Cheers! Cat wine makes drinking with your feline a possibility

DENVER, Colo. — On this Valentine’s Day, why drink alone when you can drink with your furry four-legged friends?

Manufactured and fermented at 5,600 feet in the foothills of Colorado exists a small business specializing in wine for your pets. It’s designed to bridge the social gap between humans and their animals.

It quickly became a booming business thanks to the demand of an unexpected market.

What initially started out as a joke between friends has quickly grown into a surprisingly prosperous business for Brandon Zavala.

“I always felt that basically cats didn’t get the attention that dogs did essentially when it came to treats,” said Zavala. “So we decided that we wanted to create a wine if you will, for cats.”

Yes, you heard that right. A wine for your cat with the exception of any actual alcohol.

“It’s all-natural cat nip,” said Zavala. “We do use peppermint and other different herbs and stuff for our drinks as well but mainly it’s made out of beets, beet juice mixed with water and cat nip to help get the cats a little bit crazy or have fun basically.”

After a few months of trial and error at local pet companies, Zavala decided to quit his job as a sales manager and start Apollo Peak Limited.

“We were surprised to be honest with you,” said Zavala. “I did not think that there would be a lot of people out there that would want to buy a wine for their cats or actually have fun or enjoy some sort of glass of wine with their cats but when we found out they did, we decided to keep going, moving forward and keep pushing.”

The Pinot Meow was the flagship wine but Zavala didn’t just stop there. Like humans, he figured our four-legged friends needed variety so the Moscato, White Kittendale and Catbernet were added to the menu.

“The fact of the matter is that cats are really hard to make a treat for so what we’re doing everyday is making newer and newer products that might be tailored to these cats that don’t like the original Pinot Meow so that we can actually get those cats to enjoy a drink with their owner,” said Zavala.

Zavala and his 18 employees do all the labor by hand, meaning the process takes anywhere from two to three hours to complete a single batch.

The first and perhaps easiest step is boiling water.

“We boil the water to prevent any bacterial growth in the product,” said Zavala. “So when we add all the ingredients like the cat nip we want to get all the oils out of the catnip.”

In step two, they add beet juice to the cat nip mixture. From there it then goes into a cooling and filtration system where the temperature will drop from 200 degrees to 55 degrees within just 10 seconds.

“Then we try to turn that around pretty quickly, somewhere around I’d say about 5 minutes or so when we start the bottling process right off the bat,” said Zavala. “So we want the freshest drink bottled right away as soon as possible so that we can assure the product stays good for the longest amount of time possible.”

The finished product is a liquid treat that your pet can enjoy alongside you; but be warned your wine nights can still get wild.

“The effects are basically that you’ll see they kind of roll around, they start acting kind of crazy,” Zavala said. “Basically whenever you see your cat with a cat nip toy or anything like that, that’s really how they’re going to react with this drink.”

Right now the wine lasts about 6 months but Zavala expects that to change with more shelf life testing and since business has been a hit, they’re expanding the menu.

“We’re using a lot of different herbs that are out there because they do have a lot of benefits for pets but we’re also going to be experimenting with different oils and such like Vitamin E oil and a lot of these beneficial type of ingredients for dogs and cats that help with their fur, digestion and stuff like that,” said Zavala.

The company will be moving into vitamin beverages as they expand their office location to Golden.

If you don’t have a cat, not to worry – Apollo Peak also has a couple selections for dogs, including Chardognay and Zinfantail.

If you want to get your paws on the pet wine, click here. 

You can also find the pet beverage at small pet boutique stores or on Amazon.

 

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