Twenty Arizona wineries will showcase their varietals this weekend at a local farm owned by the Arizona’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. The Arizona Wine Growers Association Festival at the Farm celebrates the history of Arizona winemaking.
In addition to tasting the fruits of the vines, Saturday's festival will honor Arizona’s wine pioneers, those folks who decades ago believed strongly enough that the desert was a perfect place to plant wine grapes and launch what has become a growing industry in the state.
Here are the wineries involved:
Alcantara Vineyards, Arizona Stronghold Vineyards, AZ Wine Cellars, Callaghan Vineyards, Carlson Creek Vineyard, Coronado Vineyards, Dos Cabezas Winery, Four Tails Vineyard, Golden Rule Vineyards, Keeling Schaefer Vineyards, Kief Joshua Vineyards, Lightning Ridge Cellars, Pierce Wines Arizona, Pillsbury Wine Company, Sierra Bonita Vineyard, Sonoita Vineyards, Southwest Wine Center, Su Vino Winery, Wilhelm Family Vineyards and Zarpara Vineyard.
The evening before on Friday Nov. 10, there will be an Arizona Wine Founders’ Gala at UA Memorial Student Union. Proceeds from the $125 tickets will benefit the UA’s Arizona Wine Research Library, a partnership between the association and the university that complements Yavapai College’s Southwest Wine Center in Clarkdale. The library was part of the association’s 2013 “Emerging Wine Industry Strategic Plan” to strengthen the state’s fast-growing wine industry.
The 6 p.m. gala will recognize Dr. Gordon Dutt, a retired UA soil scientist who was the founder and original winemaker at Sonoita Vineyards — the state’s oldest vineyard; Al Buhl, the late founder of Dos Cabezas Vineyards (now Arizona Stronghold Vineyards); Bob Webb of RW Webb Winery, who launched the first commercial winery to vint table wine in Arizona since prohibition; and Kent Callaghan, the owner and winemaker of Callaghan Vineyards.
If you go ...
What: Arizona Wine Growers Association Festival at the Farm.
Hosted by: Arizona Wine Growers Association and the University of Arizona.
When and where:
— Founders Gala honoring four Arizona wine pioneers, 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10 at the University of Arizona’s Memorial Student Union
— Wine tasting with 20 of the state's wineries, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 11, at the University of Arizona’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Farm, 4101 N. Campbell Ave.
Tickets: $125 for Arizona Founders’ Dinner, $15 to $20 for Festival at the Farm wine-tasting event through eventbrite.com