So named after the cooling winds blowing over the mountain range into the canyon to give a cooling effect on the valley, Canyon Wind is home to one of Colorado’s first +$100 bottle of wine; IV. Long groves of vines hug the valley floor and if is wasn’t for that giant mountain range lining the horizon 360 degrees one might think she was in Italy, France or California. There is something here that is similar to international fancy wine country though… the Mesa Verde sandstone that filters through the dirt in this particular spot of the Grand Valley AVA area in Palisade, CO.
We have come for a tour of Canyon Wind Cellars and on a mission to find some great wine to take home. Always fascinated and drawn to local.. well… anything, this absolutely fabulous to me. A winery here in my back yard and a very accomplished one a that! Walking thru the vine groves we learn that part of what makes this vineyard so special is its geological location; the Mesa Verde sandstone in the soil mirrors the famous left bank of Bordeaux in the south of France. The hot summer days and much cooler nights (the signature summer weather of the Centennial state of Colorado) and high altitude are also make for ideal grape growing.
Down in the actual cellar we get to my favorite part of the day, the tasting of the wine! It was only 1o:30 am at the time of our excursion, but that didn’t stop us. We tried Cabernet Franc, Perdit Verdot, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc to name a few of them. (Canyon Wind produces 14 wines in total). Interestingly enough all four of us liked all we tried, yet had a different favorite that ended up in the shopping bag. This to me is a true testament of the diversity of this family owned Colorado winery – there is something for all to love. Others feel the same – since its first crush in 1996 Canyon Wind has won many-a-medals for its wines. Most recently, IV won Double Gold at the Indy International Wine Competition. They were also the signature wine at the Aspen Wheeler Opera house after sponsoring and participating in the Mountain Summit.
A big thank you to Jay Christianson, co-owner of this amazing estate winery called Canyon Wind for sharing what you and your family has created for us all to enjoy! AND – I can not end this post without giving a shout out to Pam Maestas, who had a birthday at the time of our visit. Pam single handedly got us all hooked on the port of Canyon Winds – even though non of us like port. At all. She told us that at the end of the bottling of this liquid gold and the hose was being coiled up, workers ran to fetch empty coke bottles or whatever they could get their hands on and drink some of the excess port. That’s how good it is. We agreed, tied it, then one more bottle to our already full cart.