Hi Gerald, Hi Raphael,
As we announced in a post back in January, as well as in this longer article, we keep investigating the world of non alcoholic adult beverages hence a series of interviews.
Today we met with the funders of Wonderleaf!
Do you have a list of ingredients?
We use the same 18 botanicals of our Siegfried Rheinland Dry Gin as a basis. Clove pepper is the key botanical, while linden blossoms are also a very important ingredient. We kindly ask for your understanding that we do not disclose the full list of ingredients.
Can you tell me more about the different extraction techniques you use?
We combine two methods, all based on prior maceration. Water steam distillation to create an intense hydrolat and a regular still commonly used to distilling spirits.
In what are you macerating your ingredients, if you use maceration?
Mainly in water, but parts also in neutral grain alcohol (for better extraction of aroma).
Do you have your own facility?
No, we work very close with partners; each one an expert in his field. All have in common that we feel familiar working with each other.
Do you use alcohol at any point in the process? If yes, which one, and how is the alcohol removed?
Yes, we do. No, we don’t remove it. We just add very very tiny amounts.
Do you use preservatives?
We add potassium sorbate in order to create a longer shelf life. This is very important, so that consumers can handle the product just as the alcoholic equivalent.
What kind of water do you use?
We are fortunate that we have quite unique premium water in our region that works perfectly with our Wonderleaf. Therefore it is not necessary to source water from a larger distance.
What was the main challenge in attempting making a non alc beverage after being used to make gin?
There were two major challenges. First, distillation- and extraction techniques are very different and we had to rethink production. Second, legal and hygiene requirements differ a whole lot from producing spirits. If you are able to produce alcoholic spirits does not mean at all that you are able to produce non-alc spirits, which are basically “food”.