Since 1927, the two constants at the Pedroncelli estate in Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley have been family and wine. Started by Italian immigrant John Pedroncelli, Sr., the Pedroncelli’s pre-Prohibition property is located 25 miles from the Pacific where warm days and cool nights provide the ideal climate for grapes to ripen slowly and fully.
John, Sr.’s namesake, son John, grew up on the family property and has been principal winemaker at Pedroncelli since 1948. John’s brother Jim was actually born in the winery’s offices, which were formerly the family’s home. Jim has overseen marketing and sales at the winery since 1955. Jim only half jokingly tells visitors “I was born in this office and I will probably die here as well.” In addition to Jim and John, their children and children-in-laws all work in various capacities at the winery, as the family happily watches a fourth generation buzz about the property. In short, Pedroncelli remains an authentic family-owned and run winery. Rare as it may now be, the Pedroncelli family is one California family that has not yet traded in its name or sold its soul to a corporate conglomerate.
Obviously, stability and tradition play important roles for the Pedroncelli family as it collectively pursues its shared passion for producing quality wines. Yet, Pedroncelli’s vineyards have only gently expanded to 105 acres from the property’s original 90 acres, and the brothers continue to seek innovative means of improving production and quality, without compromising the family tradition or expanding rapidly beyond their control. Instead, the family highlights specific vineyards in the winery’s Vineyard Selection Series (i.e. Dry Creek Valley’s Bench and Family Vineyards), a decision that allows the brothers to pursue their family’s commitment to quality. This practice also provides a glimpse of the guided, practical approach that this family has to marketing.
Lovingly made, Pedroncelli wines are known for their consistent quality from vintage to vintage: they always exhibit rich fruit flavors, layered balance, and a readiness to drink upon release. Above enjoying the quality of their wines, however, partaking in a glass of Pedroncelli wine is like becoming a member of the family and sharing in their love of wine.
Red grape varietals predominate at Pedroncelli. Merlot, Petite Sirah, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, and Zinfandel are just a few of Pedroncelli’s finest Sonoma County offerings. Sauvignon Blanc is a real success at Pedroncelli, too, and it remains one of the winery’s fairer claims to fame.