Every vintage, more and more wines are made using organic or biodynamic principles.
Though still the minority, winegrowers are turning to the more natural and sustainable ways of winegrowing for the same reasons people are turning to organics and biodynamics in many areas of farming. Reasons include elimination or minimisation of chemical additions to either the farming or winemaking process; agriculture that creates healthier environments and produce; a more responsible custodianship of the environment; and more subjective and intangible reasons such as wines that taste better and processes that create a more intimate relationship with woman and her environment. Organics and biodynamics are separate schools requiring adherence to their own rules and systems to be certified as either. However, many winegrowers not classified as either biodynamic or organic still apply certain principles to their winegrowing, with the broad brushstroke of a more responsible and healthier way of utilising the earth. Here are a few wines made with fruit from organic vineyards to make your palate – and the earth – feel good. SPRING SEED COMPANY, POPPY PINOT GRIGIO 2012 McLaren Vale RRP $18 springseedwineco.com.au Joch Bosworth and Louise Hemsley Smith of Battle of Bosworth and Spring Seed Wine Company have been leaders in the organic winegrowing movement in Australia since they started converting their McLaren Vale vineyard to organics in 1995. Their A-Grade certified vineyards produce a range of wines under their Battle of Bosworth and Spring Seed Labels. Vibrant and expressive as the label that adorns it, the Spring Seed Poppy Pinot Grigio 2012 is made in a light and fresh style. “We wanted to retain the fresh gentle aromas of the variety and make a light bodied, fresh wine,” commented Louise. And light and fresh it is; the wine has aromas of pear, citrus and a slight Pinot Grigio spice. Serve chilled with a smashing view. TE WHARE RE TORU 2011 Marlborough, New Zealand RRP $25 twrwines.co.nz Te Whare Re is part of the MANA (Marlborough Natural Winegrowers), “a group of like-minded, Marlborough wine growers who share a passion for producing the very best wine possible – naturally”. Anna and Jason Flowerday, owners of Te Whare Re, the oldest small vineyard in the region, take a long-term view of winegrowing. “We want people to benefit from the land just like we benefitted from the people who planted these vines in 1979. Often the work you do is not for your generation but the ones that follow.” This wine sings as seductively and beautifully as a swarm of sirens on the rocks. Wafts of floral, orange blossom and exotic spice perfume are followed by a rich, complex and textured palate. A beautiful wine that pairs wonderfully with Vietnamese or Thai food. DOG POINT SECTION 94 2010 Marlborough, New Zealand RRP $32 dogpoint.co.nz The Maori refer to the Wairau Valley of Marlborough where the infamous Sauvignon Blanc grows as Kei puta te Wairau ‘the place with the hole in the cloud’. It is this hole in the cloud, or to put it another way, the vast amount of sunshine hours, which makes Marlborough so well suited to organic farming. Dog Point wines originated with Ivan Sutherland and James Healey who have played a large role in the region’s original successes. Farmed organically, the Section 94 has a nose of citrus, lime and flint, before a complex and layered palate with ripe fruit, layers of texture and a lick of acid. A wine to put to rest any doubt of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc’s potential for evolution, or for its ability to be crafted into complex and intriguing wines. FROMM CLAYVIN PINOT NOIR 2010 Brancott Valley, New Zealand RRP $75 frommwinery.co.nz New Zealand is an infant on the winemaking scene. In only a few decades it has created some famous stories, one being the inimitable style of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. This wine represents one of the emerging stories, set to be a classic; Pinot Noir from Marlborough’s Southern Valleys. Different aspect, different soils and slightly different microclimate than the wide yawning valleys that grow the Sauvignon Blanc vineyards. Fromm is also part of the MANA group of Marlborough winemakers and this wine from the esteemed Clayvin vineyard, tucked high in the Southern Valleys, has aromas of dark fruit, spice and savoury notes on the palate with fine tannins and an elegant finish. As well as organic farming, these wines also have music played to them during vintage. True story.