Levendi Winery is owned by the Gianulias’, a Greek family with a long tradition of making wine in Greece as well as in the Napa area. Their family has been making private wine for centuries in Greece and also for a number of years in the USA. James, the father, has a long background in property development and his son David and family friend Todd currently oversee the day to day operations of the winery.
The name “Levendi” in Greek essentially is a toast to “celebrate life”.
Winemaker Alison Doran has a degree in winemaking from UC Davis and spent time among the numerous wineries in Alsace, France. She was fortunate to have studied for many years under the famed viticulturist Andre Tchelistcheff. She has been a winemaker for more then 30 years, is Levendi’s founding winemaker and has made every vintage of their wines since day one.
While they do not own their own winery – their wines are available for tasting at Tasting Room at Napa Wine Company in Oakville (located just south of the famous Oakville Grocery). All their current releases are available for tasting. They also are featured in Antonello Ristorante, in the South Coast Village in Orange County’s. This restaurant contains the Levendi Wine Room – with numerous Levindi wines from various vintages.
Levendi concentrates on 100% varietal wines with the focus being Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon; in addition they typically will not blend multiple varietals into the same wine. They make two Chardonnays – the Red Hen Vineyard from the Wente clone which is known for its very small concentrated fruit and the other from Cold Creek on the Sonoma side of Carneros.
Our two favorite wines from Levendi are the Symphonia and Stagecoach Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignons. Both are elegant wines which come from grapes that are grown in entirely different areas. Symphonia is wine made from valley fruit contrasted with the Stagecoach fruit which is grown at an elevation of about 1500 feet.
NOTE: it has been years since we met with Levendi back when they were making their wine at Laird Estate. This review has been identified as needing a *major* update.