Subscribe

Sonoma company offers vegan wine tours

The "Follow This Story" feature will notify you when any articles related to this story are posted.

When you follow a story, the next time a related article is published — it could be days, weeks or months — you'll receive an email informing you of the update.

If you no longer want to follow a story, click the "Unfollow" link on that story. There's also an "Unfollow" link in every email notification we send you.

This tool is available only to subscribers; please make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

Please note: This feature is available only to subscribers; make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

Subscribe

After La Belle Vie owner and wine tour director Michelle Rulmont became vegan in January 2018, she did research to learn which local wineries are vegan. She was surprised to learn that many wines use animal-derived substances during the filtering process.

According to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), popular animal-derived fining agents commonly used to filter wine include blood and bone marrow, casein (milk protein), chitin (fiber from crustacean shells), egg albumen (derived from egg whites), fish oil, gelatin (protein from boiling animal parts), and isinglass (gelatin from fish bladder membranes).

A handful of local wineries do, however, use fining agents that are animal-friendly and result in vegan wine. Carbon, bentonite clay, limestone, kaolin clay, plant casein, silica gel and vegetable plaques are all vegan alternatives.

Rulmont’s tour is designed for animal-lovers and vegans, but she says that it isn’t a requirement to be either to enjoy the experience.

“La vie est belle” is a French expression meaning life is beautiful.

The tour begins in downtown Sonoma, where guests board a Mercedes Sprinter van for a visit to Charlie’s Acres animal sanctuary in Sonoma Valley. On the one-hour guided tour visitors meet rescued goats, cows, horses, chickens, turkeys, ducks and pigs. After getting to know the animals, the tour stops for wine tasting at two local vegan wineries, complete with a vegan lunch and wine tasting in a garden.

Along the way, guests learn about other vegan options around the Sonoma Valley area.

The six-hour escape begins at 10 a.m. and ends back near the Plaza at approximately 4 p.m. The tour can accommodate up to seven guests.

Rulmont and her husband Marc founded the company in 2017 but the vegan tours are new. www.labellevietours.com.

Show Comment

Our Network

The Press Democrat
Petaluma Argus Courier
North Bay Business Journal
Sonoma Magazine
Bite Club Eats
La Prensa Sonoma
Emerald Report
Spirited Magazine