In the past year, Shall We Wine has received numerous requests asking for vegan wine recommendations. In this post, we will share one of our favorite vegan wines, explain what makes a wine vegan and invite you to an exclusive virtual Vegan Wine Tasting on Friday, July 10, 2020.
Vegan Wine Recommendation
Yalumba has a rich history as Australia’s most historic family-owned winery. Not only is Yalumba one of my favorite wine brands to recommend to vegan friends and clients, a few of their cellar selections hold sentimental value for me personally.
Yalumba offers a collection called the “Y Series” which showcases tremendous value wines. This Yalumba Y Series Cabernet Sauvignon is no different. It’s an easy-drinking Cab, with some muscle, and actually a great red wine option versatile enough to have during the cold months of the year through even the warmest months.
Australia generally has a variety of top performing wines which also check off the box of “bang for your buck”. Yalumba is great not only for their wide array of affordable wine options, they’re also committed to sustainability practices and have produced vegetarian & vegan friendly wines since 2011.
What Makes A Wine Vegan?
It may seem like an odd statement but the truth is, not all wine is vegan or even vegetarian friendly.
“But isn’t wine just made of grapes?” is the common response I get. Wine is usually not vegan similarly to how Jello is not vegan – part of the process of making either wine or gelatin involves an animal component even though the final product is notably manipulated. In Jello, gelatin acts as a binder just as it does for other products like shampoo and even marshmallows. In the modern process of making wine, “fining agents” are used. They help rid of everything from a cloudy wine appearance to harsh, distasteful tannins and are eventually filtered out. There are other agents, but some of the most common clarifying agents are egg whites, which is quite prevalent in old school Bordeaux.
Lack of a fining process makes wine production much slower because you’re waiting for it to fine naturally without the help of agents. And with the modern taste palate evolving and increasing market demand to produce more wine, including a typical fining process may seem like it’s customary, but it’s definitely not the only option.
For starters, there is unfiltered wine available on the market. But if you’re uninterested in the yo-yo guessing that can come with serving unfiltered wine, there is an answer to this in the vegan realm… there are vegan fining agents!
This all may seem a bit confusing and even overwhelming, but as we become more educated about beverages as consumers, the more of a shift in the type of helpful information available will morph into the norm. Don’t be afraid to utilize your sommeliers and local wine shop people to help point you in the right direction!