Booze-Free Faves

If you're participating in Dry January, and looking for some fun NA finds come Happy Hour, here are some of my absolute faves.

Booze-Free Faves
Photo by Fred Moon / Unsplash

So, you've committed to Dry January, and you're already feeling over it? Don't know where to begin when it comes to keeping Happy Hour happy after banning the booze? Take it straight from this teetotaler and former drinker, the non-alcoholic movement is huge these days, and fun finds abound. Every time I go to Total Wine, either to buy alcohol for family and friends or to stock up on my NA collection, I am blown away by the zero-proof assortment; it has grown exponentially and shows no signs of stopping.

What follows are some of my absolute favorites, for Dry January or to have on hand for post-Dry January parties. Your non-drinking friends will be so excited to have something special to drink beyond soda and seltzer next time you throw a soiree. Seriously, you'll be their favorite person.

As I've mentioned to friends, out of all the NA alternatives, the wine selection is the least like the real thing. In terms of NA wine, I recommend the bubbly varieties, especially the dry champagne or prosecco. I'm still looking for a great Sauvignon Blanc sans alcohol; Giesen is the best I've tried so far.

Beer is much closer in taste to the real deal, and it's typically lower in calories and sugar. Some of my faves include brews by Athletic Brewing Co., Clausthauler (I love the Christmas Beer), Lagunitas and Wellbeing.

Some of the spirits alternatives are also pretty incredible. I love Ritual Zero Proof Non-Alcoholic Tequila for NA margaritas; it even has the tequila burn. Ritual's non-alcoholic take on rum is also great. Seedlip is handy to have on hand for mocktails. I like each of their offerings. Restaurants seem to dig Seedlip too; I've had some great mocktails at restaurants featuring their non-alcoholic spirits. And Beckett's Non-Alcoholic Paloma is a great pre-mixed mocktail.

De Soi perfectly complements the perfect beach day. Photo by Natalie Kaar

There are also great options with adaptogens that help soothe stress. In this arena, I highly recommend De Soi's Golden Hour, featuring maca, lemon balm and L-theanine. It pairs especially well with golden hour strolls at the beach.

Seriously, the options abound. You know that's the case when an NA bar opens in DC. Meet Binge.


Natalie Kaar