We exist to take people out of the mundane into the extraordinary through an authentic Arizona wine experience from dirt to bottle.
Arizona’s wine industry is the sleeping giant, awakened. From the first soil tests in 1973 a fledgling industry was born and in the past ten years Arizona’s wine industry has proven time and again that it is indeed world class.
Climate and soil studies show the region to be similar to Rivera Del Duero, Spain, Southeastern Australia, Southern France and is almost identical to Paso Robles, California.
My family’s vineyard in the foothills of Willcox rests in a most fitting region and in December 2013, our petition for a unique AVA was approved and is now in the rule-making process.
We privately hold, now close to 400 acres and are growing 100 varieties/clones. My vineyard is in itself an experiment to see what will grow and what will make world-class wine.
Our work has piqued the interest of many in this industry in Arizona and abroad. In 2013 we made the unprecedented move to host three winemakers hailing from Italy, Greece, and France. Topics ranging from global warming, sustainable economies to the genesis movement of the Arizona wine industry are why these winemakers seek to work and study here with us.
We continue this exchange of learning and ideas with every harvest as we welcome winemakers from all over the world to learn about Arizona’s distinct terroir and how to craft world class wine from our family’s own vineyard.
In the vineyard, we are growing many exclusive ENTAV-INRA clones. We are also growing the UC Davis Zinfandel Heritage Clones. These are distinct clones and since third leaf, the fruit coming forward has been robust and gorgeous.
Some of our other unique varietals that are the first to be grown in Arizona include Marselan, Arinarnoa, Pinotage, Graciano, Albarino, Arneis, Charbono and The Noble Portuguese grapes, Aglianico and many more. John Mcloughlin continually seeks out more intriguing and rare varietals to plant in this wondrous and unique region.
The wind blows a lot in Willcox in the South East part of Arizona. In the Vineyard the vines stand firm, tendrils gripping the trellis as their petioles wave and bend in the breeze. The tough country demands strength, fortitude and determination to survive from everything that lives where Eagles and Hawks and Falcons fly overhead seeking from on high the small animals that roam and live and make their homes with the grapevines.
It is water from a large underground pre-historic glacial aquifer, a closed basin that feeds the vines the moisture they need. Winters are spent asleep, waiting out the snow and cold. Springtime, after pruning and training, the buds appear on the vines. As the days warm and the nights cool, the grapes grow, seemingly over-night. As the days heat up, the grape clusters self-pollinate and soon there are large clusters of berries awaiting the harvest.
July, August, and September, the vines sacrifice their fruit, as the mechanical harvester moves from one row of ripe berries to the next, all in the dark of night when the grapes are cool. Soon the macro bins, full of grapes, will be tipped into the de-stemmer, then into the press, and the juice fed yeast and wine is the end result.
My family and I bought 320 acres of dry, tumbleweed filled land, 20 years ago down Kansas Settlement Road, literally in the middle of nowhere. Two years of plowing under weeds and breaking up hard-tack dirt, with an old US Army trencher, laying underground drip lines, setting rows for future planting, placing t-posts and stringing trellis lines, reflect today row after row of healthy, green grape vines as far as the eye can see that were all planted on hands and knees.