Best Orange Wines for 2022

Orange wine finally has the time it deserves. Before you dive in, here are some things to remember. Orange wine, also known as skin-contact or amber wine, can be produced worldwide. It is not made from oranges. These wines with golden hues are made from white wines vinified using red wines. In other words, orange wine production juice is not extracted directly from the grapes. Instead, it spends time on the skins.

Doreen Winkler, founder and CEO of Orange Glou, says that orange wine can be found in sparkling and still formats. Flavours also range from tropical to umami. Winkler explained that the most important thing when looking for orange wine to add to her monthly subscription, dedicated exclusively to skin-contact wines, is how it was made. She explains that all of the wines she selects are natural. They were hand-harvested and had no added / very low or zero sulphur. There is also no oak masking. Winkler points out that orange wines can be enjoyed any time of day because there are many shades, textures and flavours.

The orange wine spectrum is vast, and it can be not easy to know where to begin. We have compiled a list of our top skin-contact wines from different winemakers, regions and grape varieties all over the globe. You could have stuck with one style, but we’re glad that we didn’t.

Best Overall: Cos Pithos Bianco

COS wines are made in the Cerasuolo di Vittoria region of Italy. They have been a favourite natural wine throughout the United States. This varietal skin contact Grecanico was created by Giusto Occhipinti, who is one of the most prominent winemakers in Italy. It has juicy flavours of mandarin, yellow raisins and apricots. This delicious orange wine is a refreshing, easy-to-drink expression. This wine is made with organic/biodynamic fruits, native yeasts, and 30+ days of skin contact.

(Note: Pithos, the Greek word for amphora, is also mentioned.

Field Recordings Skins: The Best Value for Money

This easy-to-find orange wine is made right on California’s Central Coast. Andrew Jones, a winemaker, seeks a crisper and more refreshing style with this skin contact blend of Chenin Blanche, riesling and pinot gris. It has a refreshing finish with notes of orange blossom, apricot, and hearty spices. Serve with farro, blue cheese and charcuterie boards.

Best Splurge: Gravner Breg Anfora Bianco

Radikon is the best-selling skin-contact wine in the world. These long-aged bottles produced by the famous Gravner family of northern Italy promise an amazing experience for orange wine lovers. The Breg combines Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling Italico and Pinot Grigio. It’s macerated in amphora, aged six years in oak barrels, and then bottled. It has a rich, complex, and grippy flavour of honey, orange blossom, dried fruits, and sweet spices. It’s hard to find a better wine with skin contact than this, especially if you’ve never tried it. Unfiltered and unfiltered.

Attems Pinot-Grigio Ramato is the Best

This stuff is delicious, whether rose wine or orange wine. Ramato (which means copper in Italian) is a unique skin-contact wine and was born in northern Italy. It is usually associated with the Pinot Grigio grape. Scarboro is a pioneer in this category, creating flavour-packed, amber-hued cuvees for quite some time. You can expect grapefruit skin, tropical fruits, and peach skin flavours.

Best French: Anne Pichon Sauvage Orange 2020

Anne Pichon’s Sauvage is a skin-contact wine with a big punch. Anne and Marc founded the estate, which is named after them, in central France’s Vaucluse. Their 15 hectares were converted quickly to organic 3 farming. They also dedicated their estate to producing site-specific wines unique to the region from which they came.

Sauvage, a mix of sauvignon blanc and roussanne, spends 12 months in barrel. The full-bodied flavours of citrus rind, apple blossom, and crushed stones achieve a long-lasting, palate-coating finish. Pair with mezze platters or pungent cheeses.


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