For anyone who thinks the idea of sipping local wines while taking in the breathtaking, wide open scenery sounds like a perfect day, Sonoita, Arizona is an ideal destination. Sonoita is a part of the state’s original wine country, and tasting rooms and vineyards continue to thrive around the small village.
1. Las Cienegas National Conservation Area
© Las Cienegas National Conservation Area
Las Cienegas National Conservation Area in Arizona is a joint venture of the United States Bureau of Land Management and the Empire Ranch Foundation. The foundation’s mission is “to protect, restore and sustain the Empire Ranch historical buildings and landscape as an outstanding western heritage education center.”
Located in the heart of the conservation area is the Empire Ranch Headquarters, which is open to the public from sunrise until sunset.
The Visitor Center is open to visitors during special events, volunteer work days, and docent tours. The United States Bureau of Land Management acquired the land for the conservation area in 1988. Browse our romantic weekend getaways in Arizona guide for more ideas.
2. Arizona Hops and Vines
© Arizona Hops and Vines
Arizona Hops and Vines is a smaller winery in the Sonoita region of Arizona, featuring a family farm that provides a warm and fun place for both wine enthusiasts and families alike.
Visitors can come to the little, cheeky winery and spend some time sipping wine on the patio, share a story or two, and explore a winery that offers free Cheetos. Arizona Hops and Vines is run by two sisters with the help from their children and friends.
3450 Highway 82, Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 301-237-6556
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3. Dos Cabezas WineWorks
© Dos Cabezas WineWorks
Dos Cabezas WineWorks has had a significant role in the development of the wine scene in Arizona more more than twenty years. High-quality and distinctive fruit is supplied to the winery to produce its wines from two different estate vineyards: the Cimarron Vineyard and the Pronghorn Vineyard. Dos Cabezas WineWorks is located in the Sonoita area’s high desert grasslands. The winery also offers a place for guests to stay on site, offering the option for visitors to sip as much wine as they desire.
3248 Highway 82, Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 520-455-5141, (website link)
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4. Wilhelm Family Vineyards
© Wilhelm Family Vineyards
The Wilhelm Family Vineyards is the premier vineyard for growing and producing Spanish wines in the state of Arizona. The Tasting Room at the winery is open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, from eleven in the morning to four in the afternoon. The Wilhelm Family Vineyards is situated right in the center of Arizona’s Empire Mountain plateau, approximately an hour away from Tucson. The tasting room embraces the beginnings of the vineyard, the heritage, and the wine culture of Arizona. It also features beautiful views of the surrounding mountain landscape, the vineyard, and the rolling grasslands.
21 Mountain Ranch Dr, Elgin, AZ 85611, Phone: 520-455-9291
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5. Things to Do in Sonoita: Rune Wines
© Rune Wines
Rune Wines prides itself on being an off-grid winery, as well as tasting room, situated in scenic, Sonoita in Arizona. The winery was founded in the year 2013 by winemaker James Callahan. Rune Wines is a culmination of Callahan’s knowledge he had acquired thus far combined with the knowledge he gained with each and every additional vintage. Rune is focused on doing things in a different way; focusing, honing, crafting, experimenting, and producing something truly special and unique, as well as enticing to wine lovers. Rune Wines aims to bring forth the best of the unique terroirs in its wines.
3969 AZ-82, Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 520-338-8823
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6. Nizhoni Ranch Gallery
© Nizhoni Ranch Gallery
The Nizhoni Ranch Gallery can be found only thirty miles to the southeast from Tucson in the small town of Sonoita. The town is located is tucked away in a stunning spot between the Huachuca, Mustang, and Santa Rita Mountains, offering many opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, bird watching, winery visits, and more. In Navajo, the word “nizhoni” means “beautiful place.” The Nizhoni Ranch Gallery provides the local community, as well as visitors, with the finest historic and contemporary Navajo weaving, along with other select forms of Native American art. Items found at the gallery include baskets, blankets, jewelry, kachinas, and pottery.
51 E. Pinto Trail, Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 520-455-5020, (website link)
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7. Things to Do in Sonoita: The Cafe
© The Cafe
The Cafe was founded in Sonoita, Arizona back in 2010 by Adam Puckle, a true local of the area. Adam brings his natural sense for food to the restaurant, providing customers with appetizing, comfortable, and approachable offerings designed to offer a price-valued and tasty dining experience, as well as something of interest for everyone. Daily specials are listed on the blackboards at The Cafe, as well as on the Twitter and Facebook accounts for the restaurant. The signature dish of Chef Adam is the A.P.E. Burger, and no two are quite exactly alike, offering guests something truly special.
3280 Highway 82, Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 520-455-5044
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8. The Steak Out
© The Steak Out
The Steak Out has been offering some of the finest steaks cut in-house for more than fifty years. Each steak is prepared over a mesquite grill and is seasoned with the steakhouse’s own world-famous seasoning. The restaurant is a family-owned and operated steakhouse in the town of Sonoita, first opened in 1979 by the Wystrach family. While the original building unfortunately burned down many years ago, The Steak Out was reopened in 2000 with a very similar design and character as the old one. The restaurant features an authentic country ambiance, offering a relaxing atmosphere in which customers can enjoy a delicious steak.
3235 HWY 82 Sonoita, AZ 85637, Phone: 520-455-5205
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