vegan red wine pouring and salad dish
Handpicked by IWSC
Wine Handpicked by IWSC 7 January 2022

20 award-winning vegan wines

While plenty of wines are suitable for vegans, seeking them out can often be a challenge. We've rounded up 20 of the best vegan wines from the IWSC 2021
Introduction and recommendations by
IWSC Judges

If you’re looking for the best vegan wines, there are few things it’s important to know. Firstly, contrary to popular belief, not all wines are vegan, despite being made solely from crushed grapes.

The key aspect of winemaking when it comes to vegan wines is fining – that is, when a fining agent is added to remove haze and solid particles from the wine, to ensure it is in the best-possible condition and that its appearance is optimum.

Traditionally, fining agents have been made from animal products, such as isinglass (ground-up fish bladders), egg whites (which are still commonplace in Bordeaux), gelatin and casein (which is derived from milk). When wines are fined, none of the fining agents remain in the wine when bottled, but vegans still consider their use unacceptable.

Not all wines are fined or filtered, however, and there are plenty of natural wine producers who bottle their wines without doing either. Such wines may have the term ‘unfiltered and unfined’ on the label – a guarantee of a vegan-friendly wine. Not only that, but there are also non-animal-based fining products that do the job perfectly well, such as clay-based bentonite, or microplastic Poly-vinyl-poly-pyrrolidone.

vegan meal with wine on table

What makes life difficult for wine-loving vegans is that currently, producers are not obliged to disclose which (if any) fining agents they use. Organic and biodynamic wines are no guarantee of vegan-friendliness, either, and there is still no widespread legal definition of what constitutes a vegan product. Some wines do now feature the V-label (a green ‘V’ on a yellow background, the symbol of the European Vegetarian Union), but there is no standard labelling format for vegan wines.

In addition to fining, there are other processes that can prevent a wine from having vegan status. Austrian biodynamic producer Gernot Heinrich in Burgenland, for example, seals some of its wines with beeswax, while others use animal collagen-based glues for attaching labels to the bottle. And some vegans claim that the use of animal-derived manure or fertiliser is a no-no, too – which would eliminate many biodynamic wines, which frequently use horse manure in the vineyard.

Despite these ongoing issues, the popularity of vegan wines is growing, particularly as consumers are ever-more inquisitive as to how the food and drink they consume is made. The IWSC take vegan wines seriously, too, using an expert panel comprising some of the finest palates in the business to judge them. Here are the best vegan wines to try.

20 award-winning vegan wines from the IWSC 2021

  1. G.D.Vajra, Lagarbiana 2016; Italy, Barolo. 97/100
  2. Court Garden, Ditchling Quartet Brut 2014; England. 96/100
  3. Dopff Au Moulin, Gewurztraminer 2019; France, Alsace Grand Cru. 96/100
  4. Les Domaines Paul Mas, Les Neuf Pierres Roulees 2019; France, Terrasses Du Larzac. 96/100
  5. Mád, One 2018; Hungary, Tokaj. 96/100
  6. Alpha Estate, Single Vineyard Turtles Malagouzia 2020; Greece. 95/100
  7. Balassa Bor, Szent Tamás Furmint 2018; Hungary, Tokaj. 95/100
  8. Cantina di Soave, Villa Rasina 2020; Italy, Soave Classico. 95/100
  9. Claymore Wines, London Calling Cabernet-Malbec 2019: South Australia, Clare Valley. 95/100
  10. Conte Collalto, Ottaviano Sui Lieviti Brut Nature 2019; Italy, Prosecco Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Superiore. 95/100
  11. Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits, Lakeview Cellars Vidal Icewine 2019; Canada, Niagara Peninsula. 95/100
  12. Duca di Dolle, 100% Exd Extra Dry 2019; Italy, Prosecco Valdobbiadene Superiore. 95/100
  13. Duval-Leroy, Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut NV; France, Champagne Grand Cru AOP. 95/100
  14. Langham Wine Estate, Rosé Brut 2017; England. 95/100
  15. Morrisons, The Best Gewurztraminer 2019; France, Alsace AOP. 95/100
  16. Nyetimber, Tillington Single Vineyard Brut 2013; England. 95/100
  17. Palmer & Co, Blanc de Blancs Brut NV; France, Champagne AOP. 95/100
  18. Quercia Al Poggio, 2018; Italy, Chianti Classico DOCG. 95/100
  19. Viña Arnaiz, Pata Negra Reserva 2016; Spain, Ribera Del Duero. 95/100
  20. Weingut Rabl, Ried Loiserberg Alte Reben Grüner 2019; Austria, Kamptal. 95/100
vegan white wine pouring and salad vegetables

HOW DO WE JUDGE THESE WINES?

We run a tightly structured, rigorous wine tasting process. That means that each wine sample is pre-poured into numbered glasses and assessed blindly by the judges. Most importantly, our IWSC wine judges are experts in their field, who work across all sectors of the wine industry. For evidence, see our full list of judges.

HOW DO WE SCORE THESE WINES?

Only the best wines sampled receive a Gold or Silver award. For example, to win Gold, wines have to score between 95 and 100 points. Meanwhile, Silver wines range from 90 to 94 points. Click here to read more on our scoring system.

MORE FROM CLUB OENOLOGIQUE

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Top Rated Bottles

20 of the best vegan wines from the IWSC 2021

G.D.Vajra, Lagarbiana 2016

Barolo DOCG
  • RRP £30
Lagarbiana
Learn More

Court Garden, Ditchling Quartet Brut 2014

England
  • RRP £34.40
Ditchling Quartet Brut
Learn More

Dopff Au Moulin, Gewurztraminer Brand 2019

Alsace Grand Cru AOP
  • RRP £29
Gewurztraminer Brand
Learn More

Les Domaines Paul Mas, Les Neuf Pierres Roulées 2019

Score
96
100
Terrasses Du Larzac
  • RRP £10
Les Neuf Pierres Roulées
Learn More

Mád, One 2018

Tokaj
One
Learn More

Alpha Estate, Single Vineyard Turtles Malagouzia 2020

Macedonia
  • RRP £15.75
Single Vineyard Turtles Malagouzia
Learn More

Balassa Bor, Szent Tamás Furmint 2018

Tokaj
  • RRP £17.50
Szent Tamás Furmint
Learn More

Cantina di Soave, Villa Rasina 2020

Soave Classico
Villa Rasina
Learn More

Claymore Wines, London Calling Cabernet-Malbec 2019 2019

South Australia
London Calling Cabernet-Malbec 2019
Learn More

Conte Collalto, Ottaviano Sui Lieviti Brut Nature 2019

Prosecco Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Superiore
  • RRP £24.50
Ottaviano Sui Lieviti Brut Nature
Learn More

Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits, Lakeview Cellars Vidal Icewine 2019

Niagara Peninsula
Lakeview Cellars Vidal Icewine
Learn More

Duca di Dolle, 100% Exd Extra Dry 2019

Prosecco Valdobbiadene Superiore
100% Exd Extra Dry
Learn More

Duval-Leroy, Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut NV

Score
95
100
Champagne
Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut
Learn More

Langham Wine Estate, Rosé Brut 2017

England
Rosé Brut
Learn More

Morrisons, The Best Gewurztraminer 2019

Alsace AOP
  • RRP £8.75
The Best Gewurztraminer
Learn More

Nyetimber, Tillington Single Vineyard Brut 2013

Score
95
100
England
Tillington Single Vineyard Brut
Learn More

Palmer & Co, Blanc de Blancs Brut NV

Champagne
  • RRP £44
Blanc de Blancs Brut
Learn More

Quercia Al Poggio 2018

Chianti Classico DOCG
Quercia Al Poggio
Learn More

Viña Arnaiz, Pata Negra Reserva 2016

Ribera del Duero DOC
Pata Negra Reserva
Learn More

Weingut Rabl, Ried Loiserberg Alte Reben Grüner 2019

Score
95
100
Kamptal DAC
Ried Loiserberg Alte Reben Grüner
Learn More

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