Newsflash! Rosé might not be the wine queen of the summer season for much longer. Enter the mysterious new "Gik Blue" wine that's currently sweeping Europe and crossing the pond to North America. The brand's Instagram account states that "Gik is not a blue wine, it's a revolution". We'll break down the basics of this inventive refreshment, how to get your hands on a bottle (or five), and anything else you might need to know. Cheers!
So how did we get here, to where blue wine is actually a thing?! Well, the start up company was launched in Spain 2015 by six entrepreneurs with zero experience in the wine industry. They worked with the food research department of the Basque Government plus the University of the Basque Country to develop their signature electric blue product. Their goal? To revolutionize the industry, appeal to millenial drinkers, and enjoy a glass of the good stuff without the usual snobbery that accompanies wine tasting.
Gik Blue contains 11.5% alcohol by volume and is optimally served chilled; it can be best compared to prosecco or white zinfandel. This sweet wine is ideal to drink in warmer months and has been called the new summer libation heir apparent to rosé. As an extra bonus, Gik Blue does not contain any added sugar. The company recommends pairing it with nachos plus guacamole, sushi, pasta carbonara, and/or smoked salmon.
The stunning blue color is surprisingly organic and is created from a pigment in grape skin plus indigo coloring from the woad plant. The wine is a blend of red and white grapes and a calorie-free sweetener. The grapes in this beautiful blue beverage come from La Rioja, Zaragoza, León, and Castilla-La Mancha all in Spain.
Following the stunning success of Gik Blue first in Europe then across the world, it's only natural that other competitors would see the appeal of this space. At first, Gik was the only blue wine on the market. Nowadays, there are a number of other options out there. We'll break down a few of the biggest for you.
The largest and most well-known competitor is a blue chardonnay called Vindigo that recently became available in the south of France. Vindigo was started by a French entrepreneur but is also based in Spain. Surprisingly, this wine has been enjoying a summer of celebrity on the French Riviera and has been gaining traction with the vacation crowd. Its sweet and fruity taste plus pretty aqua color have proven to be a hit. Vindigo is also available in Spain but does not yet ship to other countries.
Blanc de Bleu is a sparkling wine based in California. It is available in the United States at various retailers through their store finder tool. You can also find this beverage online through various wine merchants. The addition of bubbles to the blue category is new, and this sweet wine is best used as a dessert or celebration wine.
Another variety of blue chardonnay, this wine is currently available throughout Europe but has yet to hit the States. It has also permeated the Toronto, Canada and Mexico City, Mexico markets. It is a highly fruity and acidic wine that is also refreshing.
Despite its immediate popularity, Gik faced some backlash from regulators in its native Spain regarding labelling. There is a Spanish law that stipulates that only red wine and white wine can be marketed as wine. Therefore, the company was fined and forced to drop the "wine" from its label, instead putting 99% wine and 1% grape must. But after navigating those issues in the European market, Gik was anxious to expand to the United States. It worked with the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, and Gik is now available in the United States through its website; it currently ships to 37 states. This blue delight is also available in select European supermarkets and restaurants, as well as on its website.
So now that we've covered blue wine, will you try it? Do you think it's here to stay, or just a passing viticulture fad? While only time will be able to answer that query, we hope you've enjoyed our exploration of the Gik Blue phenomenon.