Not every wine is vegan. According to the article What is Vegan Wine? An Essential Guide for Plant-Based Wine Lists, “some winemakers still use traditional animal-derived “fining” agents such as egg whites, gelatin, or casein (derived from milk) to clarify the liquid, reduce bitterness, or bind and extract excess tannins in red wines, leaving behind softer ones.”
Vegan wine must be either unfined or fined with a vegan fining agent such as clay. Unfined wines must be poured slowly because they contain natural sediment that wasn’t filtered out. According to the article, “neither the EU nor the U.S. requires ingredients or winemaking processes to be listed on labels” so unless it says unfined, you must ask if the wine is vegan or not.
There are many brands of vegan wines and there are vegan wineries that can be found in Sonoma County. Thumbprint Cellars is one of these vegan wineries located in downtown Healdsburg. According to their website, their ‘thumbprint’ symbol came about when the owner Scott Lindstrom-Dake was giving away some of his wine to friends and family. His pen malfunctioned and spewed gold ink onto a bottle. He used his thumb to place the ink onto the bottles and their wine brand was born. Thumbprint Cellars’ tasting lounge is decked out with artwork and is also dog friendly.
Not only are all their wines vegan, but according to server Evin Mojica, they offer an all-vegan cheese tray featuring “Miyoko’s English Farmhouse, Winter White Truffle and Herbs De Provence cheese. Their tray also includes “crackers, cauliflower butternut squash pretzels and almonds that they bake in-house with Miyoko’s vegan butter, maple syrup, steak rub, and fresh rosemary and olives” stated Mojica. Mojica also stated that “we typically also provide, from Renegade, a [local] vegan sausage.” Mojica explained that “our wine-maker and boss-lady are both vegans. It only made sense that if you’re going to start making wine and you’re vegan, that you make vegan wine.”
Thumbprint Cellars offers delicious vegan wine and food options and is conveniently located in downtown Healdsburg, California. As vegan wine becomes more popular, Thumbprint Cellars will help lead the way as an ethical winemaker that is doing good for the environment, animals, and wine lovers everywhere.