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Arizona Stronghold Centennial White: A blend to celebrate Arizona

Posted on: May 7th, 2012 by Tom Peiffer No Comments

If you’re searching out a wine to go with that seafood spread, it’s hard to beat our own Arizona blends. Of course, just to make things interesting, Arizona’s white blends not only jump all over our state’s map, but also all over the taste chart. Their bouquets can be one or a combination of citrusy, flowery, bready, stony, earthy, or downright rainy.

Given all of this, it’s surprising that many of the white wines made in Arizona taste quite citrusy when grown in the heat and steady Arizona sun without a single fruit tree in sight!  But, just to make us feel a little more at home, many of these are also stony.

One of our own, Arizona Stronghold Vineyard has been perfecting their own renditions of white blends for years and the last few vintages have been hitting the mark. With a unique combination of apple, citrus, and stony earth, some of the essence of the high desert countryside is captured in their wines.

It may actually be their goal to make a wine similar to that of France’s Alsace wine growing region with citrus, pear, and melon fruit combined with rocky mineral. Specifically, with flavors like those of the more fruity wines from the southern part of the Alsace region, it’s fairly close. And other Arizona Stronghold white wines also use ample proportions of Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Sauvignon Blanc grapes to achieve their citrus bouquet and soft body with balanced acidity.

To celebrate 100 years (1912-2012) as a state, pick up Arizona Stronghold’s Centennial White at Whole Foods, BevMo or AJs. It’s priced around $25. Note: With less than 1000 cases produced, the celebration will only continue until the shelves are empty!  Happy 100th Arizona, glad you picked the “Stronghold” to carry the official wine torch.

Chill in the fridge for about 40 minutes (60 degrees). Don’t cool it down too much because the light flavors will be too muted.

Enjoy a little Arizona Stronghold Centennial with your next cheese appetizer and seafood effort. The combination will add a lot to the flavors with a bright Arizona-inspired kick in the palate! This is a “must have with food” due to its acidic structure.

Article by Tom Peiffer, Phoenix Wine Shopping Examiner at

View more of Tom’s articles on by visiting his writer’s page.


About the Author - Tom Peiffer

Tom has been an avid wine consumer and collector for over 20 years. This pastime has taken he and his family on many visits to wine growing regions, including Arizona. During these excursions, with the accompanying tastings and lectures, it became clear that there is no "magic bullet" wine. For each wine contains its own character, strong points, and weaknesses. Sharing these experiences to help anyone purchase locally available wines is his goal.

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