In this special episode of 1337 Wine TV, Mark visits Caduceus Cellars in Jerome, Arizona. Yes, Arizona. This is the last of his trip out West visiting wineries. Napa, Sonoma, makes sense, yes? Arizona? Believe it or not, wine is made from grapes actually grown in Arizona. Caduceus was founded by Tool lead singer Maynard James Keenan. Maynard isn’t some celebrity that lent his name to a winery for money. He IS the winemaker. I had the opportunity to taste some of his wine back in August of 2014, so when I decided to drive to California, I made sure I figured out a way to make a detour to Jerome which is about 2 hours north of Phoenix. So it’s not a quick trip when you’re trying to get back to Texas.
I had the pleasure to meet with Brian Sullivan. Brian is not only one of the most interesting people I met on the trip, but is one of the most interesting people I’ve ever met. He is the Tasting Room Manager and essentially town historian even though he is not from Jerome. What made this visit even more special is that there was a miscommunication as to which day I would be arriving. I arrived a day after the people at Caduceus thought I was going to be there. Brian was by himself when I arrived, but he was gracious enough to go through the history of Jerome, the winery, and the state of wine making and grape growing in the state until help arrived.
Once more people came in, Brian was able to sit down with me to do the show. We tasted 3 wines. 2 from the Velvet Slippers Club (Caduceus’ wine club) and 1 regular Caduceus release. Wines tasted are the 2011 Caduceus Cellars Velvet Slippers Club Sangiovese, the 2012 Caduceus Cellars Nagual del Marzo, and the 2011 Caduceus Cellars Velvet Slippers Club Montepulciano.
On a side note. If you plan on visiting, don’t believe the GPS when it tells you to go straight on a dirt road. Take the right turn to stay on the main drag. It’ll eventually take you to the tasting room. The dirt road is pretty rough and goes through a neighborhood and they aren’t too keen on thru traffic. Don’t worry, nothing bad will happen, but I thought I’d at least ask you respect their wishes to not take what is essentially a private road. There is a sign basically saying this too.
Link for the show: