“Arizona vineyards provide the state not only with excellent, well-regarded wines, but also with fascinating and scenic opportunities for tourism and rural economic development that create quality jobs and generate revenues in some of Arizona’s most beautiful areas,” said Governor Jan Brewer as she proclaimed November 11-17 to be Arizona Wine Week.
Over 30 wineries will celebrate the best Arizona wines on Sat., Nov. 17, at the fourth annual Arizona Wine Growers Association (AWGA) Festival at The Farm. Shake hands and drink the wine of Arizona’s own grape farmers and wine producers in the picturesque and peaceful pecan groves of Phoenix’s intimate The Farm at South Mountain
Participating wineries will represent growing regions from the Verde Valley in the north, Sonoita and Elgin in the south, and Willcox in southeastern Arizona.
As a nod to Arizona wine’s rich history, the festival is an officially-sanctioned Arizona Centennial event. The event will be held from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and is limited to 1,000 guests. Adult guests over 21 with I.D. only, please.
The festival will include:
- Wine tasting with 31 participating Arizona wineries
- Picnic lunch prepared by The Farm Kitchen; tasty treats from other local Arizona favorites
- High-energy live auction for great prizes
- Educational seminars including food & wine pairing with Chef LaPrad from Quiessence and Curt Dunham, winemaker from Lawrence Dunham Vineyards
The festival will be preceded by a special event on Friday, Nov. 16. The Celebration of the Arizona Wine Growers is an opportunity to mingle and meet winemakers from across the state. The event is 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Quiessence Restaurant at The Farm at South Mountain.
The winemaker celebration is open to the public but capped at 150 guests. This special evening includes an awards reception followed by a specially prepared appetizers using local produce by Quiessence Executive Chef Greg LaPrad. Each course, from appetizers to desserts will be paired with the winning wines from the 2012 Arizona Grower’s Cup and Winemaker’s Medal competition. Each of the winning wineries will be present to discuss their wine and wine-making philosophy.
Ticket information for both the Celebration and Festival is available online.
“Novice or aficionado, this is a can’t-miss event for wine lovers to meet the folks behind the rising Arizona wine movement,” said Peggy Fiandaca, president of AWGA. “Come sip the juice from our state’s beautiful wine regions all in one place, in one of the most wonderful settings Phoenix has to offer.”
This Festival at The Farm is widely considered to be Arizona’s best showcase for its fine wines. Arizona is home to 63 licensed and bonded wineries operating throughout the state, and vineyards represent small, family-owned, low-water-use agriculture. The money raised from the festival goes to the AWGA’s commitment to advancing with integrity the sustainable growth and production of authentic Arizona wines. The industry creates jobs and keeps dollars in Arizona.
“The Arizona wine industry continues to grow and expand at a rapid rate despite the sluggish economy. Every year, more Arizona wines are being recognized for their outstanding quality and uniqueness. There is a growing buzz that Arizona is becoming the next great wine region in the U.S.” concludes Fiandaca.
Cheers, see you at The Farm!