Peter and Ali
We’re not sure but we think we are the first wine-making partners to have met in a New York City public high school Chemistry class. That was back in 1980 and over the next dozen years we dated and broke up a number of times, and finally got smart and got married. While we were falling in love with each other, we also fell in love with wine, particularly red wine.
During a vacation to northern California in the fall of 1994, we spent a week in Sonoma and Napa counties riding bikes and tasting wine. After that, we knew we wanted to come back and we moved to San Francisco in 1995. In between new jobs and then having two daughters, we continued to taste and cycle around the valleys. Finally in 2001 we found our own little spot on the east side of the town of Sonoma. While the steep hill on which our property sits can be inconvenient after ice cream runs to town on foot, its rocky soil and protected valley does turn out some fabulous Syrah grapes. In short, its the perfect location for what we wanted to do…a small, organic, family winery where the wines are made with great care.
Since our love of wine and this wine-making adventure is a shared passion, we thought a combination of our names was appropriate in naming our vineyard. Hence, Petrali – a combination of Peter and Ali – was born.
As you might have guessed, two native New Yorkers who meet in Chemistry class might know a lot more about drinking good wine than making it. That’s why we have our winemaker, Kian, around to help us. Kian was most recently the winemaker at Clos Du Val where he ran the red wine program and prior to that was at Opus One.