Is Wine Vegan?
Since wine is made from grapes and grapes are vegan, shouldn’t wine be vegan too? No animal products here. Ah, all very logical but not so fast!
By the end of the winemaking process, wines are hazy and have tiny particles floating in them, such as proteins and tannins. They are not harmful but we LOVE our wine to be clear and bright. If the wine was left long enough, these little particles would fall to the bottom. But we don't have time for that!
So wine is clarified through a fining and filtering process. Winemakers use a variety of fining agents. These agents act like magnets and attract the floating particles. This creates fewer but larger particles, which can be more easily removed. Some common fining agents are milk proteins, egg whites, animal proteins and even fish proteins. Traces of these agents are absorbed into the wine and then, the wine is no longer vegan.
Luckily, many winemakers use clay based fining agents and activated charcoal. Wines clarified using these agents will remain vegan. Also, many winemakers are electing not to fine or filter and the bottle will indicate so but there will be some sediment at the bottom of the bottle and your glass!
Chateau de Selle
This famous rose is arguably responsible for putting rose on the map.
The story started in 1896 when Marcel Ott searched throughout France for a spot to make his rose wine. Ott decided upon Provence in the beautiful south of France. By 1912, Ott was able to purchase his first vineyard called Chateau de Selle. It was in the 1930s that the distinctive bottle was designed by Ott's son. The bottle was modeled after a clay amphorae used to store wine in ancient times. Everyone that loves Ott, loves the bottle too! Many others followed in Ott's footsteps leading to the creation of the Cotes de Provence appellation.
Domaines Ott describes the blend of grapes used in the Chateau de Selle as Cabernet Sauvignon which lends the wines a complexity, elegance and magnificent strength, Grenache which gives them a full-bodied texture, Cinsault which adds a delicately rounded touch, while Syrah gives the blends their rich color.
Cotes de Provence
This famous winery has a storied and star-studded past and present.
Miraval sits at the foot of Via Aurelia - an extensive route built to facilitate the expansion of Rome in the 3rd century BC. In the 14th century, it was home to members of the French Court. In 1970, the jazz-pianist and composer Jacques Louissier became the owner and turned it into a recording studio where Pink Floyd, Sting, Sade and other musicians recorded their music. As we all know, today's famous owners are still Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
Together with one of the leading French wine producing families, the Perrin family, Miraval produces high quality wines without herbicides, pesticides and chemicals. This rose is also in a bottle with a very beautifully distinctive shape.
Summer in a Bottle Rose
Originally a Long Island potato farm and
now, world class wines are produced on this land.
Just a few miles away from us, Wolffer produces wonderful roses that are synonymous with the Hamptons. The flagship dry Rosé is a lovely blend of six varieties and exudes pure and fresh aromas of peach and pear. Summer in a Bottle is a complex and balanced Rosé with loads of flavors and fruit complementing the wine’s natural vibrant acidity.
Once again, Summer in a Bottle is bottled in
an amazingly distinctive bottle!
Natural and Low Sugar Wines
There are some wine styles that are catching people's attention - in particular, natural wines and low sugar wines. Here’s a quick guide.
Natural Wines - There is no regulated definition but the term ‘natural wine’ usually refers to a wine made of grape juice and not much else. The grapes are organic, sustainably or biodynamically farmed and then they are hand-picked. Only native yeasts are used. No additional yeasts or other additives are added during fermentation. Usually, little or no sulfites are added. This results in a wine with a different flavor profile… a bit yeastier and a bit less fruity. Natural wines may also have a cloudy appearance.
Low Sugar Wines - During the fermentation process, the yeast eats the sugar in the grapes and produces alcohol. Any leftover sugar is referred to as residual sugar. The standard definition of “sugar free” wine is anything that is statistically sugar free, at 1 gram per liter or less residual sugar. Since residual sugar is not required to be listed on the label, opt for drier wines for less residual sugar.