New Wine Company Dry Wit Revolutionizes Refreshment

by | Mar 2024

Table full of glasses and bottles of Dry Wit wine.

Photos: Chris Emeott

Local nonalcoholic wine company gains a foothold.

There’s no doubt the right wine or cocktail complements a beautiful meal. The fragrance, the notes that hit the palate, the sweetness or acidity all play a role in that perfect pairing of a glass of wine, with a beautiful filet of fish or a stout, heavy, pasta sauce.

But what about those who do not drink wine but miss the experience?

“Dry Wit wines are thoughtfully balanced,” says Adam Schepker, sommelier and bar manager at Terzo, a restaurant in Linden Hills. Terzo stocks a nonalcoholic (NA) wine, Dry Wit, which is based in Edina.

“The noticeable acidity and salinity help accentuate more subtle flavors like linden flower and bay leaf,” Schepker says. He recommends the Salinger for its floral and crisp accents as a pairing with something salty and light. “The Bruce, with its savory, peppery quality stands up to rich tomato sauces or red meat,” he says.

Wine glasses on a table filled with Dry Wit nonalcoholic wine.

Those flavors were the brainchild of Dry Wit co-owner, creator and Edina resident Peder Schweigert. He was inspired by the creative energy in the NA space coming from Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

“Someone once said to me, ‘Wine at its best is the story of a vineyard,’” Schweigert says. “When you move into the NA wine market, you lose that so we decided to start with an additive process.”

Schweigert started with what he and his partner liked and developed a blend from there. With a goal to avoid fermentation, they began with complex flavors, like the Eastern white pine, linden flower or bay leaf.

Peder Schweigert

Peder Schweigert

“We only have one botanical per bottle,” he says. “Being in Edina, you almost never appreciate how subtle and almost quaint the linden tree is. It’s that sweet, grassy aroma you smell when you walk in the fall.”

Schweigert was classically trained in a 3-Star Michelin restaurant in Chicago and returned to the Twin Cities 15 years ago to manage and bartend. He says he used botanicals like bay laurel for 20 years in the cocktails he created. And to help his NA wines with flavor, he collects grapes that are harvested before the sugar has developed, allowing for the acidity to pull the heavy load of palate cleansing while complementing the flavors found in a meal.

“The vast majority of people who buy our stuff are people who drink and are looking for ways to drink less,” Schweigert says. “It doesn’t mean you have to stop exploring flavor.” With or without alcohol, there is always something to toast.

Pouring a glass of Dry Wit wine.

Where to Find Dry Wit

By the glass at Terzo and Broders’ Pasta Bar

In local retailers including France 44, Haskell’s, Marigold and many other locations, which are listed on the Dry Wit website.

Dry Wit
Instagram: @drywitdrink


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