California Wine Country 2019

Instead of The Drink of the Month, we have decided to do something different this month and focus on a Winery of the Month. For this issue we will focus on Thomas George Estates (TGE) located of Westside Rd. seven miles south of Healdsburg, California in the Russian River Valley. The Russian River is right across the street from the winery. My wife and I have had the pleasure of staying on this magical property several times and now feel like wine country would not be the same without a visit to TGE.

This year we had the pleasure of meeting Tom Baker, the owner of Thomas George Estates. Tom bought the property from Davis Bynum in 2008 with the belief that this was the best land to grow and produce Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In late 2008, TGE acquired Cresta Ridge and Starr Ridge, two vineyards owned by Gary Farrell, who was the winemaker for Davis Bynum. In 2010, an 8,000 square foot cave was completed for barrel aging, reserve tastings and private events. In late October of this year, we were lucky enough to sit down to a multi course wine paring dinner inside this cave. In 2012 TGE acquired a 50-acre vineyard in The Chalk Hill area, now called Sons and Daughters Ranch.

Tom was kind enough to share some of his great Chardonnays and Single Vineyard Pinot Noirs with us and our friends at our home in late summer. With my mom whipping up some wonderful food that paired with Tom’s wines, it made for a night we will not soon forget.
As I am writing this article the Kincaid fire has already burned 74,000 acres in this area. Please pray for the people and their families that live and work in these effected areas. If it was not for them, we would not be able to enjoy the great gift of California wine. If you ever get a chance to go to The Russian River Valley near Healdsburg, please stop by TGE. You will not be sorry!

Three highlighted produced by Thomas George Estates

Thomas George Estates Son’s & Daughters Ranch Chardonnay 2015

This wines is aged 10 months unoaked in 82% Stainless tanks and 18% in concrete egg vats. By not aging in oak, this Chardonnay really gives a crisp, clean acidity on the tongue that shows through bright green apple and pear flavors. 2,000 cases produced

Thomas George Estates Starr Ridge Vineyards Pinot Noir 2013
This 100% Pinot Noir is fermented for 11 months in French Oak Barrels (42% new). The aroma exhibits lots of strawberry and cherry with a hint on cranberry while on the palate, lots of red fruits, and soft mellow tannins. 400 cases produced.

Thomas George Estate Cresta Ridge Vineyards Pinot Noir 2013
This Pinot is aged the same as the Starr Ridge, but picked from vines grown in the Goldridge soils located in the Green Valley of Russian River. A wonderful wine by itself or pair it with grilled salmon.