The Mediterranean cultures know how to celebrate. A good meal and a good wine seem reason enough to call together the people that matter most. And that's how the Levendi legacy began—around the family table with laughter and a wish to produce something special and unique. We think that spirit is reflected throughout the vineyards, winery and within each bottle—a testament to our family and founders.
DAVID GIANULIAS: FOUNDER David Gianulias believes in the value of fine craftsmanship. That's why Levendi's smaller production lends to such large results. From start to finish, extreme care is taken each step of the way, with no detail left to chance. Though raised with winemaking in his blood, David originally followed a different path than his father, James, and embarked on a career in the entertainment industry after graduating from UC Santa Barbara. Using the entrepreneurial skills he gained from forming his own artist promotion and management firm, David became principal of the family's real estate company, founded in 1949. David oversees major property developments that include many award-winning communities across Southern California. He returned to his roots in wine and joined his father to launch Levendi, where he, with Todd Rustman, oversees the day-to-day operations of the winery.
TODD RUSTMAN: FOUNDER Todd Rustman cares about his customers—as much as he cares about his wine! So building special customer relationships begin with making sure that each bottle enjoyed shows a consistency that can be depended on time and time again. A life-long family friend, Todd teamed with James and David Gianulias to found Levendi. In addition to his career as co-founder of GR Capital Asset Management, a Newport Beach-based financial management firm, Todd assists in overseeing the organization's business operations as well as manages its long-term financial health. A graduate of Pepperdine University, Todd has traveled across the globe to hone his skills in the financial world and credits his many successes to his work ethic and passion for making every moment count.
JAMES GIANULIAS: FOUNDER Keeping alive the family traditions is important to founder James Gianulias. And the best way to accomplish this is by building a legacy through Levendi. A member of the world-renown Napa Valley's vintner's community for more than 30 years, James' career in wine is a result of his vast appreciation for fine varietals and his Greek roots in making wine for family. The entrepreneurial UC Berkeley graduate originally began his business career in property development and, over the past four decades, has created thousands of new homes and planned communities throughout California, Texas, Oregon and New York. After setting his sights on developing a family-owned winery in Napa Valley, Jim joined forces with his son, David, and family friend, Todd Rustman, to establish Levendi.
WINEMAKER: ALISON DORAN Every year presents new challenges in winemaking. That's because winemaking is indelibly—and eternally—tied to agriculture. Agriculture is unpredictable. And that's where Alison Doran's passion really begins—solving problems and producing remarkable results from her hand-harvested, hand-selected grapes. For more than 30 years, Alison has been walking the vineyards that produce the finest varietals in the region. Spending a majority of her time on vineyard management, she keeps an eye on every aspect of vine growth—limiting their vigor so that they produce the most concentrated and intensely flavored grapes. She developed her skill from mentoring by renowned wine expert Andre Tchelistcheff, completing a degree in winemaking from UC Davis and spending time in the legendary winery-filled region of Alsace, France. Since then Alison has honed her craft into a distinctive style all her own—harvesting at optimum ripeness, and making sure she gets the "pop & jump" out of every grape. At Levendi, Alison has brought vitality and excitement to the development of each vintage. The result of her labors is embodied in the exquisite taste and velvety feel our wines deliver glass after glass—a testament to Alison's dedication to the vineyards, to the fruit and to her passion for the perfect pour.
THE SUN. THE SOIL. THE CLIMATE. The vine is vital to wine. But how that vine grows may be the most important factor to crafting outstanding wines. Levendi produces and works with the best grapes from the finest vineyards in the Valley. Our efforts have proven worthwhile every time we open a bottle! Next time you pour a glass of our wine, look at it. Breathe it in. Taste it. There are countless hours spent walking the vineyards, checking the vines, hoping for the perfect combination of sun, temperature and rain. There you have it, in your hand the literal fruit of our labors. The grandest return of our careful investment. We make outstanding wine because our attention to detail is so great. We live in the vineyards. We know our vines. We hand-harvest our grapes. And we're committed to producing intriguing wines from using primarily French oak barrels.
THE SWEETWATER RANCH VINEYARD: The Sweetwater Ranch vineyard produces grapes with intense flavors and individuality that sets it apart from other Napa Cabernet vineyards. Located in the foothills of the Oak Knoll region, the cooler climate bodes well for less tannic, fruit-forward and easy-drinking Cabs.
THE STAGECOACH VINEYARD: The prestigious Stagecoach rests on the southern face of Pritchard Hill adjoining Eastern Oakville from an elevation of 900' climbing to over 1700'. It boasts a collection of the best selections and clones of Cabernet Sauvignon in California. Cool fog rolls off the hills each morning during the summer and the sun shines on the vines for most of each day. This combination of cool nights and lengthy warm days allows for great complexity.
Stagecoach Vineyard has a strong imprint on Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine has the typical aromas of mountain sage, blackberry, and warm cedar spice. Sleek and plush, the palate is evolving beautifully, with briar berry fruit, black licorice, and clean saddle leather blending seamlessly. The tannins are elegant, and structural arches support the ripe fruit.
POS Documents (shelf talkers, case cards, spec sheets, etc.)
The 2009 growing season was cool after heavy spring rains. Beautiful ripening cycles in September with hot afternoons and foggy mornings. October rains are always better up in the mountains where the drainage is fast and the storms always drop less rain. Harvest took place on October 23rd.
"Very vivid, with a proud display of blueberry, açai berry and blackberry puree flavors streaming through, carried by a rich and polished structure while melted licorice and graphite notes score the finish. Powerful and extracted in style, but shows terrific drive nonetheless. Best from 2020 through 2038.—J.M."
"Dark plums, blackberries, brambles, burnt oranges, licorice, ash and tar. Full-bodied with muscular, structured tannins, burnt-ash character, tangy acidity and a long, chewy finish. Drink in 2022." - James Suckling (May 2018), 93 pts
Tar and violets position in an initial formation that is simultaneously insistent and lush. A juicy flow of broad, inky strokes of tar, black strap molasses and basil paint a portrait of a strudy, long-lasting keeper."