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The Ins and Outs of Vegan Wine

What makes wine vegan and where can you find them? We answer all your vegan wine question below.

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By Maker Wine

August 17, 2023

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Welcome, wine enthusiasts, to a tantalizing journey through the vineyards of vegan wines. We'll uncork the truth about vegan wines, reveal the ins and outs behind their production, explore what makes some wines not vegan, and toast to the fact that all Maker Wine partners proudly embrace the vegan way with no animal products used in the winemaking, fermentation, or bottling process. 

What is vegan wine?

To put it simply, vegan wine doesn't have any animal-derived products in its production process. From vine to glass, vegan wines are crafted with the utmost care to ensure that no animal by-products find their way into the final product. It's a conscious choice that respects the welfare of animals while keeping the tradition of winemaking alive.

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If you’re worried vegan wines are limited to a niche market, fret not. The vegan wine spectrum boasts a vast array of flavors, grape varieties, and regions. From tantalizing Tempranillo to suave Sauvignon Blanc, there's something to suit every palate. 

Another concern for some: Do vegan wines age well? Vegan wines age just as gracefully as their non-vegan counterparts. The richness and complexity only get better with time, providing a cellar-worthy experience for the discerning wine connoisseur.

Making vegan wines: The artistry unveiled

Let's dive into the fascinating world of crafting vegan wines – a journey that, in many cases, begins in the vineyards. Many crops, like grapes, are fertilized using animal manure which can contain animal by-products like blood and bones. Some vegan vineyards have adopted a cover-crop regime that includes planting specific legumes, grains, and brassicas to get nutrients back into the soil without the help of animal by-products.  

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Nicole Walsh uses biodynamic and organic farming practices at her winery, Ser

Non-vegan wines might also utilize animal by-products in the fining process. “Fining” is when unwanted material is removed from the wine while it’s still in the cellar. Vegan winemakers steer clear of traditional fining agents like egg whites, fish bladders, or gelatin, which are commonly used to clarify wines. Instead, they opt for bentonite clay or activated charcoal. These natural wonders gently cleanse the wine, leaving no room for unwanted particles to spoil the purity of the libation. The result? A delightful, crystal-clear wine that wows your palate while keeping our animal friends safe.

The culprits: Animal-based fining agents

Hold your corkscrews, not all wines are as pure as the driven snow. Like we mentioned above, many conventional wines resort to animal-derived fining agents during production. It's a dirty secret that often goes unnoticed by unsuspecting wine enthusiasts. Here’s a deeper dive into those different animal by-products that can be present:

  1. Egg whites: Egg-cellent for an omelet, but not for your wine – egg whites have been used for centuries as fining agents due to their ability to clarify wine effectively. However, they leave behind a questionable ethical footprint.

  2. Fish bladders (isinglass): Fishy business, indeed. Isinglass, derived from the swim bladders of fish, is a fining agent used primarily for clarifying white wines. But let's face it; nobody wants fish guts in their wine.

  3. Gelatin: Move over, Jell-O! Gelatin, a protein derived from animal bones and tissues, finds its way into certain wines. 

  4. Casein: Milk-based culprit, casein, is commonly used to clarify wines. While it might be a hit in the dairy industry, it's not exactly welcome in vegan wines.

Maker canned wines are all vegan wine

At Maker, we work with independent winemakers from diverse backgrounds to can their award-winning wines and tell their stories. Each of our wines are vegan and dry – with 0g of sugar and less than 5 carbs per serving. Every can represents a commitment to premium winemaking and, an added perk: animal-friendly winemaking. No egg whites, no fish bladders, no gelatin, and no casein. 

Now, as we raise our cans high, let's toast to a future of premium, vegan-friendly wines celebrating ethical practices without compromising on taste.

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