The dealcoholisation process
Rotkäppchen uses a very gentle dealcoholisation process to preserve the authentic taste of the sparkling wine. This method is unique in the German sparkling wine industry.
The process can be divided into three main steps: The starting point is a cuvée made of selected wines. In the dealcoholisation facility, which consists of around 40 stainless-steel funnels (half of which rotate) the wines are carefully heated under vacuum. The liquid forms an extremely thin film on the funnels. First of all, the bouquet – the somewhat volatile components that provide the taste – is gently extracted from this film. It is collected and stored separately in a protective container.
The second step involves removing the alcohol from the wine. The alcohol is able to evaporate completely under vacuum. This leaves alcohol-free wine, and its natural bouquet is now added to it again unchanged. The final step before bottling is to harmonise the wine by adding expedition liqueur. This rounds off the flavour of the drink.
What does ‘alcohol-free’ mean?
During Rotkäppchen’s dealcoholisation process, the alcohol contained in the wine is gently removed using a method that is unique throughout Europe. But no matter what method is used, the finished product always contains a certain amount of residual alcohol. For a drink to be labelled ‘alcohol-free’, it may not contain more than 0.5% alcohol. In a regular glass of sparkling wine (0.1 l) that is equivalent to half a millilitre of alcohol. In comparison, a normal bottle of beer (0.5 l) contains 25 ml of alcohol on average.
Interestingly, the alcohol level in many fruit juices, particularly grape juice, is similar to the level in alcohol-free sparkling wine. After ripening for ten days, even bananas contain up to 0.6% alcohol.
Information for pregnant women
During pregnancy, women should preferably avoid drinking alcohol. But that doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy a delicious drink. Alcohol-free versions of sparkling wines and beers are a great alternative for those who don’t want to consume alcohol.
Are pregnant women allowed to drink alcohol?
Pregnant women should not drink alcoholic beverages. This is because the alcohol can pass to the baby via the umbilical cord and placenta, which can damage the baby’s development. Nowadays pregnant women can avoid these risks by making the most of the huge variety of alcohol-free alternatives. Many places now stock a wide choice of alcohol-free sparkling wines and beers, in particular.
Protecting the baby by drinking responsibly and in moderation
According to European food law, sparkling wine, wine and beer can only be labelled ‘alcohol-free’ if they contain no more than 0.5% alcohol. In comparison, depending on the fermentation process used, both apple juice and grape juice can reach an alcohol level of up to 1%.
Alcohol-free drinks: a clever and elegant solution
The alcohol content of alcohol-free sparkling wine is so low that even leading gynaecologists confirm that this kind of fizz is harmless. So there’s no reason why pregnant women can’t enjoy life to the full. Alcohol-free versions of sparkling wine, wine and beer are a great way to celebrate on special occasions such as Easter, New Year’s Eve, holidays and family parties – even during pregnancy.
Information for motorists
Anyone who drinks alcohol should avoid driving afterwards. Everyone knows this nowadays – even children. The good news is that for those who want to drink sparkling wine, beer or wine without posing a risk to themselves and other road users, there are now a variety of alcohol-free alternatives.
How much alcohol do alcohol-free drinks actually contain?
Drinks labelled ‘alcohol-free’ can still contain a small amount of residual alcohol. The law states that sparkling wine, wine and beer can only be labelled ‘alcohol-free’ if they contain no more than 0.5% alcohol. Some manufacturing processes produce drinks with lower alcohol content. A 100 ml glass of sparkling wine contains a maximum of 0.5 ml alcohol.
How many alcohol-free drinks can drivers consume?
Drivers can consume as many alcohol-free drinks as they like. Even drivers who are under 21 and/or still in the probationary period, who are strictly prohibited from consuming alcohol in Germany, for example, can enjoy these drinks. That’s because even if you drink large amounts of these beverages within a short period, you won’t get drunk. This was the conclusion of a study by the Institute of Forensic Medicine at the University of Freiburg: the highest blood alcohol level measured after the consumption of 1.5 litres of an ‘alcohol-free’ beverage was 0.56 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood. That’s less than a thirtieth of the permitted limit. And just 30 minutes after the last mouthful, no more alcohol was detected in any of the participants.