What to drink: Organic wines
It's Organic September so we're making the swap to more planet friendly vino... that means wine made using only organic grapes grown without any chemicals. It's better for you and better for the planet. Try these.
THE EXPERT: Rupert Pritchett at Taurus Wines, Bramley
Waterkloof Circle Of Life Red 2017
Vegan and organic – and from a winemaker who takes her responsibility towards sustainability so seriously she even use carthorses instead of tractors – this red encapsulates why South Africa is one of the most exciting regions for minimal intervention wines. Rather than looking to Bordeaux or the Rhône for inspiration, winemaker Nadia Barnard-Langenegger wants her wines to express their true origin. It’s fresh and fruity with elegant tannins – a red of versatility and charm.
Huia Pinot Gris 2019
Huia Vineyards was established by Claire and Mike Allan when they planted the first vines in New Zealand’s Wairau Valley in 1994. After winemaking experience at key Marlborough wineries (most notably Kevin Judd’s Cloudy Bay) and extended stages at Veuve Clicquot and Taittinger in Champagne, they made it their mission to create wines of the utmost quality in the most environmentally sustainable possible. Moreish and ever so slightly off-dry, it is best paired with blue cheeses or a seafood risotto.
Torres Cordillera Sparkling Brut NV
Most Chilean bubbly is made from the rather dreary País grape variety. But not the trailblazing Torres, who prefer to use Pinot Noir for this crowd-pleasing bubbly. Creamy wild berry and rhubarb notes on the palate with a refreshing tang of citrus on the finish, it has all the pizzazz you want from fizz. And it’s Fair Trade, carbon neutral and organic.
Made In Mendoza Organic Malbec, Penaflor
Organic, sustainably made and Fair Trade, this wine has notes of black plum and damson and hints of milk chocolate. A moreish clean finish, it’s easy, fruity and a perfect BBQ mate.
Faugères ‘Les Leonides’, Domaine du Météor
Named after the huge crater of a meteor which punctured the vineyards, the Domaine du Météor produces fresh and vibrant organic wines. This one spicy, medium bodied and a great partner with lamb.
Muscadet sur Lie
Located at the extreme west of the Loire Valley near Nantes, this organic and biodynamic family estate is a rising star of this area. Round and smooth, with a crisp finish – it’s a perfect buddy for cod and seafood!
THE EXPERT: Nik Darlington at Pip of Manor Farm, Seale
Château Combel-la-Serre Le Pur Fruit du Causse 2019
Quite the perfect red for autumn, this is organic, unoaked, low-alcohol (just 12.5%) Malbec from the purest of limestone soils in the grape’s homeland, Cahors. You’ve got the dark, bramble fruit flavours of Malbec (called Auxerrois in these parts), more acidity and structure than modern Argentine versions, in an altogether refreshing package that will keep your cockles warm outdoors as we get into the cooler evenings.
47 AD Prosecco Spumante Biologico 2019
An organic sparkling vintage Prosecco from the Tombacco brothers, the third generation of their family to make wine since their grandfather Batista started out in 1899. Fruit-forward and harmonious, the palate bursts with vibrant apples and pears with a delicate floral finish.
Xavier Côtes du Rhône Villages ‘La Fondation de la Mer’ 2017
This is a Côtes du Rhône with a difference – well, several differences in fact. The “Villages” part of it means Xavier Vignon sources the Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah and Cinsault grapes from the top villages in the area, so it is a cut above your regular “Côtes du Rhône”. You’ll also find it is in a more medium-bodied, perfumed style than typically robust examples, which is how we like it! And best of all, €1 from every bottle sold is donated to La Fondation de la Mer, a conservation charity that helps clean up our seas and oceans. So you can enjoy a terrific southern French red while doing your bit for the planet at the same time.