There are numerous factors that can affect a wine’s vegan status, so it can be tricky to know which wines are truly vegan-friendly. But our expert guide will teach you everything you need to know about vegan wine, from how to tell if wine is vegan, to the best vegan wine options available right now.
Is Wine Vegan?
You may think that wine is just fermented grape juice, but there are actually a number of animal products (like milk protein, egg whites and even fish bladder extract) that can be used in the wine production process.
This is usually during a winemaking process called fining, which is a way to filter wine and remove impurities. So, while wine may start as a vegan product, it doesn’t necessarily end up that way. Similarly, beers and ciders can also be processed using animal products.
But don't panic! While some of these products may not be vegan-friendly, there are many animal-free alternatives and a range of tasty vegan wines out there to be enjoyed. To tell if you are drinking vegan-friendly wines, there are a few things you can do to check.
How To Tell If Wine is Vegan in 5 Quick Ways
Check for ‘Unfined’ or ‘Unfiltered’ on the Label
As it is usually the ingredients within the fining agents that contain animal products, wines that are 'unfined' or 'unfiltered' are more likely to be vegan. If a wine is labelled as such, it means that the wine has not undergone this process, producing a more natural wine without any of the animal byproducts.
Natural wines may also use a vegan alternative to fine their wine, such as bentonite clay, so this is something else to look out for. If a wine is fined with bentonite clay, it will usually be stated on the label.
DOCG Chianti Tenuta San Vito - Vegan Organic Wine
Look for a ‘Certified Vegan’ Label
Certified vegan products have to meet certain requirements and standards set out by vegan organisations. So, if a wine has a certified vegan label, you can be sure that it doesn’t contain any animal products.
The Vegan Society and Viva! are two such organisations that provide certification for vegan products in the UK, so keep an eye out for either of their certification labels when you’re wine shopping.
The Vegan Society has a registered trademark that is used by vegan-friendly businesses to show that their products do not contain any animal ingredients or derivatives. If you see this logo on a wine bottle, you can be sure that the wine is 100% vegan.
Check for Animal-Derived Ingredients in the Wine
The most common animal-derived ingredients used in wine are casein (milk protein), egg whites and isinglass (fish bladder extract). If you see any of these listed on a wine label, then you can be sure that the wine is not vegan.
If you don't see any ingredients list on the wine label, it may be worth checking with the producer to see if they use any animal-derived products in their wines, or alternatively checking each ingredient against a list of vegan-friendly and non-vegan ingredients - but this could be a bit more time-consuming.
Check the Producer’s Website or Social Media
If you're living a vegan lifestyle and the bottle you're looking at doesn't clearly indicate that it is vegan wine via the steps outlined above, your best bet is to check the producer's website or social media.
Many producers are happy to list whether their wines are vegan on their websites or social media accounts, so this should give you a clear idea of what you're buying. However, if they don't, feel free to contact wine producers directly to ask about the vegan status of their wines.
Do a Google Search
If you can't find any information directly from the producer on whether a wine is vegan-friendly, a quick Google search should give you the answer. Simply type in the wine name followed by ‘vegan', or type 'Is X Vegan?' - for example: Is Prosecco Vegan?
This should bring up any relevant articles or posts that mention the vegan-friendliness of the wine in question, allowing you to learn from experts in the field. For many new vegans, Google can be a great guide, just make sure the source is reliable.
Finding Delicious Vegan Wines
Now that you know how to spot a vegan wine, it's time to start trying some out! Here are a few of our favourites to get you started.
Bohem Rose (formerly Toscar)
From southern Spain, this rosé is simply brimming over with vibrant cherry and plum fruit flavours. This is one of the best value organic Rose you will find, and it’s perfect for summer!
Organic Roots Blanc
This Organic Roots Blanc is great value, reliable and of high quality. They're made by one of our favourite producers, Vintage Roots, who is consistently excellent in both quality and price. It's a wonderful, dry vegan white wine that is made from Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, and Muscadelle grapes and is very fruity.
AOC Bordeaux Supérieur L'Ecuyer de Couronneau
For those that love red wines, this AOC Bordeaux Supérieur L'Ecuyer de Couronneau is an easy-drinking Merlot-dominated Biodynamic wine from Couronneau. With flavours of dark berries, chocolate, and a touch of oak, this vegan-friendly wine is a perfect match for vegan food!
Organic, Biodynamic Vegan Wines
If you're looking for a larger collection, this 6 Bottle Mixed Case of Organic, Biodynamic Vegan Wines could be perfect for you. It can be delivered to your office or event any day of the week, making it the ideal option for corporate gifts or parties.
The case includes a selection of red, white, and rose vegan wines from some of the best organic and biodynamic producers in Europe.
Wild Thing Organic Prosecco
If fizz is your tipple of choice, this Wild Thing Organic Prosecco could be the choice for you. It's a smooth, lightly sparkling drink. Its delicate apple and pear scents are subtle, while its citrus fruit flavours are uplifting and refreshing. Don't miss out - try it today!
Looking For Vegan Wines, Beers and More?
At the Goodness Project, we love vegan wine, beer and spirits! So if you're looking for some delicious vegan-friendly tipples, be sure to check out our online store.
We also have a range of other vegan-friendly products, including vegan hampers, vegan snacks and more - so why not take a look around? There's something perfect for everyone.