george wine company

Owner(s) George Levkoff
Web site www.georgewine.com
 
Link to this site

Regular readers of the PinotFile will know the story of george wine company. George Levkoff had his wine epiphany when a friend brought a 1991 and 1992 Williams Selyem Rochioli Vineyard Pinot Noir to share at dinner. Four years later, he left his job as a bond trader and headed to Sonoma County. He interned at Williams Selyem from 1999 to 2002, learning the winemaking process. He also worked at the smaller Brogan Cellars which was more closely modeled after the type of winery he hoped to have for himself. With grapes from David Hirsch of Sonoma Coast’s Hirsch Vineyard, he released 150 cases of his inaugural Pinot Noirs in 2003 (Block 3A from the Pommard clone and Block 4A from the Mt. Eden clone). The wines immediately caught the attention of top sommeliers at restaurants in Las Vegas and New York and his Pinot Noir has become quite a cult wine.

I have been a fan from the beginning, entranced by the elegance and sensuality that his wines exhibit. George in a one-man show performing every step of winemaking from sorting to bottling, marketing and delivering. The wines are highly allocated to an eager mailing list with very limited retail distribution.

Reviewed Wines

2013 george Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $50. · Moderate reddish purple hue in the glass. Aromas of cherry tart and beef brisket. Although a blend of vineyard sources, the wine seems to have a large percentage of Hansen Vineyard with its telltale fecal note. Smoky oak envelopes the modest black cherry core which is supported by substantial tannins. Score: 87. Reviewed December 10, 2014 ARTICLE »

2013 george Buena Terra Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.8% alc., 148 cases, $60. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Enticing aromas of Bing cherry, rose petal, and baking spices including nutmeg. Soft and smooth on the palate, with a giving essence of cherry flavor. Nicely balanced with supple tannins, seamless oak integration, and a cherry-laden finish. Definitely more appealing the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Score: 91. Reviewed December 10, 2014 ARTICLE »

2013 george Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 257 cases, $60. · Moderate ruby red and slightly cloudy in the glass. Dancing aromas of red berries, red plums, pomegranate and seagrass. Light to medium in weight with flavors of strawberry, cherry, red plum and brown spice. Oak plays a significant role and needs time to integrate. More flavor intensity the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Score: 88. Reviewed December 10, 2014 ARTICLE »

2013 george Hansen Vineyards Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 148 cases, $60. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Distinctive aromas of black cherry, sweet manure, dark chocolate and smoky oak. A terroir-driven wine with its signature fecal character in the background. Silky on the palate and very well crafted, with balanced tannins and a delicious black cherry essence. This is a wine with personality and one unlike any you have ever tasted. The best Hansen Vineyard Pinot Noir from george to date. Score: 93. Reviewed December 10, 2014 ARTICLE »

2013 george Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., 148 cases, $60. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. The nose is generously endowed with lovely aromas of black cherry, dark rose petal, conifer forest and a hint of oak. The mid weight essence of Bing cherry really impresses on the mid palate, carrying over with lushness and length on the finish which lasts at least 30 seconds. Very juicy, with hints of black raspberry and oak vanillin. Substantial youthful, dry tannins guarantee age ability. Score: 92. Reviewed December 10, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 George Vintage X Buena Tierra Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 165 cases, $60. Inaugural release from this vineyard which is adjacent the Russian River and across the river from Rochioli Vineyard. Dijon clones. Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Lovely perfume of fresh · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Lovely perfume of fresh Bing cherries, dark rose petals and spice. Lush and plush on the palate, filling the mouth with overreaching sappy fruit bling, featuring flavors of dark cherries, black raspberries, cola and baking spices. Beautifully composed with balanced tannins. This wine really grabs your attention and holds on. Score: 94. Reviewed January 20, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 George Vintage X Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 165 cases, $60. Vineyard owned and farmed by the Martinelli family. Dijon clones. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of fresh squeezed black cherry juice and cherry-soaked oak. On entry there is a burst of cherry flavor complimented by spice and cola, with the beguiling fruit carrying its weight through the generous finish. Great balance, fruit purity and fortitude. Score: 92. Reviewed January 20, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 George Vintage X Lera’s Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.0% alc., 165 cases, $60. Pommard and Dijon clones. · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. Very aromatic with hi tone scents of black cherry, Moroccan spices, tobacco-laden oak and a hint of barnyard. Impressive fullness on the mid palate with layers of black cherry, black raspberry, tar and tobacco flavors. Nicely composed with balanced tannins and a spicy, black cherry finish that entices. Score: 91. Reviewed January 20, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 george Vintage IX Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Sonoma County Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 299 cases, $50. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Shy cherry aromas with a prominent contribution of smoky, toasty oak. Juicy flavors of raspberries, cherries and cola with a mild tarry, barnyard riff probably reflecting the contribution of Hansen Vineyard. Welcoming balance with easy drink ability, picking up more fruit interest over time in the glass. I prefer the 2010 vintage of this wine. Decent. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2011 george Vintage IX Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Sonoma County Pinot Noir

13.9% alc.,157 cases, $60. · Medium reddish-purple hue in the glass. Enticing aromatic presence with scents of fresh black cherries, dark currants and spice. Delicious core of moderately rich dark red berry, plum and black cherry flavors with complimentary notes of spice and cola. Well-balanced tannins, focused acidity, and a very appealing crisp and juicy finishing note like biting into a fresh, cold, plump cherry. Very admirable effort in a difficult vintage. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2011 george Vintage IX Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Sonoma County Pinot Noir

13.3% alc.,199 cases, $60. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. A terrific expression of Pinot Noir with hi-tone aromas of fresh, spiced black cherries and a discreetly concentrated core of black cherry and black raspberry flavors. The nose really makes you stop and take notice. Very approachable with gentle tannins and a good cut of acidity on the citrus-hued finish. There is a very slight vegetal note in the background, reflecting some lack of ripeness. Still the wine is a beautiful expression of the vintage and Very good. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 george Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 195 cases, $50. The name refers to the lack of nightlife in Healdsburg when the sun goes down and George’s gift for humor. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Slightly confected aromas of cherries, red raspberries, fruit punch and spice. Light in weight and easy to drink, offering the essence of fresh cherries with a subtle earth and herbal accent. Very soft tannins and bright acidity. Good (+). Reviewed April 4, 2012 ARTICLE »

2010 george Vintage VIII Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 195 cases, $50. A blend of Ceremonial, Hansen and Leras Vineyards. · Deeply perfumed nose of black cherry pie glaze. Mid weight flavors of black cherries, dark red berries, cola and spice with a moderately firm tannic backbone and some finishing intensity. Has gained some power since last tasted almost a year ago. Good (+). Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 george Vintage VIII Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc.,195 cases, $60. · Moderately light reddish-purple hue in the glass. Beguiling dark, deep cherry perfume. A clear standout that seduces from the get go, offering moderately rich flavors of black cherries, red plums, and cola wrapped in fur coat tannins. Softly textured with bright acidity and admirable length on the refreshing finish that draws you back for another sip. A ripper. Reviewed April 4, 2012 ARTICLE »

2010 george Vintage VIII Hansen Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.6% alc., 195 cases, $60. I have never been fond of george’s bottling from this vineyard which sits next to a dairy farm and smells and tastes a little bit like poop. A wine critic once said, “Good Burgundy smells like shit,” so this must be good and many sommeliers relish the Pinot Noir from Hansen Vineyard. The 2010 vintage is the best I have sampled from this vineyard going back several years. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of black cherries, barnyard and old shoe. Middleweight flavors of dark cherries and black raspberries with a subtle note of fecal matter in the background. Well-proportioned tannins and good acidity make for a balanced wine. A distinctly different wine that is the ultimate reflection of terroir, smelling and tasting like the cow waste adjacent the vineyard. A very unique wine for the adventuresome Very good. Reviewed April 4, 2012 ARTICLE »

2010 george Vintage VIII Hansen Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 195 cases, $60. A terroir-driven wine that is quite distinctive. This vineyard sits next to a dairy farm and has a smell and taste of cow waste which many find very appealing, including many sommeliers. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of black cherries, dark chocolate, toasty oak, sweet smoke, and barnyard. The wine has a signature smoky, fecal note in the background with middleweight fruit flavors of dark cherries and raspberries. Well-crafted with mild but adequate tannins and good uplifting acidity. Not my preferred cup of tea but I can respect it for what it is. Good (+). Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 george Vintage VIII Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 195 cases, $60. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of fresh cherry pie, baking spice and dried rose petals rise out of the glass. A charming wine that is light in weight but full-flavored with notes of redder cherries and berries, Chinese 5-spice and herbs, finishing with a spark of citrus driven acidity. A gentle, graceful wine. Very good (+). Reviewed April 4, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 george Vintage VII Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 208 cases, $700 a case. Farmed by the Martinelli family. · Effusive aromas of blackberries, plums, mocha and oak spice. Luscious and full-flavored, classy and polished, with a long, generous finish. Elegantly crafted exhibiting finesse over fruit heaviness, with charming flavors of dark stone fruits, ripe berries and plum reduction sauce accented by a hint of peppery spice and game. Each sip leaves you begging for more. Reviewed March 2, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 george Vintage VII Hansen Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 185 cases, $700 a case. George says this vineyard is influenced by the adjacent dairy farm and is a favorite on the East coast and among French sommeliers who treasure the smell of fumier. · The nose lacks fruit, offering aromas of oak cask, aged wood, barnyard and wet earth. On the palate, the savory dark red fruit flavors are subdued with an underpinning of tar, earth, and bright hi-tone acidity. Decent. Reviewed March 2, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 george Vintage VII Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.2% alc., 185 cases, $700 a case. · Muted, but very pleasing scents of exotically spiced berries and black cherries. The flavor profile follows in step with a persistent, grippy finish that is memorable. Flat-out delicious with a fresh and lively texture on the palate. Grand Cru quality. Reviewed March 2, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 george Vintage VII Martaella Vineyard and King Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 185 cases, $700 a case. Pommard clone. · Moderately deep reddish-purple color. Highly perfumed with an array of fresh berries, fresh and dried rose petals and spice. Flavors of wild berry soup that are crisp, juicy and viscous, coating every nook and cranny in the mouth. Supple tannins enrobe the vibrant fruit which unfurls in waves on the finish. A knockout. Reviewed March 2, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 george Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 315 cases, $50. Farmed by the Martinelli family. · The wine draw you with aromas of Bing cherry, strawberry, wooded forest, seasoned oak and spice. Delicious cherry essence that is rich, full and lip-smacking. Exotic Asian spices, nutmeg and white pepper add accents and the cherry-driven finish is a winegasm. Even better six hours after opening. This is the signature george Pinot that really wants all of your attention. Reviewed December 16, 2009 ARTICLE »

2008 george Hansen Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

83 cases, $50. There is a story behind this wine. george says people either like it or hate it with no in between. Recently he sampled a noted French sommelier on this wine. The sommelier said, “This smells like shit. I’ll take a case.” Fred Hansen farms this vineyard which is located adjacent a cow pasture, accounting for the unique terroir-driven character. Composed of Dijon and Pommard clones. · This wine is replete with barnyard smells and tastes of fecundity. I am sure the Burgundians would love this wine but I am not a fan. There is a solid nucleus of cherry and berry fruit and the wine is well-crafted but its just not my cup of tea. Decent. Reviewed December 16, 2009 ARTICLE »

2008 george Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

83 cases, $50. A favorite in Vegas. · This is the densest wine in the lineup with oodles of purple, even meaty, fruit. Everything is pulled together nicely with a deft touch of oak and well balanced acidity. The rich fruit steals the show, but the wine is focused like a laser, leaving a seductive, satisfying and lingering impression. Very good. Reviewed December 16, 2009 ARTICLE »

2008 george Martaella Vineyard and King Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 130 cases, $50. A 50/50 blend of the two vineyards that are adjacent properties on Hartman Road. Because of lack of frost protection, over half of the crop was lost from these two vineyards in 2008 so the grapes were fermented together. Pommard clone. · On the fruity nose there are bright oak-infused aromas of black cherries and berries. Moderately rich core of ripe berries with a savory overtone. Still closed, opening gradually in the glass. Supple ripe tannins, tasty supporting oak and admirable delicacy. A solid wine which will get showier with time. Decent (+). Reviewed December 16, 2009 ARTICLE »

2008 george Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 250 cases, $50. A blend of grapes from Bacigalupi Vineyard on Westside Road (70%) and Ceremonial Vineyard (30%). · The nose is captivating with its scents of cherries, wood shavings, sandalwood and brown spice. The medium-weighted red cherry and berry fruits are subtlety spiced and tinged with cola. Oak plays a supportive role. Soft, smooth and way too easy to drink. The most approachable Pinot Noir in the lineup and prototypical Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. Very Good. Reviewed December 16, 2009 ARTICLE »

2008 george Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 250 cases, $50. · Very typical of Russian River Valley Pinot Noir displaying aromas of deep red cherries, wood shavings, sandalwood and brown spice. Generous but discrete herb-inflected and spiced cherry and raspberry fruit clothed in supple tannins. Goes down easy with a soft and smooth riff of tasty fruit. Very good (-). Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2008 george Vintage VI Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 315 cases, $50. · A signature george Pinot. Welcoming aromas of fresh cherry cobbler, wooded forest, spice and seasoned oak. Layers of flavors including cherries, raspberries, nutmeg, white pepper, and exotic Asian spices. Rich, full and lip-smacking with impressive persistence on the back end. The fruit really grabs your attention. A cherry lollapalooza. Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2008 george Vintage VI Maratella Vineyard & King Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 130 cases, $50. A blend of 50% from each vineyard. · A fruity nose replete with blueberries and cherries kissed with oak. Moderately rich with tasty ripe berry flavors and a savory note. A solid wine that opens with time in the glass, showing admirable delicacy. This one will get showier over time. Good. Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 george Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 300 cases, $50. Formerly the Nuptial Vineyard, this vineyard is farmed by the Martinelli family. · Elegance personified with tasty red cherry, cola and spice flavors. Plenty of lively acidity on the finish pulls the drinker back to the glass. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george Hansen Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.6% alc., 85 cases, $50. This property was purchased by Fred Hansen · A more structured wine with a healthy attack of fruit on the palate. Earthy and a bit brambly and my least favorite wine in the lineup. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george King Family Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 85 cases, $50. 100% Pommard clone. · Relative light in color. This is a treat that begins with lovely crushed berry aromas and attacks the palate with tart cherry and berry flavors that are a little earth and cola toned. Supple tannins and no oak in sight. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george Leras Family Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 85 cases, $50. Primarily Dijon clones with some Pommard. George says Vegas loves this wine. · Intoxicating aromas of fresh cherry and raspberry fruit. I wanted to dive in. Medium-weighted, with juicy sweet fruit that is perfectly ripe. Clean and lively on the finish. This is one I could snuggle up to. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george Martaella Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 85 cases, $50. All Pommard clone. Formerly named the Benovia Vineyard on Hartmann Lane off Piner Ranch Road. · The biggest daddy in the lineup offering luscious and creamy dark stone fruit with well-spiced black cherry aromas. A showoff that will appeal to hedonists. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george Sonoma Coma Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 90 cases, $50. The name of this wine comes from Aziz, the General Manager of Charlie Palmer · This is the lightest in color and weight of the lineup. Still, there is plenty of charm here with substantial aromas of cherries, herbs and rose petals followed by a good swath of cherry fruit in the mouth. Dreamy texture and feminine in style. Reviewed November 2, 2008 ARTICLE »

2007 george Vintage V Ceremonial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 324 cases, $50. · Red fruits are underscored on the nose by scents of green pea, oak and vanillin. Dark red cherry, berry and plum flavors which demand attention. Silky in texture with a dry, fruity finish. Brimming with finesse and charm. Very good. Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2006 george Vintage IV Nuptial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., $50. · Light in color and light on the palate. Utterly seductive beginning with sexy cherry, raspberry and new oak aromas and flavors. A healthy acid backbone holds the package together nicely. Very good. Reviewed April 7, 2008 ARTICLE »

2006 george Vintage IV Nuptial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., 324 cases, $50. · Bright Bing cherry aromas with hints of Middle Eastern spices, cherry Life-Saver and a little good funk. Delicious essence of ripe cherries, raspberries, blueberries and cranberries. Juicy and vivid with gossamer tannins. Elegantly styled but packed with flavor. Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2005 george Vintage III Nuptial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 322 cases., $50. · Stunning nose initially featuring deep cherry aromas with a subtle whiff of clove spice. With time in the glass aromas of porto and charred wood take over. Lush tasting red cherry and berry core that picks up intensity over time in the glass. Beautifully balanced with bright acidity on the refreshing finish. Good richness and staying power. Very good. Reviewed April 23, 2010 ARTICLE »

2005 george Vintage IV Nuptial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

$50. George Levkoff is a Williams Selyem offshoot who crafts his Pinot Noirs in the image of those that Burt Williams produced in the early 1990s. He uses 100% new Francois Freres French oak but the oak is never intrusive. His Pinot Noirs are quintessential Russian River Pinot Noir and every year make my All American list. · Balance and finesse with power is the hallmark of george Pinots and this one is right in step. The aromatics feature crushed strawberries, dusty cherries, and spice. The flavors are long in the mouth and echo the aromas. A fine, velveteen texture is complimented byperfectly integrated tannins. A wine that caresses. Had to swallow this one. Reviewed July 7, 2008 ARTICLE »

2005 george wine company Vintage III Nuptial Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 322 cases, $50. · I went ga-ga over this one. Terrific and alluring aromas of Bing cherry, sandalwood, root beer and toast. Juicy flavors of cherry cola, mocha and spice including cinnamon and sassafras. Although light in color and body, it packs a wallop. Elegant, feminine and balanced beautifully. Pinot Noir all decked out in its finest lingerie. You’ll need a cold shower after drinking this one. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »