Wine was first produced in Arizona in the 1700′s by Spanish Missionaries. Modern wine making started in 1973 in the Sonoita area in the Southern end of the state. The high desert climate of Arizona has been likened to the high altitude climate of the Mendoza Valley in Argentina. The diurnal shift of hot days and cool nights ensures ripeness and acidity in the grapes; this gives the wines a longer growing period allowing for more complex and rich flavors. Arizona wines have been highly regarded by Robert Parker, the Wine Spectator and have even been served numerous times at the White House.