Vegan Vine Paired Dinner at Candle 79

Last night I was invited to attend a dinner hosted by  The Vegan Vine - a sustainable-certified California winery making three types of wine specifically for vegans. I had no idea that labeling regulations were so strict with alcohol that the winery was not allowed to put "free of animal products" or "suitable for vegans" on the back of their label. Instead, they had to include the V-word in the name, and create an informative "necker" label that fits around the bottle-neck (their bottles are made from 25% less glass than conventional wine bottle which mean lighter transport and less resources) describing why their wine is vegan:

The Vegan Vine Wines are made entirely without any animal products. The Vegan Vine

Animal products can be utilized as fining or filtration aids in the wine making process. They assist by removing solids. Although typically filtered out of the wine prior to bottling, the use of these animal ingredients can make many wines unsuitable for vegans. The most common animal ingredients used in making wine are:

  • Isinglass: a very pure form of gelatin from sturgeon fish bladders
  • Gelatin: extract from boiled cow’s or pig’s hooves and sinews
  • Albumin: egg whites
  • Caseins: a protein from milk

Above, Top: Whole Wheat Ravioli: sautéed summer vegetables in a sauvignon blanc wine sauce with cashew cheese Above: Walnut Crusted Seitan: wild mushrooms, haricots verts, celeriac puree, red wine reduction

The wines featured were :

  • Sauvignon Blanc, Central Coast, California, 2010: aromas of bright citrus fruit, wet grass, and lemon rind with full flavors of grapefruit and fresh herbs,
  • Red Wine, Central Coast, California, 2009:dark red cherries and ripe berries complimented by hints of warm vanilla, cedar, and balanced tannins
  • Cabernet Sauvignon, Central Coast, California, 2008: rich ripe plums and floral undertones combine with blueberries, dried cherries, and a hint of anise spice

Three cheers to the three Vegan Vine wines! And thanks for the awesome company from Team Super-Vegan, Fabrice Penot of Le Labo, nutritionist Jennifer Medley, Cheryl and The Vegan Vine trio, Chef Terry Romero,  Choreographer James Koroni, and PINNACLE cover-girl Emily Wilson and model Todd Litzinger.

(PS - James does not have a twin brother with the same outfit, he just likes to play musical-chairs)