I know, I know. You love California wine, Italian wine, French wine, blah blah blah. At Peninsula Underground we love them too! But how many of you have ever professed your loyalty to Arizona wine? You should!
We recently had the privilege to do a sit-down tasting at the Aridus Wine Company tasting room in the Scottsdale Arts District. We were humbled that Aridus team member Alex came in on a Sunday specifically because he knew we were visiting. He led us through an array of wines grown in the Willcox AVA of Southeastern Arizona. We are not ashamed to admit that we had never tasted Arizona wine before. Those who follow our reviews and IG know that one of the themes of our 2020 featured wines has been “the unexpected.” That theme continues in December as we discovered so many interesting, unique, and delicious wines from Aridus. We will be reporting on our blog and Instagram about many of them in the near future but one of them stood out as our December wine-of-the-month:
2018 Aridus Wine Company Graciano
First of all, many of you have probably never even heard of the Graciano grape, which is a Spanish red wine varietal grown mainly in the Rioja Baja region, known for its dry climate. As it turns out, the Willcox AVA has a similarly arid climate and Aridus is the Latin word for dry or arid. So you can see how winemaker Lisa Strid is able to extract the bold aromas and taste of fresh berries from her grapes. Aficionados of Paso Robles might describe this wine as jammy or fruit-forward with a peppery finish. Those adjectives are much too cliché to give to this single-varietal wine. We prefer to say that the grape is truly the star of this wine and that its mouth feel and finish are perfect representations of the region from which it hails. This wine is ready to savor now and over the next 5 to 6 years. It can be purchased for less than $40!
At Peninsula Underground we strive to report on great wines of great value that are ready to drink right now. This 2018 Aridus Graciano delivers on all fronts and that is why it is our December wine-of-the-month.
Bravo Lisa, Alex, and the entire Aridus team!
If you are planning to be in Scottsdale contact Patrick and make an appointment for a tasting. Request that either he or Alex pour for you. Tell them that Peninsula Underground sent you. If you are not going to be in Arizona then Aridus will ship to you.