San Juan Capistrano, the Next Napa?

A second wine-tasting room is coming to town, and two demonstration vineyards are planned.

A new wine-tasting room is coming to town, after a vineyard set up a remote mini-vineyard and tasting room of its own recently.

With new demonstration vines planned as part of the  at the city-owned next to , perhaps San Juan Capistrano will become as well known as for wine as it is for swallows, cowboys and historical buildings.

According to Ron Tamez, owner of Hamilton Oaks Vineyard and Winery – which is in the process of moving into the – the state's very first wine was made by the Spanish missionaries who founded Mission San Juan Capsitrano.

That makes San Juan Capistrano the birthplace of the California wine industry.

Both he and the city are planting mission grapes for their demonstration vineyards.

Now comes Five Vines Wine Bar, which is opening in the former outlet  across from the , which proposes to offer wine tasting, appetizers and sales of wine and beer.

Owners Suzy Fairchild and Randy Fairchild are hoping to open by Oct. 22, their anniversary.

The proposal will come before the Planning Commission on Tuesday. Staff is recommending approval.

Lon Uso August 24, 2012 at 06:30 PM
It's about time and it's a good first step. San Juan has all of the ingredients to become the Napa of the south but it will never happen until you have a Council that has the guts to be business friendly and can find the right compromise for a comprehensive down town redevelopment project. it will also require that the extreme "status quo" zealots stop objecting to every change. without economic development "Stockton" is just around the corner. This is not about building a 100 unit apartment building, it's about inviting and then welcoming successful businesses to town in a a thoughtful and organized manner. if you are going to increase traffic, make it pay dividends. It's also not about cutting every service to the bone until the city becomes unlivable. these zealots are even more dangerous. a balance of cutting the fat and finding new revenue sources that are sustainable and compliment the City's character is the key
Ilse M. Byrnes August 24, 2012 at 07:00 PM
your statement that we will have a vineyard around the Blas Aguilar Adobe is wrong. # 1 there is no room # 2 what is planned is a typical garden of the Mission Period with some fruit trees and maybe 2 Mission vines. Ilse M. Byrnes
Penny Arévalo (Editor) August 24, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Ilse, I attended a recent Planning Commission meeting where demonstration vines were included in the plans.
Penny Arévalo (Editor) August 24, 2012 at 07:38 PM
I think we're saying the same thing. 2 mission vines = demonstration vines. The Napa of the south is a little tongue-in-cheek.
Alberto Barrera August 24, 2012 at 08:26 PM
Didn't the city plant grape vines at the Los Rios park?
Dusty W Otero August 24, 2012 at 10:25 PM
When I worked out on the Mission viejo Ranch,back in 1971 Bob Clark planted around 30 acres of grape vines yes in the valley where Ladera Ranch is,now ,,I worked for Grimmway farms in those days we built a carrot packing company out of three hay barns,,,I worked in the fields and welded conveyors to gether to make rod and Bob Grimms dream come true... until they moved out to Arvin Bakersfield and are now a billion dollar operation look in your stores my friends and see ..I dont know if all these grape vines would be so good of and idea,,,We need to take care of the north west open space orange grove first...
Clint Worthington August 25, 2012 at 01:47 AM
Lon, I agree with you 100% abou the vineyards and wine tasting. As for traffic, you voted for the traffic signal at the Del Obispo crossing that ties up traffic like you would not believe. You voted to widen the medians at that crossing so now emergency vehicles cannot pass and are generally held up five minutes trying to get through that crossing. It is one of two locations in town where traffic tries to squeeze through an hour glass. The other location, is Rancho Viejo Road and San Juan Creek. Both voted on by Sam Allevato. We call these locations that traffic has to squeeze through, the Allevato Pinch. You may have heard that term before....
Clint Worthington August 25, 2012 at 01:55 AM
Lon, allevatopinch.com is a website that will focus on the items that Sam Allevato has voted on that actually makes traffic worse. Allevatodoggle (it is one step worse than a boondoggle) is a website that will focus on the bamboozzles that Sam Allevato has voted on that have made our town unfortunately so much worse. Website is a work in progress that will take a couple of days. Looking forward to the wine !!
Alberto Barrera August 25, 2012 at 04:09 AM
Is this a new game Clint? I want to play! Here's my first go: The GWRP is costing us millions, and do you know who drinks water? SAM ALLEVATO San Juan has terrible traffic, and do you know who drives a car? SAM ALLEVATO There are fewer and fewer swallows coming to the Mission every year, and do you know who has a house at a higher elevation than the Mission? SAM ALLEVATO The Earth is warming, and do you know who drives a pickup truck? SAM ALLEVATO I think I did pretty well for my first try, and if I didn't catch up to your score, it was Sam Allevato's fault.
Clint Worthington August 25, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Alberto, the City Council Members must be held accountable for their actions and their votes. Many of these votes are effecting the life and safety of our residents. Recently, when I had chest pains I drove myself to Fire Station 7 for the fear that the emergency vehicles would get stopped by the Ghost Train and I would die before they could get to my home. As you know, when the brain is deprived of oxygen, every second counts. Alberto, one of the worst calls to receive in the fire service, is a baby not breathing. Alberto when the unthinkable happens and we lose a child because emergency services is stopped for five minutes by the Ghost Train and unable to save the child. Unlike other Cities, there is not a alternative route to the west side of town. There is only one route. If this is not continually brought to the publics attention, this problem will not get resolved and we will not be safe on the west side. Alberto, do a Public Records Request for the letter dated 8/11/2008 to Mary Toutounchi of the OCTA from the City where it was outlined to the OCTA that the elimination of the Ghost Train was the number one priority for the railroad crossings. By the way, the estimate for the work was 1.6 million. After the voters approved Measure M2, the cost ballooned to 9.2million with little or no changes to the plans. Alberto, when you have children of your own, I am positive you will have an entirely different view of life and the safety of your family.
Lon Uso August 25, 2012 at 05:38 PM
Well Clint, if i did such a terrible job, why did you guys beg me to run on a slate with you? and by the way, then turned on me like rabid dogs when i refused. As to Alberto, Sam didn't cause global warming but there are plenty of things on the record that are legitimate reasons for not reelecting him. there is no need to go all "Bain Capital" on him with a lot of overblown and made up stuff. When you do that you just loose credibility.
Clint Worthington August 25, 2012 at 06:21 PM
Lon, I am not quite sure who "you guys" is? Anyway, yes I did call you to see if you wanted to run on the same ticket. That was prior to Derek Reeve pulling papers and Jim Reardon. You politely said no. There was not any begging. I asked you one time and you politely declined.
Alberto Barrera August 26, 2012 at 09:02 PM
Clint, I presume you'll be supporting Roy Byrnes as he seems to be part of the ticket that I see has been formed. If you really wanted to hold elected officials accountable, you would not support the former mayor, or any former city council member for their failure to add another route to get to the other side of town. I understand your frustration concerning safety, if it were up to me, I would have built two fire stations in the city, or at least forged and agreement with Laguna Niguel and Dana Point to ask for their assistance in taking care of the Eastern side of town. I agree that holding our elected officials to their word is healthy for the community, but some of the things you're doing aren't necessary. I find that making two different websites attacking the same person doesn't make fiscal sense.
Clint Worthington August 29, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Alberto, thank you for the concern of my own personal fiscal responsibility. I think I am doing ok with that. FYI, all the vehicles are paid for (truck, MBZ, Corvette, Kawasaki, Harley, custom railroad car and custom pump car). Credit card debt is less thank 2k. When I reserved the website, the monthly cost of that was equal to the cost of a Double Double, fries and a chocolate shake. It is within my budget. Thank you for caring.
Alberto Barrera August 30, 2012 at 11:09 PM
Well I guess I'm just a little more frugal than you are Clint, seeing as I'm unemployed and currently leeching off of my parents.
melissa kaffen August 31, 2012 at 12:25 AM
Love the idea of using SJC's vineyard history to build a commercial enterprise. I recently tasted some amazingly sweet grapes growing on a SW wall next to the Marbella golf course. Heres wishing the Fairchilds... salud, amor y pesata y el tiempo para gozar los.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something