The fall season has people dreaming of holidays and get togethers. As we head into the holidays, many valley residents may be on the search for some great wines to enjoy with friends and family during this season of sharing. Across the state, we have several great Arizona wines and wineries for locals to check out.
There are several other options when it comes to Arizona wines this holiday season, so if these aren’t what you are looking for, know there are plenty of other selections. You can always check out the Visit Arizona website for a look at local source options at visitarizona.com/experiences/eat-drink/wineries/
Carlson Creek Vineyard
Established in 2008, Carlson Creek Vineyard is a family-owned spot that is located in southeastern Arizona. The vineyard has grown to become the third largest vineyard in Arizona. If you don’t want to make the trek down to Willcox, don’t worry, there is a tasting room right here in the East Valley, located in Scottsdale. The vineyard produces a number of varietals including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Malvasia Bianca, Muscat, Syrah, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Malbec, Mourvèdre and Grenache Rosé. They also ship to 40 states. The Scottsdale location is 4142 North Marshall Way, Scottsdale, AZ 85251. For more information, check out the website at CarlsonCreek.com.
Merkin Vineyards + Caduceus Cellars
Rocker and now wine-maker extraordinaire Maynard James Keenan recently opened a vineyard in Cottonwood, overlooking the Verde Valley, the Caduceus Cellars Hilltop Facility & VSC Ventura Room and Merkin Vineyards Hilltop Winery & Trattoria encompass a new winery and cellar, tasting room, restaurant, and retail space, food production greenhouse, gelateria, and a vineyard set in the heart of historic Old Town Cottonwood. Originally founded in 2004, Caduceus Cellars and Merking Vineyards makes wines out of Italian and Spanish varieties, producing about 8000 cases a year. The new location, Merkin Vineyards Hilltop Winery & Trattoria is open daily Sunday to Thursday from 11:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. Details and information are available online at merkinvineyardsosteria.com.
This local spot has been in business for 15 years and all of their grapes are grown right here in Arizona, not from other locations. They have several events happening at their Scottsdale location at 7134 E. Stetson Boulevard. They will have charcuterie classes as well as Le Nez Du Vin, which is Wine Aroma Therapy, a unique curated wine experience. There are several award-winning wines available at the LDV Winery Tasting room, where guests can enjoy a wine fight, a glass of wine, or a bottle of their favorite wine. They can also purchase LDV wines on the spot or order them for shipping online at ldvwinery.com. If you plan to visit the tasting room with a group larger than six people, reservations are required ahead of time. You can call 480-664-4822 for questions and reservations.
AZ Wine Wagon
Looking for something a little different to check out wineries across the state, be sure to check out AZ Wine Wagon. They offer day trips from Scottsdale to Verde Valley, where it stops at 3 prominent wineries in the region. The mobile business was created to give people a unique AZ wine tour experience from beginning to end. Guests will get a full day of exploring the Verde Valley’s wine country, a great option to check out Arizona local wines, without having to worry about driving. Guests book a seat on the bus tour, get on at 9:00 a.m. in the morning at the Scottsdale pickup location, travel to three wineries, spending an hour and a half at each spot, and then get back on the bus for the ride home. The entire trip takes about 9 hours to complete with travel time. A single seat on the bus costs $99, but that does not include the cost of wine tastings at each stop. Guests will pay for those individually at the wineries and it is suggested that you pack a lunch or plenty of snacks to eat along the way. Reservations are required and you can book tickets online at azwinewagon.com.