What makes a vegan wine vegan? You’d think that wine was naturally animal-free since it originates from the fermentation, crushing, and pressing of grapes. However, not all wines are created equal.


Part of the vinification process involves clarification to remove unsightly particles from the wine, like yeast, tannins, and pulp. Fining agents are needed to help clear it up to make it clean and transparent (because no one wants a cloudy chardonnay!) Unfortunately, some wineries use fining agents derived from animals – fish oil, gelatin, and bone marrow are all substances that can be used to clarify. But that is completely unnecessary because animal-friendly substances like limestone and benonite clay can also act as fining agents.


Clos LaChance Winery goes even further for their Vegan Vine collection. The Northern Central Coast California company simply allows any unwanted matter to settle on its own, which is then removed through what they call ‘sterile filtration.’ Additionally, all of Clos LaChance wines are Sustainably Certified, meaning they adhere to a list of guidelines to ensure environmentally sound wine growing practices. The company has also put together a program that educates people about vinification and how vegan wines are made.

If you can’t find Vegan Vine at your local wine and spirits store, you can purchase their Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay online for a very affordable $18 a bottle.