Who remembers the early fore runners of low to no alcohol beers?
From memory, they were difficult brews to enjoy but perseverance has paid off because the low to no alcohol beer category has come of age with regular new additions and continuous refinement of lighter styles.
And now wine has joined the fray.
The most natural low alcohol wines are the gorgeous aromatics such as Moscato, Muscat and Riesling from traditional areas such as Piemonte and most regions of Germany and also Alsace, but this country has made some highly successful low alcohol wines.
The Doctors' Riesling from Forrest Estate founders Drs John and Brigid Forrest is the biggest seller and a delicious wine, which also ages superbly.
And when it comes to no alcohol wines, Giesen is leading the way in this country at the moment with its stellar Zero Riesling, Rosé and Sauvignon Blanc.
This year we were introduced to an Australian brand called plus & minus, which includes a Prosecco that was our top pick of the range and which sits on our zero alcohol shelves.
About plus & minus...
The wines in the plus & minus range are firstly made as wine, which contains alcohol, aromas and flavours.
It then goes through a process to remove the alcohol. This process sees the wine go through a high vacuum, low pressure distillation machine which separates the alcohol from the wine by creating a vacuum (negative pressure) at a low temperature. The cool temperature allows the retention of aromas, which are removed along with the alcohol. The final step sees the aromas returned back into the wine and, finally, the winemaker bottles it and sends it out to the market.