Where to Eat
After opening in late 2022, Los Milics Vineyard was named one of the top three new winery experiences in the country. Beloved restaurateur Pavle Milic, whose wine program at Scottsdale’s FnB earned two James Beard Award nominations, poured his heart and soul into this estate winery, and it shows. Visitors stroll through a striking, steel Stonehenge-esque installation to a classy, glassy tasting room overlooking the vineyard and the Mustang Mountains. The multi-award-winning wines are a mélange of popular grapes and daring varietals such as tannat and teroldego. Chef Ana Borrajo blends Southern Arizona’s bounty with flair from her native Granada, Spain, in her seasonal tapas. The small plates might feature a salad of shaved fennel, pickled beets, and Manchego cheese or punchy pintxos with jamón serrano and garlicky tomato spread.
An oldie but goodie, Dos Cabezas WineWorks debuted in 1995 and continues to win over wine lovers with its spicy-fruity reds and citrusy whites, which combine characteristically Arizonan grapes such as garnacha, graciano, and malvasia bianca. Recently, the winery started slinging wood-fired Pronghorn Pizza from its crush pad. Order a pie loaded with atypical toppings that could include garlic confit, Oaxacan cheese, or fermented poblano peppers. Then lounge on the plant-filled patio, cooling off with a can of carbonated rosé or some thyme-infused sparkling water.
Arizona’s only solar-powered, off-grid vineyard and tasting room, Rune Wines perfectly captures Sonoita’s casual, outdoorsy aesthetic. Its tasting “room” consists of a sunshade set up over lounge chairs next to a wine-barrel bar. But what more do you need when you’re sipping wild-fermented Mexican chardonnay or co-fermented syrah, grazing on upscale picnic fare, and gazing across a prairie punctuated with century plants?
When locals aren’t hanging out at the wineries, they gravitate to The Cafe for scrumptious burgers, sandwiches, and salads as well as its community-minded ethos. Chef Adam Puckle sources his ingredients from nearby farms and features beef from Vera Earl Ranch, which cares for the region’s grasslands, wildlife, and riparian areas through sustainable grazing practices. Breakfast options are thin on the ground in tiny Sonoita. So, if you’re headed to nearby Patagonia for bird-watching and beach play, fuel up at Gathering Grounds with locally raised pork chorizo and eggs, or a Mexican-influenced vegan veggie scramble.