Fruit of the vine ready to be sniffed, savored

2014-08-21T00:00:00Z Fruit of the vine ready to be sniffed, savoredArizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

It’s harvest season in Arizona wine country, time to celebrate the state’s burgeoning boutique wine industry.

Here are a few events coming up:

  • Second annual Willcox Flyer Bike Ride — 7 a.m. Aug. 30, Historic Railroad Park. 100 S. Railroad Ave., Willcox. Presented by Aridus Wine Co. and custom crush facility, riders can choose between a 33-mile or 66-mile course. Details: willcoxwines.com
  • Great Arizona Grape Stomp 5K Fun Runs — The series kicks off with the Sonoita Grape Stomp from 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 30 at Lightning Ridge Cellars, 2368 Highway 83 at Vaughn Loop Road, Elgin. Other 5Ks: Oct. 18 at Zarpara Vineyard, 6777 S. Zarpara Lane, Willcox; and in Verde Valley at the Historic Old Town Cottonwood, 777 N. Main St., Cottonwood. Nov. 1 at Fountain Park, 12645 N. Saguaro Blvd., Fountain Hills. Proceeds from the $35 entry fee for each event benefits the Arizona Wine Growers Association. Tickets and details at can be found at arizonawine.org/grapestomp.html
  • Pillsbury Wine Co. Harvest Festival — 2 p.m. Aug. 31, Pillsbury Vineyard, 6450 S. Bennett Place in Willcox. The band Copper State Collective will perform while folks pick grapes, nibble on eats including owner’s own Texas coleslaw and tacos made from lamb meat, and sample the vino. $35; $50 if you’re camping out. Discounts for Wine Club members. Details: 1-520-384-3964.
  • Sixth annual Sedona Winefest — Sept. 27-28, Sedona Airport, 235 Air Terminal Drive, Sedona. Wine tastings, nibblings and entertainment to celebrate Arizona winemakers, and particularly those who operate in Northern Arizona’s Verde Valley. $17 to $42. Go to sedonawinefest.com for info.
  • Harvest Lunch — 11 a.m. Oct. 4, Lawrence Dunham Vineyards, 13922 S. Kuykendall Cutoff Road in Pearce. Wine tasting and barbecue celebrates what winery owner Peggy Fiandaca said is shaping up to be a fabulous harvest. $15. Details:1-520-824-7273.
  • Willcox Wine Country Festival — Oct. 18-19, downtown Willcox, featuring at least 24 Arizona wineries. Details: willcoxwines.com
  • Southwest Wine & Dine in the Vines — 5 p.m. Oct. 18, Yavapai College’s Verde Valley Campus teaching winery, 601 Black Hills Drive, Clarkdale. The vineyard, planted last May, is part of the Southwest Wine Center intiative, a $3 million project conceived and run by Yavapai College’s viticulture program to train people to work in the wine industry and to provide resources to vineyards throughout the state. The University of Arizona is an education partner in the center. $125, a portion of which is tax-deductible, through yc.edu/wineanddine
  • The Festival at The Farm — Nov. 14-15 at The Farm at South Mountain, 6106 S. 32nd St., Phoenix. This is the biggie for Arizona winemakers, a chance for dozens of the state’s top wineries to showcase their vino before an audience of connoisseurs and novices alike. Details: azwinefestivalatthefarm.com

Contact reporter Cathalena E. Burch at cburch@tucson.com or 573-4642.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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