Spotlight On: Pedroncelli Winery



By Kori ~ February 11th, 2009.

20090211_pedroncelli1Pedroncelli Winery, located in Geyserville, California, in the Dry Creek Valley of Sonoma County, was founded in 1927 by John Pedroncelli, Sr. Today, Pedroncelli is still a family-owned business, now in their fourth generation. Winemaker John Pedroncelli, Jr. has more than 40 vintages under his belt at Pedroncelli Winery.

We first visited Pedroncelli Winery in 2005 on a wine tasting trip to the Sonoma Valley. On that visit, we especially enjoyed their Mother Clone Zinfandel. Their historic block of 100-year-old Zinfandel vines continue to provide the budwood for their estate Zinfandel. This quarter-acre Mother Clone block sits adjacent to their winery and tasting room.

One of our early posts here on Wine Peeps featured Pedroncelli as a great value wine. We have consistently found them to be a go-to winery for getting the most bang for our wine buck.

We had the pleasure to taste some of their wines at the Wine Bloggers Conference in October. Once again, we thought that their Mother Clone Zinfandel was excellent, and their Three Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon and “Four Grapes” Vintage Port were good as well. Their reputation for great value wines remained intact with all three wines boasting a QPR rating of 5 bangs for your buck.

20090211_pedroncelli2Recently, I had the opportunity to taste three more Pedroncelli wines, the 2006 Merlot Bench Vineyards, 2005 Sangiovese Alto Vineyards, and the 2006 friends.red. My favorite of the three was the Merlot. It is a classic, solid Merlot with nice fruit up front, medium tannins, and a long finish. As you’ll see from the tasting notes below, two of the three wines have a QPR rating of 5 bangs for your buck. It is quite rare to find a winery that can produce such good wines, across the board, at such reasonable prices.

If you are ever in the Sonoma County area, I encourage you to visit Pedroncelli Winery. It has a classic, family-farm feel nestled next to beautiful hillside vineyards, and the people are very friendly. And if you are looking to save your hard-earned money during these tough economic times but still want to drink some excellent wines, look for the Pedroncelli label on the shelf at your local store.

2006 Pedroncelli Merlot Bench Vineyards (Dry Creek Valley, California): Black cherry, blackberry, and plum prevalent on both nose and palate. Very flavorful. Well-balanced with nice, round tannins, and a long finish. A solid, classic Merlot.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to Buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $14; The Austin Wine Merchant (Texas), $10.75

2005 Pedroncelli Sangiovese Alto Vineyards (Dry Creek Valley, California): Black fruit and cedar box aromas lead to plum, cedar, and black licorice flavors on the palate. Fairly well-balanced. More fruit than most Old World Sangiovese. A bit hot but a pleasant sipper with a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to Buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $14; Available elsewhere, $10 to $12

2006 Pedroncelli friends.red Sonoma County Red Wine (Sonoma County, California): Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, and Zinfandel. Medicinal aromas with a hint of mint. Light to medium-bodied with soft tannins. Red fruit flavors. A good hamburger or hot dog wine for a summer BBQ.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to Buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $10; Carlo Russo Wine (New Jersey), $10


Filed under: American Wine, California Wine, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Merlot, Red Wine, Sangiovese, Spotlight On, Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. Deena Coutant | May 26th, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    I totally agree on your value assessment of Pedroncelli wines. My husband Chris and I stumbled upon their tasting room while visiting Sonoma in September 2007. We were on our way just up the road to Frick, but they were closed, so we stopped at Pedroncelli instead…ironically because my husband saw a little black cat hiding in the vines opposite the tasting room. Several of the Pedroncelli family members were there and were very gracious to share tastes with us so close to their closing time, too. We joined their wine club and it has consistently been one of our favorites. In fact, we just enjoyed a bottle of their 2005 Alto Vineyards Sangiovese last night with chicken cacciatore and it was delicious. I do agree, though, that the Mother Clone Zin was probably our overall favorite, too. Their wine club was much cheaper than many others we joined, and consistently very good. Highly recommended!

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