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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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  • Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Vigna Paganelli 2004 Front Label
    Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Vigna Paganelli 2004
    Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
    • WS92
    • WE90
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  • Cayuse Bionic Frog Syrah 2004 Front Label
    Cayuse Bionic Frog Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP99
    • WE96
    • WS94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $347.97
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  • Cayuse En Chamberlin Syrah 2004 Front Label
    Cayuse En Chamberlin Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP97
    • WE96
    • WS94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $195.00
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  • Bodegas Muga Reserva 2004 Front Label
    Bodegas Muga Reserva 2004
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • RP93
    • WS91
    3.9 7 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $29.99
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  • Cayuse En Cerise Syrah 2004 Front Label
    Cayuse En Cerise Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP96
    • WS93
    • WE92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $149.00
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  • Azelia Barolo San Rocco 2004 Front Label
    Azelia Barolo San Rocco 2004
    Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
    • WS95
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $125.00
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  • Cayuse Cailloux Syrah 2004 Front Label
    Cayuse Cailloux Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE96
    • RP93
    • WS92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $149.00
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  • Yalumba Hand-Picked Mourvedre Grenache Shiraz 2004 Front Label
    Yalumba Hand-Picked Mourvedre Grenache Shiraz 2004
    Rhone Red Blends from Barossa Valley, Barossa, South Australia, Australia
    • RP90
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $36.99
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    36 99
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  • Yalumba Old Bush Vine Grenache 2004 Front Label
    Yalumba Old Bush Vine Grenache 2004
    Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, South Australia, Australia
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $17.49
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  • Cayuse Armada Syrah 2004  Front Label
    Cayuse Armada Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP98
    • WS92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $159.97
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    159 97
    159 97
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  • Big Basin Rattlesnake Rock Syrah 2004 Front Label
    Big Basin Rattlesnake Rock Syrah 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    • WE94
    • RP92
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $54.97
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    54 97
    54 97
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  • Haras de Pirque Albis 2004 Front Label
    Haras de Pirque Albis 2004
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Chile
    • W&S92
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $64.99
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    64 99
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  • Chateau Maris Syrah La Touge 2004 Front Label
    Chateau Maris Syrah La Touge 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Minervois, Languedoc, South of France, France
    • WS90
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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    27 99
    27 99
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  • Cline Big Break Zinfandel 2004 Front Label
    Cline Big Break Zinfandel 2004
    Zinfandel from California
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $24.99
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    24 99
    24 99
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  • Cline Sonoma Zinfandel 2004 Front Label
    Cline Sonoma Zinfandel 2004
    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $19.99
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  • Querciabella Chianti Classico 2004 Front Label
    Querciabella Chianti Classico 2004
    Sangiovese from Chianti Classico, Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $28.99
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  • WillaKenzie Estate Aliette Pinot Noir 2004 Front Label
    WillaKenzie Estate Aliette Pinot Noir 2004
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • W&S92
    • WS90
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $44.99
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    44 99
    44 99
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  • Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2004 Front Label
    Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2004
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
    • WS96
    • RP94
    • JD93
    • W&S91
    4.8 8 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $99.00
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    99
    99
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  • Domaine Terlato & Chapoutier lieu dit Malakoff Shiraz 2004 Front Label
    Domaine Terlato & Chapoutier lieu dit Malakoff Shiraz 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Victoria, Australia
    • WS92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $41.99
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    41 99
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  • Yalumba The Signature Cabernet/Shiraz 2004 Front Label
    Yalumba The Signature Cabernet/Shiraz 2004
    Other Red Blends from Barossa Valley, Barossa, South Australia, Australia
    • WS92
    • RP92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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  • Domaine Terlato & Chapoutier Shiraz-Viognier 2004 Front Label
    Domaine Terlato & Chapoutier Shiraz-Viognier 2004
    Syrah/Shiraz from Victoria, Australia
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $23.99
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    23 99
    23 99
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  • Mauro Veglio Barolo Arborina 2004 Front Label
    Mauro Veglio Barolo Arborina 2004
    Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
    • RP93
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $64.99
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    64 99
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  • Crocker & Starr Cabernet Sauvignon Stone Place 2004 Front Label
    Crocker & Starr Cabernet Sauvignon Stone Place 2004
    Cabernet Sauvignon from St. Helena, Napa Valley, California
    • WS92
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $79.99
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    90
    79 99
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  • Vietti Barolo Lazzarito 2004 Front Label
    Vietti Barolo Lazzarito 2004
    Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
    • RP93
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $139.00
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  • Chateau Moulin Pey-Labrie  2004 Front Label
    Chateau Moulin Pey-Labrie 2004
    Merlot from Fronsac, Bordeaux, France
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $43.97
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    43 97
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