One Family, One Place, 70 Years of Fine Wine
Pedroncelli Winery has come a long way since 1927, when John Pedroncelli, Sr. purchased vineyards and a small winery in Sonoma County's Dry Creek Valley. Today, the vineyards are planted to premium grape varieties, the winery is filled with modern equipment, and wines bearing the Pedroncelli name grace tables from coast to coast. But two elements from 70 years ago remain unchanged: the exceptional place the Pedroncelli family grows grapes, and the family's dedication to making fine wines.
As Director of Sales and Marketing, Jim Pedroncelli has been a quiet pioneer. Strategies he used to build Pedroncelli in the marketplace have since been adopted by wineries throughout California and beyond, to the benefit of wine consumers everywhere.
Born at the winery in 1932, Jim remembers Pedroncelli's earliest wine sales. "We sold in bulk to other wineries, but also sold barrels to stores and individuals until about 1947. It wasn't unusual for a family to purchase a barrel and keep it in their cellar. We also had customers drop by the winery to fill their jugs from barrels."
Jim helped out in both the cellar and the vineyards until he left for college. He attended St. Mary's College near San Francisco, where he studied economics and business. After graduating in 1954, he spent two years in the Army before returning to the family winery. He soon took over marketing and sales responsibilities at Pedroncelli.
"The winery began selling wine in gallon and half gallon bottles in the mid-1950s; mostly blends, but also Zinfandel Rosť and Zinfandel. Demand for premium varietals in fifths began to grow in the 1960s, so we we made our first Cabernet Sauvignon in 1965. By 1970, we were offering a full line of premium wines, including Cabernet, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc."
On Jim's recommendation, Pedroncelli was among the first wineries to use Sonoma County as an appellation on its label. "Sonoma County wasn't well known then, so having the appellation on our labels distinguished our wines."
He has kept Pedroncelli sales moving forward in recent years with new packaging and new wines such as Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc, but Jim's marketing philosophy remains simple. "I want customers to appreciate our wines for their quality and their value. Ours are wines that are easy to enjoy in more ways than one."
Pedroncelli Winery & Vineyards / 1220 Canyon Road / Geyserville, CA 95441 / 707- 857-3531 / (800) 836-3894
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