Valley News -

By Jeff Pack

Temecula Valley Winegrowers' 50th anniversary celebration comes to an end


Last updated 9/28/2018 at 2:52pm


CRUSH 2018 – A Wine & Culinary Showcase will be held once again at Monte de Oro Winery & Vineyards, Saturday, Sept. 29.

September is the 14th annual California Wine Month, and like everywhere else in the state, Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association has been celebrating all month long, showcasing all of the association's 36 member wineries with exclusive tastings, festivals, live music, food pairings and more.

In addition, the association has a little more to celebrate, considering the Temecula Valley Wine Country is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

This weekend, right in the middle of harvest season, the planned celebrations will come to an end with a series of events.

First, the sold-out 50th Anniversary Dinner Celebration Friday, Sept. 28, features an exclusive dinner and a glimpse into the region's rich history. The seated dinner at Wilson Creek Winery & Vineyards will be set amongst original vineyards planted in 1968.

"The dinner is a culmination of the different events and get-togethers that we've had to celebrate the 50th year," Krista Chaich, executive director of the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association, said. "There will be several dignitaries and wine region pioneers in attendance – such as Audrey Cilurzo. Each of our eight board members will host a table at the dinner, and guests will have an opportunity to talk to the winemakers and winery owners."

The SIP Temecula Wine Tasting Passport program which affords passport holders the discounted opportunity to visit five of the 24 participating wineries on weekdays will continue year round.

"It's a pretty great deal for folks," Chaich said. "We have discounts for dining at some of the winery restaurants for passport holders, and everyone gets the 50th anniversary commemorative wineglass."

At the end of September, however, the commemorative wineglass deal comes to an end.

Participating wineries include Avensole Winery, Baily Vineyard & Winery, Bel Vino Winery, Briar Rose Winery, Chapin Family Vineyards, Cougar Vineyard & Winery, Danza del Sol Winery, Doffo Winery, Europa Village, Fazeli Winery, Foot Path Winery, Frangipani Winery, Hart Winery, Leoness Cellars, Lorenzi Estate Winery, Lorimar Winery, Masia de la Vinya Winery, Monte De Oro Winery, Mount Palomar Winery, Oak Mountain Winery, Palumbo Family Vineyards, Robert Renzoni Vineyards, Wiens Family Cellars and Wilson Creek Winery.

The association will present CRUSH 2018 – A Wine & Culinary Showcase Saturday, and tickets are still available for that event.

The event takes place 7:30-10 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 29, at Monte De Oro Winery & Vineyards. Tickets are $89 for general admission.

"This is the ninth annual CRUSH event, the only event where all of our wineries are together at the same time, at the same place," Chaich said. "All 36 winery members will be there; we have 17 winery and local restaurateurs doing food pairing out on the patio.

"This is a walk-about tasting where guests will walk through and go to different wineries, have a tasting and enjoy appetizer-size offerings from the restaurants," she said.

The culinary creations will be provided by Baily's Old Town, Ballast Point, Bluewater Grill, Cafe Champagne at Thornton Winery, Cork Fire Kitchen, Devilicious Eatery, E.A.T. Marketplace, Le Grange Grill, Macaroni Grill, Mama Rosa's Trattoria at Robert Renzoni Vineyards, Meritage at Callaway, Monte De Oro Bistro, Naughty Pig Butchery, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Pinnacle Restaurant at Falkner Winery, Sangio's Deli at Cougar Vineyard & Winery and Terra Venti Specialty Foods.


Tickets are still available for CRUSH, Saturday, Sept. 29, at Monte de Oro Winery & Vineyards; it is open to the general public.

Live music will be provided by Kai Kalama, who was a semifinalist on Season 8 of "American Idol" and was the winner of NBC's "The Winner Is," along with his brother, taking home the $50,000 for the singing competition game show prize. Kalana performs solo with the help of a loop pedal which plays back anything recorded live to make a band on the spot, and his music is best described as soul, rock, folk, doo-wop, hip-hop and Hawaiian.

"This is a wine and food mix and mingle type of event, several of the winemakers and winery owners will be there," Chaich said. "This is our signature vent of the year and all part of of the 50th year celebration that we are doing this year."

For more information about the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association and upcoming events, visit

Jeff Pack can be reached by email at [email protected]


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