The Winemaker's Shop
In February of 2014, an idea that had been stirring in our minds for years started to take shape, a non-alcoholic soda, home made from our own wine kits. For years prior we had been testing and experimenting with the idea for home use, for parties and for family gatherings. Those sodas were well received and the adventure began to debut our new "Winemaker's Shop Craft Sodas" during the Clintonville farmers market, which coincidentally was held every saturday throughout the spring, summer and fall months.
In May of 2014 we set up shop in front of our store, with a three gallon keg of Winemaker's Shop Green Apple Riesling soda, and sold our first soda to the public. For three hours, we continued to sell and by the end of the day our grand total of sodas sold was...one! We kept on however, thinking that maybe it was a breakdown in the marketing side of our soda division, or perhaps it was the lack of Acracrombie models we flaunted before people...or maybe it was the fact that the weather was gray, raining and a measly 45 degrees. Who wants an ice cold soda on a day like that? Undaunted by our debut let down, we came back the next week determined and more committed than ever. Our sales that next week tripled! It was amazing, we had sold three glasses of soda! We once again blamed it on the May weather, and said "well, before throwing in the towel and giving up, lets see how June through August would treat us."
June came, muggy, humid and hot as ever, and like a race horse out of the gate our sodas began to take off! It soon became apparent that we would need more inventory, a better dispensing system and more of that creamy carbonated, fruity goodness. We slowly began introducing new and more exotic flavors, we included a Black Raspberry Merlot to our repertoire, and introduced a Honey Sarsaparilla Rootbeer, made with local honey sold just a few booths down. We invested in a tap-box, typically reserved for kegs of beer at parties, but with a few quick modifications we now had the ability to serve ice cold, carbonated sodas through a tap dispenser, making the all tiresome task of keeping up with public demand a little bit easier. With the help of social media (#SodaSaturday), friends and family and our trusty network of employees and helpers, we went from selling a few glasses in May to upwards of 15 gallons a day.
One thing became clear to us, our sodas were here to stay! And as we gear up for the summer months of this years Clintonville farmers market, we anticipate the same kind of warm reception, helpful feedback and plenty of "mmms" and "aahhs." Our sodas are made with the highest quality ingredients, no additives and no added sugar. We hope you stop by this year and try a Winemaker's Shop Craft Soda. Cheers!
a FRUITY non-alcoholic wine juice based soda.
Five Star Soda Review
Check out a very cool review by Five Star Soda of our Raspberry Dragonfruit Shiraz Soda.
Five Star Soda gave us a very pleasant and enjoyable review of which here are a couple quotes:
"This is really impressive and interesting, both in concept and flavor. "
"The Winemaker’s Shop has created one of the most unique takes on soda being bottled today."
Read more at their website here.
Do our wine based sodas contain alcohol?
The answer to this is no, misleading as the names can often be, this is not an alcoholic "Merlot" or "Riesling." The process we use to make our sodas from the "Merlot" and "Riesling" grape concentrate does NOT involve fermentation or yeast (that interesting little critter that makes alcohol possible). Our process mixes our grape concentrate kits with water and then force carbonating them with CO2 so that they are completely alcohol free and as we like to put it..."safe for kids" and "great for nursing mothers."
If it is sold from a tap, can i take some home?
We are frequently told things like, "My kids at home would love this!" and "Any way we could take this to a party?" The answer is... Of course, we began bottling our sodas in 12 oz, glass amber bottles, the way Coke used to be before the modern can. While they wont keep for days, it is the perfect amount to fill a pint glass of ice and enjoy on a hot summers day. We also sell our sodas to-go in a larger quantity as well. We now sell them by the 1/2 gallon growler. The perfect amount for a small family get together, just open the growler, pour a glass, seal it back up and store it in the fridge until next time.
Check out this cool article/video from the Columbus Dispatch on ours as well as Rambling House's Local Sodas!
"The enterprise has jumped dramatically from the first week in May 2014, when sales topped off at one bottle. One year later, Hawranick reported going through 25 gallons — almost 200 bottles — in a morning. 'There are only so many hopped-up beers your palate can take,' she said. 'Sometimes, it’s just fun to have (something) for the family.' Along with selling bottles of the bubbly beverage in the store during the week, the shop supplies an ever-changing list of sodas to Alana’s Food & Wine — an upscale restaurant on N. High Street." - Read more here.
Last year we made many fruity non-alcoholic wine juice based sodas, such as:
Black Raspberry Merlot
Green Apple Riesling
Raspberry Dragonfruit Shiraz
Black Cherry Pinot Noir
Strawberry White Merlot
Peach Apricot Chardonnay
White Cranberry Pinot gris