Organic alcohol began with a few sour wines and bland brews, but it’s quickly evolving into a sophisticated niche market that encompasses a variety of spirits and mixers, including the following libations.
Tarantas Organic Cava Brut
This organic bubbly, produced by Spain’s oldest estate winery, received a rating of 90 from Wine & Spirits magazine. Tarantas uses traditional cava grape varieties (Spain’s answer to Champagne) to produce a pale yellow, creamy wine that the magazine lauded as “remarkably sophisticated for its price.”
Ayala’s Herbal Water
Ayala’s infuses organic herbal extracts in artesian water for an unusual mixer. The product is available in both still and sparkling formulations in a variety of flavors, such as lavender mint, ginger lemon peel and lemongrass mint vanilla.
This sparkler hails from the countryside north of Treviso in Italy and is made from U. S. Department of Agriculture certified-organic grapes. Its highlights include a “luminous appearance and grassy-herbal notes followed by white peach, honey and jasmine,” according to Wine Enthusiast magazine.
Frey Organic Petite Sirah 2009
Winner of a gold medal at the 2010 Mendocino County Wine Competition, this organic petite sirah from America’s first organic winery is free of added sulfites, which can cause allergic reactions in some drinkers. The 2009 vintage is described as rich and dark with flavors of spice and chocolate.
More top organic alcohol picks
Bison Brewing Organic India Pale Ale
In 2010, Bison was selected as one the top sustainable U.S. breweries by USA Today. The company offsets its carbon footprint and makes six- and four-pack carriers from 100 percent recycled paper. This popular IPA combines four varieties of hops with caramel malt for a dry finish.
Rain Organics Vodka
This vodka made from organic white corn is distilled seven times for a smooth finish. In addition to the nonflavored original version, the company offers organic vodkas infused with honey, mango and melon; cucumber and lime; red grape and hibiscus; and lavender and lemonade. Creative drink recipes for each flavor are available at rainvodka.com.
Organic Nation Gin
Oregon’s first organic distillery produces this gin from locally grown organic grains, including rye (65 percent), wheat and corn. It’s flavored with 12 botanicals, including juniper, coriander, black pepper, cucumber, dill, lemon balm and angelica.
This tonic water is made with handpicked quinine from the Peruvian Andes (instead of the artificial quinine found in other tonics) and sweetened with organic agave, resulting in a mixer that has 60 percent fewer calories and an 85 percent lower glycemic-index score than other tonics.