We love this fascinating and venerable style of winemaking. Essentially white wines made as if they were reds – the grape skins are left in contact with the juice as it ferments, and sometimes as it matures as well, orange wine can be utterly thrilling and unique when well executed.
Here’s a selection of articles and tasting notes on some favourite orange wines. Check out Simon’s major Decanter feature for a general primer and some of the backstory.
The Hermit Ram – wild beast of Canterbury Theo Coles makes naked, stripped down wines in Canterbury, New Zealand which use skin fermentation to achieve magical ends.
Impossible orange wine from Vinarija Škegro Bosnia’s Vinarija Škegro have an orange surprise up their sleeves, and it’s a lot more delicious than Simon ever suspected.
Cool climate curtimenta from Humus Rodrigo Filipe (Humus) has come up with a strange way to make his curtimenta (skin fermented white wine), but it’s an unqualified success.
Channing Daughters’ Long Island Ribolla Gialla Ribolla Gialla isn’t a grape variety you find much in the US, but this skin fermented example from Channing Daughters in Long Island is a convincing effort.
Matej Skerlj shows the elegance of Vitovska The wonderful skin macerated Vitovska from Skerlj isn’t just a great wine, it’s also a demonstration of how different this region is from its Friuli-Venezia-Giulia neighbours.
Another religious experience – Coenobium Ruscum Religious orders are always good for tasty, traditionally made beverages. Simon reviews the latest vintage of Coenobium from the Cistercian nuns at Vitorchiano.
A religious experience – Ruth Lewandowski Chilion Simon encounters a gender bending orange wine from the Ruth Lewandowski estate in Utah, USA. And it’s probably good for your soul too!
Wines of the cosmos – Zorjan Simon gets to grips with the cosmic properties of Zorjan’s excellent amphora-fermented wines
What dreams are made of – Le Vignoble du Rêveur Simon is super impressed with Mathieu Deiss’s newish solo project Le Vignoble du Rêveur – and in particular three skin macerated white wines.
Supermarket surprise – Hofer Orange 2017 Austrian supermarket chain Hofer (AKA Aldi) isn’t the first place one expects to find an orange wine for sale. But Waldherr’s “Orange” Sauvignon Blanc 2017 was on the shelves in December.