Pheasant's Tears was founded in 2007 by John Wurdeman and Gela Patalishvili. John, a painter from New Mexico (US), came to Georgia in 1996 and bought a house there two years later to live there full-time. Gela was a vintner (who was part of the eighth generation of winemakers) in Sighnaghi who met John and after several long conversations with John decided to start making wine.
Pheasant's Tears produces wine made according to ancient Georgian traditions. The wines of Pheasant's Tears are made from indigenous grape varieties, which have been slowly but surely being cultivated and grown in Georgia since the fall of the Soviet Union. All wines are fermented, aged and stored in qvevris, dug-in amphorae. Some qvevris from Pheasant's Tears are even up to 300 years old: if properly preserved (and if they are kept moist) such a qvevri can remain intact for a long time.
According to Georgian traditions, Pheasant's Tears wines are generally made with a lot of skin contact; usually about 6 or 7 months. In some cases and with grapes from more western areas, the skin contact is shorter, but the wines of Pheasant's Tears are often characterised by that powerful structure that is derived from extensive maceration. What the common denominator is is that all wines are extreme; in aroma, mouthfeel, taste and uncompromising.