After becoming vegetarian just over a year ago I decided to also try becoming vegan. Unfortunately I could only last for a few days at a time before I’d find myself making exceptions like “I’ll be vegan except for eggs” or “chocolate shouldn’t count because… it’s chocolate”. Truth of the matter is I really struggled without milk in my tea, eggs, cheese and chocolate. If it weren’t for my complete obsession with cheese and chocolate I would probably be vegan now. I tried the substitutes…daiya vegan cheese….almond milk…rice milk….super dark chocolate…but I missed the real thing in a way that never happened with meat for me.
So I’m not a vegan and I’m ok with that but I am “veganising” other areas of my life and cupboards and I thought I'd share those other things with you. To be honest I jumped at the idea of switching to vegan and cruelty free for these things because I hand on heart always assumed that they were already vegan. I mean how would something like sugar or wine not be vegan?
I never knew things until recently but wine is usually refined during the wine-making process and although there are plently of non-animal derived fining agents like carbon, plant casein and limestone a huge number of wines are refined with animal-derived products such as blood and bone marrow, casein (milk protein), chitin (fiber from crustacean shells), egg albumen (derived from egg whites), fish oil, gelatin (protein from boiling animal parts), and isinglass (gelatin from fish bladder membranes).**
The idea of blood or fish bladders being used to clarify the wine I’m drinking gives me the creeps, especially when something else could easily be used instead – at least when I eat cheese I know I’m eating cheese! So over the last few months I’ve been on a vegan wine hunt. I not going to lie it’s been tricky to find a huge selection and I’ve relied pretty exclusively on www.barnivore.com on my phone while standing in the wine ailse to check which ones are vegan or not. I’ve still got another 3 bottles on my wine rack(even though that older picture above has Jameson and Pimms on it!) but so far these are my five favourite vegan wines.
1) Pennywise – Pinot Noir – World Market
2) Schmitt Sohne – Riesling – World Market
3) Dr. Loosen Bros – Riesling – Trader Joes
4) Dr. Beckermann – Rheinhessen Auslese – World Market
5) Castle Rock – Pinot Noir – Trader Joes
Also all of these wines were in the $5-12 per bottle cost bracket and I would buy another of them again – but for now I’m thoroughly enjoying the opportunity (and excuse) to buy lots of different wine and try them all out…..for research :)
**Read more: here