Wine Tasting is a fun thing to do. You must be 21 years old or older to taste wines. They have a nice Wine Tasting List to choose from and the barista will give suggestions as to which wines you choose should be tasted first. Usually all you have to do is follow the order the wines are listed in. However, I think it's more fun to ask the barista...more
Rancho Bernardo started out as home to the Kumeyaay people. Not until 1769 did the Europeans arrive. Spanish soldiers and Franciscan missionaries landed in San Diego and as they explored and expanded they found this area and called it, “El Paraje O Cañada de San Bernardo.” By 1821, the Mexicans gained independence from Spain and the mission lands...more
This is the picnic area to the west of the Orfila tasting room. This winery, though technically located in Escondido, just north of Rancho Bernardo, is not far from S.D. Zoo's Safari Park, (formally known as the San Diego Wild Animal Park) and Bernardo Winery.This whole area has a "country" feel. There are lots of orchards out here, besides wine...more
This welcome sign is in the parking lot and gives directions to tasting room! Beyond this point are many interesting little surprises on the path. Though you may be thristy, take your time walking to the tasting room and see all the surprising items along the paths. A picnic area provides shaded tables for use, only if you buy the food and drink at...more
The name of this Shopping Center in Rancho Bernardo is The Mercado. There are several restaurants here worth your attention, not to mention a gourmet market and a coffee merchant. Summers up here can be pretty hot and the fountain provides a bit of refreshment if one dares to dip fingers into the cool flowing water. Actually, just looking at it...more
If you are traveling to Rancho Bernardo please send me an email and maybe we can meet for a cocktail.I would love to be able to meet another VT Traveler and welcome you to my hometown.So many people have made me feel so welcome when I travel I would love to extend the same favor.Looking forward to meeting you!more
This is a cute little place with a nice patio overlooking one of the "roads" of Bernardo Winery. They one thing to note is that the breads are baked daily and usually served warm with every meal.Check their calendar to see if there are things going on when you plan to be there. It is best to make reservations as they can get pretty busy. For the...more
Great stop for that Pho fix! I don't eat Viet Nam food very often but this was suggested to me as a really good place to try it out. It was a nice and clean restaurant and the people working there were very friendly. I liked the chicken pho and the chicken fried egg rolls. I didn't try it but the barbecue pork looked and smelled good.more
In the same center as the Incredible Egg you'll find Valentino's. A charming Italian eatery that offers elegant surroundings for a more luxurious dining experience. There is no pretention here so feel comfortable to come as you are and enjoy a quiet moment. Their fenced in patio is my favorite place to sit.Update: It seems that this restaurant has...more
The Incredible (Egg) Cafe is a small restaurant, in a small Center, loaded with great places to eat. It is a local favorite and quite busy so be prepared to wait a few minutes for a table. Patio dining is especially nice almost anytime of the year.They serve breakfast and lunch items, but it is the breakfast that I've chosen this place for.Update:...more
A restauarnt sitting high on a hill in Rancho Bernardo--in the same parking lot as the Public Library--offers a meal catered to your personal tastes. After a visit to the Rancho Bernardo location of the San Diego Public Library it is a treat to stop at Stir Fresh for Mongolian BBQ.Before going there make sure to check on-line for the Specials right...more
Sitting at the picnic table under the pergola looking out over the vineyard is my favorite place to have lunch in Rancho Bernardo!The last time I came here for lunch, my sister and I started with wine tasting. For $3.00 you can try 4-6 (can't remember the exact number, lol) of Orfila's nice products and the glass with logo printed on, is included....more
Gourmet Italian and European Cuisine.A small cafe that we try to keep a secret! (I guess I just ruined that)No views but the entrees will keep you going.Specialty pastaHomemade dessertsNightly chef specialsWine Bar (unfortunatley no cocktails)Lunch: Wed-Fri 11:30 am - 2:00 pmDinner: Mon-Sat starting at 5:00 pmmore
Finally, after walking the path at Bernardo Winery, we've found it! The Tasting Room. It's much smaller than Orfilia's but still full of wines and so many wine accessories that it can also be considered a shopping experience. Just outside is a patio area to picnic or just drink the chosen bottle of wine. Usually the Tasting Room closes about 5:00 pm, but sometimes they offer evening events, as does Orfilia.
Safari Park is about 35 miles north of downtown San Diego and either of these wineries would be a great stop on your way to Safari Park.
During the winter months Safari Park closes about 5 or 6 in the evening, but they stay open later during the summer and nighttime at Safari Park is something to see.
Bernardo Winery is not far from Orfila and it offers a different kind of enviornment that is charming in it's own way.
The problem is that you will need a car to get from one place to another. There is a public transportation system in place, but up in this area it is not as efficient as in other areas.
Of course, if you'll be tasting the wines, you might also want to bring along with you a "designated driver" (One who will not drink the wine and who will stay sober to drive you around.) This will save you from being stopped by the police for drunk driving and also save you from getting lost, as there is quite a bit of freeway construction going on in this area at the moment.
The freeway construction is finished, but this area has lots of traffic to contend with, so keep your wits about you when driving up this way.
The Baron Market Place isolated in a smallish shopping center in the heart of Rancho Bernardo. It hasn't any of the typical retail shopping options. The North County Mall, just up the road offers all that. This Center offers more of a restaurant row with a few other service type businesses. One of those options is the Baron's Market. This is an...more
Just follow the signs in this little village of shops and restaurants and you will locate the tasting room. No cars allowed.The Tasting Room is also a sort of gift shop. Lot's of wine related items to buy as a gift or for yourself.The Bag Center offers all sorts of designer handbags.Many are offered at at 30% to 40% discount.The Cotton Cottage...more
This is the view, facing east, from the picnic tables just outside of the tasting room of Orfilia Winery. This is a small section of vines planted here to enhance the view. The full field of 70 acres is near enough and can be seen on the free tour that is given at noon each day. Orfilia is considered a "boutique" winery and produces Rhone-style wines.
Since it's opening in 1994 Orfilia has recieved over a thousand awards in national and itnernational competitions.
Unlike the simplicity of Orfilia Winery, the path to the Bernardo Winery Tasting Room seems a maze. There are about 17 shops and studios, even a museum at the winery. It's easy to get sidetracked on the way to the Tasting Room. I suggest looking at some of these shops after tasting. Each of the parking lots have the name of a wine remember yours so you won't get lost.
Here's a hint, just before reaching "Old Winemaster Road" turn right at the Tasting Room sign.
Along the way you will find funny little things like an old shoe hanging off the handles of a wheelbarrow and street names of the paths.
Another warning, again, unlike Orfilia, you may not bring your own food for a picnic, you must buy it there either in one of the shops or at Cafe Merlot.
This is my favorite winery. Orfila Winery is actually located in Escondido which is a city just north of Rancho Bernardo. I come with a friend, taste a few wines and buy a bottle to go with the picnic lunch we brought along. The Tasting Room is huge. Full of barrels of fermenting wines and an assortment of wine related accessories for every interest or style and of course, bottles of their wine. If you've forgotten to bring a picnic a nice selection is offered at the Tasting Room too. Their Gewurztraminer is my favorite.
The wine they produce will change over the years. In this case, they didn't have Gewurztraminer so, after tasting we liked the 2012 Grenache Blanc and the 2009 Sparkling Moscato Bianco the best. We eventually bought a bottle of the 2009 Sparkling Moscato Bianco to make our picnic a little more festive. Thirteen years earlier, my sister and I came up to Orfila, it was her first experience with wine tasting. We had a great time tasting the wine, chose a bottle and set out to have our picnic when her cell phone rang. Her only daughter was I labor with her first grandson. Of course, we packed up and left directly to the hospital. So, this latest visit was the completion of that picnic.
Tours are given at noon everyday..
There are three things that would attract a tourist to the Rancho Bernardo and they are, Bernardo Winery, San Diego Zoo's Safari Park and Orfilia Winery. Two of these are not actually located in Rancho Bernardo.
What I like about coming out here is that though there has been lots of development, there are still plenty of more isolated spaces as I drive through from one place to another, to have that country drive feel.