Author Archives: winemaker

Jerome Winery

Jerome Winery

Jerome Winery was John McLoughlin’s first line of handcrafted wines.  The wine follows a more traditional way of winemaking, bottled mainly as specific varietal wines.  It brings our attention back to our family’s roots in the business.  Family members worked in the vineyard as we planted the first grapevines.  We harvested by hand.  It kept our connection to the earth.  The family photos on the labels honor that tradition of family and independent family businesses.

Where To Buy Jerome Winery Varietals and Ports

Bitter Creek Winery

Bitter Creek Winery

Bitter Creek Wines reflect our ability to take the unique

flavors of Willcox, Arizona varietals and evolve them into one wine that unites them for a more expressive taste!

John McLoughlin revels in asserting what each new vintage brings and he is renowned for his renegade style of

winemaking. Creating a wine for the distinguished palate can be likened to accessorizing the “little black dress”. On its own it is an icon, but the perfect accessories can make a breathtaking statement.

As resolutely as we believe in Arizona terroir, we equally

believe in supporting our local artists. Bitter Creek’s Tarot Card labels by Rick Wyckoff were selected to express the unique meaning and emotion evoked by the wine, the artist, and Tarot. Every wine in this collection is done in limited production. When a Tarot wine is gone, it will never again be produced. The card is retired and a new Tarot wine is created.

Wait. That label is not a Tarot card…

Through the Bitter Creek Winery collection our winemaker has gained notoriety with his renegade wine making style and of course, the Tarot labels. Over the last decade, the Rhone heritage has  become more prevalent through Willcox, Arizona’s distinctive terroir as the vineyard matures. Both wine-making and the Tarot are spiritual in nature, and the Theme cards endure this expression. Through the Theme cards the Rhone-style wines from Willcox continue to forge ahead on their destined path.

Available only through the Cellar 433 tasting room

in Jerome or online.


AWGA Award

Top 10 Hottest Brands in the U.S.

Wine Business Monthly bestowed this honor on John McLoughlin’s collection named Fiddlebender  for its

reflection of his pioneer spirit and his quest to set AZ wine apart from everyone else.

100 % AZ Chardonnay


 2013 Best In Show

In November our vigneron, John McLoughlin received the Gold Growers Cup, the highest distinction for an Arizona winemaker, at the Festival at The Farm

100% AZ Chardonnay

High Priestess

AZ Wine Labels

John McLoughlin’s sassy, Sultry Cellars labels are only one of his select series labels meant to stimulate your perception of AZ Wine. Read Richard Ruelas’ article on

Top Hat

Sultry Cellars “Top Hat”

Sultry Cellars

Sultry Cellars

Sultry Cellars Wines reflect the possibilities of more time for massaging and finessing the wine. We primp a little more and we end up with a sexy, sultry, seductive wine that is open to all. Our labels exactly match the sassy attitude of the wine. Sultry Cellars is a limited bottling run of wines. Available only through the Cellar 433 tasting room in Jerome or online.

Jerome Winery: Primitivo



A velvety and deeply colored red, Primitivo tastes of juicy cherries, wild blackberries and the zest of raspberries with just a whisper of cinnamon.
Winemaker’s Notes: Identical by DNA to Zinfandel, Primitivo’s ancient origins are rooted in Croatia. Low yields and judicious pruning of the prolific vines are an absolute necessity to result the rich fruit flavors and delicate spice notes.
Pairings: Spicy meats, roasted duck, earthy, ripe brie with cranberries.

Jerome Winery: Pinotage


Beautifully rustic and medium bodied. Earth driven notes brace delicious dark berries and ripe plums. Comfortably chewy.
Winemaker’s Notes: The elegance of Pinot Noir and the heart of Cinsaut allow this fruit to thrive in Willcox.
Pairings: Tuna Tartare, light to medium red sauces or white chocolate creme brûlée.

Bronze Medal

2013 Tasters Guild International Judging

85 Points, Silver Medal

Beverage Tasting Institute Regional Wine Competition, Southwest Region

Read about 100% AZ grown Pinotage at

Jerome Winery: Nebbiolo



Dark ruby with a brackish rim.
Winemaker’s Notes: Demanding and fastidious outside of its homeland of Piemonte, our Willcox vineyard’s gift to Nebbiolo is our ignorance of frost.
Pairings: Classic red, Italian sauces, roasted chicken with rosemary, or fontina cheese.

Jerome Winery: deNile



Complex aromas of orange blossoms, overripe apricots and vanilla invite one to enjoy a rich, almost sweet taste with a creamy mouth feel with flavors of ripe, white peaches and butterscotch.
Winemaker’s Notes: Until winemakers realized the potential of Viognier in blends, it was relatively ignored. A touch of dry Muscat keeps Viognier’s propensity for high alcohol in check and the finish is impeccable, if not memorable.
Pairings: Grilled Tilapia with fruit salsa, Thai noodles, fresh chevre with macadamia nuts or vanilla ice cream.




How can a whimsical, purple tree frog with eyelashes be anything but fun? Pull up a lilypad and join us for an

unexpected leap into what Willcox, Arizona wines can be. You might make a new friend!


The Fiddlebender collection of wines reflects the diversity of

Dragoon Mountain Vineyard and John McLoughlin’s

commitment to cultivating varietals that best express

Arizona’s terroir. Artist Bart DeGraaf’s fun and whimsical renderings were specifically chosen to reflect renegade wine-maker John McLoughlin’s creative approach to



 Top 10 Wines
Top 10 Hottest Brands



Where to buy Fiddlebender wines