“Orange wine is made using white grapes that have been crushed and left on their skins for some time before fermentation”
Whilst orange wine has been getting a lot of attention recently, it is a very traditional way of making white wine that has been around for thousands of years. Before it was ever called ‘Orange Wine’ it was made in Georgia fermented and aged in Quervi (amphora) as shown in the picture to the right.
The best way to describe it is to start with red wine. When making red wine the grapes are crushed then the skins are left to sit in the juice in order to extract flavour and tannin. The amount of time the skins are left in contact with the juice is a winemaker’s decision. Just like making a cup of tea! How long do you leave the bag in?
When white wine is made conventionally, the grapes are crushed and pressed instantly so all of the fruity flavour comes from the pulp and not the skins.
Orange wine is wine that has been made using white grapes that have been crushed and left on their skins for some time before fermentation. A simple way of saying this is – white wine made with skin contact. This means that orange wines can vary enormously in style, dependent on the amount of time skin contact is allowed (not to mention myriad other growing conditions and grape varieties that make wine so diverse). It’s not uncommon for people to say that they don’t like orange wine after trying one, and it’s true, it is not to everyone’s taste. It’s definitely worth trying a few before you make your decision, however. It may be that you don’t like the wine itself rather than the fact that it’s orange. Saying you don’t like orange wine is like saying you don’t like white wine or red wine. Most people would only come to that conclusion after trying more than one!
TIP: Try tasting orange wine with your eyes closed and imagine it’s a chilled red wine. This will completely change your perception of it and may even increase your enjoyment of it!
To browse our current selection of orange wines, please click below.