The vineyards at Hiyu Wine Farm / Photo courtesy of Hiyu Wine Farm
The term “sustainable” can have many different meanings depending on whom you’re speaking with.
Thanks to the myriad wine certifications and styles out there, terms like “organic” or “natural” can be confusing. From SIP Certified to Certified California Sustainable, there are many ways for makers to assert themselves as environmentally friendly.
According to WordStream by LOCALiQ, interest in organic and sustainable wine has soared, with the U.S. reaching more than 17,000 searches per month on the topic. Winemakers around the world are hearing the call—the organic wine market is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 10.2% from 2022 to 2030.
Organic and sustainable wines are filling up more and more glasses, and many bottles are big on flavor. Here’s a guide to 10 to try.
10 Sustainable Wineries to Explore
Mattituck, New York
In its 27 years of existence, Macari Vineyards has never used chemical herbicides. The company makes its own compost and doesn’t irrigate its vines, enriching the soil and saving water in the process.
“We recently worked with Christopher Gobler [professor at] Stony Brook University to add locally grown kelp to our compost,” says Gabriella Macari, general manager of Macari Vineyards. “Kelp extracts nitrogen and phosphorus from our seas and helps restore our ecosystem. When added to compost, it acts as a natural fertilizer that restores our vines and soil.”
For Macari, sustainability means constant innovation. “Our entire team is constantly thinking about what we can do better. We’re looking into solar, tank insulation [and] reusable glass—it’s a never-ending process but we’re proud of how far we’ve come.”
Bottle to Try: Life Force Sauvignon Blanc
Trunk paste made of horn, manure, stinging nettle, horsetail, and clay around the vines at La Montañuela ‘La Luz’ / Photo courtesy of La Montañuela
Camila Carrillo of La Montañuela prioritizes regenerative practices in her vineyard, using biodynamic, organic and regenerative methods to care for her vines. These methods eschew chemical herbicides or pesticides in the vineyards, opting instead for plant-based trunk pastes and sprays.
“The trunk paste is horn manure, stinging nettle, horsetail and clay which creates this white paste that attracts sunlight, which is healing for the vines and promotes new growth,” says Carrillo. “Sustainability to me involves a mission to farm responsibly, to heal and to create abundance.”
Bottle to try: Onda de Luz
Hiyu Wine Farm
Hood River, Oregon
Hiyu Wine Farm is a mixed farm with animals who help with vineyard management by noshing on grass and helping to create compost.
Its farming practices center on permaculture and sustainability.
The winery focuses on organic and biodynamic methods, makes its own compost, uses natural yeasts for fermentation and doesn’t irrigate. The wines themselves aim to transport drinkers to pastoral wine country, and the Columbia Valley Red contains a blend of over 50 varieties.
Bottle to try: Columbia Valley Red