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A new addition to Santa Fe's vineyard scene

5 Nov 2012 9:57 AM
A new addition to Santa Fe's vineyard scene

In many ways, winemaking is an ancient art form. Nearly as old as agriculture itself, wine has been an important part of civilizations around the world for thousands of years. Family-run vineyards have held reign over France and Italy's historic wine-producing regions for generations. With that said, like any art, there is always room for innovators, and new vineyards - especially in less tradition-steeped regions like the U.S. and Chile - are always cropping up.

In Santa Fe, where a passion for high culture mixes freely with an innovative spirit, this may be especially true. The city seems to always be adding new elements to its culture. That's why it isn't too surprising to learn that a vineyard started only a few years ago is already earning acclaim for its high-quality wines.

Estrella Del Norte Vineyard, half hidden in the beautiful Pojoaque Valley, started producing wine in 2007 and has been gaining followers ever since. The warm climate of Santa Fe serves as the perfect condition for growing the strong, hardy grapes that go into these striking wines.

With names like Holy Mole and Rio Nambe, it is easy to see how these wines fit into the region's unique heritage. Although it may not have as deep a history as other, more-storied vineyards, Estrella Del Norte is clearly unafraid of going shoulder to shoulder with some of the more established wines from California and abroad. Already, the vineyard has won several medals from prestigious competitions.

For local wine lovers, the emergence of a New Mexican wine culture is surely an exciting development. Estrella Del Norte, which is located just miles from downtown Santa Fe, is the perfect destination for a day trip for residents of nearby luxury homes. Visitors will be invited to sample some of the vineyard's best and most recent wines and be treated to stunning views of the grape-dappled landscape.

Moreover, the vineyard is home to a warm, welcoming tasting room. In addition to bottles of many varieties of wine, the room features comfortable seating, a relaxing environment and knowledgeable sommeliers. Additionally, after a glass - or two - guests are encouraged to stroll the grounds and visit the nearby European Garden to see its elegant sculptures and beautiful plants.

While it may not have the pedigree of more established vineyards from Europe, Estrella Del Norte is quickly making a name for itself and earning a reputation as one of Santa Fe's best young vineyards.