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Gold Medal Wine Club
5330 Debbie Road, Suite 200
Santa Barbara, California 93111
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Tondre Wines - Salinas Valley

Gold Plus! selection - 92 points, Editor's Choice- Double Gold Medal

With nearly a century of combined farming experience in the Salinas Valley, Tondre Alarid and his son Joe founded Tondre Wines in 2003. They shared a vision of producing world-class Pinot Noir from the heart of the Santa Lucia Highlands, and today, their dream has most certainly come true.

Tondre Alarid grew up as a vegetable farmer and purchased a 450-acre property in the Santa Lucia Highlands back in the 1950’s. He raised his son Joe to be a part of the family business as well, and together grew sugar beets, beans, potatoes and broccoli.

In the mid 1990’s, Tondre noticed nearby growers starting to plant wine grapes and he was instantly intrigued by the idea. He asked a local wine grower for advice and in 1997, planted his first 6 acres of Pinot Noir. Tondre and Joe turned their little “grapefield” into a labor of love and enjoyed their first harvest in 2001.

Their timing couldn’t have been better! Pinot Noir was in high demand and the Santa Lucia Highlands was gaining some serious recognition as an appellation. The well-known David Bruce Winery purchased the Alarid family’s grapes and were so impressed with the quality, that they made a vineyard designate wine and added “Tondre Grapefield” to the wine’s label.

The Alarids had a habit of calling the vineyard a “grapefield” because of their experience with farming, and once David Bruce put “Tondre Grapefield” on the wine label, the name stuck. In 2003, Tondre and Joe established Tondre Wines and hired David Bruce’s winemaker, Anthony Craig. They named it after Tondre as a tribute to his farming guidance and his idea to plant the original grapefield.

Tondre Wines now produces nearly a thousand cases each year with a recent small addition of Chardonnay. Their tiny 6-acre vineyard has also grown to 100 acres, all located on the Alarid family farm in the Santa Lucia Highlands.

  1. Tondre
    2010 Chardonnay
    Santa Lucia Highlands
    Monterey County


    92 - James Suckling
    id: 1343