.A.T Marketplace

28410 Old Town Front St, Temecula, CA 92590

Founder/president of Slow Food Temecula Valley, chef and owner Leah Di Bernardo’s chic artisan cafe has been a local mainstay since 2011. Called the “Alice Waters of Riverside County” she sources much of her fare from local and regional farms, including Sage Mountain in Anza – think hueveos rancheros with farm eggs and mighty bowls for breakfast, avocado toast served all day, to rustic soups, sandwiches, and a farmhouse chop for lunch. Open daily from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. the slow-bar coffee station serves everything from pour overs and paleo bullet to French press too – pair with one of EAT’s infamous donuts whose flavors range from pumpkin spice to lavender earl grey.

28410 Old Town Front St
Temecula, CA 92590

9. The Goat & Vine

41911 5th St #100, Temecula, CA 92590

The jalapeño lime carnitas pizza with slow roasted pork shoulder and secret recipe Mother’s Meatballs with house marinara, are two fan favorites at this Old Town gem. Specializing in elevated comfort fare, salads, and hot sandwiches all breads, doughs, sauces, and dressings are made from scratch daily. Open until 9 p.m. weekdays and 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday the drinks list covers seasonal sangrias, bubbles, wines, and assorted beers. There’s a cute outdoor patio but alcohol can only be served in the dining room.

41911 5th St #100
Temecula, CA 92590

10. ESPADÍN

28544 Old Town Front St, Temecula, CA 92590

Expect an extensive roster of small-batch mezcals, tequila-infused cocktails and regional Mexican cuisine at this buzzy, upscale cocina. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Espadín’s scratch-made comfort classics range from street tacos and empanadas to chicken mole with fried squash blossoms, and pescado Veracruz with mussels. On Taco Tuesday enjoy $3 street tacos, $3 Tecate cans, and $2 off Cadillac and Mezcal Margaritas.

28544 Old Town Front St
Temecula, CA 92590

11. The Gambling Cowboy

42072 5th St, Temecula, CA 92590

Fringed tablecloths, vintage lamps, and a saloon-style bar set the scene at this gourmet chophouse in Old Town. The suitably meat-centric dinner menu covers everything from classics - think filet mignon and traditional rib eye with add-ons like bone marrow - to St. Louis style pork ribs with a homemade white peach barbecue sauce. Save room for the homemade bread pudding, and, from the cocktail list, the Saddle Me Up Sangria or Reverse Cowgirl Martini with Absolut Peach Vodka and St. Germain. 

42072 5th St
Temecula, CA 92590

12. The Nightingale

41923 2nd St #103, Temecula, CA 92590

Expect everything from rustic pasta plates to wood-fired pizzas at this modern Italian in Old Town. With its delicate shavings of Italian cured ham served alongside a generous dollop of whole grain mustard, the san Daniele prosciutto appetizer is a menu standout. During the daily happy hour (4:30 t0 6:30 p.m.) select classic cocktails and wines by the glass – local, New, and Old World varietals all feature in the vault – are just $8 alongside small bites, pizzas, salads, and signature items, plus half a dozen cold-water oysters for $9.

41923 2nd St #103
Temecula, CA 92590

13. Apparition Room

28693 Old Town Front St #105, Temecula, CA 92592

Access to this intimate and handsome bar – complete with spiffily waistcoat clad bartenders – can be found via a discreet passageway in next door’s Devilicious Eatery. Opened in 2017 by father and son team Bob and Kenneth Danko, Temecula Valley’s first speakeasy specializes in Prohibition-style cocktails with a top-notch list that currently offers both classic versions and new takes on storied drinks, including a French 75, Negroni, SideCar and Sazerac. The Campfire Sour made with house whiskey blend and pineapple syrup, and Mai Tai riff Dead Man’s Chest, are consistent bestsellers while launching this month ‘Sunday Rum Days’ will serve as a showcase for all-things tiki from 2 to 6 p.m.

28693 Old Town Front St #105
Temecula, CA 92592

14. Cork | Fire Kitchen

44501 Rainbow Canyon Rd, Temecula, CA 92592

When not being sourced from the Temecula Creek Inn garden or nearby farms, executive sous chef Sterling King (a San Diego Culinary School graduate) forages ingredients locally for dishes across his rustic-American menus. Open for brunch, lunch, and dinner – the bar menu offers a cheese board with local honey, plus smaller versions of the poutine, and carnitas nachos, while standouts from dinner include the burrata with peach and sorrel pistou, a crab salad, and local halibut with chorizo broth. A good selection of local and regional California wines are available on tap or ‘by the stem,’ and there’s a great signature cocktail list too – try the gin-based blackberry bramble. 

44501 Rainbow Canyon Rd
Temecula, CA 92592

15. Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar

45000 Pechanga Pkwy, Temecula, CA 92592

Helmed by Tokyo transplant and self-taught chef Kiyokuni Ikeda (who worked under Iron Chef Morimoto in Philadelphia) Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar was voted second best casino restaurant in the country by USA Today in 2018. While raw bar selections, sushi, and sashimi are all top-notch — including the oyster shooters and hotate ceviche — don’t miss the robata street corn with kewpie mayonnaise and togarashi, or seafood steam pot – a winning combination of crab, shrimp, fish, mussels, clams, corn, and potatoes in a fresh herb white wine broth. 

45000 Pechanga Pkwy
Temecula, CA 92592

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