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Interesting article on vegan/veg wine makers
Vegan-Friendly Finger Lakes Wineries
We've contacted many of the local wineries asking which have vegan-friendly wines. Some use no animal products in any of their behind-the-scenes wine production although some wines may have honey. Others have some varieties that are vegan-friendly while others are not.
Regardless of the info contained here, ALWAYS ask your server to make sure the wine is vegan as things change from year to year due to processing/refining requirements.
Here's some very good info from a friend who used to work at Dr. Frank's Vinifera Wine Cellars:
Dr. Frank’s, like many wineries is committed to producing the best wines possible. This means they will use what is needed to make the best wines possible. Fortunately, there are not a lot of animal products available to use. There are fish based products that totally strip a wine clean of all flavors. This is only done when the wine is really BAD and the owner refuses to throw it away. (or can’t because there is too much. EPA regs.) The most common animal product used is egg whites. They are used as a fining agent occasionally for red wines. This sometimes is used in the last 3% of the wine. This is where the hardest pressing occurs, too much tannins and unripe bitterness. The eggs whites are separated and placed on the top of the tank where it slowly drops catching the impurities and dropping them to the bottom of the tank. The good wine is filtered from the top and the egg whites are removed with the waste. This is not needed on all reds or every year. Only when mother nature gives a relatively poor harvest.
Unfortunately calling a wine vegan can be as misleading as calling a wine organic. An organic wine can contain sulfites and usually contain more than normal wines to keep the wine from going bad. But the government allows sulfur in organic wines.
Fortunately most wine makers follow a simple rule: let mother nature do most of the work. (Anything living will ferment into alcohol.) The winemakers job is to keep bad things from happening. It is much easier than fixing a disaster later."
Domaine LeSeurre - 100% vegan and dog friendly.
Magnus Ridge - 100% vegan and located in Rock Stream!
Heron Hill - 100% vegan
Torrey Ridge - 100% vegan
Red Newt Cellars - All vegan except some years of the Red Eft
Lakewood Vineyards -: All vegan with a few exceptions. Sales of their Summer Sidekick benefit the local Schuyler County Humane Society.
Fox Run Vineyards - All vegan except for the Fine Old Tawny Port and Ruby-style Port
Leidenfrost Vineyards –: The white wines are 100% vegan and contain no animal by products but Egg whites are used in the fining process of the red wines. Their two blush wines are a combination of white and a tiiiiiny bit of red and are therefore not vegan
Ventosa Vineyards – All vegan
Castel Grisch Winery - All vegan
Atwater Estate Vineyards and Billsboro - 100% vegan
"...I spoke with our
winemaker Vinny Aliperti this morning, who also owns Billsboro Winery.
We use no fish, blood, or dairy to fine our wines, therefore can be
classified as producing vegan wines. Billsboro follows the same
Atwater also has a vegan cheese plate available. Cheese plates and small bites can be ordered to accompany each tasting via the reservation page or at the time of the tasting. Check this out!
Glenora Wine Cellars - As of October, 2023, we've been told that they have now labelled which wines are vegan on their tasting menu and the majority of them are vegan.
Anthony Road Wine Company -
Here are some wines, which are considered vegan-wines every year:
- All the Martini-Reinhardt Selection wines.
- The "Art"-Series Riesling
- Devonian Red
- Devonian White
- Tony's White
- Tony's Blush
- All dessert (Late Harvest) wines
Wagner Vineyards - 100% Vegan
Lamoreaux Landing - A note from their wine maker:
"I do like to note that no processing agent ends up in the finished product (i.e. there is no residual animal product in any of our wines). I understand that you might disagree with this or have a problem with the use animal products during any stage of production.
Hermann J. Wiemer - 100% Vegan!
They do not fine their wines or use any animal products in the wine making process. In addition, their viticulture practices are very traditional in the sense of no use of herbicides or insecticides and their wines ferment on natural yeast.
Damiani Wine Cellars -
Vegan: (as of 2018) All of our red wines are vegan friendly. Of the whites, our Pinot Grigio, Gewurztraminer, Semi-dry Riesling, and the RHYS-Ling are vegan friendly.
Hunt Country Vineyards - almost all vegan and they supply a detailed listing on their website! They are located on Keuka Lake (about 45 min-1 hour)but it's worth the drive. Here's what Andy Marshall, at the Vineyard, recently emailed to a friend of ours:
I’m glad to hear that our vegan wine policy is encouraging other like-minded people to visit! I went vegetarian in 1995 and then vegan 3 years ago and have never once regretted my decision. When I went vegan one of my biggest concerns was the lack of suitable wines; when I approached the winemaking staff and owners about this, I was amazed at how receptive they were to implementing vegan-friendly (and more importantly, animal-friendly!) practices for the vast majority of the wines we produce.
Montezuma Winery - Wines are vegan except for their Meads which are honey-based.
Fulkerson Winery - Check with the winery. In the past, none were vegan.
Heron Hill Winery has a blog and recently discussed which of their wines are vegan.
"...So, to clarify for our vegan friends, all of our wines are vegan except for the Eclipse White, Icewine and Late Harvests..."
From the former head winemaker (a friend of ours) for Swedish Hill, Goose Watch and Penguin Bay:
Not many of our wines are vegan. We use milk derived fining agents in some of our white wines before they are fermented. Because most of these treated wines are blended with all of the other (untreated) wines, it technically would make the wines they're blended with non-vegan (at least by association).
I can safely say that any DRY RED wines from the 06 vintage (my first vintage as head winemaker) have not had any animal based agents added to them."
Swedish Hill: Any DRY RED wines from the 06 vintage onward have not had any animal based agents added to them. These would include Swedish Hill Optimus and Cabernet Franc
Goose Watch: Any DRY REDwines from the 06 vintage onward which include the Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Lemberger.
Penguin Bay: The Only Dry Red, the Pinot noir, is vegan
McGregory Winery - all white wines are vegan friendly, see note below, from the owner, John McGregor:
use egg whites to fine our red wines, but all of our white wine selections
are vegan friendly.."
King Ferry Winery
vegan and vegetarian friendly:
A note from their wine maker:
"...These wines are available through our Tasting Room in King Ferry, NY, at the Ithaca Farmers Market, Syracuse Farmers Market, The Windmill Farm and Craft Market between Dundee and Penn Yan, NY, Saturdays at NYC's Union Square Greenmarket, as well as through our website ww.treleavenwines.com or there is a list of liquor stores and restaurants that have our wines, located throughout the state..."
Rock Stream Vineyards - None of the reds are vegan.
Keuka Lake Vineyards – Several are vegan. Just ask
Climbing Bines - 100% vegan except any honey-based and the facility is dog friendly
Finger Lakes Beer Trail - celebrating Craft Brewing and Beer Culture in the Finger Lakes
Market St. Brewing in Corning (the owner identifies himself as vegetarian) says his microbrews are vegan and that the processed grains go to a Christmas tree farmer.
Ithaca Beer is vegan
Rooster Fish - All the beers are vegan except the honey-based