The Roots of Peterson Winery
Peterson Winery is located on Dry Creek Road just north of Healdsburg, in the famous Dry Creek Valley of Sonoma County, California. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the geography of Northern California, Healdsburg and the Dry Creek Valley are about 75 miles north of San Francisco, and 15 miles from the Pacific Ocean coastline.
Peterson Winery grew out of the vineyards that now supply it with grapes. That may seem unusual, but Fred’s background is not just in winemaking, but also in grape growing, or viticulture. That is why he refers to himself as a winegrower. For Fred, making great wine is about the grapes — where and how they were grown, what the weather conditions were, and how the vineyards were managed during the growing season.
Fred came to Dry Creek Valley in 1983, working to find and develop world-class vineyard properties. It was an exciting time for Fred, being able to select ideal vineyard locations and then plant the appropriate grape variety and clone for each site. The vineyards Fred developed in Dry Creek Valley (Sonoma County), including on Bradford Mountain, began producing amazing fruit. The next step was a natural one; Fred wanted to make wine from the fruits of his labor (Sorry about the pun, it was too good to pass up).
In 1987, all the pieces fell into place for Fred, and he launched Peterson Winery. For nearly twenty years, the winery was located in an old, red barn tucked away in the vineyards off of Lytton Springs Road. It was beautiful place to make wine, but the antique structure began to show its age. In late 2005, Fred seized an opportunity to move into a newer facility on Dry Creek Road, at Timber Crest Farms. This new, more convenient location offers more offices and space, plus a room for visitors to taste the wines.
Over the years, Fred has befriended grape growers who share his goals and values; to grow grapes that reflect a sense of place. The Dry Creek Valley encompasses one of the greatest ranges of microclimates for such a small area in the world, making it possible to grow many grape varieties, with world-class quality. Peterson Winery now makes an average of 8000 cases annually, all in many small lots from the like-minded growers he now calls his friends.
Here are the wines Peterson produces:
- 3V White Blend- Vermentino, Verdelho, Vernaccia
- Agraria — a proprietary Bordeaux/Cabernet Franc varietal blend
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Cabernet Sauvignon Port- dessert wine
- Mendo Blendo – Petite Sirah based blend
- Muscat Blanc — Dessert Wine
- Petite Sirah
- Petit Verdot
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Sangiovese — Dry Creek Valley and Il Granaio
- Vignobles- Red Rhone Style Blend
- Zinfandels — Dry Creek Valley, Tradizionale, Bradford Mountain, Bernier Zinyard, Warren Ranch, & Old School
- Zero Manipulation — an old-fashioned red blend