Drink me Vegan vino
As the interest in eating a predominantly plant-based diet has risen, so has the prominence of vegan, and to a lesser extent vegetarian, wine on the shelves. It can come as a surprise that not all wine is vegan. It’s down to fining, a practice that helps clarify the wine before bottling. This, along with filtration, makes the liquid clear. The different substances used to fine can define wine as being vegetarian, vegan or neither. One of the most common used to be egg white; chefs deploy a similar method to make a bright, clear consommé. Not so long ago, dried cow’s blood performed a similar role – the BSE crisis put a stop to that. Today, there are plenty of options winemakers can use that are not derived from animals, and they are on the rise in response to consumer demand. The process of fining is not essential (indeed in some cases not desirable, as it can also alter flavour), but in cases where it is, the alternatives take time and labour – something top producers charging high prices can afford, but less so those whose market is everyday wine. Here are three vegan wines to try.