By Maris Callahan for DietsInReview.com
There are a lot of ways that you can reduce your carbon footprint when you’re throwing a party, including composting your leftovers, recycling, and buying locally grown produce – fruits and vegetables that haven’t been shipped halfway around the world.
Another way to do your part to help the planet is by serving organic wine. Contrary to popular belief, organic wine is actually no healthier for you than conventional wine, but it is better for the planet.
“Organic winemaking is the emphasis on growing grapes with natural remedies and enhancements instead of manufactured fertilizers and pesticides,” said Erica Witte, owner of The Poison Cup, a wine and art boutique in Chicago. “Anyone who is concerned about the planet’s lack of potable water should consider trading traditional wines for organic,” Witte said. “It’s also perfect for anyone skeptical of FDA-approved pesticides or fertilizers.”
Not only are organic grapes farmed using more sustainable methods than conventional grapes, organic wine is free of sulfites, which some wine-drinkers like to avoid.
On the Fourth of July, when many people serve cans of beer that will eventually wind up in the recycling bin, serve bottles of organic wine instead or in addition to your usual libations. We’ve chosen a few organic wines that pair with a few favorite, healthier burger recipes that will allow for a delicious and guilt-free summer celebration.
Southwest Turkey Burger with Avocado:
Sink your teeth into a lean turkey burger paired with a glass of Brut Rosé Cuvée de la Pompadour by Domaine Carneros. The full-bodied blush bubbly has an elegant, yet simple flavor with hints of raspberries and red cherries that will cut through the rich flavors of the avocado. In 2008, the winery received organic certification of all Estate vineyards by the California Certified Organic Farmers (ARV $35).
Cheeseburger with Grilled Onions:
Watching your weight (and your carbon footprint) doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in the occasional burger. You can always pair a rich cheeseburger made of lean, grass-fed beef with full-bodied red wine, a 2008 Cono Sur Chardonnay Colchagua will stand up to the beef and cheese. It’s crisp, lightly oaked and made with organic grapes (ARV $8.99).
Mile High Veggie Burger:
A pure, simple vegetable-based burger needs a wine that is equally crisp and clean. 2009 Yellow + Blue Torrontes is produced in a dry valley of the Andes mountains, which is an area that lends itself well to organic vineyard practices. The wine has fresh aromas of peach and pineapple with a nice acidity that will stand up to, but not overwhelm, a veggie burger (ARV $12).
Mediterranean Style Burger with Caper Yogurt Sauce and Portobello:
With supple tannins and notes of red fruits and citrus, 2007 Girasole Vineyards Mendocino Pinot Noir is an easy drinking red wine that hails from 45-year-old organically farmed vines in the Redwood Valley in California. It’s smooth body pairs nicely with the flavor and spice in this lighter Mediterranean-style burger (ARV $12).