Customers are increasingly interested in all aspects of the wine making process and we now focus on adding wines that are organic/biodynamic and vegetarian/vegan to our portfolio – all excellent wines (tried and tested!) to suit different tastes and budgets.
Organic wine: To achieve organic certification, the vineyard has to adhere to organic practices for a minimum of 3 years and then subsequently, undergo an annual audit. It has to meet strict guidelines stipulated by the relevant country. One of the key aspects is vineyard management – no pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or chemical fertilisers are allowed in the vineyard and the vines and grapes must be allowed grow naturally. Additionally, no added colour, artificial or synthetic preservatives are used.
Biodynamic wine: this goes further than organic wine by managing the vineyard cycle according to nature and the cycle of the moon. This is based on the writings of Rudolf Steiner, an Austrian philosopher, who believed that the best fruit could only be grown if the vineyard ecosystem was in balance with nature.
During the winemaking process, many wines are filtered using a process called ‘fining’. This removes unwanted particles and ensures the wine looks clear and bright. This process can use a number of methods and these define whether wine is classed as vegetarian or vegan.
Vegetarian: wines fined with casein (a milk protein) and albumin (egg whites) are usually acceptable to vegetarians.
Vegan: There are a number of animal friendly products available for fining wine, the most commonly used are clay based products such as Bentonite. No dairy, fish or animal products are used in the process.