Leonard Wine Company
Napa Valley AVA
It was on this trip that Tom developed a deep appreciation for the ‘Old World’ wines of Europe and it instilled in him a lifelong dream of producing his own wine in the classic style.
A father-son team dedicated to crafting classically styled Roussanne and Zinfandel from distinguished Northern California vineyards, Leonard Wine Company was founded in 2014 by Tom and Chris Leonard. From the beginning, Tom and Chris set out to do something different, wanting to make high-end, luxury wine using California grapes and European winemaking techniques - and everything about the brand is absolutely firstclass. Now in its sixth year, Leonard Wine Company is producing roughly 1,000 cases per year of elegant, vineyard-designate wines from Napa and Sonoma Counties and their future is looking especially bright.
Tom Leonard was first exposed to wine by his grandmother who owned a very successful catering business in St. Louis, Missouri, and later a French restaurant, Chalet de Normandie. Although Tom earned his B.S. in Finance, he pursued his interest in fine wine by finding local mentorships at revered restaurants and, after graduating from college, he traveled throughout Europe where he visited some of the best wine regions in the world. It was on this trip that Tom developed a deep appreciation for the ‘Old World’ wines of Europe and it instilled in him a lifelong dream of producing his own wine in the classic style.
Tom went on to work alongside his father, Bud Leonard, for the next 40 years at W. T. Leonard & Associates, a ‘Manufacturer’s Rep Firm’ to represent the most respected brands in the plumbing industry. He excelled in professional salesmanship and general management roles and became president of the company in 1987. When he and his father stepped away from the business in 2012, it allowed Tom to take on a new challenge of launching a family winery with his son, winemaker Chris Leonard.
Chris Leonard was also exposed to wine at an early age, growing up in St. Louis, Missouri, and experiencing childhood family dinners paired with exceptional wines. Discovering the synergy created between structured wine and cuisine led Chris to pursue a career in fine winemaking. Over the years, Chris has studied under a Master Sommelier, ‘chased’ harvests from Napa Valley, to New Zealand, to Piedmont, Italy, and back, and he has worked under several seasoned winemakers at the following world-class wineries: Joseph Phelps, Spottswoode, Claiborne & Churchill, Vidal, Ceretto, Cakebread, Rustridge, Anomaly, Zeitgeist, Keever, and Vellum.
When Tom and Chris established Leonard Wine Company together, they decided to focus on Zinfandel, which is native to California, and Roussanne, which is less-known in the United States and typically used for blending. Their wines are classically structured and made with ‘Old World’ European techniques, which results in distinguished, elegant, food-friendly wines. Tom and Chris are also accompanied by an accomplished Napa Valley Chef, Josh Wheeler, who creates exquisite food pairings for the Leonard family wines. We are proud to present this Leonard Wine Company wine to our Garagiste Wine Club members and hope you enjoy it. Cheers!