Energetic, juicy, and fruit-forward, the 2018 Pedroncelli Signature Selection Dry Creek Valley Chardonnay, which has garnered 90 points from James Suckling, comes across as both refreshing and immensely interesting. It is not an ordinary California Chardonnay, nor is it an over-oaked fruit bomb. Rather, the wine’s amplifying fruit-filled aroma of pineapple, peach, and pear is immediately appealing but not at all sweet or cloying. In the mouth, the 2018 Signature Selection enlivens the palate with bright fruit and a laser-like focus that ends with a citrus twist. The wine finishes clean and gratifying, leaving the palate refreshed and ready for more. Enjoy the 2018 Pedroncelli Signature Selection Dry Creek Valley Chardonnay now and over the next couple of years. We suggest a moderate chill (40°-45° F) for optimal enjoyment.
Appetizers, hors d’oeuvres, salads, and light entrées provide ideal starters to Pedroncelli’s sleek and food-friendly 2018 Signature Selection Dry Creek Valley Chardonnay. Several of the Pedroncelli family’s favorite accompaniments to their Signature Selection Chardonnay include Avocado Toasts with Arugula Pesto and Crisp Cucumber; Grilled Shrimp Tostadas with Tomato-Corn Salsa, Guacamole, and Lime; Risotto with Snap Peas and Prawns; and Chicken Scaloppini. Grilled Thai Prawns, Shrimp Salad with Avocado and Orange, and almost any white fish, such as cod, flounder or mahi-mahi served with a fresh cucumber sauce or vegetable relish, get our nod, too, as they offer tasty, heart healthy accompaniments to Pedroncelli’s Signature Selection Chardonnay. Salads served with fresh greens and grilled marinated chicken strips, and bowtie pasta in an herb infused cream sauce offer additional complements to Pedroncelli’s Signature Selection Chardonnay. All point to the versatility and food-friendly quality of this wine. And then, of course, there is always that aperitif before dinner when a glass of the 2018 Pedroncelli Signature Selection Chardonnay will provide an excellent segue to an enjoyable evening. Enjoy!
Pedroncelli celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2017. Very few California wineries can claim a lineage as long and illustrious as Pedroncelli, and even fewer California wineries are still family owned. 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 remained principal winemaker at Pedroncelli from 1948 until his passing in 2015. 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.” We are happy to say that Jim remains alive and well and going strong. In addition to Jim, John and Jim’s 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 where the family’s unwavering philosophy to produce wines that are flavorful, balanced, affordable, and reflective of their terroir have stood the test of time through four generations. Rare as it is today, 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 family continues to seek innovative means of improving production and quality, without compromising the family tradition or expanding rapidly. Instead, the Pedroncellis highlight specific vineyards in the winery’s Vineyard Selection Series, a decision that allows them to pursue an uncompromised commitment to quality. This practice also provides a glimpse of the guided, practical approach that this family has to marketing.
Although Pedroncelli is best known for their red varietal offerings, especially Petit Sirah and Zinfandel, the family’s Signature Selection Dry Creek Valley Chardonnay (this month’s feature) and Dry Creek Sauvignon Blanc constitute two of California’s finest white wine values.
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.
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