I’m always interested in the sustainable practices that winemakers use. From how the grapes are grown and harvested to how the winery is powered, there are many different steps a wine grower can take to lessen the impact that their business makes on the earth.

Unlike food manufacturers that love to splash any old organic or health claim on the front of their packages, many winemakers that create wines sustainably, organically or biodynamically do so under the radar. Not all winemakers put that information on their wine bottles. Many put it on their websites, but when you’re at the wine store contemplating a bottle of wine, that information is not readily available.

Slow Food is going to make the process of identifying sustainable wines easier with the publication of “Slow Wine 2011.” According to Decanter, the first-ever Slow Food wine guide will cover Italian wines. The publishers visited each winery and vineyard and conducted interviews with wine makers to decide which wines to include in the guide.

The Slow Food movement itself began in Italy, so it makes sense that the first wine guide would focus on Italy. Just as the organization has grown throughout the world, hopefully the wine guide will grow to include wines from across the globe in the future. 

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.