Between all the new restrictions and limited opportunities to maintain regular routines or socialise, the current situation in Hong Kong can be a little daunting, to say the least. If you find yourself coping with a glass or two of wine at home, don’t feel bad. In fact, there may be even more reason to raise that glass.
Can red wine prevent Covid?
A recent study published by Frontiers of Nutrition analysed data from nearly 500,000 U.K. residents and found that subjects who drank one to two glasses of red wine per day had a 10-17% lower chance of COVID-19 risk compared to non-drinkers. The findings even held true for white wine and champagne drinkers, though at a lower rate of 7-8%.
While factors related to lifestyle, diet, and vaccination rates could be at play, the study suggests that there are benefits to consuming red wine in comparison to other alcoholic beverages for reducing your risk of catching Covid-19.
The study attributes this to the polyphenols or the compounds found in red wine that are rich in antioxidants, which can inhibit certain respiratory conditions while also managing blood pressure and promoting blood circulation. Polyphenol content can also reduce chronic inflammation, which is a risk for heart diseases.
So, along with those long-shelf life vegetables, now could be as good a time as any to restock the wine fridge too. If you’re looking to try a few new wines that are as good for the planet as they are for your health, here are some excellent picks for natural, bio and organic red wines in Hong Kong:
Domaine de Michelet, Buzet, France
Grown on 16 hectares of organic vineyard, Domaine de Michelet is a family-run estate in Buzon, France that was first established in 1989. The Rousille family are dedicated to the work of reclaiming the vines, working the soil and using ancestral techniques of winegrowing, integrated with modern methodologies to produce their natural vegan wine.
This aromatic, medium body cabernet franc merlot blend is free of products of animal origins and sulphites, and is grown with practices that are bee friendly – which indicates a healthy environment surrounding the vines.
Learn more about Domaine de Michelet from Bluenote Wine
Discovery Wine Bundle
Specialists in French natural and biodynamic wines and handcrafted spirits, Natural Asia Pacific always has an exciting and highly curated collection to browse.
Take yourself on a tour of France’s foremost wine regions with the Discovery Wine Bundle, featuring expertly picked reds from Côtes du Rhône, Beaujolais, and Languedoc – all of which are biodynamic, sustainably grown and harvested to meet international standards of production and respect of environment.
Learn more about Natural Asia Pacific
Garage Project Fairy Bread Red
The folks at Garage Project in New Zealand are as serious about their brewing and winemaking as they are about sustainability and it shows in their environmental practices. Aware of the footprint the brewing industry has on the environment, GP seeks to offset its carbon emissions 100%, uses only renewable supplied electricity, repurposes its grain from its brewing to local farmers, and even encourages employees to bike to work with stipends for purchasing a bike or scooter.
Their Fairy Bread Red is a blend of grapes from the Nelson region, thoughtfully grown by Kindeli Natural Wines, which prides itself in farming organically and holistically. Tart, fruity and fun, this juicy red wine will be a party pleaser, even if it’s a party of one at home (thanks, COVID).
Learn more about Garage Project from The Bottle Shop
Jean Foillard Elles Madine & Agnes 2018
Founded in 1980, the Foillard vineyard in Morgon, France has been carefully steered toward more sustainable and natural winemaking processes with the guidance of owner Jean Foillard. The move, which allows for the true character of the region to shine through, also demonstrates a sensitivity and respect for the vines, which Foillard further facilitates through manual harvest and traditional vinification.
This 100% Gamay blend is particularly special as it is produced by Foillard’s wife, Agnes, and her friend Nadine. Floral with a nice balance of black fruit and earthy notes, Beaujolais enthusiasts will appreciate how versatile this bottle can be with a range of dishes.
Learn more about Jean Foillard from Wine Guru
Guthrie Family Farms Chateau Guthrie Red Blend
If you believe in less being more, conservation, composting and helping others, you’ll appreciate the work of Guthrie Family Farms, and the wine that comes out of it. Grown in Sonoma, California, their farm is built on the premise that organic is conventional, and sometimes doing things the old-fashioned way is best.
This means conserving water, organic farming and composting where possible – not to mention capsule-free bottles and corks made of repurposed sugar cane (which are carbon negative too!). Balanced yet interesting, this California red blend has inviting notes of strawberry, cherry and oak.
Learn more about Guthrie Family Farms from Crushed
Alex Foillard Côte de Brouilly 2018 – Magnum
Winemaker Alex Foillard has impressed many with his own natural wines, following in the footsteps of his father, Jean Foillard. Employing the same passion for sustainable farming and low intervention winemaking he shares with his father, the younger Foillard tries to make his wines with as little intervention as possible, using only natural yeasts, no additives and minimal sulphites. Hailed as powerful, thrilling and pure, this Foillard Gamay displays Alex’s own masterful ability to cultivate incredible wine.
Learn more about Alex Foillard from La Cabane
Lammidia Rosh 2020
Anchored on the principles of simplicity and spontaneity, winemakers Davide and Marco are true believers in the purity of good grapes. With zero reliance on sulphites, additives, clarifying agents or filtration, the process of perfecting their wine can be challenging but it also makes their craftsmanship distinct.
The residual lees and grape skins are indicative of the natural and genuine processes they use to make their bottles, like this juicy montepulciano. Light with mouth-watering acids, the touch of trebbiano adds a dimension of freshness one can’t deny.
Learn more about Lammidia from Wine Guru
Alex Craighead Wines DON Nelson Pinot Noir 2020 from La Cabane
The organic vineyards of Alex Craighead have helped to put New Zealand wine on the map, and particularly Craighead’s progressive approach to winemaking, through manual harvest, biodynamic farming and using only organically farmed grapes.
Before the grapes ripen, sheep are invited to the vineyards to mow the grass and eat the leaves around the young grapes, allowing for greater airflow and lowering potential rot. Crafted with zero additives, this pinot noir serves up berry, cherry and spices with a slight earthy and vegetal nose.
Learn more about Alex Craighead from La Cabane
See also: 8Shades’ Guide To A Greener Lockdown
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