About this WINE
Sine Qua Non Winery
Sine Qua Non is a California cult winery known for its sought-after Rhône style wine blends, produced in very limited quantites. The winery is located in Ventura County within the Central Coast AVA.
Manfred Krankl and his wife Elaine established the winery in 1994. Sine Qua Non's winery has been described by Robert Parker as "a Mad Max- junkyard dog sort of winery in one of the ugliest sections of Ventura.", while according to Antonio Galloni (Wine Advocate Aug 2011) "the wines that emerge from this site are often profound. The sheer drive for perfection and attention to detail at Sine Qua Non is something I have rarely witnessed anywhere else in the world."
Sourcing fruit from a wide variety of growers from year to year as Krankl follows his preferences, results in the winery to make different wines in each vintage.
In collaboration with Austrian winemaker Alois Kracher Manfred and Elaine Krankl have also produced sweet wines under the label "Mr. K"
The red wines are based on the grape varieties of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, and a whites made from Roussanne, Viognier and Chardonnay. Sine Qua Non used to produced a Pinot Noir until the 2005 vintage. In certain vintages, the winery has released a sweet white wine or a rosé wine.
Central Coast AVA is an all-encompassing appellation used for wines blended across several counties in the broader central coast viticultural region.
The associated counties (and their AVAs) are Alameda (Livermore Valley); Contra Costa; Monterey (Arroyo Seco, Carmel Valley, Chalone, San Lucas); San Benito (Cienega Valley, Lime Kiln Valley, Mount Harlan, Paicines); San Luis Obispo (Arroyo Grande, Edna Valley, Paso Robles, York Mountain); Santa Clara Valley (most of Santa Cruz Mountains, San Ysidro); and Santa Barbara (Santa Maria Valley, Santa Ynez Valley).
Grenache (Noir) is widely grown and comes in a variety of styles. Believed to originate in Spain, it was, in the late 20th century, the most widely planted black grape variety in the world. Today it hovers around seventh in the pecking order. It tends to produce very fruity, rich wines that can range quite widely in their level of tannin.
In many regions – most famously the Southern Rhône, where it complements Syrah and Mourvèdre, among other grapes – it adds backbone and colour to blends, but some of the most notable Châteauneuf du Pape producers (such as Château Rayas) make 100 percent Grenache wines. The grape is a component in many wines of the Languedoc (where you’ll also find its lighter-coloured forms, Grenache Gris and Blanc) and is responsible for much southern French rosé – taking the lead in most Provence styles.
Found all over Spain as Garnacha Tinta (spelt Garnaxa in Catalonia), the grape variety is increasingly detailed on wine labels there. Along with Tempranillo, it forms the majority of the blend for Rioja’s reds and has been adopted widely in Navarra, where it produces lighter styles of red and rosado (rosé). It can also be found operating under a pseudonym, Cannonau, in Sardinia.
Beyond Europe, Grenache is widely planted in California and Australia, largely thanks to its ability to operate in high temperatures and without much water. Particularly in the Barossa Valley, there are some extraordinary dry-farmed bush vines, some of which are centuries old and produce wines of startling intensity.
Antonio Galloni - 31/08/2011