Organic wine buying guide: Where to buy organic or biodynamic wine?
Organic wine buying guide
A veritable revolution in biodynamic agriculture, organic wine joins this "organic" way of life so much appreciated in France.
An exceptional wine that attracts the attention of all oenophiles looking for a good bottle. Acquiring it is an art, the only satisfaction of which lies in tasting a glass or adding it to a collection. You can find organic wine in all regions of France: Burgundy, Languedoc Roussillon , Côtes-du-Rhône, Bordeaux , Loire, Champagne etc... and all appellations . The climate, the vines, the soils on which they evolve, the selected grape varieties are just as many characteristics that make the specificities of each of the wines.
The quality of organic wines no longer needs to be proven . We even find that they are considered better wines when tasted blind. No wonder when you know how much the winegrowers who work the land in this way invest in the environment, in biodiversity and in everyone's health. In addition to quality in taste, organic wines advocate working the land in harmony with the environment. The practices are respectful of the fauna and flora.
Unlike conventional wines that contain chemical fertilizers, organic wines are healthy and clean for the environment since they are produced without chemical pesticides. At Oé, all wines are produced hand in hand with our Oé winegrowers. They have vineyards all over France and produce organic , vegan and zero pesticide wine. To validate that the wines have no pesticide residues, we have them analyzed by the independent Capinov laboratory. They are tested on 425 molecules and must respond negatively to each of them.
Whatever your motivation when buying organic wine, the selection of the bottle to savor or collect always respects certain rules. The bottles of wine you buy are tailored to your tastes. If you want advice on food and wine pairings, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org , the team will be happy to advise you on the best wines for the occasion. Whether it's for a birthday, a wedding, a housewarming party or just a little evening with friends, our organic wines will delight your meals!
Whether you prefer red wine, rosé wine, white wine, a great wine, an aromatic , fruity and delicate wine, you will find what you are looking for in organic wines with organic red wine, white wine and rosé.
How to select a good organic wine?
Beyond the design of the bottle, choosing your organic wine is done first from the label . More than a square of elegance, the label is the collection of information that indicates the essential of everything you need to know about your wine. You choose it according to its elegance, its appellations and its grape varieties.
The presence of the labels AB , Ecocert , Demeter , Nature & Progrès , SIVCBD , Biodyvin… proves that the vineyard has complied with the specifications drawn up by the authority in force . These are labels of trust on which you can rely with your eyes closed. They all comply with precise and more or less demanding specifications concerning the authorized doses of pesticides. "Pesticide" means "that kills plague" and is not always chemical in nature. For example, Bordeaux mixture is considered a natural pesticide since, composed of copper, it is a trace element.
Between these organic labels, organic certifications and other AOCs, it is difficult to know which certification to refer to when making a purchase. A review of the details of these indications is therefore necessary.
AB : Those produced from organic grapes have the AB label (organic farming) on their bottles. This is proof that the wine respects the specifications of organic farming and that it does not use chemicals . Organic farming is a mode of production that excludes the use of synthetic chemicals and GMOs. Its objective is to better respect living organisms and their environment . It aims to manage production globally by promoting the agrosystem, biodiversity, soil activities and biological cycles.
- Ecocert : The presence of the Ecocert label on a bottle certifies production according to organic viticulture standards.
In other words, it proves the use of exclusively natural products to grow grapes and wine at all stages of winemaking.
- Demeter : Only wines made from biodynamic grapes have this label.
The goal of biodynamic winegrowers is therefore to produce authenticity insofar as biodynamic cultivation makes it possible to develop the best potential of the vineyard. Biodynamics is as close as possible to nature and aims to intensify exchanges between the plant and its environment to improve the quality of the grapes and therefore of the wine .
Biodynamics is rich and we strongly advise you if you want to better discover its principles, to read the book "35 questions about biodynamics", by Antoine Lepetit de la Bigne.
Nature & Progress : This label approves the biological character of the grapes used. In addition, it imposes rules on the level of the harvest which must be manual, and the fermentation which must use only grape yeasts.
- SIVCBD : Like Demeter, the SIVCBD (International Union of Winegrowers in Bio-Dynamic Culture) certifies production from biodynamic grapes . The presence of its Biodyvin label on a bottle is also a marker of quality.
There is also a category of wines to which no or few inputs are added : these are natural wines or natural wines. Natural wines can be red wines, white wines, sparkling wines or rosé.
Organic wine category
On the French market, organic wines are categorized as VSIG (Wine Without Geographical Indication), IG (wine with Geographical Indication) and IGP (wine with Protected Geographical Indication).
GIs and IGPs such as VDP (Vin De Pays) guarantee a certain homogeneity, since the grapes come from the same Province or Region. The VDT (Vin De Tables) are wines for common consumption, most often without geographical origin. VSIG organic wines can carry a sales denomination “sparkling”, “sweet”, “sparkling”….
This is replaced by “protected designation of origin” or “controlled designation of origin” for IG wines, and by “protected geographical indication” or “vin de pays” for IGP wines. These appellations are valid for white wine, rosé and organic red wine.
There are also the AOC "Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée". In the field of wine, this label corresponds to a wine produced according to the know-how recognized in this geographical area. Like the organic or biodynamic labels, the specifications are very strict and the winegrowers must respect them to keep their AOC.
The vintage may appear on the bottle. When mentioned, it means that 85% of the crops are from the year displayed . Below this percentage, the wine will not have an "assigned" year since it will be the fruit of several years of mixed harvest.
If the wine comes from several harvests, no date will appear. Wine cannot be vintage. The date is the vintage of the wine. This is the case of brut champagne without year (BSA). As a general rule, the vintage brings a certain prestige to the wine or champagne that bears it.
The alcohol and sugar content
The alcoholic character is assessed on the label . Sweet wines like dry and fruity provincial wines, or those from the south-west have a high degree of alcohol. The degree of alcohol allows the consumer to have an idea of the strength of the beverage that he will serve during the meal.
Especially for sparkling wines, the sugar content is mentioned on the label . The indication raw nature, zero dosage, raw, extra-dry, dry or mild will be present depending on this. In dry white wines, there is less than 2 grams per liter of sugar, or about 0.2% sugar. Sparkling dry wines contain between 17 and 35 grams of sugar per liter of wine. It is the sugar dosages that define whether a wine is dry, raw or sweet.
On the bottle, it is still possible to read the provenance (wine from France, wine from the European Community, etc.); the nominal volume, the name of the bottler; the batch number (preceded by an L); allergens (“contains sulfites”); the health message (pictogram representing a pregnant woman in a crossed circle or a descriptive message)… and also the grape varieties of the wines (variety of grapes ) such as: Grenache, Syrah, Pinot Noir , Merlot, Cabernet-Sauvigno n, for red wines; Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier, Grenache blanc for white wines etc... All these indications allow you to know more about the product you are going to taste.
Where to buy good organic wine?
Organic sales have been growing strongly in France for several years.
Under the impetus of the many wine fairs and dedicated websites, not to mention a better presence in the cellars, there are now several places where you can obtain a superior quality organic wine with serenity.
- The caves
They now have a very large selection. Compared to supermarkets, you will find better service in wineries most of the time. Your wine merchants will advise you on the choice of appellations, guide you according to your grape variety preferences and have you taste certain cuvées before purchasing.
- grocery stores
In addition to offering a variety of food products, more and more of them are offering bulk, organic, and zero waste. At Oé, the deposit box has been brought up to date , and many grocery stores have been won over by this system for reusing bottles.
- Organic wine fairs
The organic wine fair is a great opportunity to make a quality purchase , because you will discover a wide choice offered by brands specializing in organic wines. The wine fairs are ephemeral and the offer evolves with each new edition. You can find dry, fruity, mineral wines on the shelves.
- Merchant sites
The wine market on the internet has recently experienced remarkable expansion, and the style of organic wines also benefits very well from this new situation. Buying online gives you access to a wide range of organic wines. The offer is more consistent and it becomes easier to make a choice, to make the right choice by buying responsible wine.
And finally, you can also get advice on good wines in the restaurant. The sommeliers will guide you on the most suitable food-wine pairing according to your tastes. If you like the wine, you can order it from the winemaker or on an e-commerce site that offers it.
To buy good wine, the best way is to taste a bottle to be sure to be seduced. You can also refer to the grape varieties you like such as Cabernet-Sauvignon , Syrah, Mourvèdre for red wine ; Marsanne, Viognier, and Grenache blanc for white wine, for example.
To find out more, READ All about biodynamics