Barberry Garden

A wine corner in a crazy world


El Bandito I am the Ninja - 2022


3.9 / 5.0

South Africa » Western Cape » WO Swartland
white ancestral sparkling, brut
Chenin Blanc
1050 UAH
not available
Find at
Testalonga El Bandito I am the Ninja 2022


3.9 / 5.0750 ml@Wix Kyiv Office · Norm Wines Vol. 3

What can I say? I love these bubbles. Easy to drink, easy to enjoy—no fuss, just bliss. But it's not mindlessly simple; it nicely combines fruits and yeast influence, resulting in a bouquet full of stone fruits, white flowers, fresh bread, and ice cream. Yes, it's on the sweeter side, but who cares when it's so quaffable and fresh?

Wine #7 on Norm Wines Vol. 3 event.

3.9 / 5.0750 ml@Wix Kyiv Office

Opening multiple bottles of this wine revealed intriguing, albeit expected, variations due to its production nuances. Each bottle showcases an expressive and generous bouquet, rich with stone fruits, white flowers, yeast, and ice cream. The palate is round and fresh, though some bottles exhibited sharper profiles than others. While not exceedingly complex, the wine is undeniably delicious, and it finishes with a notably long and flavourful aftertaste.

3.9 / 5.0750 ml@Garage · Rural Bubbles Party by Vova and Mykola

Consistently delicious bubbles. Aye, it's a bit sweet. But combined with good acidity, it makes a friendly wine to drink with or without food. Easy to understand and easy to enjoy.

Wine #5 on Rural Bubbles Party by Vova and Mykola event.

3.9 / 5.0750 ml@Elvira K

Some wines are here to make you happy. Some are even persistent in this quest. Some say the dogs are man's best friend. And I tend to agree while looking at the wine's label. Not naïve but pure. A simple pleasure. Liquid ice cream, lemon and yeast. Easy-going, quaffable and delicious.

3.9 / 5.0750 ml@Lo Bar · Heaven and Earth

Arguably one of the best Pet Nat you can find on the UA market. It's a liquidised ice cream. It's a pure pleasure. Yes, a simple one, but it's still a pleasure. Lemon, cream and yeast. Easy-going, quaffable and delicious.

Wine #1 on Heaven and Earth event.

3.8 / 5.0750 ml@Andrii S · Home Party Vol. 3

I tasted blind and didn't guess. I genuinely thought it was Crémant by Domaine de la Touraize. Why? Because I had a liquidised ice cream in my glass, that's why! And a tiny bit of lemon, yeast and coconut shavings (ok, that was a counterargument). A bit short aftertaste with a pleasant ice cream finish. Truly, a ninja.

Wine #4 on Home Party Vol. 3 event.


Craig & Carla Hawkins, without any doubt, are revolutionizing the South African wine industry. After long years of traveling around the world and making wines in known and established wineries (like Matassa and Niepoort Vinhos S.A.), Craig came to Swartland to work for Eben Sadie in 2006. Carla has been here since 1997.

Testalonga was established as a side-line in 2008. They produced 2 barrels of macerated Chenin Blanc. It is considered the first macerated wine in the whole of South Africa. They had to fight for the right to export their wines as regulators were against letting these wines out to the market. All those sediments and other traces of low intervention winemaking were quite suspicious back then. No surprises here, they figured that out. And today Craig and Carla are famous in the wine world.

In the 2015 they bough Bandits Kloof farm in the northern mountains of Swartland. Climate is similar to Sicilian, so they planted Frappato, Macabeo, Carignan, Mataro, Grenache and Garnacha Blanca.

Wines are not the only thing one can appreciate about Testalonga. Most of their bottles wear catchy labels of high-quality (e.g. paper and printing quality). It turns out Craig designs them all. He did art at school, but today he lacks time to paint. So he turned the labels into a canvas. Most of them are photos that friends or family have taken, which Craig then plays around to create various labels.

The Baby Bandito range was first released in 2015. All it requires is a proper label. And luckily, Craig found a perfect image in his brother's new house. The Baby Bandito photo is a picture his brother took of some street art in Cambodia. Craig just played around with it to make the little girl the focal point of the image, as she has a plaster on her finger. In addition, Craig overlaid it with quotes by Banksy - Keep on Punching, Stay Brave, Follow Your Dreams, and Chin Up.