Thursday, April 22, 2010

Celebrate Earth Day with organic Releaf wine

What better way to celebrate Earth Day then sitting by the Koi pond sipping a glass of South Africa’s Releaf wine. My husband and I try to be as Earth friendly as we can. We recycle more than we put in the trash, have a rain barrel to catch rain for our thirsty Florida friendly plants, compost to reduce waste and provide nutrient rich soil to plants and vegetable garden and use a micro-irrigation system to reduce the use of water in our gardens. Today we can add one more Earth friendly act to our list, drinking Releaf wine, made in an organic manner.

I have to admit, I had my reservations on how this wine would taste. I’ve had some other organic wines and even beers and they usually taste like, well…pesticides. I know, exactly the thing organic grown fruits don’t use but still, they have not been very pleasant. Imagine my delight when I found this wine not only did not taste like pesticides but actually tasted pretty darn good.

Black Cassis, spice, vanilla and oak tickle the senses. High tannins and astringent on the first sip and not much else that I can detect but after a little aeration, bold vanilla, a hint of capsicum, black cherry and cassis leave the palate with a delicious and supple mouthfeel. The wine is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 20% Shiraz. Each grape lending to the concentrated flavors and balanced complexity.

Releaf is produced in the Swartland region of the Western Cape, South Africa. Formerly a cattle pasture, the land had been uncultivated for 17 years, making it ideal for growing organic grapes. Each grape is 100% hand harvested and grown in organic soil certified by Soil Association Certification Ltd., the oldest and most recognized organic certifier in the world. The bottle is made from partially recycled glass and the labels are made from recycled paper, and printed with sustainable inks.

Now let me just say, Releaf is not alone in their efforts. Most wine makers realize the importance of sustainable land. If they ruin the land, they ruin their livelihood and ruin the land for future generations. This means reducing or eliminating the use of harsh chemicals and finding alternate methods to protect their vineyards. Many vineyards are now looking to harnessing the wind to offset power use for their facilities. Unfortunately many wineries face too much red tape and are unable to install wind turbines or windspire turbines. Even collectors are reducing their carbon footprint and outfitting their cellars with products that have minimal impact on the environmental.

This Earth Day, raise your wine glass to Mother Nature and throw caution to the wind knowing somewhere, a winery may be harnessing that wind to make you delicious wine.

Tampa Bay, looking for a way to do your part. ABC Fine Wine & Spirits and Whole Foods both have cork recycling programs. Bring in your corks so they can be recycled and given second lives.

My rating - We’ll drink the rest tomorrow.

2010© Kellie Stargaard. All Rights Reserved.

Follow me on:

No comments:

Post a Comment