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Q&A With Michael Bright, Founder of Edenvale

Michael Bright, founder of Edenvale is a pioneer in the non-alcoholic world. Starting Edenvale way back in 2006, Michael was way ahead of the trend and has some really interesting insights to share.

I absolutely love the Edenvale brand, they are also a local Northern Beaches business so I was delighted to chat to Michael about the story behind the brand. 

What inspired you to start an alcohol-free brand? 

Non-alcoholic wine had been produced before Edenvale. However, those who were producing it were not taking the category seriously and focusing on a quality product. This led to a lack of consumer confidence in alcohol-free wines, particularly in the United States, where products on the market were subpar.

That said, they were still selling nearly 1 million 12 bottle cases per year (in 2006). This provided validation that there really was a gap in the market for sophisticated adult beverages that did not contain alcohol, and we were certain we could make a better product than those already in market at the time.

With the rise of the health and wellness movement, the demand for these products has continued to grow, especially over the past couple of years during which we have seen significant growth.

Edenvale

Edenvale was the first brand to exclusively make non-alcoholic wine – what were the challenges in the early days? 

As we were one of the first brands in Australia to break into the alcohol-free wine industry, and the first to deliver into mainstream retail, our biggest challenge was definitely validating the category and convincing retailers that it was a product that they should stock. As we introduced stockists to the product, they began to understand its purpose. We have only seen uptake grow as awareness for alcohol-free alternatives has increased over the years.

What were some of the things people told you about alc-free when you first started out?  

Like others in the industry, we were faced with many questions of ‘what’s the point?’ and ‘why?’ We are also often asked why our wines are priced the way they are, with many people falsely assuming we are just selling grape juice. There are several products that are just juice and have not had the enrichment of the fermentation process, and this has contributed to the confusion amongst consumers.

Most of the questions stem from a lack of understanding of the benefits of alcohol-free alternatives and the complicated process of first producing a traditional wine and then removing the alcohol from it. However, as time has passed and awareness for the category has grown, these questions are slowing.

Edenvale make delicious non-alc wine

What is special about Edenvale? 

The most special thing about Edenvale is the people who make up the organisation and all the hard work they put into creating the best alcohol-removed wines on the market. As a company, we are proud of our extensive range, the varietal nature of our wines, product integrity, and how we adhere to wine-making standards to create entirely grape-derived wines with no artificial flavours.

We are also proud of being a market leader in the space, which has allowed us to expand into our Spanish Expedition Series, a collection of Spanish varietals produced entirely in Spain, which is another step forward in our global expansion.

Edenvale mulled wine a big hit in winter

What is your fav Edenvale wine? Why?  

With the size of our range, it is hard not to have a number of favourites. However, if I had to pick just one, it would be the Premium Reserve Sparkling Blanc de Blanc. It has a strong varietal flavour and complexing oak characters that make it a sophisticated non-alcoholic sparkling alternative perfect for every celebration.

What’s next for Edenvale? 

We are always looking to expand our brand to provide a sophisticated alcohol-removed option for all tastes and preferences. Within this goal, we are working on extending our range further to include more new varietals, new sizes and packaging formats, and a couple of other exciting new projects.

Our global expansion is also something we are continually working on; with the Spanish range having achieved great success overseas and other international opportunities in the works, we are looking to grow Edenvale’s share of the global market and build on our position as the benchmark for alcohol-removed wines.

Edenvale labels explained 

Edenvale produces a huge array of wine - in fact, I can't think of another brand that covers so many varieties! To make it easier, Edenvale have three distinct labels; Edenvale Classic, Edenvale Premium Reserve and the Edenvale Expedition Series.  

Edenvale Non-Alcoholic Classic Range  

The classic range has been developed to be true to classic varieties of wine. They're crafted with a combination of traditional winemaking techniques and alcohol removal and include Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Shiraz and Rose. 

Edenvale Pinot Gris

[product name="edenvale-pinot-gris"] 

What customers are saying: "Great flavours, great value. Best non alco white yet. Will buy again." 

Edenvale Sparkling Cuvee

[product name="edenvale-sparkling-cuvee"]

What customers are saying: "This tasted like a nice dry sparking, not too sweet and a crisp fresh taste. So nice to find an alcohol free sparkling that tastes like the real thing." 

Edenvale Shiraz

[product name="edenvale-shiraz"] 

What customers are saying: "I have struggled to find a good alcohol free red, but this one is not bad and it’s not too expensive. I would buy again." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve

Expertly crafted from the best grapes that South Australia has to offer, the premium range features wine designed to deliver an exceptional drinking experience.

Edenvale Premium Reserve Sparkling Shiraz 

[product name="edenvale-premium-reserve-sparkling-shiraz"] 

What customers are saying: "This is the most full bodied flavoured red I’ve tried since embarking on my alcohol free venture. Refreshing to enjoy when you need a change from white wine, but not too dry. Very enjoyable." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve Pinot Noir

[product name="edenvale-premium-reserve-pinot-noir"] 

What customers are saying: "I was very impressed this Pinot after trying a few other brands. Nice body and smell, made me feel like I was drinking a real red. Would happily recommend." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve Sparkling Blanc de Blanc

[product name="edenvale-premium-reserve-sparkling-blanc-de-blanc"] 

What customers are saying: "This offering from Edenvale is fantastic! It’s like drinking real bubbles, nice and dry and perfect for any occasion. My favourite at the moment: Friday after WFH drinks with the hubby before we pick up kiddo from daycare. The highlight of our never ending lockdown week!" 

Edenvale Expedition Series

The edenvale expedition series has been inspired by varieties popular in Spain. They're perfect for wine lovers who enjoy full-flavoured Spanish wines.

Edenvale Tempranillo Cabernet Sauvignon

[product name="edenvale-tempranillo-cabernet-sauvignon"] 

What are customers saying: "This is the best tasting red I have tried and I have tried many, great taste, low in sugar and calories."

Edenvale Verdejo Sauvignon Blanc

[product name="edenvale-verdejo-sauvignon-blanc"] 

What customers are saying: "I thoroughly enjoyed this wine, great flavour and felt like I was drinking the real thing."

Edenvale Sparkling Cuvee Spanish

[product name="edenvale-sparkling-cuvee-spanish"] 

What customers are saying: "There is a decent depth of flavour and has that distinct Cava flavour. I've ordered a dozen and ready to celebrate." 

I absolutely love the Edenvale brand, they are also a local Northern Beaches business so I was delighted to chat to Michael about the story behind the brand. 

What inspired you to start an alcohol-free brand? 

Non-alcoholic wine had been produced before Edenvale. However, those who were producing it were not taking the category seriously and focusing on a quality product. This led to a lack of consumer confidence in alcohol-free wines, particularly in the United States, where products on the market were subpar.

That said, they were still selling nearly 1 million 12 bottle cases per year (in 2006). This provided validation that there really was a gap in the market for sophisticated adult beverages that did not contain alcohol, and we were certain we could make a better product than those already in market at the time.

With the rise of the health and wellness movement, the demand for these products has continued to grow, especially over the past couple of years during which we have seen significant growth.

Edenvale

Edenvale was the first brand to exclusively make non-alcoholic wine – what were the challenges in the early days? 

As we were one of the first brands in Australia to break into the alcohol-free wine industry, and the first to deliver into mainstream retail, our biggest challenge was definitely validating the category and convincing retailers that it was a product that they should stock. As we introduced stockists to the product, they began to understand its purpose. We have only seen uptake grow as awareness for alcohol-free alternatives has increased over the years.

What were some of the things people told you about alc-free when you first started out?  

Like others in the industry, we were faced with many questions of ‘what’s the point?’ and ‘why?’ We are also often asked why our wines are priced the way they are, with many people falsely assuming we are just selling grape juice. There are several products that are just juice and have not had the enrichment of the fermentation process, and this has contributed to the confusion amongst consumers.

Most of the questions stem from a lack of understanding of the benefits of alcohol-free alternatives and the complicated process of first producing a traditional wine and then removing the alcohol from it. However, as time has passed and awareness for the category has grown, these questions are slowing.

Edenvale make delicious non-alc wine

What is special about Edenvale? 

The most special thing about Edenvale is the people who make up the organisation and all the hard work they put into creating the best alcohol-removed wines on the market. As a company, we are proud of our extensive range, the varietal nature of our wines, product integrity, and how we adhere to wine-making standards to create entirely grape-derived wines with no artificial flavours.

We are also proud of being a market leader in the space, which has allowed us to expand into our Spanish Expedition Series, a collection of Spanish varietals produced entirely in Spain, which is another step forward in our global expansion.

Edenvale mulled wine a big hit in winter

What is your fav Edenvale wine? Why?  

With the size of our range, it is hard not to have a number of favourites. However, if I had to pick just one, it would be the Premium Reserve Sparkling Blanc de Blanc. It has a strong varietal flavour and complexing oak characters that make it a sophisticated non-alcoholic sparkling alternative perfect for every celebration.

What’s next for Edenvale? 

We are always looking to expand our brand to provide a sophisticated alcohol-removed option for all tastes and preferences. Within this goal, we are working on extending our range further to include more new varietals, new sizes and packaging formats, and a couple of other exciting new projects.

Our global expansion is also something we are continually working on; with the Spanish range having achieved great success overseas and other international opportunities in the works, we are looking to grow Edenvale’s share of the global market and build on our position as the benchmark for alcohol-removed wines.

Edenvale labels explained 

Edenvale produces a huge array of wine - in fact, I can't think of another brand that covers so many varieties! To make it easier, Edenvale have three distinct labels; Edenvale Classic, Edenvale Premium Reserve and the Edenvale Expedition Series.  

Edenvale Non-Alcoholic Classic Range  

The classic range has been developed to be true to classic varieties of wine. They're crafted with a combination of traditional winemaking techniques and alcohol removal and include Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Shiraz and Rose. 

Edenvale Pinot Gris

 

What customers are saying: "Great flavours, great value. Best non alco white yet. Will buy again." 

Edenvale Sparkling Cuvee

What customers are saying: "This tasted like a nice dry sparking, not too sweet and a crisp fresh taste. So nice to find an alcohol free sparkling that tastes like the real thing." 

Edenvale Shiraz

 

What customers are saying: "I have struggled to find a good alcohol free red, but this one is not bad and it’s not too expensive. I would buy again." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve

Expertly crafted from the best grapes that South Australia has to offer, the premium range features wine designed to deliver an exceptional drinking experience.

Edenvale Premium Reserve Sparkling Shiraz 

 

What customers are saying: "This is the most full bodied flavoured red I’ve tried since embarking on my alcohol free venture. Refreshing to enjoy when you need a change from white wine, but not too dry. Very enjoyable." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve Pinot Noir

 

What customers are saying: "I was very impressed this Pinot after trying a few other brands. Nice body and smell, made me feel like I was drinking a real red. Would happily recommend." 

Edenvale Premium Reserve Sparkling Blanc de Blanc

 

What customers are saying: "This offering from Edenvale is fantastic! It’s like drinking real bubbles, nice and dry and perfect for any occasion. My favourite at the moment: Friday after WFH drinks with the hubby before we pick up kiddo from daycare. The highlight of our never ending lockdown week!" 

Edenvale Expedition Series

The edenvale expedition series has been inspired by varieties popular in Spain. They're perfect for wine lovers who enjoy full-flavoured Spanish wines.

Edenvale Tempranillo Cabernet Sauvignon

 

What are customers saying: "This is the best tasting red I have tried and I have tried many, great taste, low in sugar and calories."

Edenvale Verdejo Sauvignon Blanc

 

What customers are saying: "I thoroughly enjoyed this wine, great flavour and felt like I was drinking the real thing."

Edenvale Sparkling Cuvee Spanish

 

What customers are saying: "There is a decent depth of flavour and has that distinct Cava flavour. I've ordered a dozen and ready to celebrate." 

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