Galleano Winery Granita
By: Sara De Leeuw
Celebrating 89 years in the Inland Empire, Galleano Winery is a Cucamonga Valley Historical Landmark and a true hidden gem for local wine enthusiasts.
Located at 4231 Wineville Road (which, by the way, dates back to the 1890s) in Mira Loma, this vineyard produces award-winning wines and has a rich history, evident by the various old signs, cars, buildings, barns and farming equipment placed around the winery’s quaint little tasting room.
The Galleano Winery is still owned and operated at its original Prohibition-era location by third and fourth generation Galleano family members, many of whom still live on the property. They proudly grow Zinfandel grapes, along with Grenache, Mourvedre and local Mission grapes. They dry farm their wine grapes using traditional European methods, which means the majority of their grapes are certified organic. Each year, the Galleano Winery crushes approximately 150,000 gallons of wine, which translates to nearly 10,000 cases of delicious wine, using grapes all grown right here in the Inland Empire.
We were given a tour of the winery by fourth-generation vinter Dominic Galleano. It was incredible to see the huge redwood storage barrels that were built in the 1930s, still in use today. It may be a small winery, but the Galleano family takes a great deal of pride in the grapes it produces and the wine that comes from the family winery. In fact, Galleano wines have won numerous prestigious awards, including the Grand Champion title at the Jerry Mead International Wine Competition two years in a row.
With all this greatness, I was humbled in trying to come up with a recipe that would showcase these incredible wines. In the tasting room, we tried several delicious varieties, including a special taste of Galleano’s Port Wine, directly from the barrel, given to us by third generation owner Don Galleano. Since the local weather has been so hot lately, I thought something simple, that wouldn’t change the flavor or integrity of the wine would be a great idea. So here is your recipe for this month. Also, check out the awesome video the IEShineOn.com team made, to give you more of a visual experience of the recipe and process.
Red Wine Granita
2 cups red wine
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
Optional - Mulled Wine Option:
Zest and juice of one orange
1 cinnamon stick
1 whole clove
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, mix the wine, water and sugar (orange and cinnamon if using) together, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 15 minutes to steep. Strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve to remove zest and spices.
Pour the mixture into a shallow baking dish and put it into the freezer until partially frozen (about 30 minutes). Use a fork to scrape and break the mixture into shards and crystals. Return the pan to the freezer until completely frozen. Scrape and toss the Granita every 30 minutes until fine crystals form (about 5 hours) Keep frozen until serving.
Serve in stemmed glasses, dolloped with sweetened whipped cream, or over vanilla bean ice cream.
If you are a wine enthusiast, make it a point to stop by this historic winery. Take some time and look around, savor the history and enjoy some delicious wine!. Till next month, adventurers, stay cool!
Thank you to Gallleano Winery for their time, generosity and hospitality. To learn more about one of the best Inland Empire historical site, visit them on the web, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Salute!