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Green / Sustainable Wine

Natural Wine, Organic & Sustainable Defined ...

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Wines marked with the green leaf icon are produced using organic, biodynamic or sustainable practices as certified by various domestic and international organizations. Any spirits marked with the green leaf have been made using sustainable methods designed to decrease their production impact on the environment.

Does the green leaf mean it is a natural wine?

Though it is a widely used term, “natural wine” is difficult to indisputably define. Other terms are almost as popular: “low intervention,” “live,” “raw,” and “green wine,” to name a few. Isabelle Legeron, Master of Wine, in her book, Natural Wine explains the term best.

“Whether or not it is certified (or indeed certifiable), natural wine does exist. It is wine from vineyards that are farmed organically, at the very least, and which is produced without adding or removing anything during vinification, apart from a dash of sulfites at bottling.”

While this definition may sound ideal to most, the USA defines “organic wine” differently. Read on for clarification.

What is the difference between organic wine and wine made from organic grapes?

Organic wine in the USA is regulated by the National Organic Program (NOP) of the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, in accordance with the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990. By definition, organic winegrowing integrates cultural, biological and mechanical practices that foster the cycling of resources, promote ecological balance and conserve biodiversity. Synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation, and genetic engineering are not allowed. Products from outside of the cycle are used minimally. The USDA NOP allows for two categories of finished wine:

  1. Organic wine, as defined and labeled in the USA, is wine made from organic grapes with no added sulfites. Each country has its own laws on how to define organic wine. But any wine labeled “organic” sold in the USA, whether it is domestically made or imported, is not allowed to have any added sulfites. However, less than 20 mg/L can occur naturally.
  2. Wine made from organic grapes, which allows minimal addition of sulfites (less than 100 mg/L) cannot be labeled as “organic wine” in the USA, but can mention the use of organic grapes.

What is biodynamic wine?

Biodynamic wine is created from a system of winegrowing similar to that for organic wine, but includes various concepts from the ideas of Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925). Steiner’s farming methods treat soil fertility, plant growth and products, and livestock care and products as ecologically interrelated. Biodynamic agriculture uses compost and manure for fertilization, natural herb and mineral supplements for field sprays and prohibits the use of anything artificial. It treats the entire vineyard as an interrelated part of a self-sufficient farm. Biodynamic farming considers the influence of weather, seasons and movements of the moon and planets on the rhythms of the farm. The term “biodynamic” refers to both the agricultural methods used to grow the vines, as well as winery processing.

What does sustainable wine mean?

Sustainable wine production can be defined by three main goals: environmental stewardship, economic profitability and social and economic equity. This means that sustainable farmers do their best to give back to the environment and to the community, while also furthering their business. Sustainable wine growers may largely use organic or biodynamic practices, and occasionally or minimally use synthetic materials (only the least harmful), but have the flexibility to choose the methods that work best for their goals. The sustainable label tells the consumer which wines are made with ecological, economical and social principles in mind. Its limitation is that it is locally defined and therefore varies regionally.

What are sustainable spirits?

While regulations on the spirits side of sustainable are still in their infancy, that hasn’t stopped individual producers from taking heed of conscientious production techniques to reduce their carbon footprint. Distillers striving to make their operations more sustainable are implementing a wide array of eco-friendly procedures ranging from renewable power solutions, water and heat reclamation systems, utilizing locally sourced agricultural produce and composting or reusing any refuse as fertilizer or feed for livestock. In addition to optimizing the efficiency of the manufacturing process, eliminating harmful single use plastics and repurposing or recycling waste products such as barrels and bottles are also proving to be effective strategies for improving sustainability. All spirits labeled “organic” must meet the regulations provided by both Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) and the USDA.

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  • Laurent-Perrier Cuvee Rose Front Label
    Laurent-Perrier Cuvee Rose
    Sparkling Rosé from Champagne, France
    • CG96
    • D95
    • WE94
    • WS93
    • TP93
    • W&S92
    • JS92
    4.6 454 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $79.99
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  • Billecart-Salmon Brut Rose Front Label
    Billecart-Salmon Brut Rose
    Sparkling Rosé from Champagne, France
    • WW96
    • JS94
    • WS93
    • D93
    • WE92
    • RP90
    4.7 516 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $79.99
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    90
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  • Argiano Brunello di Montalcino 2016  Front Label
    Argiano Brunello di Montalcino 2016
    Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
    • JS97
    • D97
    • WE96
    • RP94
    • JD94
    • V94
    • WS93
    4.5 49 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $57.99
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    65
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  • Sena  2018  Front Label
    Sena 2018
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Aconcagua Valley, Chile
    • JS100
    • RP98
    • JD98
    • D97
    4.6 19 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $129.99
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    150
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  • Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut (187ML Split) Front Label
    Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut (187ML Split)
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • TP92
    • WS91
    • W&S90
    • D90
    4.5 111 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $15.97
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    15 97
    15 97
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  • Chateau Pontet-Canet  2016 Front Label
    Chateau Pontet-Canet 2016
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
    • WE100
    • V99
    • RP98
    • D98
    • JD98
    • JS97
    • WS95
    4.4 83 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $174.99
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    174 99
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  • Bollinger Brut Special Cuvee Front Label
    Bollinger Brut Special Cuvee
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • D96
    • WS93
    • JS92
    • WE92
    • RP92
    • W&S91
    4.3 544 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $69.99
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    79
    69 99
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  • Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2020  Front Label
    Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2020
    Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • WS93
    • JS92
    • D92
    • V91
    4.3 180 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $35.99
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    35 99
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  • Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut (375ML half-bottle) Front Label
    Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut (375ML half-bottle)
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • D94
    • WW92
    • JS92
    • WS90
    • W&S90
    4.5 266 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $34.97
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    34 97
    34 97
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  • Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve  Front Label
    Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • D95
    • W&S91
    • WS91
    • WW91
    • JS91
    • WE90
    • RP90
    4.5 196 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $59.99
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    59 99
    59 99
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  • Krug Grande Cuvee Brut (169th Edition) with Gift Box  Front Bottle Shot
    Krug Grande Cuvee Brut (169th Edition) with Gift Box
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • WW97
    • JS97
    • WS96
    • D94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $279.99
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    279 99
    279 99
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  • Chateau Pontet-Canet  2015 Front Label
    Chateau Pontet-Canet 2015
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
    • JS98
    • RP97
    • WE97
    • D96
    • JD95
    • WS94
    4.2 26 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $124.99
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  • Billecart-Salmon Cuvee Elisabeth Salmon Brut Rose 2008  Front Label
    Billecart-Salmon Cuvee Elisabeth Salmon Brut Rose 2008
    Sparkling Rosé from Champagne, France
    • WW98
    • D98
    • JS98
    • RP97
    • WS94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $219.00
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    219
    219
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  • Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Pinot Noir 2017  Front Label
    Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Pinot Noir 2017
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • JS96
    • D94
    • WS93
    • RP93
    • WE91
    4.7 17 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $84.99
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    84 99
    84 99
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  • La Magia Brunello di Montalcino 2016  Front Label
    La Magia Brunello di Montalcino 2016
    Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
    • JS96
    • D95
    • JD94
    • WE90
    4.2 26 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $44.99
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    60
    44 99
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  • Wente Morning Fog Chardonnay 2019  Front Label
    Wente Morning Fog Chardonnay 2019
    Chardonnay from Livermore Valley, Central Coast, California
    • D90
    • WE89
    4.0 138 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $14.99
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    18
    14 99
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  • Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2016  Front Label
    Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • WW93
    • D91
    4.4 319 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $84.99
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    84 99
    84 99
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  • Clos Apalta  2014 Front Label
    Clos Apalta 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Colchagua Valley, Rapel Valley, Chile
    • JS100
    • D94
    • WS94
    • RP93
    4.2 19 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $114.99
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    114 99
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  • J Vineyards Russian River Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
    J Vineyards Russian River Pinot Noir 2018
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • D96
    • RP91
    • WW91
    • WE91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $41.99
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    41 99
    41 99
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  • Jansz Premium Rose Front Label
    Jansz Premium Rose
    Sparkling Rosé from Tasmania, Australia
    • WW92
    • D92
    • WS91
    • JS91
    • W&S90
    4.3 179 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $26.99
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    29
    26 99
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  • Nautilus Sauvignon Blanc 2020  Front Label
    Nautilus Sauvignon Blanc 2020
    Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • JS92
    • WS92
    • V90
    • D90
    • RP90
    4.1 89 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $18.99
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    18 99
    18 99
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  • Querciabella Chianti Classico 2016  Front Label
    Querciabella Chianti Classico 2016
    Sangiovese from Chianti Classico, Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
    • D94
    • JS93
    • WS93
    • W&S91
    4.0 108 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $33.99
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    33 99
    33 99
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  • Quintessa  2017  Front Label
    Quintessa 2017
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Rutherford, Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • JS95
    • WW94
    • D93
    • WS92
    4.6 27 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $209.99
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    209 99
    209 99
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  • Christian Moreau Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru 2018  Front Label
    Christian Moreau Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru 2018
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
    • D95
    • BH94
    • JS94
    • WS94
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $119.99
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    119 99
    119 99
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  • Louis Roederer Brut Premier Front Label
    Louis Roederer Brut Premier
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • D94
    • JS93
    • WE92
    • RP92
    • JD91
    • W&S90
    4.3 275 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $49.99
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    55
    49 99
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