Vegan Wine – Common Questions and Misconceptions
There are many questions and misconceptions around Vegan Wine. Some people assume that all wine is vegan while other people believe that there are specific wines which are 100% Vegan. So, what exactly is Vegan Wine and is it for everyone?
Vegan Wine Questions and Myths
It is no secret that wine is made from grapes. The resulting drink is not inherently vegan, but there are a number of ways you can make it vegan friendly. And most producers are more than happy to help. For example, if you are interested in buying a bottle of wine that is not animal-derived, you may want to visit a vineyard that uses green composting materials to ensure you don’t get exposed to any nasty surprises.
A lot of wine makers have social media profiles on their websites, so you can connect with the good folks at the source of your choice if you want to. You may even want to check out a virtual wine tasting hosted by the likes of Martha Stewart. However, this is a small list, and the sheer volume of options can make finding the perfect wine a bit of a challenge. In the end, the best way to go about this is to just ask. Luckily, there are a plethora of sommeliers, foodies, and wine experts at your beck and call. As such, you’re more likely to find the right mix of options. With a little foresight, you should be able to have your cake and eat it too!
For starters, there is a wide variety of quality vegan wines to choose from. While you are at it, you may want to check out the many farms and restaurants that are proud to serve up plant based offerings.
Is All Wine Vegan?
While the production of wine has been around for thousands of years, it’s difficult to say that all wines are vegan. Many vintners use natural alternatives to achieve a more animal friendly wine.
Wine is a fruit based alcoholic drink that is produced by fermenting grape juice. During this process, yeast converts the sugar in the juice into carbon dioxide.
In modern times, the process includes a number of sophisticated industrial techniques. Fining and filtering is an important part of the process, which removes sediments and haziness from the liquid. Traditionally, winemakers have used fining agents derived from animal products. The most common are fish bladder, bone marrow, egg albumin, and casein.
Several vintners have also been turning to more modern fining substances such as activated charcoal, gelatin, and bentonite. Bentonite is particularly effective at removing unwanted particulates.
Another notable fining ingredient is the oxblood fining agent, which was banned in 1997 due to the epidemic of bovine spongiform encephalopathy. This particular fining substance is considered non-vegan, however, because it is a by-product of natural cork production.
Aside from fining, another important aspect of winemaking is the clarification process. This involves removing tartrates, insoluble matter, and pectins from the liquid. These ingredients are removed by filtration or evaporation. Some winemakers also use hard ingredients such as clay.
If you are looking for a more vegan-friendly wine, it’s important to pay close attention to the labels. Some wineries may not disclose the details of their fining process. However, you can always ask your local wine store or check the producer’s website.
Is Vegetarian Wine Ok For Vegans To Drink?
If you’re a vegan, you may have wondered whether you can drink wine, since grapes are not an animal product. Most conventionally produced wine is not suitable for vegans because of the way it’s made. However, there are some exceptions.
Wine is generally made from fermented grape juice. The process usually includes two stages of filtration, which removes particulate matter, yeast and bacteria. This may also include adding small amounts of substances. Some wines, such as Malbec, are low in sugar and therefore suitable for vegans.
Vegans can find vegan wine at specialty stores and some small wineries. However, most wines are processed with non-vegan clarifying agents.
Animal-derived products are also used in the fining process. Often, the fining agents are derived from fish or animal intestines, which is troubling for vegans. Fining is a process that reduces tannins and helps remove suspended particles.
Certain fining agents are not suitable for vegetarians, and some are even derived from milk protein. However, some alternative fining agents are safe for vegans.
The first step to determining whether a wine is vegan is to determine the ingredients that go into it. In general, it is acceptable for most vegetarians to drink wine that contains albumen (egg whites). But, other fining agents such as isinglass are not.
Fortunately, many wineries now provide information about their winemaking process. Many of them publish technical specifications online, and some of them even post social media accounts. You can find out more by contacting them directly.
Are Vegan Wines The Same As Natural Wines?
The vegan movement aims to be kinder to animals. It also seeks to protect the environment. Wine can be made without animal products. However, it can be tricky to know whether a wine is truly vegan.
Some wineries use traditional fining agents like egg white to clarify their wine. These fining agents may remove impurities, but they are also known to remove some of the unique characteristics of the wine.
Vegan winemakers must meet strict requirements to use certain fining agents. They often use bentonite and kaolin clays. Other fining methods are also becoming more popular.
There are several different types of fining agents, each with its own benefits and limitations. For example, some of these agents act like a sponge, removing unwanted ingredients from the wine. Others remove sediment. Still other types of fining agents are plant-based. This means that vegan wines are not always the same as organic wines.
Organic wines are based on organic farming principles. The practice excludes herbicides, artificial chemicals, and other harmful processes.
There are a number of organic winemakers who use additives to improve the taste of their wines. These additives can include sulfites. Historically, sulfites were added to wine to help preserve it. Some believe that they were used as early as the eighth century BC. But they can still be found in wine.
If you are looking for a vegan-friendly wine, you should look for labels that have the Vegan Society logo. The Society aims to promote the adoption of a vegan lifestyle and to educate consumers on the advantages of being vegan.
Nearly 40% Don’t Realise All Wine Isn’t Vegan
There are a plethora of vegan wines available today, but surprisingly, not everyone knows that all wine isn’t vegan. In fact, nearly 40% of the general public doesn’t even know that it’s possible to produce a non-vegan bottle of wine.
For the uninitiated, wine is a fermented grape juice. Although it isn’t a product of the animal kingdom, it is often infused with animal products. The most obvious example is the fining process. Fining is a process used to filter out the sediment, yeast and other microorganisms that can cloud up the liquid. A variety of popular animal-derived fining agents are available, such as gelatin, milk protein, and fish oil.
The wine industry is finally taking notice of this growing trend, and more and more companies are turning to independent third-party certification companies to help boost consumer confidence. Even retailers like Marks and Spencer have announced plans to make their entire range vegan by 2022.
However, the only way to truly determine whether or not your favorite alcoholic beverage is vegan is to ask the winemaker. Most are aware of the growing demand for plant-based foods, but they don’t want to exclude an already burgeoning consumer base. That said, there are a handful of companies making it a point to offer wines that are both vegan and a tad more healthful than their non-vegan counterparts.
Some of the biggest names in the wine game have a vegan-friendly line up, including Virgin Wines, Laithwaites, and BevVeg! While the term “vegan” isn’t regulated, these and other companies have put their money where their mouth is by promoting their vegan credentials.
Awareness of Vegan Wines
While the term’vegan wine’ might sound like a oxymoron, there are actually many benefits to drinking a vegan wine. They include better gut health, weight management and a more natural approach to winemaking.
Wine made without animal products is becoming increasingly popular. This is in large part due to the growing popularity of plant-based eating.
However, some people are still confused about whether or not vegan wines are really any different from traditional wines. Most wineries have historically used animal-derived ingredients in the making of their wines, but more vintners are taking a more natural approach to winemaking.
Animal products are commonly used in the fining process to help remove unwanted ingredients from a wine. For example, egg whites are used to filter out particles.
Fining agents are also commonly derived from animal products, such as gelatin. These chemicals can be difficult to identify, and even trace amounts of them may be found in a wine.
Winery owners don’t have to specifically declare if they use animal products. It’s always best to check the description on a bottle.
Vegan wine isn’t always easier to find than non-vegan wine, though. Some retailers and health-food stores carry vegan wines, and online retailers tend to have a wide selection.
When searching for a wine that is vegan, be sure to look for terms such as ‘unfiltered’ and ‘natural’. A lot of vintners are using vegan alternatives to common fining agents.