I love to research wine country. Before a trip my planning stages can take more time than the trip itself. I’m a bit obsessive about this. Now don’t think that I’m also a control freak. I tend to also build in multiple options and once we are in wine country I go with the flow. Well in my research, one of the wineries that I have really wanted to stop by was Doffo. Last year when we were in Temecula they were only open for tastings on weekends, so they were a definite stop on my list this trip.
Doffo is a family owned winery that is almost the last winery as you head east on Rancho California Road in Temecula. This is a newer winery that was founded in 1997 by Marcelo Doffo. The family decends from Italians who immigrated to Argentina in the early 1900’s. Marcelo grew up on his grandfather’s farm in Pampas Argentina. In the 80’s he traveled to Italy to the northern part of Turin and found his great uncle still making estate wines. In 1997 he bought the property in Temecula. The logo is an homage to the schoolhouse that used to be on the premises. If there is one thing Marcelo loves as much as wine it is motocycles. Be sure to stop by on weekend mornings to get to see the MotoDoffo exhibit in the barrel room.
We strolled the grounds a little when we arrived, they have a beautiful covered patio next to the tasting room and the residence. The tasting room was busy and lively and just the right size. It had a really warm feeling that is the essence of their motto “Visit us once and you are family forever.” We did a basic tasting and look forward to going back for a reserve tasting. All the wines here were beautiful and well balanced. We tasted their beautiful 2011 Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc as well as the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2010 Petite Verdot.
On the wall behind the tasting bar was a shelf filled with wines in gorgeous bottles. These are the higher end reserve wines. The Library reserve Zinfandel and the reserve Syrah both of which go for $150 per bottle. These were made it very small lots. We also tasted some of their chimichurry sauce and left with a jar.
After our tasting I asked for a map for their self guided walking tour. This lovely stroll around the property was relaxing and informative and is well worth the time. The tour takes you out of the tasting room past the residence and patio where some of Marcelo’s motorcycles are on display. You wind around and see the Doffo windmill some of the beautiful terracing they have done then stroll through the Malbec to the front of the property the original stairs to the old school house and the olive tree on the corner of the property before heading back up to the tasting room. They also make olive oil and infused chocolates.
This beautiful tiny winery has terrific wines and a great atmosphere. Next time you find yourself in Temecula be sure to stop by!