by Tim Diesch, Marketing Specialist, Yavapai College
Yavapai College’s Southwest Wine Center (SWC) at the Clarkdale campus won a gold medal for Best Sauvignon Blanc at The Arizona Republic’s Arizona Grand Wine Festival in Phoenix in January. Wines made by students at the SWC won five additional awards, including a bronze medal for Petite Sirah, and four Wines of Distinction medals. The judges were composed of Arizona sommeliers, chefs and wine professionals.
“Having a student-produced wine honored with a gold medal by such a respected panel of judges, is validation that our winemaking program is among the best in the Southwest,” said Director of Yavapai College’s Enology Program, Michael Pierce. “With this recognition, the Southwest Wine Center has been showcased as the centerpiece for teaching and learning programs for the region’s wine industry.”
The SWC is a wine industry and community resource, providing comprehensive hands-on education from vineyard to bottle with programs in enology, viticulture and business/entrepreneurship through its vineyard, teaching winery, tasting room and region-wide wine industry research epicenter.
LAST ACRE PLANTED AT SWC
The last acre of 13 at the Yavapai College Southwest Wine Center (SWC) was planted in late April at the Clarkdale campus, thanks to the efforts of 70 volunteers and the ongoing dedication of the auxiliary group, Friends of the Southwest Wine Center (FoSWC).
Wrapping up a years-long “Plant-a-Vine” program, which saw community members help prepare the soil and plant the vines for future harvesting, the FoSWC will turn its attention exclusively to supporting the SWC through fundraising.
President of the FoSWC, Joan Meyers, said that the focus for the coming year is to raise scholarship funds that will support endowed scholarships, program costs and other educational needs as they arise.
“We’re working on the details on how the community can assist in harvesting the grapes each fall,” said Meyers. “Next spring, we’ll work on putting on an ‘Emerging Winemakers’ event.”