New Local Winery: Cove Mesa Vineyard in Verde Valley

Arizona wine regions are booming with new high-end wineries including family-owned Cove Mesa Vineyard in Cornville

It’s a well-known fact that Arizona produces some incredible wines. A new local vineyard from the state’s acclaimed Verde Valley wine region has opened its doors just in time for the holiday season to celebrate with a bottle (or two).

Born out of a passion for exceptional wine, Cove Mesa Vineyard emerged on the Verde Valley wine scene at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Founders Emil and Cynthia Molin focused their energy on creation, and Cove Mesa Vineyard was born. In April, 2021, the duo released their first collection of wines that included Merlot, Sangiovese, Malvasia Bianca, PicPoul Blanc, Vermentino and Rosé from their Cottonwood-area winery and tasting room. The sophisticated collection of wines quickly grew a cult following, attracting wine lovers and visitors from Sedona and beyond, and additional beautiful reds will soon join the line-up as they complete French Oak barrel aging.

“It was our lifelong dream to own a vineyard,” says Founder and Executive Winemaker Emil Molin. “Having studied wine and visited wine regions around the world for several decades, we became very intrigued by the beautiful fruit produced by the high desert vineyards in the Verde Valley and around the State of Arizona. Although the Arizona wine industry is very small and very young, our unique terroir has already produced exceptional, European style wines from a wide range of grape varieties native to France, Italy and Spain.”

The Cove Mesa Vineyard family in their Cottonwood area tasting room.

With its estate vineyards located in Cornville, Cove Mesa Vineyard is located in the heart of Arizona’s Verde Valley wine growing region. Perched atop a long and winding pebbled dirt road, Cove Mesa overlooks the entire Verde Valley with soaring views that reach from Mingus Mountain and Jerome to the red rocks of Sedona. With a total of 11,400 vines planted in its Cove Mesa and Solair Vineyards, Cove Mesa is the embodiment of a family-owned winery with strong community ties and bold plans for growing with the Verde Valley.

“It was our lifelong dream to own a vineyard. Having studied wine and visited wine regions around the world for several decades, we became very intrigued by the beautiful fruit produced by the high desert vineyards in the Verde Valley and around the State of Arizona.”

—Founder and Executive Winemaker Emil Molin

As one of the region’s newest wineries, Cove Mesa sources fruit from premier local growers in the Verde Valley, as well as a select number of vineyards in the Willcox and Sonoita AVAs in southeastern Arizona.

“We were very fortunate that for our first harvest we were able to source 21 tons of fruit from some of the very best vineyards in the state,” says Molin. “2020 will certainly be a year that’s remembered for many reasons, but for us it was a standout year for a quality harvest that was key to our vision as the winery took shape,” he said.

Artfully crafted in the style of Old World wines, Cove Mesa’s 2020 vintage is 100% Arizona fruit, with grapes sourced from the Verde Valley and the Willcox AVA. These two wine growing regions, along with the Sonoita AVA, highlight Arizona’s unique terroir that is necessary to create the sophisticated and nuanced elements of Cove Mesa’s distinctive and elegant wines.

“Arizona wines continue to surprise, delight and exceed all expectations of wine lovers around the world making The Verde Valley a premier destination for extremely high-quality and thoughtful wines,” says Molin. “By producing supremely high quality wines that celebrate our unique terroir, it is our goal to continue to elevate the identity of the region lead the Verde Valley in the super-premium wine segment,” he said.

Each bottle of Cove Mesa wine begins life in small, responsibly farmed Arizona vineyards and is produced at the family owned and operated winery. Visitors are invited to sample Cove Mesa wines and indulge in gourmet food pairings at the winery’s tasting room located in Cottonwood. A new tasting room, located in the heart of Cornville is planned to open in early Spring 2022.

Located just 90 minutes from Phoenix, or 30 minutes from Sedona, Cove Mesa has quickly become a must-visit destination for wine connoisseurs who love Arizona wines.

The Cove Mesa Tasting Room is located at 741 Airpark Way, Unit 8, Cottonwood, AZ 86326 and is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.. For more information about Cove Mesa Vineyard, visit www.covemesa.com or connect on social @CoveMesaVineyard.

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