Erika and I met in Temecula yesterday morning at, I'm sure you can guess, the gigantic Joann's!
As I've mentioned before, these Joann's stores rock. And, it being a Winter Flurry Sale, Erika and I spent quite a bit of time there. We walked away with a really cute tote pattern from Simplicity and fabric to complete our projects:
Yes... another sewing project :) I plan to alter mine a bit to make it more of a knitting bag.
After about three hours, we headed to the Temecula Wine Country for some lunch and wine tasting. We had lunch at Ponte Winery's Smokehouse Restaurant. Since it was an hour's wait to get seated, we paid the ten dollar fee to have a taste of their wines. Needless to say, neither one of us was really impressed. Their reds were a bit better than their whites, but since I'm allergic to red wine I was reduced to just little sips. On the other hand, lunch was extremely yummy. Erika had the pumpkin and squash ravioli and I had the seafood pasta - we cleaned our plates :)
It has been quite awhile since I've been wine tasting in Temecula, and I was shocked at how many more tasting rooms there are compared to just few years ago. I much prefer the "mom-and-pop" wineries to all "corporate" wineries, and it seems the scale is tipping in Temecula. I remember when all the wineries were of the m-n-p nature, except for Callaway - and we never went to Callaway for that reason. If Ponte is any indication, these wineries do not seem to be producing out-of-this-world wines. But it is, of course, a matter of taste. Erika and I did go to Filsinger Winery, one of my all time favorites established and operated by a retired doctor who used to practice in Orange County - And it was as good as I remembered. Great hospitality, two dollar tastings, wonderful wine, and reasonably priced bottles. We both walked away with two bottles of their infamous gewurztraminer, but could have easily purchased more of their various varietals! I guess I am biased, but there's something to be said for chatting with Dr. Filsinger's son while tasting and purchasing the bottles directly from Dr. Filsinger himself :)