Jaime’s Local Love: Pillsbury Estates Tasting House
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - “There’s too much generic food and wine in the world,” winemaker Sam Pillsbury says. “We make food wines, not cocktail wines.”
He’s been passionate about food and wine his whole life but took a winding road to winemaking in Arizona. Pillsbury spent many years as a film director, producer, and writer, having made dozens of documentaries, 32 features and TV dramas before changing careers to focus on food, fruit, earth, and growth! He said this has been an exercise in risk, patience, passion and finally, an award-winning wine!
It was 22 years ago when Pillsbury began growing wine grapes on his properties in Cochise County. He’s performed as a chef and winemaker ever since, and Pillsbury wines have won more awards in the last eight years than almost any other wineries that competed in the celebrated San Francisco Chronicle American Wine Competition.
The Pillsbury Wine Company only makes wine from the grapes they farm organically on their vineyard in Willcox. They ferment all their wines with the wild yeasts that come in on their fruit and never age in new oak. Pillsbury says he doesn’t want his wines to taste of oak from Kentucky or France, or to be made with yeasts and chemicals from a lab in California. He said he wants them to come 100% from Cochise County.
The vineyard and tasting room can be found in Willcox, having moved from the tasting room off Main Street in Cottonwood to a tasting house just up the road instead. The bigger space is now based out of a historic old miner’s home, complete with a full kitchen with more opportunities for elevated snacks, wine pairings, and even full dinners.
Check them out on the web here and in Willcox at the following locations!
Pillsbury Estates Tasting House: 315 S. Willard, Cottonwood, AZ 86326 | (928) 639-0646
Willcox Winery, Vineyard, and Tasting Room: 6450 S. Bennett Place, Willcox, AZ 85643 | (928) 595-1001
Follow them on social media at the following sites:
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