At The Bar with NON Founder Aaron Trotman

Fine dining in Europe with his wife in 2019, enjoying non-alcoholic pairings with fabulous meals, was the sobering lightbulb moment for NON founder Aaron Trotman.

Upon returning to his home in Melbourne, the entrepreneur decided to start working on a range of non-alc beverages in a bottle. Little did he know at the time, he was helping create a sober movement that’s changing the way we interact with our booze free days.

The wine alternative NON is proudly Made in Australia [Cheltenham headquarters in Melbourne in fact]. They’re less focused on taking the alcohol out and more about adding flavour in. You’ll find the range at many top dining spots in the city – from Supernormal to Bar Liberty. The Write Drop spoke to Trotman about his favourite drink and dining destinations.


Melbourne is my all-time favourite city. It has everything you could need – including amazing produce which is obviously very important to us at NON. I’m a supporter of wild ideas and trying new things, Melbourne is a place that’s always filled with open-minded people who are ready for adventure. Also, closely followed by New York which I believe to be Melbourne on steroids.



Fico in Hobart. This restaurant is truly a special place, it’s warm, honest and you can really see their respect for their ingredients. The mushroom souffle was unforgettable.


I’d have to say Caretaker’s Cottage has absolutely nailed it. They are constantly providing excellent drinks in a great environment, with fantastic and friendly staff that continue to deliver. The sound system blows my socks off every time, in a good way.


Fernet Branca. You either love it or hate it.


A McDonald’s triple cheeseburger. Everything you need during a hangover; greasy, saucy and cheesy.


I love Hubert in Sydney. This French restaurant dishes up some impeccable meals, but also still finds time for a generous happy hour. Whether you’re after a cheeseburger and an after-work drink or a delicious fine dining meal, I’d recommend.


Jayden Ong is one of the coolest wineries in the Yarra Valley, where the space doubles up as both a modern winery and relaxed cellar bar. They source the best, tastiest, local ingredients that are cooked simply over charcoal. My recommendation is to go for the chef’s tasting menu with wine pairings every time.


It’s not new, now but I’m obsessed with Saison Aperitifs. Dave Verheul is a genius who is always innovating fantastic new products with great ingredients. These drinks are super flavourful and feel expertly curated.


I do love Paris, closely followed by NYC. An ideal travel destination for me has delicious food, great produce and a mixture of different cultures and ideas.


NON8 joins our signature seven bottles that are 18 months in the making. It was born from the idea of creating a beverage with apple flavours and with skin contact wines in mind. Our challenge was: how do we use apples to make a beverage that doesn’t taste like apple juice? In the same way we use freeze dried raspberries for NON1, this too could work with apples. Which was to just wait for the seasonality to come around and order the year’s supply of apples. This apple flavour then gave us a great body to work with that we needed to build on.  High minerality, high acidity, bright and fresh; we think this is a flavour like no other that people are sure to love.


Absolutely! The non-alcoholic drink industry is booming and more people are going sober than ever before. We’re really lucky we have great options and distribution that makes it very accessible for people to try out. Kudos to all the beverage buyers out there making it easy for people to navigate and explore their drinking options.


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