Thursday, June 26, 2008

"Slow it down" . . . Organic & Biodynamic

Our society loves buzz words. The loudest buzz words right now of are of the eco-friendly persuasion: ‘organic’ is by far getting the most face-time in the grocery aisle. And while ‘green’ is the new black, it is also the new red, white and rose. After all, grapes are a crop, and wine a grocery item, so organic practices are relevant.

It is inspiring to see how many of the hot trends in wine are connected to maintaining the traditional integrity of terroir, as well as sustaining the environment which creates it.

Biodynamic farming is a definite defender of these concepts. It centers around the important reality that humans are not the only creature involved in the act of producing successful crops; biodynamic farmers are in tune with the rhythms and cycles of the soil, the animals, the moon, the sun - literally every aspect of their ecosystem in order to keep in step with the best partnerships and practices in the vineyard. Randall Graham, California wine rebel/guru, is leading the biodynamic way at Bonny Doon Vineyards; the wines produced of his Ca' del Solo vineyards proves that excellent wines can result from these methods.

I see a lot of similarities between the ‘listen to the land, taste the terroir' philosophies of biodynamic farming and the Slow Foods Movement. Biodiversity is a core fundamental of both, as is the revival of traditional techniques. What I love about Slow Foods is that it also upholds the importance of savoring the pleasure of this eco-friendly bounty at the dinner table, with friends and family. I agree wholeheartedly with the principles of Slow; it should be a priority for us to stop and smell the roses that we just fertilized with organic compost! Wine is a bottled pleasure, a gracious gift from Mama Nature; I think she would be insulted if we did not delight in it to the fullest extent.

In honor of respecting Mother Nature, I highly recommend you try Slowine, a South African wine partnership that supports all the tenets of the Slow Foods movement, and produces delicious wines at an incredibly reasonable price. I recommend their Rosé [Savvy Cellar carries this in store], a jubilee of cherries, strawberries and limeade; though it is rich with fruit it is still quite refereshing, and I guarantee it will pair beautifully with whatever is fresh this week at the farmers market.

1 comment:

Jack at Fork & Bottle said...

Randall Graham has talked about leading the way, but, to me, it has really been Mike Benzinger who has led the way in California. Or Burt Araujo, who easily makes the best biodynamic wines in the country, perhaps followed by Joseph Phelps.

Btw, here's my list of Biodynamic Wine Producers...

http://www.forkandbottle.com/wine/biodynamic_producers.htm