Wolf & Woman is an exciting project created in 2019 by Swartland native, Jolandie Fouché. Her goal with Wolf & Woman is to produce wines that reflect her origins by focusing on the magic of the old vines in the Swartland (and certain beautiful pockets of the Voor-Paardeberg and Piekenierskloof) that provide an exceptional expression of the schist, granite and iron soils in which it grows. Jolandie spent her early childhood roaming the vineyards around her house despite not growing up in a winegrowing family. She went to Elsenburg for winemaking studies and today she uses the knowledge she has gained through working as a winemaker in Australia and California, as well as her home, South Africa.
A few years ago, Jolandie’s husband Gustav sent her a quote that reminded him of of her. It read, “some days I am more wolf than woman and I am still learning to stop apologizing for my wild.” A while later she was at the airport and while waiting to board, she went into a book shop and saw the book “Women Who Run with the Wolves” by Clarissa Pinkola Estés. She immediately thought about that quote that Gustav had sent her and bought the book. After reading it, her eyes were opened to the fact that the ‘wild woman’ is naturally creative, passionate and instinctive – all requisite characteristics for a winemaker.
There are many parallels that can be drawn between women and wolves. Loyal, protective, wild and beautiful, both know the unknowable and sense the unseen. This range of wines is inspired by the fierce, untamed nature of these glorious creatures – and Clarissa Pinkola Estés, who first put it into words.
Jolandie produces wines that of course she likes to drink and ultimately reflects these untamed ideals. She only works with select growers with whom she carries special relationships. The vineyards are all sustainably farmed and the fruit is hand-harvested. The whites are made with a large amount of lees contact while the reds see bits and pieces of whole-clusters. All fermentations are carried out without any additions except a touch of sulfur, and the wines are made without anything being taken away in order to highlight the intensity of the site and grape. In Jolandie’s words, she merely steps in as an “interpreter of the wine’s natural song.”