The Independent Goes All In On All Natural Wines

 


After reading a few lines of a recent natural wine story in The Independent (U.K.), you can see why the natural wine movement is winning fans by the thousands. 
 
The reporter, Rose Birkett, takes us into the moment when she tastes a natural white Jura during a meal in Paris' 2nd arrondissement. 
 
As she takes a sip, the legendary natural-wine wizard Eric Narioo tells her to remember the flavor well. 
 
“Remember this wine. Memorise the flavour, because you won't come across it very often,” he said. “That searing acidity. That saline quality. It's going to be a very hard act to follow.” 
 
And perhaps herein lies the proverbial rub – natural wines are the darling of an emerging community of connoisseurs who want story and authenticity with their wines, yet many a critic has derided the stuff for its sometimes-abnormal or strange flavors. 
 
Yet no one can deny the power of the stories and the philosophy behind the wine, which is what brought Birkett to Paris for her “natural wine crawl.” 
 
In some sense, natural wines suffer from the same fate most visionary products do. Take Stephane Majeune's Domain de Peyra 2004 Gamay, for example. The rare wine is now a treasure, but “10 years ago, no one understood this wine. Now they love it,” Nairoo said. 
The 2004 Gamay is a representation of the natural wine movement as a whole. In the past few years foodies and chefs alike have grown to love the once-outlandish liquid. 
 
In fact, Master of Wine Isabelle Legeron's RAW natural-wine fair in London sold out this past year. 
 
The wines also have the support of NOMA, a perennial titan in the yearly list of The World's 50 Best restaurant list. 
 
Some natural wine proponents like Narioo take a hard stance on the use of the word “wine”. In his opinion, there are wines (natural) and wines made with chemicals (everything else).
 
Another aspect of the movement which is quite attractive – and rather anti-establishment, mind you – is the way that individual winemakers take great care in preserving a winemaking process which does not use chemicals or automated harvesters. Wines come out unfiltered and unrefined, yet so very much alive.  
 
All of these factors combine to color a niche of the wine world of which many of which today's Millennials and even the occasional tired-of-big-business winemakers are growing fond. 
 
Photo Credit: Pixabay

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