The founder of the brand, Luke, came to us in 2021 with a simple, yet ambitious brief: develop the best tasting non-alcoholic white and red wine on the market. In a bid to solve a problem that he himself experienced 'often and acutely'.
As Luke puts it, "If you were choosing not to drink, your options were limited and you probably felt slightly out of the loop. Not another lime and soda, you would silently lament as you made your way back to the bar whilst your friends were still enjoying their first round."
We had developed low/no alcohol beer, cocktails and spirit products previously, so we were delighted to get the opportunity to finally work on a wine project. Even more so given that Micah’s background (and main passion in life, alongside fine food of course) is in the wine industry. His WSET Diploma and vast experience in wine tastings was certainly going to come in useful for this project.
So, much to the team's delight, the process all started with wine tastings. With so many different styles, terroir, grape varietals and ageing processes of wine, we wanted to pull apart every single attribute that goes in to a well-balanced glass of vino.
It’s the balance and complexity of wine that makes it so enjoyable to be sipped, appreciated and (importantly) paired with foods. We then set about seeing how best to replicate these characteristics in a non-alcoholic recipe.
Shelf life testing
Volatile compounds, stereoisomers, trigeminal effects, fruity notes, floral notes, earthy notes, fermentation notes, woody notes, acidity, bitterness, sweetness, weight and body - all of these are delicately combined in a highly complex way in the very best wines, so we needed a strategic approach to building each of these elements in to the development recipes.
While we can’t share too many recipe insights from this point onwards, what we can say is that the precision required for developing these recipes is on another level. Even Micah declared that these were the most complex and precise beverage recipes he has ever worked on, requiring him and the team to find new ways of dosing and tweaking flavours with such precision.
The recipe development spanned across the development kitchen and in to the factory, making any necessary tweaks right up until the first batch of liquid being sealed in to the bottles.
We’re now delighted to hear the fantastic feedback that the first bottles sold are receiving with some if its early stockists already reordering.
It’s been a pleasure working with Luke on this project, his passion and drive for having a great tasting product is something we deeply respect, and we’re excited to see the success he is no doubt going to have with the brand!
If you are on the hunt for a sophisticated, alcohol free tipple, we strongly recommend you visit Wednesday's Domaine website and stock up (see link below).
Having worked with the Tastehead team over the past year or so, I can speak to their wide-ranging expertise and thoroughness in getting the job done.
Working with a difficult brief, they developed two brilliant products that we are now taking to market and have already begun receiving very positive reviews for.
Founder of Wednesday's Domaine
Good luck to Luke and the team at Wednesday's Domaine!