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Tempe Arts Festival: Don’t forget the AZ wines this weekend

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This year the well-proven linkage between the arts and wine sampling is right in Tempe for you to enjoy. Savor the total appreciation of sight, sound, and taste, and experience that “sense of place” that is best expressed here in Arizona.

So once again, for 45 years running in the fall, the Tempe Festival of the Arts is working with the Arizona Wine Growers Association (AWGA) this weekend (12/6-12/8) to bring out the best of both worlds.

They are featuring wineries from all over the state with plenty of tasting opportunities to discover what’s new and what’s luscious. Of course, you can purchase bottles of your favorites to take home and enhance the “Arizona Section” of your wine rack. Taste and carry, how can you lose?

And even if you are somewhat skeptical about what Arizona wines are all about, at $12 for a tasting, it’s not too much of a risk to check them out. But you may be surprised, especially with the white wines, at how far Arizona winemakers continue to improve their work enough to compete on a world scale. With both familiar and new wineries holding out a glass, there is quite a variety from which to choose.

You may purchase tickets at the Wine Garden from 10am-5pm on Friday thru Sunday. This will guarantee entrance into the pavilion. There will be at least 8 wineries there, all with booths to sell whatever you’re willing to purchase. Note that you get a fixed number of tastes per ticket, so you can save a few bucks by sharing tastes with a fellow wine lover!

What to focus on? Don’t miss Alcantara, Arizona Stonghold, Keeling-Schaefer, Kief-Joshua, Kokopelli, and Page Springs. They each have something special to offer. Take your time, try some from each, and be sure to use this site to post comments about what you find.

Of course, you must be 21 years of age or older to enjoy the wines. Access to the pavilion is restricted.

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