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Buying a local wine from Arizona may seem really cheap but you will be surprised at what you find. Arizona has been growing wine quality grapes for more than 200 years and the original vines were brought over by Spanish missionaries who wanted wine for their religious ceremonies. Although these cultivars have long since disappeared, alcoholic spirits from Arizona are still in very high demand as compared to imported australian wines.
Not really, although the Spanish missionaries did cultivate several local wines, they were unable to deal with the hot weather and sudden temperature changes of the area. On top of that, the Prohibition and Depression put an end to all local wine production. The industry actually picked up in the late 1970s, when vineyard owners started clubbing together to create unique wine formulations. Moreover, vineyard owners took a strategic step while building their vineyards along the southern border of the state. This area has a classic climate that mimics the wine growing region of Mendonza, Argentina. Vineyards were also located on elevated plains that were at a minimum distance of about 3600 to about 8000 feet elevations. This lowered the temperature of the area while still stabilizing the temperature around the vines and ensuring a stable environment for the grapes. Now the state has more than 20 different vineyards and several more being under development but not in active production.
Most famous wine growing areas
There are three popular tours hosted during summer season to encourage wine awareness and popularity. The Southern Arizona vineyards are the most popular and they are primarily located around the cities of Patagonia and Sonoita. More than a dozen vineyards are located around the region and you can easily travel down from major cities for a quick wine tour. The North Central areas of Arizona are also very popular with tourists. For example, The Verde Valley region has several new and upcoming vineyards that are very popular with tourists. This area has lovely red earth, abundant sunshine, lovely evening weather and a stable temperature that contributes to wonderful wine making. There are other areas as well that are now developing vineyards. For example the Skull Valley area is also being developed for wine formation and there are great vineyards located in and around the area.
Arizona wines are local but they have steadily increased in popularity with locals. In fact, several bottles are usually served during White House State Dinners for guests to encourage local interest in the unique blends. The Arizona Wine Growers Association website is also a great way to connect with local wines and vineyards. The site has updated information about wines, quantities, tours, events and special occasions hosted during summer season for tourists and locals as well. You can also check with local city events calendars to find food, wine and music festivals that are hosted along with the wine tours. Almost all vineyards host wine stomping festivals along with tasting sessions and this is a great time to visit the area.