Wine

The Best Organic Wines To Serve This Thanksgiving And How To Track Them – Forbes

Summary

Thanksgiving dinner with organic wine

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Whether you are dining on turkey, ham, or a vegan feast for the Thanksgiving holiday, there is always room for several bottles of wine at the table. And given the current trends for wellness and transparency, organic and other “green-label” wines may be the best choice. But how do you track down wines produced organically, and what do all of the certifications really mean?

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Thanksgiving dinner with organic wine

getty

Whether you are dining on turkey, ham, or a vegan feast for the Thanksgiving holiday, there is always room for several bottles of wine at the table. And given the current trends for wellness and transparency, organic and other “green-label” wines may be the best choice. But how do you track down wines produced organically, and what do all of the certifications really mean?

Organic Wines Vs. Natural, Sustainable, and Biodynamic

Grocery stores, wine shops and online retailers offer hundreds of different wines, but many will have a section where certified organic and other “green-label” wines can be found. Also, many certified wines will list this on the label. Here are some simple definitions:

  • Wine made with organic grapes – the grapes were farmed without any artificial fertilizers or chemicals. Often certified by CCOF in the US. 
  • Organic wine in Europe – wine made from organic grapes with up to 100 mg/L sulfites allowed to be added for red wines and 150 mg/L sulfites for white wines. Usually labeled as BIO wines. 
  • Organic wine in the US – wine made from organic grapes with NO added sulfites. Very rare because difficult to stabilize.
  • Biodynamic wines – beyond organic in that all artificial products are prohibited, and incorporates a systems perspective with animals, herbs, minerals, and seasonal practices. Certified by Demeter.
  • Sustainable wines – use of environmentally friendly practices in the vineyard and winery, as well as concern for community and employees. May use synthetic materials (only the least harmful) if they could lose the crop. Multiple certifying agencies.
  • Natural wines – wine made from organic grapes and natural yeast with no additions except for a small amount of sulfites. No official designation in US yet, but INAO certification in France.
  • Sulfites – Sulfites are substances that naturally occur in some foods and the human body. They are also used as regulated food additives. Dried fruits have many more sulfites than wine.

Some Organic and Biodynamic Wine Brands for Thanksgiving

According to a recent OIV report, only 6% of certified organic wine is produced globally. For biodynamic certified wine, it is even less. Given that both certifications require at least 3 years of documentation, proving that no chemicals were used in the vineyard, and fees that average around $3000 per year, it is understandable that not all vineyards are certified. However, a good number of vineyard owners farm organically, but they cannot put this on the label, unless they are certified. Following are four wine brands that are certified and large enough to find in the US market.

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Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/lizthach/2021/11/17/organic-wines-for-thanksgiving/