Craven Wines Pinot Gris Stellenbosch WO 2022

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Craven Wines Pinot Gris Stellenbosch WO 2022
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Country South Africa
Region Stellenbosch
Appellation/Sub-Region Stellenbosch WO
Grapes Pinot Gris
Vineyard/Cellar Practices Organically Grown, Low-intervention/Natural Wine

Craven Wines is the eponymous project of Mick, an Australian, and his wife Jeanine, a South African, who met back in 2007 while each was working harvest far from their respective homelands, in Sonoma County, California. As the typical tale goes, the two kept in touch, fell in love and eventually ran off together to work (all around Australia, Europe, the US and South America), taste and learn all they could about winemaking and viticulture. By 2011, they decided to establish their own venture and settled near Jeanine’s family in Stellenbosch, South Africa, cranking out their first commercial vintage three years later. Today, they make “single site, single variety, honest grog”—balanced yet characterful, terroir-driven wines born from organic grapes and created with as little tinkering as possible in the cellar. (Fermentations are natural, a scant amount of sulfur is the only addition, and the wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered.) With just 440-ish of South Africa’s 49,000 vineyard hectares devoted to pinot gris, this expression is a bit of a rare bird, even for the Cravens, and man, is it a delicious one. A pretty amber-blush color in the glass thanks to six days of skin contact, it’s chewy and textural, with bright acidity giving way to vibrant strawberry, watermelon and rooibos tea flavors. Organically grown, low-intervention/natural wine.