A subject that has been weighing heavily on my mind lately is the concept that all wines may not be gluten-free. I may be “late to the prom” and have somehow just missed this topic. But as far as I have ever heard or read, liquors and wines are gluten-free.
What changed my opinion on this was after a knowledgeable reader wrote in asking about this, and then I noticed on Yellow Tail Wine’s very interactive website they have a tab for each of their wines called “nutritional info” which states whether a wine is vegan (free of gelatin, casein, egg whites or isinglass) or gluten-free.
According to Yellow Tail’s website:
- All Red wines and Reserve Reds are gluten-free and vegan
- All Chardonnays, Pinot Grigios, Sparkling Wines and the Reisling are gluten-free, but not vegan
- And the Sauvignon Blanc is NOT gluten-free or vegan
I have, however asked for more information from this allergy-responsible company. As while contacting other companies I learned that a good rule-of-thumb is that a barrel-free wine is likely a gluten-free wine, and Yellow Tail does use some barrels, so I am curious as to whether they take specific measures are taken to avoid the use of gluten in their barrels.
According to Bogle Winery:
- Their wines are not vegan. But in the past couple of years they did stop using casein specifically, but not other non-vegan fining agents.
- They also told me that the wheat-paste used to seal the barrels is used in the manufacturing, not the wine making. But they also said that the paste should be washed away in the initial rising.
- I do not know what the initial rinsing entails, but based on this information, unless I hear otherwise I will therefore assume their wines are NOT gluten-free
According to Castle Rock Winery:
- All wines are barrel-free and thus gluten-free except for their Chardonnay
- All are also vegan friendly
According to Cline Cellars:
- All wines are vegan
- They said that all wines are gluten-free, but I have inquired for more information, as they do use oak barrels in the aging process, so I am not ready to assume that these wines are safe
I will keep contacting winemakers and trying to learn more about this. I am far from being a Wine Maker and know very little about the use of wheat paste in barrels, but as far as I can conclude thus far, wines that are not aged in barrels are less likely to contain gluten. And with Australian standards for gluten-free labeling perhaps a bit ahead of ours, if Yellow Tail’s website labels all but one of their wines gluten-free, that is likely good information.