Let’s Wine: Pfendler Vineyards

Behind every good wine is a good story, and that’s no exception with Pfendler Vineyards.

Nestled in the hillsides of Sonoma Mountain, Pfendler Vineyards is a small, family-owned winery dedicated to cultivating the finest estate-grown grapes. Limited production offerings of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay capture the distinct qualities of our vineyards and the newly emerging Petaluma Gap region of the Sonoma Coast.

Vineyard panoramic
We had the honor of speaking with Kimberly, who continues the legacy of the late Peter Pflender, by putting passion and dedication into the craft. It’s truly an art, and we are thrilled to share the story of Pflender Vineyards with you.

“In 1992, Peter Pfendler planted the first vineyard on our family’s Sonoma Mountain ranch with the goal of creating beautiful, hand-crafted wines. Since then, we have planted three additional vineyards that flow from the peak of the mountain to its base. The maritime influence of the Sonoma Coast touches each of our vineyards differently, providing a broad palate of exceptional, cool-climate flavors.

While Peter is no longer with us, his vision is the guiding star for the quality and beauty of the wines that we produce, and we celebrate his memory with each vintage. My goals are to continue to grow the finest-quality grapes for our wines, to further Peter’s legacy of wildlife and land conservation, and to foster in our son, Nicholas, a love of our vineyard, our ranch, and in his father’s words, “this big, green, beautiful Earth.”~ Kimberly Pfendler

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What sets Pfendler apart from other wineries in the area?

Fine wine really does start in the vineyards, and ours are especially distinct. Our four Petaluma Gap vineyards flow from the top of Sonoma Mountain to its base, allowing a tremendous variety of sun, wind and foggy climates. This combination produces a beautifully complex range of flavors, aromatics and textures when blended together into the final wine. Another element of what sets us apart is that our winemaker, Greg Bjornstad, is also one of the Sonoma Coast’s best vineyard managers and consultants. He takes great pride in making elegant wine from our property out of the respect he holds for the land. He uses gentle practices in the winery to allow an honest expression of the fruit and an authentic sense of place.

We love the story of Peter’s vision for Pfendler, and you carrying it on now. How does it feel to produce a product that not only brings joy to others, but that is carrying on the mission Pfendler set out to do?

It is wonderful to enjoy the wines with family and friends and to know that Peter’s legacy and his vision for Pfendler are living on through our ranch, the vineyards and our son, Nicholas. I feel truly fulfilled and I believe Peter would have too.

The classy and elegant design of your wine bottles/label is extremely eye catching. What was the process to perfecting those?

I really feel that my personal background as a Hollywood creative executive in the film industry helped me effectively communicate my vision in a way that hopefully comes through to people as both honest and memorable. I set out to find a label designer that could capture the elegance I dreamt of for Pfendler. Michele Leblanc is an artist who was able to get to the heart of our story and translate it into a piece of artwork that was timeless and respected Peter’s legacy as well as our dream for the future. There is a very subtle watermark of the Polaris star, in the background of our label, a symbol that means a lot to us. Polaris is the name of the aviation company that Peter built from the ground up, and it went on to become the world’s largest at its time. Polaris is also called the North Star, the guiding light in the northern sky for thousands of years, just as our vision for Pfendler Vineyards has been my guiding light for the past few years. I love this symbolism.

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