The art of winemaking in Sedona and the Verde Valley
The art of winemaking in Central Arizona goes back to the late 17th century when Franciscan missionaries planted the first vineyards in Arizona. Within years, the first planters were already selling wine to miners in Jerome and loggers in Flagstaff. Just in the last ten years has the Verde Valley been rediscovered by vintners, who have come to appreciate its climate and soil for exceptional winemaking. Four wine makers have planted roots just outside Sedona. Their wineries produce both white and red varietals, library wines and multi-grape bottlings. Visitors can give the wines a try in the vineyards’ tasting rooms, during occasional winemaker dinners and by picking up a bottle in fine food and liquor stores.
The best part about Sedona wineries is that they are small, locally owned production meccas. Visitors can truly visit a bottling site and see the intricate details that go into making each and every drop of delicious reds and whites. To celebrate this local scene, the city’s winemakers created a “Wine Passport” program that allows vineyard-goers to visit Verde Valley’s distinctive wineries and earn tasting stamps in addition to enjoying the annual Sedona Winefest celebrating the regions unique varietals and blends.
Located in Northern Arizona, the Verde Valley Wine Trail invites wine enthusiasts to experience a destination rich in history, beauty and the production of exquisite Arizona wines. There are seven Arizona wineries and eight tasting rooms on the Verde Valley Wine Trail that offer a variety of skillfully crafted wines to satisfy any wine taster’s palate.
Many Sedona restaurants serve local, national and international wines. For a drink-as-you-go experience, there’s the “Grape Train Escape” on the Verde Canyon Railroad, where Arizona wines are served in First Class as the train travels through unspoiled wilderness. Arizona wines have a notable presence in the global wine community and since 1989 have even been in the White House collections.