Proud mom, Marge Black-Graziano and sister Carrie help celebrate John’s well deserved victory!
A victory, not just for John McLoughlin, but for the Arizona Wine Industry. John took Best Of Show with his Bitter Creek Winery series wine, “Death”. Bitter Creek Winery also took awards in the categories of Wine of Distinction and Judge’s Favorite as overseen by some of AZ’s finest chefs, and renowned Sommeliers and Certified Wine Specialists.
John was stunned. “We submitted this year, just to see what would happen, to get a feel for some feedback on the upcoming releases.”
In true John fashion, he quickly credited the victory to his family and staff at the Cellar 433 wineroom in Jerome, Dragoon Mountain Vineyards in Willcox and the heart of operations, “MHQ” in Mesa.
“If it wasn’t for such a great group of individuals such as yourselves, this wouldn’t have been possible.” John said in an e-mail to his entire staff. This victory is especially sweet, as the fruits harvested for these wines came exclusively from Arizona soil.
The victory comes at a time when John is sponsoring an effort to create two American Viticultural Areas, (AVA) for the area around Willcox. On Friday afternoon, Paul Hagar, Special Projects Manager, described the completed petitions that will be submitted to the Federal Government by the end of the month. Members of the industry, who were in attendance, were very supportive of this effort. Commenting on the extensive research and organizational effort required to complete all the materials for filing, Mark Cave, GM of Arizona Stronghold said in an e-mail, “Thanks for all the legwork on this…”
Regarding the AVA applications, approval can take up to one year. We look forward to achieving a recognized status that we can legally include on our wine labels. Exciting Times!