We have been to Temecula several times and I have done lots of research on the area and one of the wineries that our radar just kept missing was Baily. As you drive on Rancho California Road from Temecula it is on the left just past Europa Village. The grey stone building is dotted with vines and houses the tasting room as well as Carol’s restaurant.
This is one of Temecula’s oldest wineries and produces all Estate grown wines. Walking in you notice the sculptures, the angels and gargoyles and then walking into the restaurant are greeted by a big warm fireplace, suits of armor and tapestries. It’s a little medieval. They also have a patio outside for al fresco dining, but the fire looked much better to us on this slightly chilly day. I had a lovely Sangiovese rose with lunch.
They have a Dog Day Sunday’s where they encourage you to bring your well-behaved pooch to enjoy lunch on the patio. They have music as well as a doggie menu! Decorated for the holidays the tree was up and some of the gargoyles were wearing Santa hats. They have a small stage in here for music. After lunch by the fire we headed into the tasting room.
I had no expectations here. I had read brief descriptions on their website and other than that all I knew was that they had been producing wines here for 25 years. We were welcomed to the tasting room and Bill took care of our tasting. Bill is full of great information on the Temecula Valley and the winery so we chatted it up during our tasting.
The Baily’s bought this property in 1982 and they mostly grow reds. All the grapes are estate grown and their wines tend to be dry. They produce about 5,000 cases each year. They do age in small oak barrels typically for 30 months which is a pretty long time. The wines were smooth and well-balanced without being fruit bombs or being over-oaked. We tasted the 2010 Montage which is 56% Sauvignon Blanc and 44% Semillon. This medium bodied white wine was rounded on the palate with a nose of lemon and lime and crisp granny smith apple. This had been used in my pasta sauce at lunch and was very nice. The Malbec is from newer self rooted vines planted in 2004. This wine gave you berries with deep flavor and a long finish. The 2009 Cabernet Franc was long and smooth and very well-balanced. Lighter than most Cabernet Francs it had a hint of chocolate. The 2009 Merlot was especially good and with a $20 price tag is a steal. The atmosphere the information and the wines will definitely bring me back here. We will also try to stop by their other restaurants downtown. Their son and daughter in law run Baily’s Elegant Dining and the Front Street Bar & Grill in Old Town.
So put Baily on your radar, these are wines worth stopping for.