Organic wines , biodynamic wines and natural wines are a little more present in our daily lives every day. They are called niche wines and behind this funny name, hide good, well-pampered wines with unique flavors. Follow us, we show you all this!
What is a niche wine?
Unlike straw wine, which takes its name from the straw on which grapes were dried, kennel wine was not raised in the dog's house. No no, none of that, niche wine has everything that is more normal but better. Better? Why ? We qualify as a niche wine, a wine that is aimed at a more restricted target, for which we take the time to develop the most qualitative beverage possible. Yes, because unlike mass wine , quality prevails over quantity. We often like to say it and we never repeat it enough, at Oé we want to consume less and consume better .
Mass wine is a wine that is made on an assembly line, we make shovels of it (well, bottles but you have the image) with minimal production costs to be able to sell it cheaper and therefore sell large quantities quantities. In conventional viticulture, the soil is sprinkled with chemical phytosanitary products to grow hectares of vines very quickly, very straight and in large quantities. All sorts of inputs are then added to the vinification to stabilize the wine , correct its faults , preserve it better and sell it at an attractive price .
Mass wine is tolerated and controlled, but we can reassure you that not all conventional wines are mass wines and we are not here to slap them on the wrist. At Oé, we are more adept at organic viticulture and organic winemaking , which respects nature and which is better for our health .
On the other side, there are therefore niche wines , which currently delight the taste buds of a smaller part of the population and we are proud to be part of it! You too ?
The organic wine market: a market that is skyrocketing
If you look at your two hands you can count ten fingers, well tell yourself that the organic wine market in France represents only one of these ten fingers (10% of the wine market in France). On paper, it's not very big, we agree, with only one finger we wouldn't do a lot of things, but the good news is that it increases every year. At Oé we are optimistic and we hope that in a few years the organic wine market will be represented by our ten fingers, meaning that everyone has started to consume healthier and more sustainable foods .
Why does organic wine appeal to some and not to others?
In history, wine has always been organic and it is only recently that chemical phytosanitary products and inputs galore have come to disturb all these beautiful people. Yes, before smartphones, the internet and mass consumption there was life. Gaul is not just in history books, the discovery of America is not just an adventure story and the Renaissance is not just an aside from a chronological frieze, they are all parts of our history and at each of these periods, we were already drinking wine. Incredible but true, wine has it in the bottle and it has always conquered the hearts of men, especially the palate . ;)
At the time, in addition to a dance in the rain to fertilize the soil, the vineyard was maintained with natural products , which made wine a healthier drink than water. Yes, yes you heard right, healthier than water. It was even served to the sick and to young children because the water being very little filtered and full of bacteria, the best pick-me-up was a good glass of wine . Of course this is no longer the case today so we avoid serving a glass of Bordeaux to your friend who has gastro and even less to children, the memory would only be bad and the remedy ineffective.
In short, you have understood it, organic wine is not a new trend but rather an original product that was replaced when chemical pesticides and additives arrived , but fortunately for us, this wine is coming back in force.
Some detractors are against organic wine , considering it to be bohemian wine, a fad and a drink of the new days that is not really worthy of the wine of yesteryear. And yet, if we dig a little deeper, we realize that many of the greatest wines are made in biology. The majestic Château Latour with prestigious wines in the Médoc for example, which has been classified Premier Grand Cru since 1855 and which began the total conversion of the estate to biology in 2015 . The 2018 cuvée is therefore the first entirely organic vintage from this château , whose reputation is second to none. It is one of the very many prestigious wine estates to be part of the list of organic viticulture estates and we are convinced that it is not the last to convert!
If organic is so popular with winegrowers , it is because winegrowers are very attached to their terroir and their grape varieties and they want the best for their vines while respecting the soil. Thanks to organic viticulture , their estate is maintained like no other and the vines dance with the wind, lulled by the surrounding biodiversity , delighted with these natural treatments.
If we like organic wines , it is because they are more respectful of the environment and also better for our health . Would you like a shot of chemical pesticides ? We neither ! Organic wine means less pesticides and more love, so how can you refuse.
The biodynamic wine market: a pleasing philosophy
Biodynamics , a philosophy, really? Yes, a philosophy, and it's not us who say it but its founder, Rudolf Steiner . This Austrian thinker from the beginning of the 20th century multiplies the hats and among all his professions and all his activities, he devoted part of his life to defining a new way of approaching agriculture .
It is unlikely that you studied Steiner 's esoteric philosophy during your high school years, but fortunately the Oé team will reveal its secrets to you.
Biodynamics is the idea of considering the earth and Man as a whole. To work together, we must therefore respect and listen to each other. Yes, it's a bit like a couple or a friendly relationship after all, and even if there may be arguments, there is strength in unity.
Respecting the soil means looking further than the tip of your nose and lower than the vine stock , taking the time to observe the surrounding fauna and flora and learning to work with it. Biodynamic farming is very similar to organic farming, to which we add a little magic. So no, we don't immerse Tinkerbell in the wine vats but we refer to the stars and the moon to establish the winegrower's calendar.
In any case, there is one thing that is real and not magical, and that is that the enthusiasm for biodynamic wines continues to grow. Even if for the moment this wine is a niche wine, its reputation honors it and many domains, in particular prestigious ones, have converted to biodynamics. The biodynamic market is doing well and our little fingers tell us that the Domaine de la Romanée Conti has given it a nice boost!
Yes, because the most expensive wine in the world is none other than a bottle of Romanée Conti vintage 1945 . The Domaine de la Romanée Conti in Burgundy is recognized internationally for its great wines for laying down and has converted entirely to biodynamics since 2007. This makes this estate a good sponsor of sustainable agriculture , full of the future!
The natural wine market: the rebel proves its worth
Natural wine has long been seen as the little rebel of the family, the one that goes its own way, even if it means displeasing some people. Its reputation is sometimes a little unfair because behind its aromas and its slightly raw texture hides a wine with unequaled sensitivity.
The natural wine market is heading towards good times contrary to what its detractors thought a few years ago who liked to say like our good old Hubert Bonisseur de la Batte alias OSS 117 “ I do not predict a great future for it ”.
Although it has not always had easy days, the natural wine market has taken on a second wind since the creation of the “Vin method nature” label, which marks a new page in the book of this fine wine. If until now, this wine had loyal companions, convinced of its identity, many people also made it the ugly duckling because it had, until March 2020, no label and was therefore not officially recognized. It's hard to find a place on the shelf of a wine merchant without being able to show off your crest.
All that, it's like Capri, it's over , because thanks to the label “Wine method nature”, we can easily recognize it and know the conditions to produce it. Yes, natural wine suddenly has its own specifications , the class!
Where can you get niche wines?
With the arrival of large retailers, we got used to finding everything easily and in the same place. We no longer really ask ourselves the question where the products can come from and above all we find the same products everywhere. To have fun with niche wines, you have to get off the beaten track and rediscover the pleasure of going to see small traders, independent winegrowers and local producers . Far from being an effort, it is rather a pleasure!
Buying mass wine at the supermarket doesn't have a lot of flavor, you do it almost automatically without really asking yourself what's in the bottle. By going to your wine merchant , to a delicatessen , to cooperative cellars or to independent winegrowers to buy the wines of the property , you will rediscover the pleasure of human contact, of the exchange around products and we will reveal to you some of the secrets that the bottle contains. Niche wines are authentic wines, which have a history and that's why we love them. Most of the grands crus are niche wines because their prices are higher and they are aimed at a more restricted clientele. You can also taste good niche wines at very affordable prices .
The best way to discover authentic wines , unknown to the general public, is probably to go to wine fairs and wine fairs to meet winegrowers and let yourself be surprised by wines from estates that you do not know. not . If you are an adventurer at heart, you can take the experience a little further and let yourself be tempted by the wine route of France . By criss-crossing the roads, you will discover, in the middle of the vineyards, recognized estates and other unknown ones producing unique wines that you will surely not find in the supermarket.
Indulge yourself with our selection of good red wines , white wines and rosé wines . The Oé bird wandered through our beautiful wine regions of France , taking with it our good bottles of protected designation of origin (AOP ) from Provence , Côtes-du-Rhône , Languedoc Roussillon , Bordeaux , Vaucluse and the Mediterranean .