If you are seeking a naturally lower calorie wine, look for dry wines with a lower ABV, such as Prosecco (brut or extra dry), dry Riesling, or Gamay. These wines typically fall on a spectrum of 80 to 120 calories per glass.
Q: Karen S. from Margate asks, “What’s the difference between a natural wine and an organic wine?”
A: Hi Karen! Natural wines and organic wines have a lot in common. Most significantly they share a concern for the earth and sustainable practices, but there are also several key differences.
To be certified organic by the USDA, a wine must be made without genetic engineering, and it must undergo a rigorous process of inspections and assessments. The grapes must be grown organically without synthetic fertilizers, and all other ingredients such as yeast and fining agents must be certified organic, as well. While sulfites are commonly added to wines as an additional preserving agent or to enhance flavor, organic wines cannot have added sulfites. Wines labeled as “made with organic grapes” have slightly less restrictions, but it is still a feat for winemakers to achieve this certification.
“Natural wine,” on the other hand, is not a legal certification. Rather, it’s a loose term that refers to wines made with little to no intervention by the winemaker. This means grapes are grown without the assistance of pesticides, grapes are handpicked, and juice is fermented into wine using only native yeasts. These yeasts occur naturally on the fruit, and winemakers allow fermentation to start spontaneously, rather than controlling fermentation with the addition of cultured yeasts. While natural wines won’t necessary be certified organic, one could argue that they exemplify the most ancient, non-invasive method of winemaking.