Sunday, April 5, 2020

Corona Coping 101: My Dry Farm WINE + Dining at Home Plate


I love everything about it. 

Red, white, sparkling... I do not discriminate. 
I love cooking with wine.
I love pairing good food with wine.
I love drinking wine.

However, about a year ago, due to headaches (no matter how little I drank), I had to stop drinking red wine. The switch to white wine was fine, but the lovely elixir had a tendency to go down faster than I can throw a fastball. I started wondering about all the sugar and alcohol amount I was consuming. 


A healthy bit.

And then I found Dry Farm Wines. For those of you who have come over to my house in the past year, you know I have a hard time drinking anything else. In fact, I have been known to be that "wine snob" who brings a bottle over to drink at your house. #sorrynotsorry

Today, with immune health being high up on the collective mind, plus being stuck inside/socially distant, it's definitely time to share why I'm such a weirdo about my wine. (Plus I'm linking you to my rad lasagna recipe at the very end... so you have read lol. Or just scroll down cheater.)

My passion for real food + gut health is well known. I've been talking on & on about our microbiome-brain connection since the start of this lovely blog in 2012. I can't help but smile + sip nowadays - I never thought it was possible to build a stronger gut through wine, but now I know how powerful a probiotic it can be.

No way 

you say.

Yes way 

I say.

Natural wine is a beautiful thing.

Simply, it’s when a wine is made with organic grapes and native yeast. Nothing is added, nothing is removed. No human intervention.

Wine = A probiotic like kimchi or kombucha.

That means natural wine is alive in the bottle, full of beneficial bacteria and antioxidants. It hasn’t been filtered or chemically altered in any way.

From a taste perspective, this vitality makes each bottle of natural wine a unique experience. Leave the same bottle open on your counter overnight and you’ll wake up to a whole new wine.

But the beauty of living wine goes beyond taste. All those yeasts, bacteria, and colorful compounds that make natural wine delicious also help you live a healthier life. The secret lies in your gut bacteria.

What’s so important about your gut?

Right now, as you’re reading this, trillions of bacteria are thriving in your gut. These little companions outnumber your own cells 10-1; You’re actually more bacteria than you are human. Feeding the good bacteria in your gut can give you some glorious health benefits: staying lean, feeling happy, and even being more social.

For example…

  • Mycobacterium vaccae, a bacterium that’s naturally in the soil around you, significantly increased happiness in lung cancer patients who took it as a probiotic.
  • A diverse gut biome can boost tryptophan. Tryptophan turns into serotonin, the brain chemical that enhances mood. No surprise that a balanced gut can reverse depression and anxiety.
  • Diverse gut bacteria can also increase your metabolism, and even affect social skills.

In short, your gut bacteria regulates your health. It helps you look and feel more vibrant. We need to strengthen our immunity now more than ever.

So, how does wine enhance it?


Natural wine is alive, which means it’s rich with precious bacteria and compounds that strengthen your microbiome. To name a few …
  • Polyphenols, the antioxidants that give red wine its color, feed good gut bacteria. They also remove harmful bacteria to make room for the new ones to grow. Two superb sources of polyphenols in your diet are red wine and coffee.
  • Flavanols and wine aroma compounds protect brain cells from dying in people who drink moderate red wine daily, and ward off Alzheimer’s Disease in mice.
  • Resveratrol, an antioxidant found in grape skins, makes mice leaner by fostering a balanced gut. You may have heard of resveratrol; it gets a lot of attention in the news, but the reality is most red wines have nearly undetectable amounts of it. Wines that have the most are Malbec, Pinot Noir, Petite Syrah, and St. Laurent.
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a wild yeast that gives wine a spicy, fruity flavor. But it’s good for more than taste: S. cerevisiae also increases absorption of zinc, magnesium, calcium, and iron through your intestinal wall. Commercial wine is sterilized to get rid of most native yeast, but you’ll find an abundance of S. cerevisiae in natural wine.
  • Probiotic bacteria also form in wine while it ferments. Commercial wines are filtered to get rid of nearly all bacteria and sediment, but natural wine keeps those beneficial bacteria in. Among them is Pediococcus pentosaceus, a bacterium that attaches to your intestinal wall and protects it from pathogens like E. coli. Wine also contains lactic acid bacteria that have similar probiotic benefits as fermented foods like kimchi and miso, and unique wine probiotics that decrease gut inflammation in mice.
Can wine damage your gut?

It can, although the harmful compounds are either far lower or entirely absent in natural wine.
  • Sugar can feed the harmful yeast Candida and other pathogens in your gut. Sugar hurts gut bacterial balance and decreases brain function in mice, too. Stick to “dry” wines that are left to fully ferment; they have less than 3g/L of sugar, which tastes crisp and won’t cause bloating.
  • Alcohol is a toxin for your gut, too. It increases gut permeability (leaky gut), which can cause gut inflammation. Try to find lower alcohol wines — less than 12.5% ABV — to avoid negative effects.
  • Acetaldehyde is a fermentation byproduct that increases intestinal permeability and makes you feel hungover. During the final steps of fermentation, though, yeasts use up acetaldehyde as fuel, and bacteria break it down. Natural wines typically have far less acetaldehyde because they’re unfiltered and ferment without human intervention.
How to get the healthiest wine for your gut bacteria:

The short answer is to get real wine, grown in accordance with nature.
  • Organic grapes. Grapes grown organically (without pesticides) have more polyphenols and antioxidants than conventional grapes do. Grapevines produce antioxidants as a natural way to protect against microbes and pests. Organic vines aren’t artificially protected by chemical sprays, which means they produce many more antioxidants to survive.
  • Natural wines. Commercial processing techniques, like extreme filtration, damage or remove many of the good compounds in wine. Manufacturers often replace them with artificial coloring and lab-created yeast strains.
  • Low sulfites. Sulfites kill bacteria to stabilize a wine. The lower the sulfites, the more alive a wine remains. You can see the difference under a microscope — low-sulfite wine is vibrant with a diverse spectrum of wild bacteria and yeast.
  • Sugar-free, low-alcohol wine. Sugar and alcohol are the two biggest toxins in wine. Try to find the driest, lowest alcohol wines possible.
So there you have it. By drinking moderate amounts of natural wine, you can help keep the companions in your gut healthy and happy.

In turn, they’ll take good care of you.

The top 3 reasons why my gut-brain is a happier corona-camper drinking Dry Farm Wines:
1. Every bottle of wine is lab tested to ensure it is:
  • Sugar Free (< 1g/L)
  • Lower Sulfites (< 75ppm)
  • Lower Alcohol (< 12.5%)
2. Every bottle of wine is also:
  • Grown Organically/Biodynamically
  • Low Carb-Friendly
  • Dry Farmed/Irrigation Free
  • Fermented with 100% Wild, Native Yeast
  • Handcrafted/Small Batch
  • Old World International Natural Wines
  • Paleo & Keto-Friendly
  • Free of Industrial Additives
  • Grown From Older Vines
3. Dry Farm Wines offer a 100% happiness promise on every selection. They are so confident in the quality of their wines, that they will never make me or you pay for a wine we don’t love. They will replace any bottle, no questions asked. I promise. 

If you'd like to learn more, here is the link to the Dry Farm Wines YouTube Channel.

Without further ado, I am honored to announce my partnership with this amazing family owned company. If you are a wino like myself and are looking to buy + drink better wine, here is my gift to YOU, dear mullies reader:

By clicking to my unique link, (or any of the links throughout this blog post), you'll get a BONUS bottle of wine added to your order for just 1 penny. 

You're welcome. I love you too. 

Keep cooking & drinking ON from my home plate to yours!!


to the mullies we go... 

PS - As promised and pictured, here is my famous soffritto lasagna recipe... still cooking it the same circa 2016! Cheers to friendship + family tables no matter how far apart we are from our chimmies!!! Stay healthy everyone!!!