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Is the Natural Wine Movement at a Crossroads?

Jenny Lefcourt, the force behind natural wine importer Jenny & Francois Selections, has a portfolio that reads like the menu at an of-the-moment natural wine bar. She worked with some of the most well-loved producers in the natural wine scene—that is, until the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) changed its definition of “organic.” 

Recently, the USDA implemented a series of directives aimed at increasing the regulation of organic products at various steps of the supply chain. The idea is seemingly well-intentioned—to protect the integrity of the organic label. But the law’s implementation, Lefcourt and others believe, has created more problems than it solved. They say it’s now difficult for smaller producers to distribute organic wine and easier for corporations to keep additives out of the public eye, putting the long-term welfare of the organic and natural wine movements at stake.

In this episode, we draw on Lefcourt’s experience as a natural wine pioneer and importer in a discussion about the impact of the USDA’s new rules, the imperative to support small organic wine producers and what everything means for natural wine moving forward.

You May Also Like: Your Favorite Organic Wine May Not Be ‘Organic’ Anymore

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Episode Transcript

Transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before quoting.

Speakers: Jenny Lefcourt, Samantha Sette

Samantha Sette  00:09

Hi, everyone, and welcome to the Wine Enthusiast podcast. My name is Samantha Sette, and I’m the Senior Web Producer here at wine at this yes, today I have the pleasure to speak with Jenny Lefcourt, founder of her own natural wine importing business, Jenny and Francoise selections. Since founding her company in 2000, Jenny has played an influential role in spearheading the natural wine movement in the United States. Some may argue her portfolio reads like an elite team roster of some of the most well love producers in the organic and biodynamic wine scene, a sector of the industry that is more popular than ever. I’m here with Jenny today to discuss recent changes in the natural wine industry, including updates to the USDA Strengthening Organic Enforcement Rule, and other labeling protocols. With many leaders in the space left in limbo. We can’t help but ask how have these changes impacted producers small and large? What does this mean for the organic wine scene and the consumer moving forward? And are the new regulations really the issue? Or is there a larger problem at hand when it comes to the prioritization and support of wine as an agricultural product? Clearly, we have a lot to talk about. I’d love to start by learning a little bit more of what brought you to where you are today, if you don’t mind sharing a little bit more backstory to you and your role in the natural wine scene.

Jenny Lefcourt  01:30

Thank you so much for having me. I’m happy to share that story. Yeah, I moved to France at first to do Junior semester abroad. And then I went back after finishing college, and I enrolled in a master’s program there. And I was going to be a professor of French literature and film actually did finish my PhD at Harvard. Oh, wow. And I have a degree in the French system as well as master’s degree. But while I was doing that, I got very interested in food and wine. As soon as I moved to France, I thought, amazing. You could sit down and have lunch for an hour and talk politics and hang out with friends. And I just thought it was a much more pleasurable way to live life. And so I started drinking wine and asking questions about wine. And literally one day I was waiting for the bus after studying at the National Library. And I was in front of this Bistro, and the bistro ta the owner of the bistro came out in his battered out dressed up for work. And he saw me looking at a poster about wine. And he said, Oh, are you interested in wine mademoiselle? Whenever you come in and try something, I want to pour you a glass of something. And so I walked in, and I had a glass of wine after work, which was not in my habit in those days, and it was a cloudy Chenin Blanc, I remember exactly what it looked like it tasted like and it was beautiful. And so that evening, I went and met François who I started the company, we co founded the company and ran it together for a bit before I bought him out in 2008. And now sole owner and president of the company. But at the time, we tasted a bunch of wines with this person later actually ended up selling his bistro and going off and making wine. But the ones were amazing. And he invited us to come to a wine tasting with like 12 winemakers that weekend in the suburbs of Paris. And so we went off to this tasting and tasted and asked questions. And all the ones were alive and different from what I had tasted thus far in the US, especially but they were similar to wines we tasted at certain friends houses, and certain pieces that we liked in Paris in that they were just alive, aromatic, pleasurable, good acid great with food. They’re what we’ve come to call natural wines, which even at the time, this was the late 90s did not have a name yet and did not have a movement yet per se but this was the rumblings and the beginnings of what became the natural wine movement, which really started in France and then became spread to Italy and all over the world really. It’s become a huge international movement. But at the time we went to this tasting and what struck me was that all the producers said well, we grow our grapes organically or biodynamically. We use no synthetic chemicals in the vines and no synthetic herbicides and then in our winemaking, we also just use the grapes, fermented grapes, none of the hundreds of additives that are permissible in winemaking we use indigenous yeast we don’t filter we don’t add sugar Ever, we don’t have tartaric acid, we don’t add flavored yeast. So they all had a very similar way of describing their process. And what was interesting in this beginning was that none of them knew each other really. And every one of them felt very alone and what they were doing, they had the impression that they were like the ugly duckling of their village of their appellation of their corner of France. And so there wasn’t quite yet of movements. And what these tastings did, oftentimes was bring people together to talk about how they did things similar ly to each other. And once those started up, and there were more and more tastings of this type of wine, it really did become a movement.

Samantha Sette  05:47

Wow, thank you for sharing all that. It sounds like your first confrontation with wine was natural wine then because you’re kinda like theee doing your PhD. And then suddenly, all this time in France ended up stumbling into wine.

Jenny Lefcourt  06:01

Yes, it was very, almost random. And when I came back to New York, I didn’t see any of these bottles, and I wanted to share them with friends and family. It was very crazy.

Samantha Sette  06:17

So did you spend a lot of time going back and forth between France and New York? Are you originally from New York?

Jenny Lefcourt  06:23

I am born and raised in New York City.

Samantha Sette  06:26

Same awesome. And have you found that like, things were different there then versus Europe in, say, the 90s?

Jenny Lefcourt  06:34

Yes, things were different. I mean, you know, we’re a young country and wine and in sort of drinking everyday wine and that sort of love of food and wine, and it’s much more recent here. When I started the company, there were way less even boutique wine shops. It was much more traditional.

Samantha Sette  06:55

And so prior to this, you mentioned too, that in Europe, they weren’t calling this the natural wine movement. It was just kind of this thing they were doing.

Jenny Lefcourt  07:03

Yeah exactly. It was a thing they were doing. It was groups of friends. It slowly formed into a group. And then after that there’s different groups. There was sort of the natural wine group and the biodynamic group and the organic group and definitely a different different groups doing similar and overlapping things, but not always with exactly the same rules or philosophies.

Samantha Sette  07:29

So for listeners who aren’t fully familiar, and honestly, I could always use the clarity on this too. We hear these terms, organic, natural, biodynamic, what’s the difference? And where do you consider yourself falling under?

Jenny Lefcourt  07:42

Yeah, so organically grown grapes are grapes, which are grown without any synthetic chemicals, whether it be herbicides or pesticides. So it’s similar to our organic agriculture, there’s a certification, you have to work for many years without chemicals to become certified. It’s very serious. It’s about farming. Once you grow organic grapes, there’s also something called biodynamic farming, which is kind of one step beyond that, in that it’s really about facilitating biodiversity. So it’s thinking about ways in which a vineyard or a farm can become hospitable to an enormous amount of diversity in terms of flora, fauna, insects, animals, everything. And so there’s ways to facilitate that there’s planting different things. You can have a farm which doesn’t only purely grow grapes, but also grows wheat and fruit and has animals and, you know, making composting is important in biodynamics. There’s different biodynamic preparations that are used to encourage biodiversity. So that’s sort of another level of farming. Then there’s the winemaking itself, and what we call natural wine is comes from grapes that are grown organically or biodynamically. But then in the winemaking, as well, there’s a simplicity it’s having confidence that the grapes are are of quality, that they’re well balanced, and taking those grapes and they ferment from the indigenous yeast that are present on the skins of the grapes. And they transform the sugar into alcohol. So it’s just fermented grapes. Winemaking actually we we think of in that way, but it’s most of the time not that most of the time. It is grapes that are grown using these chemicals round up everything you can imagine. And then a lab yeast is added, while sulfites are added to the grapes to kill off any yeast or bacteria that are present And then a lab yeast is used to get that fermentation going. And sometimes that loud lobbyist has a very specific flavor. There’s mega purple is the most famous one. There’s many others. There’s enzymes that could be added sugar, tartaric acid, all kinds of additives. You know, there’s reverse osmosis to take out some of the water. There’s all kinds of things that can be done to process the grapes and create wine. So some wines are really kind of beverages created using grapes, I would say. And to me, that’s not the kinds of wines I’m interested in importing. What I import we call natural wines, their wines made with fermented grapes with indigenous yeast, low to no sulfites and nothing else.

Samantha Sette  10:48

That was such a beautiful definition. I think it just clicked for me to that. When it comes to agriculture, we have organic and biodynamic and organics kind of more about the product, like what is coming out of this harvest versus biodynamic, is taking into consideration that entire ecosystem. And so the implications I mean, I know people like to talk, “is it good or bad?” But this is really thinking more of a sustainability lens, really. So that’s, that was really cool to hear from your perspective. And when it comes to natural wine it’s so focused on that process. Right. So leaving our terms aside, good and bad, what you’re importing has a different process than some of those other grapes, well wines.

Jenny Lefcourt  11:28

It really does. It’s something different. And, you know, there’s, there are more and more organically grown grapes, but it’s still a very small portion of what is produced in various countries and regions. And then there’s even less net what we call natural wine produced. All of this for the consumer can be a bit confusing,

Samantha Sette  11:49

Right? We are so…based on the timing. So we’re talking here today kind of in light of a recent change from the USDA, and some rules that have gone out Jenny, I’m sure you could do a much better job than I can, explaining the recent change, but it does affect organic labeling and the wines that you are putting out for the consumer.

Jenny Lefcourt  12:10

For sure. So since I started importing wine 24 years ago, since 2000, I have always encouraged the winemakers I work with to get certified if they weren’t already certified. That means that there is a certifying agency. Eco CERT is one of the biggest in France, for example, diameter is the biodynamic certificate, but there’s a bunch of different organic labeling agencies that come to the vineyard, they make sure that no chemicals are being used. They analyze the product to make sure that it’s grown from organically produced grapes, no traces of chemicals. And they certify in France, for example, this takes three years. So certification process in most countries, it’s three or four years. So that’s a big commitment. It’s serious. It’s not just about a fad. It is a belief that it’s better to grow grapes a certain way. It’s a lot of people who do do not want to pollute polluter Earth. Traditional vineyards that use chemicals are some of the biggest polluters, in in the bigger winemaking countries in Europe, it’s it’s huge. You know, just like agriculture is a huge polluter of, you know, our soils, our water, everything. So it’s a big deal to make the decision to become a certified organic grape grower. And so because it’s easy to say, hey, yes, I grow organic grapes. And to lie about it. Even the small producers who are growing organic grapes who say, you know, it’s too much time, it’s too much bureaucracy. See, I’ve really pushed them to say, hey, you know, we really want to be transparent with the consumer, it’s really important to get their certification, even if you’re doing everything yourself. And oftentimes these are producers who not only are they working in the vines day and night making their wine, they have to figure out marketing, they need to drive around and sell their wine they need to export and figure out the rules of export and fill out customs paperwork. It’s a lot for a small winery where maybe there’s one employee or no employees or two employees. That’s a lot to ask so many of them have gone through it in the years since I started. Most of the producers I work with have become certified, organic or certified biodynamic, which is wonderful. The difficulty is that the laws in different countries are different. The other and in California for example, until recently, a winery could request to be registered as organic without going through the same rigorous country rules that European wineries had to go through. So that is upsetting. So there’s a new law, it’s called the strengthening organic enforcement law. I think now, it’s my understanding that there’s much stricter rules set up in the US, which is great. I’m all for stricter rules. I’m all for transparency so that the consumers feel confident about what they’re purchasing. If you’re purchasing organic fruits and vegetables, you know, these, you want to have confidence that was labeled as organic is organic. So the same with wine. The difficulty is that for all of these years pushing people to become certified, I’ve also been pushing for some kind of natural label to say, Well, what what is more than organic, and there’s been a big movement in Europe to push for this labeling. And so in recent years, just very recently, they came up in France with something called vanmeter. Natural, that’s a natural wine label. So that could be great. The problem is what’s defined as natural here in the US is very, very different. So we can’t use that label here. We can’t import wines that have that certificate. The other difficulty, of course, is the same one as just the organic certificate. Generally, it’s not these small wineries, it’s requiring additional work additional paperwork, and just not everyone has the time for that. So that’s hard, because who does have the time? It’s big wineries, and big wineries. I think it’s great that there’s more and more certified organic, larger wineries. But there is something unfair when if the paperwork that’s required isn’t simplified, simple explained, that there’s not help from the government to pay for it to implement it, it becomes a detriment. And it becomes harmful to smaller wineries who are doing maybe better or more true work in terms of biotech creating and encouraging biodiversity, because biodiversity is what’s going to save the planet. People who are working on their compost and working on making sure bees are comfortable in their vineyards, people who are the fixing the most carbon into the soil. This literally fights global warming, fixing carbon. It’s the biodynamic producers who are doing the hardest work. Some of them very small wineries, we’re spending the time in the vines and the fruit trees in the, with their animals, to fight global warming, where it’s going to be hardest to implement some of these laws around organic certification. So that’s difficult, I don’t have a set solution to it. But the problem is that it’s just becoming more and more difficult. So the other thing that’s happened recently

Samantha Sette  18:14

It was also, not to interrupt you, then it’s almost disappointing to hear that these individuals and producers who are putting in the work, they’re doing the thing, they’re incorporating these practices into what is a practice of winemaking after all and producing agriculture, yet, they aren’t getting the support that they need. And now are there, correct me if I’m wrong, but that means that there are organic wines out there that just don’t have that label? And as a consumer, that’s confusing, how are you supposed to know?

Jenny Lefcourt  18:48

Yes, that’s very confusing. So all I can say is that importers like myself, I tried to be a gatekeeper, and a to curate a selection of wine, wineries and wines that I believe in. And so there is the back label, you know, our name Jenny and Francois selection, it’s on the back label of everything, we import, that sort of our stamp of approval, but I realize like, it’s better to have an actually official stamp of approval. So hopefully, we’ll get there. But right now, it’s feeling I’m feeling pretty glum about about the whole thing. I was feeling good about having so many wines that were labeled organic, or grown from organic grapes. But in Europe, recent lays so laws have changed and there’s going to be or maybe is already a law requiring ingredients to be listed on the label with a QR code.

Samantha Sette  19:50

Oh, really? That’s really neat. So the QR code on the bottles, people can scan and see what’s in their wine.

Jenny Lefcourt  19:56

Yes. So I wish that it was a law requiring the ingredients to be printed on the back label that’s easier to see like, why should we have to scan a QR code? You don’t have to scan a QR code to see what’s in your food. You just go read what’s on the back of the label, spend so much time doing when I’m in the supermarket. What’s in this you know how much sugar is in this how much as so I wish it was directly on the label. But it’s better than nothing out something that the that metaneseur. Groups of natural winemakers has been fighting for for years list your ingredients, natural winemakers can list their ingredients, grapes, you know, but why? Why should they struggle with certifying their grapes as organic and biodynamic, and just see wineries that are adding you know, 40 different products to their wine, not have to list anything? That’s not fair. Why should all the onus be on people who are actually doing fighting the good fight. So this is a huge victory. That I mean, wine was the only product that we eat or drink but didn’t have a list of ingredients.

Samantha Sette  21:08

I was gonna say something that was always very surprising kind of curious to me is why, you know we go to the grocery store. And all of these food items have nutrition label, and drinks do to I’ve been into these prebiotic sodas or like a kombucha or something and they have a nutrition label. But when you go to the wine section, you get the ABV you get where it’s sourced from you get the label, you get the importer, but you don’t get I don’t even want to say nutrition facts, per se, but what’s in my bottle?

Jenny Lefcourt  21:37

Right, exactly. And when you listen to the debates, which there have been recently showed this lobby applied in the US, you know, the bigger wineries are saying, well, we don’t want to scare the consumers. The consumers think this is something romantic. It’s made from grapes that are grown in the winery. Well, if it is made from grapes, list grapes, but the problem is most wines are not just made from grapes, there’s lots of other scary things in them that we don’t know about. So that’s the scandal. So what’s crazy is instead of aligning with Europe on this, and making things possible for them at the naturae, to be able to say okay, this is a natural wine, making things clear that you know, what, what are the ingredients in this bottle, instead of that the USDA went and passed a different law. So about strengthening organic enforcement law rate, on the one hand, it seems like people have here have to get certified now. But on the other hand, it sounded like a good law where, you know, we’re just making sure people are certified. But it turns out like two weeks before it was implemented, they said, no, no, no, actually importers need a license as well. importers who do not hatch or pour wine from one vessel to another, they take something that’s already bottled that’s closed with a cork or other, and they move it from one place to another, but now, importers have to be certified. But the way this was implemented was very last minute and incredibly confusing. And also the wineries have to be listed on this database, the organic integrity database. And basically, none of the producers I work with understand what’s going on. And so at first, I was in a panic, I rushed in some of the bigger producers wines that we count on, let’s say organic that we sell in Whole Foods and other places that really want to see that stamp on there that says certified organic. We rushed in a lot of wine, which is a huge burden to a small importer, because there’s a cost to that. And then we said, Okay, what is this law, then we were going to run out of our counties. So we said, Hey, okay, just this time, I know, we told you to get certified and put it on the label. But now we want you to take it off of the label, because we’re not sure it’s gonna get stuck in customs. And we don’t really understand what’s going on. So why don’t you take that off of your label your cost, you must reprint and

Samantha Sette  24:14

You don’t hear this going on with like, produce?

Jenny Lefcourt  24:17

No. It’s it’s really, really, really difficult.

Samantha Sette  24:24

And what’s interesting too, is how the at least the front facing intent behind it seems really pure and good. We want to make sure that we’re not greenwashing and we’re not promoting things to be organic and this better kind of promotion and it not be yet as a result. I feel like that’s what’s happening. It’s like the intent is producing a completely other outcome and kind of hiding what you were calling even those under the cover. there are a bunch of things in our wine that we don’t want to know about it just kind of like letting that propagate because it’s so hard to be organic.

Jenny Lefcourt  24:57

Yeah, it’s very, very confusing. process, there’s just nowhere you can look for a list of very clear rules, which certification agencies in Europe are acceptable, which aren’t. Now we need every single time we send a purchase order to a winery, it has to go to the certification agency who has to approve it, and enter it into this database and get a number associated with the order that then they send back to customs that has to then accompany the wine. So talk about I mean, we’ve had had all kinds of difficulties in the last bunch of years, with the tariffs that were imposed by the Trump administration and then cancelled by Biden, thank goodness, which almost destroyed our industry, we’ve had backups in containers because of COVID, and difficulty shipping, then we have too much wine in stock, because everyone tried to ship everything at once, because of the lack of containers. And now this, which it just feels like, I would love to know whose idea this was to make importers get certified. And make make sure all POS are approved by this. USDA who haven’t they don’t even speak to the TTB, who approves labels. There’s a lack of communication between agencies, there’s a lack of transparency in what the laws actually are. You have to pay experts to get the certification in the first place, which is a penalty to small importers, for sure. There’s a cost and a time to all of this, which feels an absolute undue burden on my business, and others working in the field to try to import wines. And I just wonder, you know, where this came from part of me, I mean, I, if I have my theories, like, there’s no possibility that any small winemaker or small importer would have requested something like this. So where does this idea come from? I mean, it’s just why should importers need a certification? I’m not growing anything. I’m not transposing anything, there’s no way for me to commit fraud. So it’s, it’s, um, it’s upsetting. And I would like to go to Washington and talk to someone about it.

Samantha Sette  27:28

Totally. It sounds like y’all aren’t being properly heard. Right. And that’s just such a human thing. And also in this industry, something that needs to be accounted for as y’all make up a big proportion of who is importing and producing. And as an importer yourself, where do you find support amidst like, all of these challenges that you face over the past few years?

Jenny Lefcourt  27:52

You know, it’s it’s, it’s difficult, you know, I mean, that this, a lot of colleagues have been very helpful in sharing information, which is wonderful. But I think, you know, because there’s so little organic wine, in a way, while there is so little organic wine compared to the rest of the wine industry. But it, you know, there was a huge to do with the tariffs, because the whole industry was affected. But this kind of law, you know, it attacks 100% of my book, almost, we have a few sustainable wines that aren’t certified organic, but it affects my business. In a way, it affects very few other importers, because that’s my focus, and it always has been. So yeah, it’s hard to catch the ear of the government or anyone on this one.

Samantha Sette  28:44

Which is interesting, because if we even took out the meaning and the beauty away, the demand for natural wine is is increasing, unless I heard incorrectly, we learned gravitating towards this beautiful category. And now, we’re kind of like punishing them by cutting it off, because we’re making it so difficult, which, again, some of that intent makes sense, at least to me. But I’m curious, what do you think this means for the future of the natural wine scene, which was kind of it was growing rapidly is this? Yeah, I’m curious what you think is gonna happen next.

Jenny Lefcourt  29:22

I think will continue to grow. I think this is a temporary hiccup, as we’ve had many, and we’ll continue to fight the good fight, and we’ll figure it out. We’ll have to figure it out. And whether that’s going to Washington and lobbying and saying, you know, yes, of course, we want to fight fraud. Yes, of course, there should be more transparency. But this is not how to do it. And please don’t include importers in this law. You know, let’s get on par with Europe. Let’s make sure the labeling across different countries that there’s similar laws so that these producers don’t have to change They’re labeled with each country they’re working with, let’s all have the same, you know, list of ingredients and laws around organic certification. I believe in certification, I really do. It just has to be easier and less burdensome, small business.

Samantha Sette  30:21

And the certification at like it, it’s in its essence, if you will, it seems like a solution, right? But it doesn’t sound like the problem at hand and the situation and circumstance of natural winemakers and small producers and small importers is fully understood. And so by not taking the time to fully understand that problem, the solution doesn’t do anything, because it’s not addressing what the needs are.

Jenny Lefcourt  30:46

Right, correct. I mean, you know, bigger, big industry, wine doesn’t want ingredients on the list. That’s understand that I understand that. That’s very clear. That’s fighting against transparency. I’m fighting for transparency. I’m not against transparency at all. But this has to be easier. It has to be easier, not in terms of the laws around organic viticulture, that should be very strict. You know, there, there shouldn’t be I mean, there’s still, you know, in the US, you’re still allowed to use certain chemicals, which shouldn’t be allowed. You know, I believe in the strictness of these labels, if they’re not strict, nobody will believe in them. And what we want is organic viticulture, to expand. We want organic agriculture to expand, we want biodynamic agriculture and agriculture to expand. That’s how we’re going to fight global warming. And so it’s really bringing awareness to the positives of this kind of way of making wine, and the importance of it for the future of our planet. And also our pleasure.

Samantha Sette  31:56

If I may even add, like meeting y’all where you are. Is that seems like a big discrepancy too, that you deserve to have your needs met and be able to accomplish these what sounds like you know, an ideal situation, right? Like what is what does ideal winemaking look like for the natural winemaker? What does it look like for an importer? And that ideal? I don’t think we’re there. At least from the sound of it we’re not there.

Jenny Lefcourt  32:23

Yeah. Now it’s true. And it I mean wine growers, every grape growers everywhere, agriculture everywhere, there’s so much change with global warming. You know, just a few weeks ago, there was horrible frost and a lot of Northern France, for example, and other places in Europe. really devastating. And so, you know, the energy of these people who are growing grapes has to be put towards finding solutions for that. For example, we work with a producer in Montlouis, La Grange Tiphaine, and he is president of its appellation Damien Delecheneau. And he’s fought to put these wind turbines that disrupt the air and make it so the vines don’t experience frost, they fought off the frost recently. And it’s because he’s working with other producers to fight against frost that they succeeded in saving their grapes this year. Whereas previously they had were pretty devastated by frost, there’s so much to do together to preserve a way of life and a history of making wine. And there’s there’s good energy to put out there and coming together to do these kinds of things. So hopefully, I have hoped that this strengthening organic enforcement will shift and change and will be a tool to to defend the work of natural winemakers.

Samantha Sette  33:52

Totally, and perhaps it’s time to look abroad for some inspiration even like see how, what can we learn from others, and then also to take that time and look inward to what’s happening in our country and how individuals and companies both small and large, are being affected by this. It sounds like there is a need. And everybody like nobody puts baby in the corner. We’ll know if it’s natural when in the corner and it’s time to sign up. Give everyone a voice.

Jenny Lefcourt  34:17

For sure. Yeah, I mean, we we make a lot of noise. We are. You know, I think it is an expanding category for sure. Our business has grown from like a little New York company to a national company. We just opened up a California Office, which is super exciting. I just came back from Los Angeles. And there’s so many shops and restaurants serving natural wine who are very supportive of natural winemakers and natural wine cross us. It’s it’s exciting, and I believe it will still expand

Samantha Sette  34:51

Totally and with the natural flow of information. I mean, you got New York City and Los Angeles which are like two major hubs, if I will, the country and so with time sure it’ll start going to those smaller second tier cities as so many things do. And I guess some some questions as we start to wrap up here. I know you’re from New York. So where’s one of your favorite places to go sip on natural organic wine in the city?

Jenny Lefcourt  35:14

New York City? Ah, I can’t pick favorites. Let’s see, there’s The Ten Bells that’s been there for forever. There’s one in Brooklyn and one in Manhattan. Both fabulous places to go. Gem is another wonderful place, but in lower Manhattan, especially are filled with wonderful wine bars. Focusing on natural wine.

Samantha Sette  35:40

Oh, yeah. And then one thing that we ask all our guests is what’s in your glass? A favorite wine you’ve been loving now or it could be water?

Jenny Lefcourt  35:51

Well, yesterday at this conference of women movers and shakers, we poured a Beaujolais from Rémi Dufaitre called Super Remi which is absolutely delicious. Easy to love and drink cloudy Gamay from Beaujolais quite beautiful and lots of fun.

Samantha Sette  36:11

That’s awesome. Well, Jenny expression of gratitude, thank you for your time, your work your hope I am hopeful for you and your community at large for the future.

Jenny Lefcourt  36:23

Thank you, Samantha for having me. It’s really lovely chatting with you and honoring this word.

Samantha Sette  36:29

Thanks so much. As the industry continues to evolve, we’d love to know, what do you think is in store for the natural wine scene? You can email us your comments and questions at remember, you can subscribe to this podcast on Apple, Google, Spotify and anywhere else who listen to your favorite shows. You can also go to for more episodes and transcripts. I’m Samantha Sette. Thanks for listening