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I was at that "debate" and I was the last person to ask a question. My concern is and has always been about GMO yeast and our health and the environment. I felt that Dr. Ugliano was very helpful for a lot of people because he answers in a very straight forward manner. I went to one of his workshops by accident and it was the most informative of them all. I think people have gotten really overly concerned about the label of being a naturalist or not rather than what are the real issues. Why is there even a movement in the first place? I am concerned about loss of autochthonous grapes, I am concerned about GMO yeasts invading the entire planet and eventually mutating and working their way into other ecosystems. I am concerned about small famers losing their way of life because they can’t keep up with Big Agro, even in the wine world. I am concerned about the use of petro chemicals and I don’t want to drink wine that has been fined with animal blood. Everywhere in this world I feel that there is a constant onslaught of fake food, fake drinks fake everything. My hope is that one of the traditions that made humans civilized will not die out for the cause of greed and money.
While conversations and debates are good, this one in particular had no answers and no point. I don’t believe that any of the 4 people on the panel had any idea about what the other panelists were going to talk about so it is was just 4 presentations, some people in the audience clearly irritating and nothing new was said.

Sarah May


Hi Sarah, I did not listen to his whole answer, which I believed was headed down the wrong road. ML01 is indeed making headways even if only approved for 'experiments' in certain cases. This will be the future debate. Big Ag will win out. Those in the natural wine movement will be the foot soldiers in this next war --at least in the wine world.

> Do take a look at this article.



Hi Alice...

Thanks for weighing in on this. And thanks for the link to my post on the topic (http://awe.sm/nAXzn). I have never had such an acerbic and interesting attack and discussion as in the comments there.

I've stated forever my views on this and how this is neither trend nor movement but a change in the world. I believe this with all my heart.

And though we all tire of the debate the population is still interested. Rather huge readerships on my posts, almost 100 shares and 75RTs is indication enough that interest, not just arguments, is still high.

Thanks Alice!


Arnold, your statement after the event was extremely articulate. Enjoyed hearing it.


Alice, I admit to having taken a more extreme view than I meet, but many of my conversations with naturalistas does tend to push me to the edge.

I find it curious how little respect is ever paid to what I think are some fairly straightforward views on my part

1) non-"naturals" can and do take offence at being treated as "un"natural
2) Many non-naturals who choose not to march under that banner resent the implication that they routinely add tannins, gum arabic, grape concentrate, PVPP
3) "Natural" is a curious term to adopt, given its use for "natural " flavourings
4) What consideration is being given to the potential longevity of low- and non-SO2 wines?
5) If one is not aware of the philosophy behind them (which most people won't be). how is anyone to see any kinship beween Arpent Rouge (which tastes and looks like a "conventional" wine) and totallyzero-SO2 and/or amphora and/or orange wines?


I thought you were great on the panel.

But Robert, if you 'studied' natural wines the way you have conventional wines, you'd have the answers to all of your questions.But here are a few stabs.

This natural wine banner was only a banner for the past few years when consumers starting to love them and then press had to identify and discuss them.

As a result they've become something for the market to consider.

There is just nothing to do about issue #1:

#1: If the wines went under minimal interventionist, other's would get equally pissed off.
#2: Even if they do the bare minimum of high intervention: two inoculations, yeast food and mega sulfur--that's a lot. It doesn't make a difference how much. The intention is different.

#3: agreed. Problematic. Natural food went through the same debate in the 70s and 80s. #4: who cares? (though look at older chateau musar)

#5:If you can't taste the difference...who cares, once more.

Regarding #5: I started to drink these wines before I knew they had a name, just because they tasted so different and they had the tastes and textures that I wanted. I didn't care what they were called. Taste came first, I learned about their philosophy 2d.

The answer, as far as I'm concerned, is to stop discussing the natural and just look at the wines as wines. The people who want to seek them out, will. The people who just drink them not knowing why they love them, will find out soon enough.

Looking forward to whenever!


HI Alice thank you for the link. I also appreciate your responce to Mr. Joseph and your point, "This natural wine banner was only a banner for the past few years when consumers starting to love them and then press had to identify and discuss them.

As a result they've become something for the market to consider." This would have been perfect in the powerpoints on that panel.

On a side note, last night I was at I was at a Slovenian wne tasting here in Rome and luckily the winemakers were there. Usually at these events they have sommeliers in suits who don't really know much about the nature of the wine. Anyway, I was able to get the lowdown on many of the winemakers' philosophies. One stood out because when I asked him about his yeasts they sounded like this to me "Obi-Wan Kenobi"

Also I agree that taste comes first.

Bicycle Gourmet

alice....quelle co-incidence(and BIG news to me) that there is a vignernon named "Virgile Joly who works in organic" and (as a wino of your stature is obviously aware) there is - Virginie Joly, totally bio, daughter of and heir apparent to daddy Nicholas at Coulee-de-Serrant.

will sunders never wease!

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I'm hunting the Leon Trotskys, the Philip Roths, the Chaucers and the Edith Whartons of the wine world. I want them natural and most of all, I want them to speak the truth even if we argue. With this messiah thing going on, I'm trying to swell the ranks of those who crave the differences in each vintage, celebrate nuance and desire wines that make them think, laugh, and feel. Welcome.

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