Skip to content
09/14/2020 Newsletter

Greetings from the Wine Cellar:

Here’s the follow-up to last week’s Newsletter. Two word summary:  We lost.   

Gov. Doug Ducey’s order closing bars remains intact, at least for now.  In a 14-page order issued last Tuesday, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Pamela Gates spurned a request by the owners of more than 100 Arizona bars and taverns to block enforcement of executive orders that forbid bars from opening while allowing operators of restaurants with liquor licenses to continue to serve clients. Judge Gates said Ducey’s orders “are rationally related to expert data and guidance on minimizing the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

Gates also said she saw no evidence that the orders cause irreparable harm to bar owners, one of the factors that judges are required to consider when determining if a law or order can remain in effect while it is being challenged.

Because being closed by government order while most or all of your costs of operation and expenses continue doesn’t really cause any real harm, right?  (Sorry, don’t mean to editorialize…)

Anyway, the fight may go on, according to the attorney for the plaintiffs, Ilan Wurman, who said he will consider taking the case to the state’s Court of Appeals.  Personally, I don’t see much chance for a reversal.  Governor Ducey appears to hold all the cards in this game.  So until Yuma County’s COVID-19 community spread numbers improve sufficiently to satisfy the AZ Dept. of Health Services, things will remain the way they are with respect to bars here in Yuma County.  One major exception:  A few bars in the area have re-opened recently.  How?  They’ve been able to do so by changing their operation to qualify as a “Bar Providing Dine-in Service” as defined by AZDHS.  They have to provide in-house dining at all times, patrons must order food in order to be served any alcoholic beverages, patrons must be led to a table and are not allowed to stand or move around afterwards, and in general the bars have to comply with all of the other restrictions that are currently imposed on restaurants, including occupancy limitations.

Not much chance of the Old Town Wine Cellar providing dine-in meal service any time soon, so unfortunately no wine will be served in the Wine Cellar for the time being.  However, we most certainly remain fully OPEN for business with our normal days and hours of operation.  And if you miss wine tasting at the Cellar as much as I do, we can help.  Check out the Wine Cellar’s Facebook page this week for more details.  Hope to see you soon!


Rivetto 2017 Langhe Nebbiolo (Piedmont, Italy)    $27.99
Dried rose petals, fresh herbs, new leather and perfumed berry aromas mingle with baking spice in this superb Nebbiolo.  In the mouth rich red raspberry and cherry fruit dominates, while notes of star anise and crushed mint provide the backdrop.  Taut, fine-grained tannins and pleasingly fresh acidity provide the perfect framework.

Gerard Bertrand 2018 Chardonnay Cotes des Roses (Languedoc, France)    $14.99
This Chardonnay from the south of France boasts a lovely golden hue.  It’s fresh and intense on the nose, revealing scents of citrus and exotic fruits, flowers and notes of candy, pear and pineapple.  A fresh, flavorful palate is lively, precise and pure, with a pleasant mineral edge.

Fonseca 2015 Guimaraens Vintage Port (Douro Valley, Portugal)    $59.99
Intoxicating aromas of crushed berries, lilac, violets and mineral mingle on the nose, and are followed by accents of peppercorns and Indian spice in this powerful Vintage Port.  On the palate, the wine shows tremendous depth, with medium sweetness, gripping tannins and a lengthy, chewy finish.  A classic Vintage Port, this will age and improve for decades to come…


Mike Shelhamer
Old Town Wine Cellar
265 S. Main Street, Suite E
Yuma, Arizona  85364

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Every Monday, we send an email newsletter with our weekly wine tastings list and new wine & beer arrivals - right in your inbox.

* indicates required