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 Arizona News

Growing Wineries Putting Rural Arizona to Work
In the midst of a recovering economy, one industry that is putting Arizona's rural residents to work is the state's booming wine industry. "The beauty of the wine industry is that it's an economic driver in rural Arizona," Peggy Fiandaca, president of the Arizona Wine Growers Association, told News/Talk 92.3 KTAR. "It's allowing jobs to be created, not only labor jobs, which are in the field during certain times of the year when we have harvests or we're planting, but it's also the more technical jobs that are in our wineries."
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Vinifera for Oenofiles
Arizona Wine Growers Association is pleased to introduce a new series of articles in the Arizona Wine Press. For wine enthusiasts new to Arizona wine, AWGA will periodically profile a unique wine grape that is being grown in Arizona. We will also profile an Arizona winery that is producing that varietal. AWGA is very pleased to launch this new series with a profile of Tempranillo and the introduction of our newest master grower member, Rancho Maria Vineyards. Welcome Mark and Maria to the Arizona Wine Growers Association!

Tempranillo, the famous red grape of Spain. Grown abundantly in the northern region of Rioja, this grape produces a delicious red wine. It is also known as “Tinto Fino" in the neighboring Ribera del Duero region. Next door in Portugal it is one of the grapes used in the production of “Port”and goes by the name of “Tinta Roriz.” A warm climate varietal,Tempranillo lends itself very well to Arizona's climate.

At Rancho Maria Vineyards we produce an earthy red wine from our Tempranillo that reflects our vineyard and wine making style. In addition, we produce a 100% Tempranillo Rose and a late harvest dessert wine in a 50/50 blend with our Zinfandel. We also offer a White Grenache and a Zinfandel Nouveau. All our wines are grown, produced and bottled on site. With a total production of just over 200 cases annually, great love and attention is given to each vintage.

Rancho Maria is located at 4200 ft. elevation on the Southern foothills of the Rincon Mountains. Planted eleven years ago by Mark and Maria Mabry with the help of their children, Mark, Jr. and Marissa, and some close friends, it has been a journey of love and exploration. The winery followed and was licensed in 2010. Probably the smallest licensed winery in the state and powered exclusively by solar power, RanchoMaria and its wines are unique. We are native Southern Arizonans who have been fortunate to find a path that has allowed us to marry our love of the Arizona desert, our family and wine. Tastings are done by appointment.

Rancho Maria Vineyards
13490 South Bell Road
Benson, Arizona 85602

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Off the Vine
Presented by the Arizona Wine Growers Association, the inaugural Off the Vine Arizona Wine Festival gives residents and visitors a uniquely juicy take on the local wine industry. With an 1800s ranch house and the beautiful Santa Catalina Mountains as the backdrop, the afternoon offers festivalgoers a special opportunity to interact with the winemakers, listen to live musicians and sample an array of locally grown varietals.

The picturesque setting for the daytime event is located just 6 miles north of Tucson at Oro Valley's Historic Steam Pump Ranch. Guests can learn, not only, about the locally produced wines directly from the growers, but also satisfy their thirst for some of Arizona's history with a docent tour of the property.

Participating wineries include Aridus Wine Company, Arizona Stronghold, Callaghan Vineyards, Carlson Creek Vineyard, Flying Leap Vineyards, Golden Rule Vineyards, Hannah's Hill Vineyard, Kief-Joshua Vineyards, Lawrence Dunham Vineyards, Lightning Ridge Cellars, Pillsbury Wine Company, Pleasant Valley Winery, Saeculum Cellars, Sonoita Vineyards, Wilhelm Family Vineyards, and Zarpara Vineyard.

The Off the Vine Arizona Wine Festival will take place on Saturday, February 22 from Noon-5 p.m. Advance tickets are $20 or $15 when guests purchase three or more. Admission includes a commemorative wine glass and eight tasting tickets. Tickets are available online now at The festival is a 21 and over event.

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Arizona Winery to be Honored at First Press
The 12th Annual First Press Fine Wine Dinner and Auction is Arizona's premier gala of fine and extraordinary wines. This exclusive black-tie fundraising gala features 25 to 30 outstanding wineries.

This year Todd and Kelly Bostock of Dos Cabezas WineWorks will receive the Honorary Wine Chair. Dos Cabezas joins a distinguished list of wineries and is the first Arizona winery to receive this honor.

Past honorees have included:
2013 – Rich Frank, Frank Family Vineyards
2012 - Robert Craig, Robert Craig Winery
2010 - Joe Anderson, Benovia Winery
2009 - Justin Baldwin, JUSTIN Vineyards and Winery
2008 - John Conover, PlumpJack Winery
2007 - Brett DeLeuze, ZD Wines
2006 - John Williams, Frog's Leap Winery
2005 - Bruce Cohn, BR Cohn Winery
2004 - Koerner Rombauer, Rombauer Vineyards
2003 - Dan Duckhorn, Duckhorn Wine Co.
2002 - Nancy Andrus, Pine Ridge Winery
Dos Cabezas WineWorks is a family-owned and operated winery that challenges the perception that Arizona does not produce exceptional wines. Dos Cabezas WineWorks has been producing wines in Arizona since 1995. Dos Cabezas wine has been enjoyed at the White House, earned critical acclaim and grabbed international attention.

For tickets and information:
Or contact Rich Ripley 489-774-8468 /

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Quarterly Membership Meeting and Wine Industry Boot Camp Series 2014
The Arizona Wine Growers Association is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art information related to vineyard and winery management. The association is presenting a new, informative workshop series that will be a valuable learning experience for vineyard managers, winemakers and support staff.

Next week's Vineyard Management Workshop is the first in a series of workshops that will be presented as part of the Wine Industry Boot Camp Series 2014. This workshop will cover topics such as pruning styles, methodology and practice; vineyard irrigation design and implementation; frost protection; site selection strategies; grape varietals with a focus on matching terroir to the vine; trellis design, spacing and the pursuit of a balanced vineyard. This is a hands-on learning experience and will be presented in the vineyard. This first workshop is being held on Tuesday, February 4, so you will want to register soon!

Just prior to the Vineyard Management Workshop will be the first quarterly membership meeting of 2014. Just a couple of the very important topics to be presented include the 2013 AWGA Annual Report and an update on the AVA applications for the Willcox area.

Both events are being hosted by Jim & Ruth Graham at Golden Rule Vineyards, 3649 N. Golden Rule Road, Cochise, AZ. The quarterly meeting will be from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m. You may choose to purchase lunch and network with the group, but your request for lunch must be placed with anyone at the AWGA office no later than Monday at 5 p.m.

This is indeed the time to get involved in the booming Arizona wine industry, as it is on a steep trajectory toward a very successful and flourishing future. If you aren’t already a member, please check out membership opportunities by clicking on this link and call the office if you have any questions at 623-236-2338.

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Arizona Small-Business Owners Call for Less Regulation, Lower Taxes
Cronkite News
Reducing taxes and government regulation would help Arizona's small businesses bolster the economy and create jobs, advocates said in making their case to state lawmakers. Patricia King, executive director of the Arizona Wine Growers Association, said she's eager to see lawmakers approve legislation that would among other proposed changes increase production caps for the state's wineries and allow for more off-site tasting rooms.
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Explore Arizona Wine Country with 2014 Wine Travel Cards
The Wine Travel Card
With so many wineries and travel destinations (62 to be exact), explore Arizona wine country with the 2014 Arizona Wine Travel Card! The AZ Wine Travel Card program features money-saving discount offers all throughout the Sonoita, Verde Valley and Willcox wine regions. Travel destinations include restaurants, hotels, resorts, attractions and specialty shops/services. At only $20 per card, the 2014 Arizona Wine Travel Card is an amazing value for any Arizona wine and travel lover!
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Food, Wine, Beer and More — That's a Festival
Arizona Daily Star
The Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance is presenting two events in the coming weeks that give Tucson's culinary scene a chance to shine.
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 AWGA Signature Events

Date Event Location Details
Feb. 22, 2014 Off the Vine Arizona Wine Festival Oro Valley Tickets available now
March 15, 2014 The Art of Arizona Wine Celebration Scottsdale Sneak peak
June 13-14, 2014 Wine in the Pines Pinetop-Lakeside Save the date
Nov. 14-15, 2014 The Festival at the Farm Phoenix Save the date

Wine Fest Set to Debut in Oro Valley
Those looking to taste and buy wines from local vintners are in for a treat at the inaugural Off the Vine Arizona Wine Festival, noon to 5 p.m. Feb. 22 at Oro Valley's Steam Pump Ranch.

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Wine Bar Showcases Arizona Vintages
Your West Valley
Cafe Roka is marking its 21st year by opening a wine bar in historic Bisbee, with tasting menus feature Arizona regional wines paired with chef/owner Rod Kass's cuisine.

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Virgin Atlantic Shines Light on Arizona Wine
Virgin Atlantic
Once a local secret, Arizona's wine is making a name for itself on the national stage. Conditions in the state's growing regions have been compared to the likes of Napa Valley.

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 Business & Marketing

Employers: Is Facebook a Friend or Foe?
Julie Bernhard
With Facebook's 10-year anniversary coming Feb. 4, many can't even imagine what life was like without it. What started as a college kid meet-up is now the world's largest social network, boasting 1.15 billion users, according to CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg. With that many people involved, how can job candidates and employees make the mistake of thinking their Internet posts are not seen by potential employers and current bosses?
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3 Accounting Errors Common in Small Businesses
Business 2 Community
Accounting can be tedious, and when you're not meticulous, mistakes can happen. The following are three accounting mistakes that new business owners commonly make.
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 National News

Number of North American Wineries Grows to 8,391
Wines & Vines
New data confirm solid growth in the North American wine industry during 2013. The number of wineries grew to 8,391, a gain of 4.3 percent. U.S. wineries showed two other signs of health as their combined production increased 6.3 percent and the winery average bottle price rose from $9 to $10.85.
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Slow Wine USA Tour
Slow Food
The Slow Wine guide adopts a new approach to wine criticism and looks at a variety of factors to evaluate wineries in their entirety, taking into consideration the wine quality, typicity and adherence to terroir, value for money, environmental sensitivity and ecologically sustainable viticultural practices.
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 International News

Beautiful Winery Gardens Attract More Attention Than the Grapes
Wine is an agricultural product and, though we don't often think of them this way, the people who grow grapes are farmers, first and foremost. That means there are a lot of green thumbs around the vines. Yet the strikingly lush, aromatic gardens adjacent to some wineries still come as a surprise.
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Pilot Program Imports Grapes from Peru
Refrigerated Transporter
A pilot program that aims to import grapes from Peru into southern Florida by sea is in full operation, with 150 containers of this season's fruit expected to arrive soon at the Port of Miami in Florida.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Arizona's Next Century: A Strategic Vision for Water Supply Sustainability (AzDWR)
Take Advantage of Early Bird Pricing for the Grape Arizona Wine Event (Phoenix Rotary 100)
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AWGA Wine Press
Colby Horton, Executive Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Valerie Hunt, Senior Content Editor, 469.420.2690   
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