Surprised to find out that not all wines are vegan or even vegetarian? Don’t worry - you’re not alone. In honour of National Vegetarian Week, we’ve put together a quick guide to vegetarian wines with a few recommendations of our own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Photo by Maja Petric

Why are some wines not vegetarian or vegan?

While the ingredients in the finished product are all veggie-friendly, many winemakers use animal products in a process known as fining their wine.

What is fining?

Young wines contain small but unwanted molecules such as proteins and tannins which make them hazy. While wine will take care of these itself if left for long enough, wine-makers often add fining agents to speed the process along. These agents bond with the unwanted molecules to make them larger and easier to remove.

What can be used as a fining agent?

Common fining agents include milk proteins, egg whites, animal gelatin and fish bladder proteins. Vegetarian and vegan fining agents include activated charcoal and bentonite clay. Some winemakers choose to skip the fining process altogether and let the wine develop naturally.

Where can I get vegan and vegetarian wines?

We’re glad you asked...


Vegan Red Wines

Carmenére Brisa, Vistamar

If you’re looking for a rich red wine, try this smooth Chilean Carmenére with spicy aromas intermingled with red fruits, mocha and vanilla.

Malbec Merlot, Finca del Alta

If you like light fruits and a dry finish, you’ll love this Argentinian Malbec Merlot, which is dark in colour with black cherries and plums on the nose.

Shiraz, Beyond the River

For something smooth, warming and easy-to-drink, relax with a glass of this Australian Shiraz, which is full-bodied with ripe black-fruit flavours.


Vegan White Wines

Sauvignon Blanc, Tierra del Rey

Get into the summer spirit with this pale Chilean Sauvignon Blanc, with nicely rounded fruit, a soft, dry finish and good acidity.

Chenin Blanc Chardonnay, Finca del Alta

This light and delicate Argentinean Chenin Blanc Chardonnay is great for fruit-lovers, with complementary notes of lemon and ripe pear.

Happy drinking!