Los Angeles Historic Landmark from the early 1900’s, the only Los Angeles winery to survive prohibition, the only current winery in Los Angeles, and home to tours and restaurant dining — the San Antonio Winery is a great location to take in some history, culture, and of course, some vino.
Visiting the San Antonio Winery is a great way for wine novices to learn more about the wine-making and storage process. For wine-lovers, it’s an opportunity to sample some new blends, buy some bottles (or cases) at reasonable prices, and expand one’s collection.
On a visit with a group of friends, we enjoyed visiting the sampling room, even tasting vintages poured by Mr. Stefano Riboli himself — one of the surviving founding family members, taking in the 45-minute tour, and dining on the delicious and very satisfying entrees. The tour was free, the wines are reasonable (average of about $7 per bottle; less as you purchase more), and dinner is what you might pay at, say, an Olive Garden — so all in all, not too bad, and a very interesting outing.
On the tour we learned more about the history of the winery itself, saw pictures of the founding family, and even picked up on some old San Antonio Winery Trivia. For example, back in the day one of the services that the Winery offered was similar to that of a milkman. A “wineman” would visit homes once a week and deliver a bottle full of the equivalent of 10-12 gallons of wine for a small Italian family (8-10 people). It’s possible that the alcohol content in wine back in the day was not what it is now, or that longevity of life is being extended with each glassful, but no matter how one spins it — that’s a lotta vino!
Looking for some interesting and local culture? If you’re in the Los Angeles or Ontario areas, check out the San Antonio Winery. If not, do some researching, I’m sure there’s a cultural gem in your area waiting to be discovered.