This week, two wines new to O’Briens. From Alicante, in southeast Spain, they are both organic and vegan. Many wine drinkers assume that, as wine is made from grapes and yeast, it must be suitable for both vegetarians and vegans. But winemakers can use egg whites, casein, isinglass (made from fish bladders) or gelatine to fine or filter their wine, removing tiny particles of sediment. Bentonite, made from clay, is a vegan alternative used by many winemakers, although not all of them put it on the label, as this is not required by EU law. So some wines are vegetarian, some are vegan and some are neither. As well as being vegan and organic, the pair below are very good value for money.
Almorquí Blanco 2021 Organic & Vegan, €9.95 (down from €13.95)
Light in alcohol, at 12.5 per cent, this has fresh tropical fruits and plenty of zesty lemon. Made from a blend of Viura and Sauvignon Blanc, this would make a good aperitif, with or without tapas.
Almorquí Tinto 2021 Organic & Vegan, €9.95 (down from €13.95)
Made from a blend of two local grape varieties, Garnacha Tintorera and Monastrell, with some Merlot, this is a soft, rounded easy-drinking red wine with ripe cassis and plum fruits. Enjoy it with meaty tapas or grilled pork chops.