Nine vegan wines to try this VeganuaryBy Seren Morris
If you’re trying Veganuary, you have probably cleared your fridge of animal products and are checking menus for vegan options before going to a restaurant. You’ve sorted your packed lunches so that you’re not caught out on your lunch break with no vegan option in sight. So far, so good! But what do you do when it comes to that glass of wine?
Surprisingly, a lot of wines aren’t vegan. In the final stage of wine-making, the use of fining agents remove yeast traces and bacteria in the wine. These fining agents are often derived from animals, such as gelatine, casein, bone marrow, egg whites and fish bladders. Definitely not vegan friendly.
But don’t fret; you don’t have to give up Veganuary just yet. Many winemakers are turning to mineral and plant-based fining agents, such as bentonite clay, silica gel and plant casein. Or, they are abandoning the fining process altogether. The result? Wine that everyone can enjoy, omnivores and vegans alike.
Aldi Organic Prosecco: 11.5%, £7.99, Aldi
If your reason for giving veganism a go is environmentally-based, look no further than Aldi’s Organic Prosecco. Produced on a family-run vineyard, this Prosecco is made with sustainability in mind. Made with hand-picked grapes, without pesticides or herbicides, produced using renewable energy, and packaged in recyclable boxes, this is a sparkling wine for the eco-conscious. The ideal wine for celebrations and parties – you won’t be tempted to quit Veganuary any time soon. If that’s not a good enough reason, you can enjoy this extra dry Prosecco while remaining environmentally-friendly. A win-win!
Fento Wines La Liebre y la Tortuga: 12.5%, £15, Honest Grapes
Despite the animal-inspired name, La Liebre y la Tortuga, or The Hare and the Tortoise, is a 100% plant-based Albariño. You won’t have to miss out on your white wine during Veganuary, and you definitely won’t have to sacrifice the quality either. This dry white wine from Galicia is perfect for dinner parties, so sip on this while snacking on delicious vegan canapés and nibbles. Even your non-vegan friends will be impressed.
Vinalba Malbec Bonarda 2016: 14%, £9.99, Majestic
This one is for red wine fans. Although this full-bodied red is described as being perfectly paired with red meat dishes, it is entirely suitable for vegans. Why not drink this with vegan steak or vegan meatballs? This blended wine (90% Malbec and 10% Bonarda) is from the Mendoza region of Argentina, and is exclusively available at Majestic.
Dandelion Vineyards Lionheart of the Barossa Shiraz, Australia 2014: 14.5%, £12.50, Wine Trust
This Shiraz is from the historic Barossa region of Southern Australia. It’s vegan as the filtration and fining processes are skipped out altogether, in order to maintain the essence of the vineyards. No fish bladders used here.
Coteaux Varois en Provence, 12%, £9, Marks and Spencer
This rosé has flavours of strawberries and white flowers, and is perfect for those vegans with a sweet tooth. Perfect to drink at a vegan dinner party – nobody has to miss out on this bottle.
Thomson & Scott Skinny Brut NV: 12%, £52, Harvey Nichols
This Champagne is the go to for any health-conscious vegan who still wants to enjoy a glass of fizz. With less than 0.1g of sugar per litre, and only 60 calories per glass, this one is for guilt-free celebrations. A blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes, the flagship wine of the house is one to try this month. Perhaps as a reward for completing Veganuary?
Grillo, “Kore”, Cantine Colomba Bianca, Sicily, 2017: 13%, £14.50, Drop Wine
Made at one of the largest co-operative wineries in Sicily, this certified organic ‘lean, mean, honeyed machine/wine,’ is a great accompaniment to a vegan linguine dish. What’s more, if you order through Drop Wine, they will deliver straight to your door, seven days a week with free same day delivery. Making Veganuary easier than ever before.
Pinot Noir, Calusari, Viile Timisului, Romania, 2017: 12.5%, £11.70
Another one from Drop Wine, but this time they’re delivering a vegan Pinot Noir. Made by a husband and wife duo, this wine estate was established in 2000 in Western Romania, where wine has been made since Roman Times. This Pinot Noir is light and soft, with smooth flavours, and is perfect to drink with spicy vegan food.
Vermentino, Screaming Betty, Deliquente Wine Co., Riverland, Australia, 2017: 10%, £16.55
Drop Wine will also deliver this rebellious bottle, the Screaming Betty by Delinquente. This winemaker creates quality focused small batches using Southern Italian grape varieties. Its producer, Con-Greg Grigoriou, is the son of wine professional Chris Grigoriou, so you know he knows what he’s doing. This bottle looks unlike anything else on this list, and for good reason, too. Con-Greg said, he wanted his wine to be “ugly and confronting and weird, but still sort of beautiful and cool,” and we think he’s nailed it.