Going Natural Wine Club - October 2021
Posted on October 15, 2021
Blog Post # 5 – Low Intervention Convention
Alice Fiering, the leading writer on Natural wines, says that there are faults within organic agriculture. Within the certification, you are allowed to use anything that is derived from a natural source. Alice says:
“Even though it’s derived from natural sources, doesn’t mean [the herbicides/pesticides/fertilizers] are nontoxic. For example, one organic product derived from marigolds is so dangerous that farmers must wear full protective bodysuit to use it.”
It is also known that within the North American Organic Certification, farmers can still spray up to 150 different types of chemicals, this includes Copper. So, unfortunately, just because a winery has organic certification, it doesn't necessarily mean that they have the environment's best interest as their primary concern.
Alas, there is hope: Producers like Anne-Sophie Dubois and Anthony Buchanan focus on creating a healthy environment within the vineyards, using little if any additional chemicals (minimal sulphur is added before bottling).
Gewurztraminer (51%), Chardonnay Musqué (28%), and Sauvignon Blanc (21%)
Tier 2 – Goldilock's Natty Sips
“For me, winemaking is a combination of art and science. I don’t follow a blueprint or a set recipe in the cellar because each year brings new challenges in the vineyard and I believe the best wines are made when we work with what Mother Nature gives us.”
- Anthony Buchanan
Trois Orange is a unique orange blend sourced from three different vineyards within the OK Valley: Sage Brush Vineyard planted in 2007 on the Black Sage Bench, Vintoro Vineyard planted on a South-East facing slope in East Kelowna and Malhi Farm in Oliver. Each plot is farmed with minimal intervention in mind, which continues with Anthony in the cellar. He takes a simple yet elegant approach to each vintage, focusing on the advantages of each season. This also means it’s a rarity to see some of his cuvees for more than a single vintage. He creates different/unique cuvees each year to elevate what the fruit is naturally giving him. This is a little bit of a maverick approach, but it is paying off!
The wine is fermented on skins for three weeks, and then is transferred into third fill Russian oak with acacia heads and concrete tank for élevage.
I don’t know about you all, but this is a fun, aromatic, orange wine. You still get those chicken stock notes, which is typical of orange wines, yet the floral punch of the Gewurztraminer, the tangy kick of the Sauvy B and the body of the Chardonnay that work together so well!
This is a fun wine to show to some new orange wine people, or to pour for some of your wine nerd friends. Or, you can be like me and enjoy the bottle to yourself. Now, I would recommend, if you can, to see how this wine changes over the course of an evening, or over the course of a few days.
Pairing-wise, stick to something simple. I enjoyed it with some popcorn while I was reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula (Orange wine and spooky books are always great in October!). But I can see this working with a variety of different things; Lindsay Goat’s Cheddar, Mushroom Risotto, Ham & pea soup, Roasted Butternut squash etc.
100% Gamay Noir
Tier 1 – In-Law Friendly
A Classic Beaujolais for Autumn!
Anne Sophie Dubois is a young dynamic winemaker within Fleurie, Beaujolais. Her family moved from Champagne, where they were previously winemakers, to Beaujolais in 1992 and purchased a Domain. At 23 years old, Anne Sophie took over the Domaine in 2006. Since then, she has converted all her vineyards to organic and is currently 3 years away from getting her organic certification. In the cellar, she works with a minimal intervention approach. She uses a gravity-fed system with no chemicals, minus a minute addition of Sulphur before bottling. She also only uses wood barrels for ageing:
“I am very attached to the ageing of my wines in barrel, not to bring a woody taste. I love this material. The wood is natural, the wine breathes through it, it comes out clear and open.”
- Anne Sophie Dubois
Les Cocottes is the first wine bottled every vintage. It’s a semi-carbonic Macmration wine that is aged 6 months in wood. A fruity and elegant Gamay Noir that sings of Fleurie. It has those crunchy red berries with a mushroom and floral undertone. It’s a fresh and lively wine and is one of my go-to Gamays as of late.
This is a wine for everyone; It’s a traditional wine that is produced with the environment at mind! No weird or funky characteristics here!
A gorgeous wine that I would recommend pairing with cheese & charcuterie, grilled duck (or other poultry), French onion soup, or a good book!
If you have any questions about these picks or other natural wine please let me know. See you in November!
Pip pip, cheerio,