“It’s in our logo, it started with bananas and champagne, so it’s in our DNA so to speak,” Dada Life’s Olle Corneer says of the Swedish electronic duo’s connection to champagne. “[So] to make our own champagne is kind of a no-brainer.”
Now, the pair of Olle Corneer and Stefan Engblom are unveiling their Dada Life Champagne. According to the band, the vines for the Dada Life Champagne were planted in the 1980s within the Marne Valley and Côte des Bars regions of Champagne. Harvested by hand annually Dada Life’s Brut Reserve is a traditional blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay.
While Corneer was on vacation in Spain, where he had just come back from snorkeling, he spoke about the champagne, how it came to be and that Dada Life Champagne is the best not only for taste, but for spraying people.
Steve Baltin: Where did the idea for the Dada Life champagne originally come from?
Olle Corneer: We’ve been playing around with the idea for years. It probably started four or five years ago and then the first step was to get in touch with a winemaker we can partner with. We did that with a California wine maker and then we did a sparkling wine to start with, two, three years ago. It tasted good and everything, it was a not bad sparkling wine. But we were like, “We need to do the real thing, it needs to be champagne from Champagne.” And we just scrapped the whole thing and started all over again. We never launched it. We tried and it tasted good, that wasn’t the problem, it was just a problem knowing it was not the real thing.
Baltin: Have you always had a connection to champagne?
Corneer: When we realized we wanted to do it with a proper champagne from Champagne in France, it took two or three years longer to make it work. It’s actually really bureaucratic, it’s actually this board of the people in the Champagne approving all the new brands that are put to market that are real champagne. And they didn’t really approve our brand. I don’t know what the traditional French people have against bananas and champagne and partying, but they didn’t approve anyway. But we kind of found a work around and now we’re ready to launch.
Baltin: How involved were you in the process?
Corneer: The process was sending stuff back and forth. We wanted it to be a light, summery feeling to it. I actually blind tasted it a few months back against a lot of other famous champagne brands and it’s definitely not the super complex champagne. That’s exactly what we wanted, it’s light and summery and easy to drink. And powerful to spray too.
Baltin: So you tested out the spraying?
Corneer: Oh yeah, we tried it against famous brands and I don’t want to name any because you don’t do that (laughs), but we tried it against brands, both blind tasting and when it comes to spraying. And it wins all categories.
Baltin: Where will you first spray it?
Corneer: It might be one here in Sweden cause we have a big few festivals coming up here in Sweden this summer, definitely some kind of summer festival. Also it’s so limited to start with that I don’t think they’ll send us too many bottles. Spraying will just have to wait.
Baltin: Will you expand the run if it does well?
Corneer: We’re definitely gonna keep doing it cause it’s not like champagne has different tastes. With beer it’s different I suppose cause then you can make another brand, make an ale or lager. This is how it’s gonna taste, so we’re definitely gonna keep doing it. But I could tell you how it works with our ideas, basically. Stefan and I sit around talking, having fun and coming up with ideas that are stupid in a way. Then we go to someone, go to our manager, someone like that and go, “We want to do this.” They’re like, “We need to talk to all these lawyers and insurance companies.” Then nine out of ten of those ideas never happen because it gets too complicated. When they actually happen, like this one, we’re just happy, we don’t have a master plan. We don’t work like that, we go with spontaneous plans and see what happens.
Baltin: Who would be the dream artist to spray with champagne?
Corneer: This is a big thing of our live shows, we try to get rid of the line between audience and stage and have people feel like we’re just one in the crowd. So that’s why we always try to take people up on stage and maybe spray them with champagne. At one show we had 50, a hundred people on stage and sometimes it’s ten people or just one person. So that’s probably the way I would want it to work, just bring random person in a banana suit from the crowd, pull him or her up and hose them down.
Baltin: So it’s more egalitarian?
Corneer: That’s what I’m saying, that’s what we’re all about in “dada land,” we’re all one, it’s super democratic. It’s not like us and them, it’s just one dysfunctional family.