Turned on, tuned in, and dropped out somewhere near Sedona

Above: From left, the guy I work for, Dan Redman, and winemaker Maynard Keenan look out on Maynard’s top growing site. The limestone-rich vineyards are terraced like the ones I’ve seen in Chianti Classico.

Did I turn on, tune in, and drop out somewhere near Sedona? Have I drunk the Kool-Aid? Did I inadvertently eat the brown acid?

Above: The high desert in Arizona is an awe-inspiring place. I wish my camera could do it justice.

I have to confess that I was skeptical: the thought of finding anything less than entirely spoofilated wine in Arizona seemed chimerical.

But what I discovered instead was honest winemakers trying to make real wine. The wines I tasted and the people I talked to gave me a lot to think about. Terroir, I remembered, is not just about soil, exposure, and climate. It’s also about people and what they believe in. Every tradition (and every cult, as it were) has to begin somewhere.

Above: An almond tree adjacent to one of the vineyards I visited. Maynard practices integrated farming and at one of his sites, he has built a small swamp that he hopes will encourage pollination of the young vineyards.

Dan and I will post more about our visit at the Mosaic blog next week. Right now I’ve got to get my butt back to Phoenix and get on a plane to the Bay Area to meet up with Tracie B.

Above: They told me that Axl Rose and Howard Stern are regulars at the resort where I ate a delicious, spicy bowl of posoles with chicken and pork.

10 thoughts on “Turned on, tuned in, and dropped out somewhere near Sedona

    • Hi Mrs. B. thanks for the comment! :-) Tracie B and I are enjoying our trip. Maybe someday we’ll all go to Sedona together and visit Maynard. He was really nice.

  1. I love Sedona. I went there many years ago and had a mystical experience. Guess I have to go back for the wine…did you know that 7 of the earth’s vortexes are located in Sedona, at least according to Shirley McLaine.

    • Alfonso and Susannah, Enchantment was beautiful. Susannah, I had totally forgotten about the vortexes and Shirley McLaine! I hope to go back to visit Maynard when he opens his new tasting bar in Jerome.

  2. What grapes are they growing? This is really interesting stuff. Tell us what wines you drank…I must know! that posoles looks awesome. that is one of my alltime favorite meals, and the finest I ever had was at a night market in mexico city, made with pork but also with meat cut from a big scary pork head the guy pulled from under the counter.

    • Jon and BrooklynGuy, thanks so much for stopping by and the comments. I’ll write a more detailed post on Maynard and his wines next week when I have more time. It was truly fascinating and this trip is giving me cause to reflect on the nature of terroir, tradition, and the true meaning of real wine. Some of what I’m coming to understand is troubling while some of it is making me realize I haven’t spent enough time thinking about these notions. More later… please stay tuned and thanks again. The nachos at Enchantment weren’t very good but the posoles were awesome.

  3. I’ve been a fan of Maynards music for years, and I’ve been keen to try his wines for a while now. The thought, even possibility of decent wine from Arizona has held me back, left me more than a little trepidatious frankly. Even the descriptions on his website sound a little too…. “spoofy” (that does seem to the popular word for it lately). I look forward to your thoughts on AZ wine.

    That Posoles looks mighty tasty!

  4. Is Maynard making all his wine these days or is he still collaborating with Eric Glomski? Di you have a chance to meet Glomski?

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