Sustainable Wine Tour with Renee Loux

Renéee Loux goes on a tour of organic and biodynamic wineries in Santa Ynez, CA in a segment of her TV series It's Easy Being Green.

For too long organic wine fought the stigma of being an inferior product. Now, a wine list is considered to be inferior without a considerable selection of organics. The word is getting out and Bryan Hope is helping spread the good word one bus-load at a time.

The Sustainable Wine Vine Tour is a creation of Bryan’s, a wine enthusiast who’s equally passionate for wine as he is about the environment. In a Mercedes Sprint running on bio-diesel, Brian takes passengers on a tour of eco-friendly wine makers in the Santa Rita Appalachians near the Santa Barbara area.

The tour covers all stages of the organic wine making process, from the vineyards to the wineries, the distributors and the glass. To be organic a win maker cannot use chemical fertilizers or pesticides during the growing process, as well as artificial preservatives like sulfites during bottling.

The wineries have been chosen based on: one, quality wines, because if they don’t make good wines, then what’s the point? Second criteria is that they have really good customer service, that you’re often meeting the wine maker or the owner, and the third thing is that they have some degree of sustainability.

The first stop on the tour is Ampelos Vineyards in the Santa Rita hills In the spring of 2006, Peter and Rebecca Work converted Amelpos to a 100 percent biodynamic farm, which is a complex system of organic farming that takes a holistic approach to all the components of farming, including the soil and the plants. The process is labor-intensive, but the benefits can be substantial.

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