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Giesen News

Frequently Asked Questions About Giesen 0%

Alcohol-removed and dealcoholized wines are a relatively new concept for many people, so we’ve put together this handy guide! Read on to learn more about our no alcohol range, Giesen 0%, and how non-alcoholic wines are made.


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ABOUT GIESEN 0%
What is Giesen 0%? | How is Giesen 0% made? | Alcohol, sugar and calorie levels | Nutritional values and ingredients | Reviews | Where to buy

ABOUT ALCOHOL-FREE WINES
What does alcohol-removed/dealcoholized mean? | Isn’t it just grape juice? | How do you make non-alcoholic wine? | Spinning cone technology | Different types of distillation | Why is it more expensive? | What types of wine can be non-alcoholic? | Is there added sugar? | Why did you make non-alcoholic wine? | Who drinks it? | Where should I drink it?  | How does it taste?

 

ABOUT GIESEN 0%

1. WHAT IS GIESEN 0%?

 

Giesen 0% is a range of alcohol-removed wines including a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Rosé, Riesling and Merlot.

Our mission was to create a non-alcoholic option that tasted as wine-like as possible – so we go through the entire winemaking process first, before we remove the alcohol! All of these wines contain not more than 0.5% alcohol by volume – about the same levels that naturally occur in fruit juice.

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2. HOW IS GIESEN 0% MADE?

 

Step One 

After a full year of growing and tending our vines, we make full-strength New Zealand wine featuring the classic varietal flavours you know and love.

Step Two 

We use innovative spinning cone technology to gently distil the wine into layers:
AROMA
ALCOHOL
BODY

Step Three 

We carefully collect the delicate aroma and add it back into the body of the wine (sans alcohol!)

Step Four 

We add just a touch of premium grape juice to round out the final blend. There you have it! Delish.

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3. HOW MUCH ALCOHOL IS IN GIESEN 0%?

 

All of our Giesen 0% wines contain not more than 0.5% alcohol by volume. This is the level provided by New Zealand, Australia, UK and USA law for non-alcoholic beverages – about the same as the levels that naturally occur in fruit juice!

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4. HOW MUCH SUGAR IS IN GIESEN 0%?

 

We don’t add any sugar to our alcohol-removed wines, so what’s there is aaaaall natural. Many of our alcohol-removed wines have around 50% fewer grams of sugar per serving than our closest non-alcoholic wine alternative. How’s that for a bonus?!

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Sauvignon Blanc: 1.8g of sugar per 100ml; 2.2g per 125ml serving
  • Rosé: 2g of sugar per 100ml; 2.5g per 125ml serving
  • Pinot Gris: 3g of sugar per 100ml; 3.8g per 125ml serving
  • Riesling: 5g of sugar per 100ml; 6.25g per 125ml serving
  • Merlot: 3g of sugar per 100ml; 3.8g per 125ml serving

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5. HOW MANY CALORIES ARE IN A GLASS OF GIESEN 0%?

 

We’re proud to say that on average, our Giesen 0% range contains about half the calories of most fruit juices we compared and 70-80% less calories than full strength wines.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Sauvignon Blanc: 13 calories per 100ml; 16 calories per 125ml glass – that’s 80% fewer calories than a full strength 12.5% alcohol/volume wine.
  • Rosé: 13 calories per 100ml ; 16 calories per 125ml glass – 80% fewer calories than a full strength 12.5% alcohol/volume wine.
  • Pinot Gris: 18 calories per 100ml; 23 calories per 125ml serving – 70% fewer calories than a full strength 12.5% alcohol/volume wine.
  • Riesling: 22 calories per 100ml – 70% fewer calories than our Giesen Estate Riesling 10.5% alcohol/volume wine.
  • Merlot: 18 calories per 100ml – 70% fewer calories than a 12.5% alcohol/volume wine.

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6. WHAT ARE THE NUTRITIONAL VALUES AND INGREDIENTS FOR GIESEN 0%?

Giesen 0% Nutritional Values

7. WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING ABOUT IT? WHERE CAN I READ GIESEN 0% REVIEWS?

You can read feedback from our lovely customers on our New Zealand online store:

Giesen 0% – New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Pinot Gris
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Riesling
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Rosé
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Merlot

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8. WHERE CAN I BUY GIESEN 0%?

 

We’re seeing new retailers come on board all the time, so you can always ask your local store if they’ll stock it, or enlist the help of your favourite search engine.

NEW ZEALAND

Our wines can be found at all good supermarkets and major liquor retailers.

AUSTRALIA
View Stockists:

USA
Sauvignon Blanc
Rosé:

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ABOUT ALCOHOL-FREE WINES

 

 

9. WHAT DOES ALCOHOL-REMOVED / DEALCOHOLIZED MEAN?

 

‘Alcohol-removed’ or dealcoholized might sound like a funny way of saying non-alcoholic, but there’s an important distinction here – for a wine to have its alcohol removed, there had to be alcohol present in the first place! This distinguishes alcohol-removed options from drinks like grape juice, which never actually contained alcohol in the first place.

This is really important to our process – making a full-strength wine first is what allows us to get maximum aroma and flavour into our finished non-alcoholic wine.

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10. ISN’T IT JUST GRAPE JUICE?

 

It was once! But no longer.

If you’ve tried grape juice recently, unsurprisingly, you’ll notice a distinctly grape-centric flavour. When grape juice is fermented and turned into wine, we unlock all these fantastic flavours which create the complexity (and deliciousness) we associate with having a glass of vino. Tropical fruits, apples, red fruits, citrus – you don’t get those in grape juice! Grape juice is also very sweet; it hasn’t been fermented so all the sugar is still there.

Our 0% alcohol wines have been through a full fermentation before the alcohol is removed, so they’re not sweet and have much lower calories and sugar than grape juice.

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11. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE WAYS TO MAKE A NON-ALCOHOLIC WINE?

 

Not all methods are created equal! Here are just some of the ways you could go about it:

  • Some products like grape juice don’t contain alcohol at any point during the production process
  • Some products are ‘naturally’ lighter in alcohol – grapes are picked early and only fermented very briefly which can leave a lot of sugar behind and create a very sweet end product
  • Some products use a form of distillation like osmotic distillation, reverse osmosis, thin-film evaporation, thermal gradient process, and others. You can read more about these below.

Giesen 0% is made using spinning cone technology, which is a gentle type of distillation popular in perfume making. This technology only arrived in New Zealand in 2019!

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12. WHAT IS SPINNING CONE TECHNOLOGY?

 

Spinning cone technology is a form of distillation that’s popular in perfume making because it can handle delicate aromas with care. We use this innovative technology to produce our 0% wines because it means we can keep as much of the beautiful, varietally-expressive aromas as possible. We recombine this aroma with the body of wine to get our final product, with not more than 0.5% alcohol/volume – about the same level as what naturally occurs in fruit juice!

We were the first New Zealand winery to purchase our own spinning cone – an investment of $2 million dollars. We’re pretty excited about what this means for the quality of our wines, for a couple of reasons.

Number one, investing in this equipment means we can make these wines onsite with our specialist winemaking team and much greater control over the quality. It gives us the ability to test and retest, ensuring we’re making the best alcohol-free options we possibly can! Our no and low alcohol team are specialists, as explained by our Chief Winemaker, Duncan Shouler:

“The technology is only as good as the person operating it, and the Giesen specialist winemaking team is best in class. It’s rare to have a whole team dedicated particularly to the NOLO wine process, but we believe that the wine needs to taste as pure and fresh as our alcohol range. Having our own technology allows our team to experiment and continually innovate and improve. We’re seeing better 0% wines every time we produce them and learning about which parcels of wine work best to produce the flavours and aromas of these wines.”

And number two, one factor that makes for a really great dealcoholised wine is freshness. Our Chief Winemaker Duncan explains it best:

“One key thing with 0% alcohol wines is that they are fresh! They’ve got to be made fresh, blended fresh and bottled fresh.  Having our own unit means we can keep a very tight timeline, bottling wines within just a few days of production. This lets us capture aroma in the bottle, producing more varietally expressive wines.”

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13. WHAT IS OSMOTIC DISTILLATION?

 

Remember osmosis, from high school science class? Us neither, honestly! In a nutshell, some pretty cool physics and chemistry mean this process can diffuse a solution through a semipermeable membrane. The Academic Wino explains it all here in this article.

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14. WHAT IS REVERSE OSMOSIS?

 

This nifty answer on Wine Spectator explains the effect that reverse osmosis has on wine.

They describe it as effectively a very small filter – letting some parts of the wine through, and leaving others behind. It can be a slightly harsher technique by comparison.

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15. WHAT IS THIN-FILM EVAPORATION?

 

Evaporation as a general concept uses heat to turn a liquid into a gas; this gas can then be captured and cooled back into a liquid in order to separate it out. This historically hasn’t been so good for heat-sensitive liquids like wine, so thin-film evaporation does its best to counteract this by using indirect heat transfers under controlled conditions.

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16. WHAT IS THERMAL GRADIENT PROCESSING?

 

The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) have a great article on the different ways to remove alcohol from wine. They explain:

“In this method, wine is cooled to form ice crystals, which float to the top of the tank, increasing the alcohol concentration in the liquid. About half of the contents is then drained from the bottom of the tank. Then the tank is heated to melt the ice crystals, essentially diluting the liquid in the tank and thereby producing wine with reduced alcohol concentration.”

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17. WHY ISN’T ALCOHOL-FREE WINE CHEAPER THAN FULL-STRENGTH WINE

 

Alcohol-removed wine is more expensive to produce compared to its full-strength counterpart. To produce 0% wines that taste like wine and not like grape juice, we go through the same winemaking process as full-strength wine and then add the spinning cone distillation process to remove the alcohol. This technology is expensive but necessary to create a quality end product.

It’s worth noting there are plenty of alternative products on the market that don’t go through the full winemaking process and so can be cheaper to purchase. Grape juice is a good example of this!

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18. WHAT TYPES OF WINE CAN BE NON-ALCOHOLIC?

 

With technology like our spinning cones, almost any wine can be dealcoholised! It’s a great time to be a 0% drinker, as wine producers are coming to the party with all sorts – red, white, pink, bubbly, sweet, and more.

Our winemakers begin every 0% journey with a premium base wine. Our first release was a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc; we chose this varietal for its intense aromatics, and since then have hand-selected varietals and regions for their potential to create delicious 0% wines. Our Pinot Gris, Rosé, Riesling, and Merlot have all been very well-received as part of our growing range, as our talented team continue to zero-in (pun intended) on what makes amazing non-alcoholic wine.

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19. DO YOU ADD SUGAR TO MAKE UP FOR REMOVING THE ALCOHOL?’

 

We don’t replace alcohol with sugar!

Alcohol does add sweetness and body to any wine, as alcohol is inherently sweet in nature and has weight on the palate. When you remove it, you do need to find ways to retain body and fullness without alcohol.

Many 0% alcohol wines are relatively sweet (around 40-60g/l sugar) – so we can’t say for sure whether some of the others add sugar or not! However in our case, we were adamant about producing Giesen 0% with lower natural sugar levels, to match the style of each of the classic New Zealand wines we make. Without those higher levels of sugar, we need to ensure the wine acidity is in balance, so we add just a touch of grape juice to add a little extra mouthfeel and body to the wine.

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20. WHY MAKE NON-ALCOHOLIC WINE?

 

The birth of 0% came about from a company fitness challenge where all Giesen employees participated in which included cutting out alcohol for a month, giving the winemaking team motivation to pursue 0% wine. Our consumers are wanting choice to add to their wine repertoire, and with 40 years’ experience making great wine we recognise we’re in a fantastic position to offer the next evolution for a particular segment of the market. It’s been incredibly validating to receive an outpouring of lovely comments from customers who are excited to have a no-alcohol option they can enjoy.

International research predicts that global sales of no and low alcohol sales are set to increase 31 per cent by 2024, valued at more than $1.6 billion. Studies show more than 50% of consumers took a break from drinking alcohol in 2019. And 77% of consumers are on the look-out for ways to live a healthier lifestyle. The low and no alcohol trend is here to stay, and our investment in spinning cone technology proves we’re in it for the long haul too.

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21. WHO DRINKS NON-ALCOHOLIC WINE?

 

It might be quicker to point out who doesn’t drink it! We’re seeing people of varied ages and stages who are glad to enjoy a glass of wine without the after-effects. They might be moderating, cutting back for health reasons, or unable to drink.

Most commonly, 0% drinkers are often wider wine-drinking consumers – they’re still drinking full-strength wine but are wanting a 0% option for particular occasions. Research shows 77% of no-alc consumers are also buying alcoholic wine, beer, or spirits. It’s been validating for us to also see a large number of fans who’ve reached out to thank us for providing a high-quality option when they can’t drink!

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22. WHERE WOULD I DRINK NO-ALCOHOL WINE?

 

Our Giesen 0% fans have told us they love the ability to reduce their alcohol intake when they’re looking after their wellbeing, sober driving, cutting down on sugar, managing health problems, moderating, or even just have a big day planned the next day!

So, where wouldn’t you drink it?! Any time you’d like the feeling of having a glass of wine without the downsides, pour yourself a Giesen 0%. It’s also a great thing to have on hand at home in case any of your guests aren’t able to drink but are still partial to a vino or two.

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23. HOW DOES NON-ALCOHOLIC WINE TASTE?

 

By now, you’ve probably heard about several low and no-alcohol options. You might have even tried some. And you’ve almost definitely encountered some faux wines or grape juices that taste too sweet, don’t live up to the style of the varietal – or at the very least, taste nothing like what they’re pretending to be.

The challenge in creating an alcohol-removed option is that traditionally, alcohol carries a lot of the flavour. Fortunately, our winemaking team are experts on getting that flavour just right – so we made it our mission to concoct an alcohol-free option that stays true to the best qualities of each varietal.

Check out the tasting notes and learn a bit more about each of our alcohol-removed wines!

Giesen 0% – New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Pinot Gris
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Rosé
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Riesling
Giesen 0% – New Zealand Merlot