I was reading in Vogue an article about how Arizona is now producing great wines and it got me curious, as I had never tried any of them before. After a research on Arizona wines, I contacted a few selected vineyards to try some of their products. I was pretty amazed and pleased by the ones I got to try.
Ready? Here they are!
Today, I am telling you about three Arizona vineyards and some of their products I tried. I loved it so much in fact that my next step will be to visit some of them for a full wine tasting experience, which, I am sure of it, will be an another amazing Arizona moment.
When I do, I promise I’ll tell you more details about each one of them and why you should go visit them. For now, let me make a first introduction here with this article.
Pillsbury Wine Company & Vineyard
6450 South Bennett Place, Willcox, AZ
The Pillsbury Wine Company & Vineyard is located both in Willcox and Cottonwood. You can visit them in either one of those locations for a wine tasting and for buying their products.
You’ll also find some of their wines at the Tucson Total Wines store – very close to where I am located, what a good news! To know more places to buy their wines, clic here.
Their wines have won numerous awards (including Gold and Double-Gold medals) in national and local prestigious competitions.
The company was founded by New Zealand film director Sam Pillsbury and produces 18 different wines, including reds, rosés, whites and Rhône varieties.
Pillsbury – WildChild White 2017
This aromatic and dry white is a blend of Chardonnay, Symphony, Viognier and Malvasia.
With its pear and white flowers notes, this is a beautiful, aromatic white that is sure to please. There is a reason why it won a Double Gold medal at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2019 – it’s a real find!
At $25,00 a bottle, it’s an excellent choice and the price-quality ratio is great. I will always keep a bottle ready to serve because this is a great example of Arizona wine at its best!
Pillsbury – One night stand 2018 – Rosé
This is a beautiful rosé, made from 50% Grenache and 50% Mourdevre. It reminds me of French Côte-de-Provence type of rosé wines – and it’s the kind I love. Its beautiful pale robe doesn’t lie : it’s as crisp and fresh as it looks! And to make it even better, it has notes of watermelon and strawberries – how charming is that?
I find it perfect by itself, on a nice and sunny day, but you can pair it with any BBQ meat for a real feast!
At $26,00 a bottle, it’s a beauty.
Pillsbury Roan Red – 2017
If you like Côte du Rhône, you will love this one. Made out of 55% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 15% Mourvèdre, here is another wine that fits perfectly in my taste palette.
Update : it just won a Gold medal at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2020! Congrats!
Its red candy nose and ripe fruit aromas make it a charmer. The fact that it spends 18 months in neutral oak, along with the warmer climate of Arizona, makes it a red with a beautiful richness and a balanced intensity. It’s a definite YES for me!
You’ll find it at $36,00 a bottle.
47209 N. Highway 288, Young, AZ
This very friendly Vineyard is owned by James Bruzzi. A visit here seems to be way worth to travel in the wilderness of Arizona and it’s definitely part of my plans for this year to go and visit them. There are even llamas on the ground – oh my!
But back to the wines; everything I tried made me excited! I just can’t believe I have been coming to Arizona for almost 10 years and just so recently discovered those wines. Well, now I sure know and I am happy to share it with you!
Bruzzi Vineyard – Vidal Blanc 2018
This beautiful white made me so happy! Floral and fruity, I found it great to drink by itself for the apéro, especially on a terrasse on a nice sunny day. If you want a nice pairing, try it with a salad or white fish.
It sells at $40,00 a bottle and you can buy it – as well as their other wines – on their online boutique.
Bruzzi Vineyard – Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
This is a great wine to accompany a great meal. It retails at $60,00 a bottle.
I noticed that the color is more grenat than what I expected for a Cabernet Sauvignon. And what a nice complexity it comes with!
At first, it reminded me a little bit of a Bordeaux, but as you let it breath out, more notes will come to your nose. I recommend to let it breath (decanting) for at least 45 minutes before serving it. This is a beautiful wine, excellent to drink now, but I have no doubt that it will get even more complex and interesting with a 3 to 5 years of aging.
Bruzzi Vineyard – Symphony 2017
If you want something different, try this desert white wine, Symphony 2017. With a hint of pear and banana notes, this is a perfect way to end a good meal on an original and delicious note. It’s perfect to surprise your guests.
Price: $20,00 a bottle of 375ml.
Deep Sky Vineyard
124 Elgin Rd, Elgin, AZ
After visiting Argentina and falling in love with their Malbec wines, Kim and Phil Asmundson couldn’t help noticing how Arizona’s weather and terroir were similar to those of Argentina, and that’s how they got inspired to plant their own Malbec grapes and started their business in 2010.
In addition to Malbec, they also planted the Rhone varieties of Viognier, Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah, Petite Syrah and Counoise, all grapes that could benefit from the Arizona sun and terroir.
To find where to buy their wines, clic here.
Deep Sky Vineyard Big Bang – 2016 Malbec
This beautiful Malbec has powerful tannins. It has been in French Oak and it is full bodied and fruity. I loved its dark red robe and its intensity was perfect to my palate.
I would pair it with a dish of red meat. It will pair well with this kind of flavor.
You can buy it online ($30,00) on their website online shop.
There it is, my first experience with Arizona wines, and what beautiful discoveries I made.
I’ll make sure to bring some bottles back to Montreal to organize a little Arizona wines tasting at home with my wine lover friends.
Are you already familiar with Arizona wines? Which ones have you tried? Let us know in the comments below!
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