The first non-alcoholic wine shop has opened in Paris. An NPR article questions: Will the French actually drink their products?
Alcohol-free wine and liquor shop Le Paon Qui Boit (translation: The Drinking Peacock) opened in April, the brainchild of lawyer Augustin Laborde. The shop sells more than 300 bottles of low- and zero-proof beers, wines, gins and whiskeys. Laborde quit drinking during the pandemic and was frustrated going to bars with friends and finding his only non-alcoholic options were sugar-filled sodas or fruit juices.
The bottles have high price tags in Paris, at 10 to 15 euros (compared with 4 to 8 euros for an alcoholic version). Laborde says there are extra steps involved in making a non-alcoholic wine. After going through traditional fermentation, the alcohol in wine is evaporated through a filtration process.
Non-alcoholic wine consumption globally has grown 24% in the last year, according to consulting group IWSR Drink Market Analysis. Dan Mettyear, research director at IWSR, says “This is definitely not a fad…it’s all connected to the kind of big wellness trends that we’ve seen across the world.”
Growth, though, has been slower in France than in the U.S. and the rest of Europe. He says it’s a harder sell in traditional wine markets like France. “A lot of people have already well-established ideas about what wine is and what wine should taste like.”
But there are wineries transitioning to the production of non-alcoholic wines, such as Le Petit Béret, a small producer in southern France. And Laborde says he anticipates the flavor of non-alcohol wine to become more refined, as techniques improve and the market grows.
Read more (NPR)