In addition to being a destination for wine and beer, Temecula’s makers movement extends to spirits and mixology.
Two family-run distilleries each produce a full range of handcrafted artisan spirits and both are open to the public for tours and tastings. Add to the mix a pair of Old Town speakeasies that shake and stir up impeccable cocktails, and you’ve got a solid gold must-hit list for cocktail connoisseurs and spirits appreciators.
Owned by Ken Smith, the family behind the Galway Downs equestrian center, Galway Spirits Distillery (galwayspirits.com) specializes in whiskey, bourbon, gin and specialty vodkas made with locally sourced grapes. The production facility is on full display in the expansive tasting room that embodies the rustic elegance of Temecula’s countryside. Tours and tastings feature sips of the individual spirits, and you can also drop in to try creative cocktails utilizing fresh herbs and citrus. Open to the public Wednesdays through Sundays, Galway Spirits also hosts a regular line-up of special events and concerts. Check their online calendar to see what’s happening when you’re in town.
Old Town’s two speakeasies share a dark, moody, modern vintage vibe, yet each have their own unique character and distinctive cocktail menu. The Apparition Room (apparitionroom.com) is hidden inside Devilicious Eatery & Tap Room. Thompson & Twain Prospecting Co. (thompsonandtwain.com) is accessed through a discreet curtain in Crush & Brew. You must have a reservation here too—bookings available via the speakeasy’s website.