Over the years we have been writing about wine, we have noticed a shift in public thinking to lower or no alcohol wines, cocktails, and drinks. Coinciding with that shift, we have been seeing more wineries and drink producers offering lower alcohol wines, spritzers and seltzers, non-alcohol wines, and grape juice. Just about everywhere you look on social media you will find hashtags of #soberlife #sobercurious and #soberissexy.
The world of alcohol drinkers has decreased in numbers by 5% since 2000, according to the World Health Organization. This trend seems to come from Millennials and Generation Z’s more health conscious focus on life as opposed to a fad fueled by irresponsible drunk stories with unhappy endings. It is a trend that is here to stay like vegetarianism / veganism and mindful eating.
Unlike sobriety, which is chosen as a result of alcoholism or alcohol abuse, sober curiosity is defined as having the option to choose, question, or change drinking habits for health-focused reasons (mental and/or physical). The sober curious movement encourages people to recognize the unhealthy habits that are often associated with alcohol.
The difference between grape juice and non-alcoholic wine
While grape juice is the unfermented juice sourced from grapes, non-alcohol wine goes through the same fermentation and aging process as regular wine, only to have the alcohol removed at the last stages. This makes non-alcoholic wine much less sugary than grape juice and provides a real wine flavor.
Trying non-alcohol grape juice from “The Castle”
When Castello Di Amorosa (affectionately known as “The Castle”) sent us samples of their latest grape juice creations, we were excited to share them with you. This isn’t the grape juice you might have had as a child. The bottling and packaging of these lovely juices give the impression of fine wine – setting the stage for elegance and sophistication.
Reasons to choose non alcoholic grape juice
Many of us have that friend/relative/person in our lives who battles with alcohol addiction or simply alcohol just doesn’t work for them. They overindulge, experience changes in behavior, or just get sleepy after a couple of drinks. Any one of these conditions brings down the mood of the occasion. Am I right?
No drinking and driving please
Drinking and serving others responsibly when it comes to driving comes into big focus as designated drivers, ride share apps, and taxi services are not always convenient, available, or affordable. No one wants to be “that guy/gal” who drinks themselves over the legal limit and gets pulled over or causes an accident. Having a satisfying alternative to alcoholic beverages is the hero in this story. Drinking and driving is NEVER acceptable or encouraged.
Respect for religion/personal beliefs
We live in a melting pot of cultures, religions, and belief systems. Respecting the religious and cultural teachings of your guests, friends, and family should be another consideration when planning your beverage menu. Non-alcoholic juices are the perfect sophisticated way to celebrate occasions with people of every faith, age, and walk of life.
People who are on blood thinners, blood pressure medications, and other medications that don’t mix with alcohol are perfect reasons to buy a non-alcoholic juice. Serving beverages that won’t make your guests feel left out or deprived is such a win for everyone. No one will feel shamed or put to the kiddie table for drinking these juices. They pour and look just like wine in the glass.
Hey, we have all been there. The cusp of adulthood here in the United States where drinking is unlawful under the age of 21. At parties and occassions, these young adults need to be included in the fun without the pitfalls and dangers of underage drinking.
Tasting through the juice
Castello di Amorosa offers three different wine grape juices. All three are sweet on the palate. My only comment is that I wish they made a dry style in their lineup (We had dry style grape juices in Europe but haven’t found them in the USA). I’d especially love to see the Gewurtztraminer made in that style. Who knows, this article may inspire them to do that next year!
Muscat-Canelli Grape Juice ($14) Is a medium sweet still white grape juice made from 100% Muscat Canelli wine grapes. From the glass you get intense aromas of peach blossom, and flavors of sweet pear, orange zest, and ginger spice. Pairs well with light creamy desserts, fresh fruit and spicy Asian food.
Gewurtztraminer Grape Juice ($14) is a medium plus sweet still white grape juice made from 100% Gewurtztraminer (pronounced guh·vurt·struh·mee·ner). This juice is highly aromatic (the smell of the juice is pronounced both in the nose and on the tastebuds). It has the signature lychee fruit and floral notes one would expect from this grape. It smells like spring in a glass, and tastes like the nectar of sweet flowers. I’d pair this lovely juice with brunch in the garden, curries, or salads. It feels light and healthy on the palate with the sweetness lingering pleasantly.
Red Blend Sparkling Grape Juice ($14) is a sweet sparkling red juice and is made from a blend of 90% Gamay, 5% Grenache, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. This one is perfect for celebrations and toasting good news like a pregnancy perhaps? It has a pleasant red fruit nose and a palate of overripe strawberries that tickle the tastebuds with a light effervescence. Chocolate dipped strawberries would be absolutely lovely with this one.
It does not surprise us in the least that “The Castle” has created this thoughtful, on-trend line of non alcoholic wine grape juices. It happens to be one of our favorite places to recommend for first time visitors to Napa Valley. Although “The Castle” is a spectacular place to tour and visit for its amazing architecture and hospitality, it is also a place that offers one of the widest varieties of different wines and winemaking styles to their guests so those guests can truly get an education and understanding what wine characteristics and flavors in they enjoy.
Will you be visiting Napa soon? If you would like to visit Castello di Amorosa‘s gorgeous tasting room for yourself you can book your tasting and tour here.