What is Natural Wine?
The term “natural wine” is not defined nor approved in Australia and beyond, anyone can claim to make “natural wine”.
We attended the first Natural Wine Fair in London in 2011, which evolved in future years to became the Real Wine Fair. Isabelle Legergon MW then put a charter forward in 2012 for the RAW wine fair which we have used as our roadmap:
- The entirety of the domaine from which the grapes are issued must be farmed organically and/or biodynamically.
- Grapes must be hand-harvested.
- No yeasts may be added, except in the case of the second fermentation of sparkling wines, when neutral yeasts may be used.
- No blocked malolactic fermentation.
- No winemaking additives (yeasts, enzymes, vitamins, lysozymes etc) may be used in the cellar except for low levels of sulfites. If you do not add any sulfites whatsoever, we do require analyses ** Please note: no sulphite totals may exceed 70 mg/L regardless of colour or style.
- No ‘heavy-manipulation’ has been carried out using winemaking gadgetry such as reverse osmosis, cryo-extraction, spinning cone, and so forth.
- No sterile filtration or pasteurisation.
- Most of the wines showcased will not have been fined or filtered. If your wine has been fined or filtered, it will be clearly labeled as such.
French Law: Vin Méthode Nature
In Spring 2020, the Syndicat de defense des vin naturels (SVDN) had its rules approved by the French Authorities (INAO). It is currently in a 3 year trial to become a legal definition.
The label , Vin Methode Nature’ is available in two versions, “without added sulphites” and with “<30 mg/l added sulphites”. Members must be certified organic, harvest manually and ferment with natural yeast. No additives (except sulphites as mentioned above) and no “brutal” processing aids during production (e.g. reverse osmosis) are allowed.
So what does this mean for Blind Corner Wines?
Our wines are Certified Organic/Biodynamic, no additives aside from SO2 under 50mg/L, (some at zero), no fining agents, no heavy manipulation, no blocked malolactic, no pasteurisation.
We use non-hand harvesting in some blocks when necessary due to labour, time and price constraints, however our goal has always been to move 100% hand harvesting and 0-30mg/L SO2.
We also make a second label Certified Organic wines under ‘Blindside’ for an online retailer which can occasionally use sterile filtration and organic vegan additions where necessary.