Craig Hawkins is a young winemaker based in the Swartland, South Africa, where he makes delicious natural wines at his farm called Banditskloof.
Having travelled extensively throughout Europe, and then worked as wine maker for Lammershoek, he now makes makes a huge variety of different wines under his own Testalonga label and has his own vines at the beautifully named ‘Banditsskloof’ farm in Swartland. These are beautiful, natural hand-crafted wines from low yielding organic vines. Craig only uses wild ferments and nothing is added except a little SO2 at bottling in some but not all the wines and vintages.
Over the years, Craig has expanded his repertoire and now makes some 15 different Cuvee including some delicious Pet Nat sparklers. His wines continue to promote natural freshness, balance and quality and increasingly, a more precise and refined style. The superb El Bandito Skin Contact Chenin Blanc is a very different wine from 12 years ago when we first tasted it and much more elegant and easy drinking.