Some exciting news for all us Organic Wine lovers!!
A large supermarket chain stated recently “We have seen a really strong increase in demand for organic wines in the last year”. According to the latest report from accreditation body the Soil Association, the UK organic food and wine market worth £2.2 billion, with supermarket sales rising by over 4%, double the growth of the mainstream food and wine market. The market for organic wine in the UK is expected to rise by 14% this year, according to the data published by Millésime Bio. Mellésime Bio reported recently that France, with 70,740 organic hectares, registered 467 new organic winegrowers in 2017, compared to 343 in 2016, 227 in 2015 and 170 in 2014.
Lee Holdstock of the Soil Association added: “Organic wine is going through a really buoyant period, with growth that is 10 times higher than non-organic wine. Higher certification standards for organic wine mean it is low in sulphates, while research shows that organic crops and products – including organic red wine – have higher levels of antioxidant-rich bioflavonoids. Choosing organic also means helping to protect our vital wildlife and reducing exposure to potentially harmful pesticides and chemicals”.
Sulphites in Organic wine explained;
The USDA has three levels of organic certification that can appear on wine bottles: “100% organic,” “organic” and “made with organic grapes.” Each of these has standards for the number of organic ingredients that must be in the wine (100% organic ingredients, at least 95% and at least 70%, respectively). The main difference between these three categories is the number of sulfites in the wine. To quickly explain what the purpose of sulfites is; They preserve the wine to prevent it from spoiling, oxidizing and ageing too quickly—it is probably the most controversial ingredient in the wine world, and there is a lot of confusion about it on the consumer side.
People often blame sulfites for causing hangovers, but…there is no medical research data showing that sulfites actually cause headaches! Sulfites are also used in plenty of other foods; The main reason we use them is to keep dried fruit from browning. If you eat dried apricots and don’t get a headache, then you can you drink organic wine and not get a headache because of sulfites.
If you’re looking to start your Organic wine journey, then why not start with some examples from Pull The Cork? Below are some examples for you, all are low on sulphur, histamines and tannins;
Organic White Wine
The Mica Vinho Verde is a wonderfully refreshing organic wine. It has an exceptional sappy, herbal and mineral backbone, coupled with lively green apple and citrus acidity. This wine is lovely dry and vibrant on the finish ‘Mica’ is full of genuine character. There is a slight spritz on the palate which livens things up, creating a fine aperitif, or better still, a fabulous partner for seafood. For the full Portuguese experience, try it with some bacalhau (salt cod).
Organic Red Wine
Painted Wolf Pinotage The Den 2015 is ONLY £11.50!! For a wine of this price, the results are amazing!! The grape variety is 100% Pinotage, harvested from the Langvlei and Leeuwenkuil vineyards on the Agter Paarl / Swartland border. The Painted Wolf Pinotage is organically a certified Pinotage, It’s produced from grapes that were sourced from the Kasteelsig vineyard which is owned by Painted Wolf Pack members Billy (Guillermo) and Penny Hughes. The site is primarily red Glenrosa soil with some Oakleaf, both shale-rich duplex soils, and the vines are not irrigated. Kasteelsig supplies grapes for some of South Africans top boutique wines.
The Painted Wolf Pinotage is an intense fruit-packed wine with a smorgasbord of red and black summer berries, savoury spice and toasty wood flavours. The wine has fine bright tannins and a long fresh finish.
Organic Rosé Wine
Chateau Fontainebleau Ma Cuvée Rosé 2017 is produced using only biodynamic and organic methods.
The Ma Cuvée Rosé exhibits a pale and radiant colour. The nose emits beautiful notes of white peach and citrus creating a delightful aroma with just a hint of spice. On the palate, the wine is straightforward and long, noticeably fresh with a mineral finish and a delicate hint of bitter citrus zest.
Organic Sparkling Wine
Domaine La Calmette Nyctalope Pet Nat 2017 is produced at La Calmette. This estate was founded by Maya Sallee and Nicolas Fernandez, a young couple who in 2015 came across various parcels in the Trespoux-Rassiels subzone of Cahors and started making their own wines in the 2016 vintage. Although Maya and Nicolas’ approach in the cellar is very minimal and hands-off, striving for no additions whatsoever, their technical background helps them to craft natural wines of ultimate precision. Maya used to work in an analysis lab in Alsace and consulted with the likes of Patrick Meyer, Christian Binner, Pierre Frick etc, so whilst most decisions are ultimately based on feeling, there is a scientific backbone to rely on when needed.
This exciting new Domaine currently produces two blended wines, three single vineyard cuvees, and a Petillant Naturel made from 100% Malbec.
The Calmette Nyctalope is a sparkling Malbec! Hailing from Cahors in Southwest France, this is Malbec as you’ve probably never seen it. Lean, perfumed, spicy, all within a dry natural sparkling wine (or ‘Pet Nat’). Fine bubbles and no added sulphites, this one is sure to go down a treat.
Organic Orange Wine
Domaine Kalathas Notias Aspro Potamisi 2016 hails from Greece. Domaine Kalathas Notias Aspro Potamisi 2016 is the fruit of the labours of Jerome Charles Binda, a former graphic designer and an art dealer in France. In 2011 he decided to come to Tinos and become a farmer and a winemaker. Committed to producing the finest expression of the island’s granitic non-phylloxera sandy terroir, he applies manual techniques in the vineyards and the cellar. Organic-certified, he is building his own interpretation of biodynamic wines with patience and humility.
The Notias Aspro Potamisi is superb. Jerome Charles Binda is making truly remarkable wines on this tiny Greek island. This full-bodied orange wine is made according to biodynamic and natural winemaking principles. We love these heroes here at Pull The Cork and this wine is well worth the purchase.