Sine Qua Non
Founded in 1994 by Manfred and Elaine Krankl in Ventura, on California's Central Coast, the winery is the epitome of an artisanal, cult winery. The husband-and-wife team makes mostly Rhone-style reds and whites in very limited quantities using such grapes as Syrah, Grenache, Pinot Noir, Roussanne, and Viognier. The couple pays meticulous attention to their winemaking and uses little or no fining or filtration. Robert M. Parker Jr. has called Sine Qua Non "one of the world's most creative wineries" and one that "is turning out world-class wines of extraordinary complexity and individuality. The Krankl husband-and-wife team remains wholly dedicated to the pursuit of perfection." Sine Qua Non is also unusual in that the Krankls like to give wild, sometimes outlandish names to their wines, and they often change wine names with each vintage. They have christened their wines with such names as "The Hussy" and "In Flagrante," and the labels generally are as distinctive as the wines.