You’ve probably noticed there are several new wine clubs being advertised these days. Lot 18/The Tasting Room , WINC, and Uncorked Ventures to name a few. Another interesting trend within wine clubs, are the clubs that focus on providing access to natural wines. Just what are natural wines? Natural wines are more of a philosophy for making wine than anything. They can also be organic or biodynamic, but they focus on omitting added sugars or preservatives. They utilize traditional practices and tend to be made at smaller producers. I find that natural wine as a philosophy seems to be a polarizing topic within the wine community. Some proponents calling natural wine making responsible, while others say they can lack quality and depth.
I recently wrote a review of Fitvine Wines in our WineBlog, but have also been very curious about Dry Farm Wines. They are an all organic, natural wine club. Brenda and I decided to place an order and split six bottles. I mean, we always need new wine to test our new product with, right? Another great excuse for the gals at WineBlock to pour a glass of red.
Dry Farm Wines describes themselves as, “the only health-focused, organic wine club in the world” with a focus on providing wines that are, “healthy, clean and delicious”. I often get a flushing effect in my feet, hands and face when I drink red wine so I’m always looking for the culprit. I wonder if it’s the added sulfites, sugar, and preservatives in wine that cause this reaction? I’ve heard it may also be that I have trouble metabolizing the alcohol in wine. I’m hoping it’s the first scenario and that natural and organic wines with less additives will stop my flushing problem all together. I don’t see myself foregoing my favorite glass of red anytime soon though. I love it. Enjoying a nice glass of wine, is part of who I am.
So began my little experiment with Dry Farm Wines. I opened the box and was pleasantly surprise to see bottles from wineries I have never heard of from all around the world. There was an insert on how to best enjoy the wines and suggested temperature. Reds should be served at 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit, while whites at 40-55 degrees Fahrenheit. They also mention storage and that both red and white should be refrigerated. A great bit of info for wine novices or recreational drinkers like myself. Another insert explains that each bottle of wine has less than 12.5% alcohol, less than 1 g of sugar and carbs, very low sulfites, no mold, no additives or chemicals, is fermented with native and wind yeast, and uses organic/biodynamic farming practices.
What I found even more interesting, is the criteria Dry Farm Wines used to select their wines for “your health and hangover free enjoyment”. Did you just read, “hangover free enjoyment”? Yes you did! You can check out their criteria for choosing wineries and lab testing the wines they offer on the wines by nature section of their website.
I can say that I enjoyed all three bottles that I tried. I’ll spare you a technical review of the wines because I’m not qualified, but I will say that I LOVED trying wines I would never have been introduced to from all over the world. There were six bottles in our shipment both red and white. You can opt for 6 or 12 bottles, select red, white or mixed and choose the frequency when you sign up for their club.
The first bottle I tasted was a crisp and refreshing white wine from Montemolino Wine Cellars in Tuoro sul Trasimeno, Italy. Tuoro sul Trasimeno is a small city between Tuscany and Umbria. The winery is in a beautiful farmhouse and specializes in making wine and olive oil. Their website makes me want to book a trip to central Italy immediately.
The next bottle was St-Julien en St-Alban Rouge 2014 from the French producer Éric Texier. This bottle is 100% Syrah from the western side of the Rhône River valley in France. I will say I only had a slight amount of face flushing with this bottle of red. Perhaps I’m onto something! I'm going to have to do at least four of five additional tests to prove this theory.
The last was Ànima Negra Quíbia Falanis 2015 from southeast Majorca, Spain. Majorca is a Spanish Island located in the Mediterranean sea; how exotic! It’s made from the Callet variety and other indigenous grape varieties from Majorca. Their website is retro and trendy and I loved having a little taste of the Mediterranean. This white wine was fresh, dry and floral.
Our first Dry Farm Wines shipment had bottles from Austria, France, Italy, Spain and Germany. I probably wouldn’t have picked up any of these bottles at the store for fear of the unknown or buying a terrible bottle. I found trying wines from all over the world to be fun an exotic. I also love that these small producers focus on using grape varieties from their local area, coupled with traditional practices that are both healthy and environmentally friendly. If you are curious about natural wines and organic wine, I highly recommend trying their service.