Wednesday, January 14, 2009

A little vino...

Arizona has some wonderful wineries around the state. Among them, you can find a few organic wines available.

Kokopelli Winery
Produces a variety of organically grown grapes
Grown in Bonita Valley, north of Wilcox, AZ
Wines available in grocery stores, as well as their two bistros located Chandler & Surprise

Granite Creek Vineyards, L.L.C.
100% Certified Organic Grapes, Sulfite-free wine
Chino Valley, AZ
Purchase wines at winery or local stores

In our quest for a more organic, chemical-free lifestyle, you may also want to look for wines with "no added sulfites" or "low in sulfites". Sulfites are chemical preservatives added to wine to prevent oxidation and bacterial growth. They've been linked to headaches and a variety of allergic reactions. Another FYI - European wines typically have more sulfites than American-made wines. And white wines require double the amount of sulfites than red wines. (Note, that some sulfites occur naturally due to the fermentation process.)

As I mentioned in a previous post, the USDA has strict guidelines using the term organic on the labeling of products. Since many winemakers choose to include sulfites in their wine (other than those naturally occuring), you may need to look for wines labeled "using organically grown grapes".

In addition to the Arizona wines, there are quite a few organic / organically grown wines that are worth mentioning and trying out for yourselves: (in no particular order)
  • Sanford Winery, Pinot Noir, 2000
  • Bonterra Vineyards, Syrah, 1999
  • Badger Mountain Vineyards, Riesling, 2002
  • Guy Bossard, Muscadet's De Sevre Et Maine, 2001
  • Frey, Syrah 2001
  • Frog's Leap, Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 1999 (organically grown, not certified)
  • Topolos Piner Heights, Zinfandel, 1999
  • Lolonis, Chardonnay, Redwood Valley, California 2005
  • Domaine Montanet-Thoden Bourgogne, Pinot Noir, 2005
  • Trader Joe's Organic Syrah
  • Rosenblum's Black Muscat Gallagher Reserve, Alameda, California, 2004
Remember that, like non-organic wine, you may need to try a few to find your niche.

Let me know if there are any other great organic wines we should be trying!