Our Vineyards

Quality wine begins in the vineyard, and our vineyards are a constant source of pride, worry and inspiration. We farm 23 varieties on over 300 acres, making ours the largest vineyard in Temecula. Our vineyard team keeps us up to date on the latest viticulture techniques and work hard to make sure our grapes thrive year after year so we can deliver the wines our guests love.

We have grapes for sale for Harvest Year 2016. Click here for more information.

We recommend visiting the winery during different seasons to see the changes the vineyard goes through. Read below for more information on what some of these changes mean:


Pruning

Pruning is to cut last year's canes to leave a predetermined number of fruiting buds on the vine. Prune too aggressively and we don't get enough fruit. Prune too little and we get too much fruit which may not ripen properly. Balance is essential! Pruning usually takes place between January and mid-February.


Bud Break

Tiny buds on the vine start to swell and eventually shoots begin to grow from the buds. Buds are the small part of the vine that rest between the vine's stem and the leaf stem. In California bud break occurs in the month of March. Note the cut above the bud. That's last year's cane.


Bloom

The buds become the new year's canes and flowers. Each flower cluster will become a bunch of grapes.


Fruit Set

The flower begins to develop a seed and grape berry to protect the seed. This stage occurs in late April and is very critical for wine production since it determines the potential crop yield.


Hedging

Hedging is like a green pruning. Once the canopy of the vines grows past the top wire we give them a "hair cut", and just like a hair cut allows healthier hair growth, hedging allows the vines to grow a better canopy for better photosynthesis and better fruit.


Leaf Pulling

We perform our leaf pulling with our Clemens De-Leafer. We do this to allow air, light and disease control products to penetrate in the canopy and reach the clusters. We de-leaf the red varietals on the "morning side" of the rows to add more polyphenols to the grapes, which helps the color and structure of the wine.


Veraison

40 to 50 days after the fruit has set, this stage signals the beginning of the ripening process, with the colors of the grape changing from green to red/black or yellow/green depending on the grape varieties. Within 6 days the berries begin to grow dramatically and the bunches weight makes them hang vertically. Look for this stage of growth in June.


Maturity

The completion of the ripening process of the grapes on the vine. What constitutes the exact ripeness varies depending on the style of wine being produced and what the winemaker considers optimal flavors. Depending on variety, the grapes reach their maturity from August to October.


Harvest

One of the most crucial steps of the wine making process, it is determined primarily by the ripeness of the grape. Our winemakers decide the exact timing. In California harvest usually occurs between August and October.


Dormancy

After harvest, the vine enters a period of dormancy in late November. Reacting to the cold weather, the vine changes colors and it drops its leaves. At the end of this phase, the vine is pruned and trained so that it can yield a better crop the following season.

Cabernet

Nicknamed "the king of red wine grapes", this French varietal has the aroma of bell pepper, black currant, eucalyptus, mint and tobacco with the flavor of blackberry, blueberry, raspberry, plum and the essence of dried fruit.

Sangiovese

This Italian varietal, known as the noble grape of Tuscany, produces a medum-bodied wine with high acidity, moderate tannins and the aroma and flavors of orange peel, plum, strawberry and vanilla.

Dolcetto

Although the name means "little sweet one", this wine is not sweet! Dolcetto's are nearly always dry and tannic, with low levels of acidity,ripe-berry flavors and sometimes a slightly bitter aftertaste.

Nero d'Avola

This Sicilian grape produces a red wine with sweet tannins and the flavors of plum and pepper.

Montepulciano

An italian varietal, this grape produces rich red wines with the flavor of blackberry and pepper.

Sangiovese

This Italian varietal, known as the noble grape of Tuscany, produces a medum-bodied wine with high acidity, moderate tannins and the aroma and flavors of orange peel, plum, strawberry and vanilla.

Cabernet Sauvignon

Nicknamed "the king of red wine grapes", this French varietal has the aroma of bell pepper, black currant, eucalyptus, mint and tobacco with the flavor of blackberry, blueberry, raspberry, plum and the essence of dried fruit.

Zinfandel

This robust wine has hints of strawberry, cherry, blackberry, anise and pepper notes.

Petit Sirah

This French grape produces a deep-colored, highly tannic wine with characteristics of pepper, smoke and chocolate.

Barbera

An Italian varietal, this grape produces a red wine with low tannins and high acidity levels with hints of fresh berries, cherries and vanilla.

Vermentino

An Italian varietal grown on the Island of Sardinia, this late-ripening white grape that is highly aromatic with the flavor of white flowers, pink grapefruit and pear.

Cabernet Sauvignon

Nicknamed "the king of red wine grapes", this French varietal has the aroma of bell pepper, black currant, eucalyptus, mint and tobacco with the flavor of blackberry, blueberry, raspberry, plum and the essence of dried fruit.

Cab Franc

A French varietal, this grape produces a plum-colored red wine that has the aroma of bell pepper, raspberry, tobacco and violet with both fruity (raspberry, cherry, plum and strawberry) and floral (violet) flavors.

Chardonnay

The noble white grape of Burgundy, France, its berries are small, thin-skinned and fragile and the taste is influenced by the climate, although most have a vanilla tone from oak barrel aging. Cooler climates create a citrus or fruity flavor, while warmer climates can create flavors reminiscent of tropical fruits like pineapple and mango.

Merlot

These grapes produce a dry wine that is rich in flavor and smooth on the palate with aromas and flavors of ripe berries, plums, black cherry, currant, mint and vanilla. The most expensive and exlcusive red in the world, Chateau Petrus, is made from 100% Merlot.

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About this Page: Nestled away in the heart of Temecula Wine Country, you will find the Ponte Family Estate Winery, Southern California’s premier winery destination. Through an exclusive winery market atmosphere, Ponte Winery offers its visitors wine tasting, fine wine country cuisine dining at the Restaurant at Ponte, weddings set with a serene view of the Temecula, California Wine Country mountains, as well as an all inclusive Ponte Wine Club.