Take a stroll through the grocery store these days and one can’t help but notice all the buzz words plastered along the aisles: “organic”, “farm-raised”, and “Fair Trade Certified”. What do all these terms actually mean? For some it simply means a higher price tag. For others it represents a healthier, higher quality product that is more than just a product, it’s a lifestyle.
When it comes to wine, consumers have only just begun to familiarize themselves with the term “organic”. To completely immerse oneself and gain a total understanding of organic and biodynamic winemaking would require a college level amount of course reading and discussion. Even then you would only have begun to scratch the surface.
Organic Authority’s Laura Klein recently helped break down the topic of Organic wine production in the United States for Cork’d readers. What about outside of the United States? Every country has a different set of standards and guidelines that they must adhere to in order to label wines as Organic. As a general definition, organic winemaking, as with organic farming of all kinds, means that during the “vine-to-wine” process, no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers were used. At the wine store, as with food, this should result in increased pricing, right? Wrong. As one New York Times online article recently pointed out, these wines are made with more care and attention to detail, cost more to produce, yet often command a lower price. The lower price tag is a result of a stigma associated with organic wines from yesteryear, which lacked both in terms of quality and shelf life. Today, organically made wines often receive better scores when compared with non-organic wines amongst wine critics. Cork’d users recently had a chance to taste some of these wines for themselves, from D.C. based importer Calypso Organic Selections. The tasting proved that organic winemakers have begun to show their merit. With a little bit of consumer education, wine drinkers will discover a more earth-friendly category of wine that deserves their attention.
Here were some of the night’s highlighted wines: