Tuesday, September 22, 2009

let go of the sulfites ... and everything else

Yeah, so there's no way I'm showing you my face today. I'm stuck at home with a twisted ankle from slipping and falling on my butt yesterday at work. So instead I'm lying on the couch with my mismatched socks playing Batman: Arkham Asylum. And, of course, tasting wine.
Today I'm trying the next stage in organic winemaking: sulfite-free wines. Well, more specifically, no sulfites added wines. It's near impossible to guarantee that there are no sulfites whatsoever nowadays. These wines have been produced without adding any sulfites to the mix, which makes them USDA-certified organic wine. The only problem with sulfite-free wines is that you cannot age them, since sulfites are one of the primary assistants in making sure a wine ages without going sour.
Well, too late. This wine is abysmal.

I'm trying the 2008 Well Red Organic Wine from, well, California ($5.99, Trader Joe's). Or at least the organic parts of California, anyway, since all the grapes are required to be 100% Certified Organically Grown. The nose on the wine is pleasant enough, a little chalky but with a nice fruit and jam bouquet. But the taste. Oh God, the taste. It's sour and undeveloped, almost tastes like cough syrup.
All I took was a small sample and I've tasted enough. Do not buy this wine.
I don't recommend giving up on sulfite-free wines entirely, especially if you believe you have an allergy to them. I've heard that Frey Vineyards in Mendocino makes acceptable no sulfites added wines, but I haven't seen them in stores. You can go to www.FreyWine.com if you'd like more information on them.
Well, I'm going to make sure to open up a nice, quality red tonight for dinner with Julien. But first, a nice appetizer of chips and salsa. I have to get the taste of that wine out of my mouth. Sheesh.


  1. I don't remember the first "organice" wine I tried, but I DO remember having the exact same reaction. All I could think was "what is this garbage? They call this WINE?" Very disappointing.

    Love your blog, by the way!

  2. i have attended a wine connoisseurship last month here in clark philippines and i sooo love it. the wine tsating and all.. good thing people here are wine lovers and they just mind their own biz.. haha.. have a great day!