We’re keeping you informed by answering your most frequently asked questions:
Are alcohol-free and non-alcoholic wines the same thing?
No, they are classified differently based on their alcohol by volume (ABV). In South Africa, alcohol-free wine has less than 0,05% ABV while non-alcoholic wine categorises those with less than 0,5% ABV.
Is there really no alcohol in non-alcoholic wines?
Some non-alcoholic wines could theoretically also be alcohol-free wines but that’s not always the case. Since non-alcoholic wines can range from 0,5% ABV to anything below this, it’s important to check the label to determine if a beverage truly has 0% alcohol.
Can I get drunk from drinking non-alcoholic wine?
Scientific testing concludes that drinks with less than 0,5% ABV don’t give any impairment except in rare cases. You get the taste without the tipsy! However, due to religious reasons or sober habits, some people still prefer to only drink alcohol-free wines (0% ABV).
What is de-alcoholised wine and how is it made?
Like non-alcoholic wine, de-alcoholised wine also has less than 0,5% ABV but the main difference is to do with the production process. While non- alcoholic wine undergoes the conventional production process, fermentation is interrupted to halt the conversion of sugar to alcohol.
In contrast, de-alcoholised wine undergoes the full fermentation process, and thereafter the alcohol is removed either by vacuum distillation or reverse osmosis.
Is non-alcoholic wine just grape juice?
Alcohol-free wine is often just grape juice since the product doesn’t undergo the fermentation process. However, it’s made to imitate the flavour nuances of regular wines but without the boozy taste. While non-alcoholic wine can sometimes just be spruced-up grape juice, some varieties taste similar to regular wines as they contain slightly more alcohol by volume. De-alcoholised wine has the closest taste to the real thing as most of the flavour associated with conventional wine is retained even after the alcohol is removed.