Additives are often necessary to ensure your precious vino in the wine cellar isn’t full of creepy crawlies of the nefarious nature and to ensure the flavor is desirable. However, some vinophiles are concerned when it comes to the lack of labeling all of these additives, particularly if they are interested in buying bottlings created using traditional methods, abstaining from animal products, or have allergies. For instance, aging in oak barrels versus using oak chips for flavor marks a contrast between traditional wine making methods and modern techniques. There is also concern for products such as egg whites or fish protein which are used to reduce tannin levels, some residuals are left despite careful straining. People who wish to maintain vegan diets will want to know these details, as well as individuals who have egg allergies.
Until the Food and Drug Administration requires labeling of all additives, we’ll just have to hope that wineries will opt to include these valid details. While they aren’t exactly harmful, many of us like to know just what we are ingesting in our glasses adorned in orchid wine charms (my favorite).
California winery, Bonny Doon, includes all additives on their labels and also has a kickass site. These new labels will be divided into two basic sections and featured on their 2007 vintage whites and 2008 vintage reds. I’m really looking forward to trying some of their bottles, which are in the $20 and up price range. From what I’ve read, their wines are highly rated.
For those who would like to read more about additives in wine, check out this website. At the bottom of the page, there’s even a link to a tutorial on how to make your own bottles at home. If you are serious about going green, making wine at home is certainly going to reduce your carbon footprint since delivery isn’t necessary. You can also just recycle your own glass bottles and just get new corks. I also believe you can use the twist top bottles as well, which saves cork trees.