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An interview with Schorlefranz: How Dominic Zetzsche makes wine spritzers hip

by Yascha Roshani
Schorlefranz Teambild

We all know Weg beer and Weg mix very well. But a Weg wine spritzer? You should know it by now. With Schorlefranz, Dominic, Annik and Cornelius make white wine and rosé spritzers not only hip, but also handy. To polish up the image of wine spritzers, the team relies on refreshing marketing and quality wines from regional family businesses in Rheinhessen. In this interview, Dominic tells us about their beginnings, their target group and what makes a good wine spritzer.

You can buy wine and wine spritzers from Schorlefranz here

Schorlefranz is your white wine spritzer, Schorlefranzi is the rosé spritzer. Was it clear to you from the start that you wouldn't just make one type, but both?

We had the idea of launching a white wine spritzer and a rosé spritzer pretty much from the start, but as we naturally had a small budget to begin with, we decided to start with just a wine spritzer.

Three years ago, you were also one of the first to launch a cold brew coffee on the German market. What was that all about and why don't you make it anymore? You certainly had an early nose for it.

We did indeed have an early nose with Brewno. Cold brew coffee has been a big thing for some time, especially in the USA. The trend has recently spilled over into Germany. But when we launched Brewno on the market, the hype wasn't quite as big yet. We did get really good feedback for Brewno, but in the end we decided to concentrate on our wine spritzers for the time being.

Gestatten, Schorlefranz
Allow me, Schorlefranz.

Wine consumption in Germany has been stable for years without any major upward or downward changes. However, wine drinkers are mostly in the 30 to 35 age group. Is the wine spritzer to go primarily aimed at young people who are otherwise not so keen on wine?

Of course we want our products to appeal to young people who like to enjoy a Schorl at a party in a shared flat or in a café. In general, the image of wine spritzers is still a bit dusty, especially among the younger generation. When people think of wine spritzers, they tend to think of grandma sipping her homemade spritzer with cake and Andrea Berg. And that's exactly the image we want to change. But of course we don't just want to appeal to young people, because whether old or young, Weinschorle is something for everyone.

How has your customer feedback been in the first three years?

We keep getting really great feedback. Many are happy that they can finally drink a refreshing alcoholic beverage other than beer. The taste - and that's the most important thing - is also very well received across the board. And last but not least, we are often asked about our humorous marketing, with which we want to give the Weinschorle a fresh image and, of course, set ourselves apart from the run-of-the-mill producers.

You have a winemaker, a marketer and a graphic designer in your team. That sounds like the best prerequisites for conquering the world of wine spritzers. What else did it take in the early days to bring Schorlefranz to life?

Unfortunately, many things in life don't work without money - logically, that was also the case with Schorlefranz. So for the first production, we jumped in at the deep end and scraped together our savings. And of course, family and friends also lent us a helping hand in one situation or another to get our juice store up and running.

Gestatten, Schorlefranzi
Allow me, Schorlefranzi.

Where does the wine you use for the spritzers come from?

The wines for our spritzers come from Rheinhessen. We decided to do this because we wanted to work with regional family businesses where we are convinced of the quality of the wine. What's more, short delivery routes are of course better for the environment.

And with Château Franz, you also have your own wine collection. How does that fit in with the Schorlefranz concept?

In general, we are staying in the wine segment with our bottled wines and expanding our portfolio. With the wines, we are showing our more traditional side, so to speak, and thus also serving customers who like to drink a glass of wine from time to time. There is a great demand for this, especially at events, which we are naturally happy to meet.

For the quality and taste of the spritzer, only a top wine is really important - or how important are the water and the right carbon dioxide content?

Of course, the water plays a minor role compared to the wine, but of course our water doesn't come from the rain barrel either. We attach great importance to high quality in our spritzers, and of course the water is part of that.

Neben Qualitätsweinen aus Rheinhessen setzt Schorlefranz auf hochwertiges Wasser
In addition to quality wines from Rheinhessen, Schorlefranz relies on high-quality water

You decided on Schorlefranz because you found it too monotonous that there was always only beer at parties. Do you now always make sure you have enough wine at parties or is beer a nice change again?

As part of a balanced diet, we also like to have a beer from time to time, of course. But wine still has priority, of course.

The other day, a friend told me that she was drinking "cold pussy" again. I haven't heard that in years. Do you ever think about adding some hip, creative red wine creation to your Schorlefranz family - if there's anything comparable that you can do with red wine? Or is there something else we can look forward to soon?

Even if we don't look like it, we are sometimes a bit conservative and therefore stay away from wild red wine creations for the time being. Sure, the idea has come up a few times, but nothing is currently in the pipeline. But you should never say never. We are of course planning something new, but don't want to give too much away at the moment.

Fancy some tasty and hip wines and wine spritzers? You can find all SCHORLEFRANZ products and tasting packages here.