Owls and wine slushies

Illustration by hayley doshay

A dream is about to come true if the dream is to recline on a picnic blanket, sipping on a wine slushie at a vineyard while watching owls be released by a wildlife rescue organization. Experience it at Heringer Estates Family Winery & Vineyards (37375 S. Netherlands Road in Clarksburg) on Saturday, September 12, at 5 p.m. RSVP at www.heringerestates.com. A $5 donation goes to the Wildlife Care Association, the releaser of the evening's nocturnal birds of prey, who act as pest control on the Heringers' 140-year-old-plus farm, swooping up rodents who nibble on the vines' fruit. They're not vegan, but that's natural. But how does one know if a wine is vegan? Some wineries use fining agents to clear the natural haziness of young wines, and albumin (eggs), isinglass (fish bladder), gelatin (animal protein) and casein (milk protein) are common animal-derived ones. Bentonite (clay) and charcoal are vegan-friendly. Look up your favorite alcoholic beverage on the awesome Barnivore (www.barnivore.com).