Drinks for Non-Drinkers: The Top 5

By Posted in Drinks

Alternative drinks to alcohol for non-drinkers

One of the questions we frequently get asked is what to drink when you’re non-drinkers. We have lots of drink reviews (I know because I wrote them all). So here we are going to compile a quick guide to the best things to drink when you’re not drinking.

1. Non-alcoholic beers for non-drinkers

Non-alcoholic, or 0% beers have come a long way in the last few years. With a little work, you can find some great options, and if you’re not sure you can come to one of our 0% beer tastings and try a whole range of interesting drinks. Or you can just check out our reviews here.

Our top picks are:
Brew Dog Nanny State Alcohol Free BeerBrewdog Nanny State

ABV: 0.5%

Style: Hoppy Ale

Where to buy: Bottle Dog in Kings Cross/online, or at larger branches of Tesco

Tasting Notes: Good reviews noted for its real beer flavor.

“A good proper beer”

“Buttery & herby”

“Definitely a picnic kind of beer”

“Pretty good! Smelt floral and smooth but tasted a tad too bitter for me. I could manage about two on a night out with food”

Rothaus Tannenzapple Alkoholfrei

Rothaus Tannenzapple Alcohol Free BeerABV: 0.5%

Style: Hefeweizen

Where to buy: Online, from importers, or The Beer Boutique in Putney.

Taste: A strong contender.

“I would drink this on a weekday pub night”

“Easy drinker”

“Tastes like lager!”

“This beats Becks! I could have 10+ on a night out!”

2. Top Tonics

If you’re used to drinking a G&T you might want to replace it with a T&T. Lots of craft soda producers are making Peter Spanton Tonicinteresting flavoured tonics that need no accompaniment. A great example of this is Peter Spanton. These are great because Peter Spanton created them for non-drinkers, he quit and was sick of going out and having no decent non-alcoholic options, sound familiar? His Cardamon tonic is well worth a try and these are other unusual offerings like chocolate and lemongrass.

Fever Tree also do a good range of tonics including flavours like Elderflower, and Lemon and Rosemary. They are also served in lots of pubs and restaurants which make them perfect for a non-drinkers night out.

3. Craft Sodas

Drinking soft drinks doesn’t have to mean a night of coke. More and more craft soda producers are popping up with great drinks designed for a more grown-up palate than the usual fizzy offerings. Some of our favourites are:

Square Root SodaSquare Root London Rhubarb Soda

Available online here and at Square Root’s own shop/cafe in Hackney.

Square Root is all about hand-making sodas from natural, and frequently seasonal, ingredients. What they have on offer varies a bit depending on the time of year from Raspberry Lemonade, to Rhubarb to Cucumber, there is always something new on offer. Additionally, there is a standard line including tonics, cola, lemonade, and ginger beer.

Dalston Cola Real LemonadeDalston Soda

Available from £2.00

Dalston Cola’s drinks are handmade in London, the citrus fruit comes from the market near Spitalfields; and the bottles are from Clapham. The ingredients are simply water, fair trade sugar, and fresh natural flavourings. Their Cola is made with real Kola nuts for an interesting take on a classic and a hit of natural energy.

4. Kombucha

KombuchaTry Love Kombucha or Ucha Kombucha

You may not be convinced that kombucha is the drink for you. Fermented tea sounds a bit hipseter-ish and weird. But, if you are used to drinking cider it may be the perfect drink for you. It really does taste quite a bit like cider and is an amazing healthy alternative to alcohol. Kombucha is basically a fermented and sweetened black or green tea drink originating from Japan. It’s the brewing process that distinguishes it from fizzy pop!

5. Interesting Botanical Things

There has also been a bit of an explosion, recently, in adult drinks for non-drinkers. This has led to some interesting offshoots that defy easy categorisation. So here are a couple of examples of some interesting drinks to look out for.

SeedlipSeedlip is a spirit without the alcohol. I know it doesn’t seem like that makes much sense but that is the general idea. It’s the brainchild of founder Ben (last name) who got the idea from the 1651 book ‘The Art of Distillation’ by John French. Distillation was originally used for making medicines, some of them were alcoholic formulations but plenty weren’t. Seedlip is distilled from six botanicals: oak bark, cardamon, cascarilla bark, lemon peel, grapefruit peel, and pimento berries blended together without alcohol or sugar.

The flavour is a balance of smoke, spice, and citrus. Because there are no added sugars a 50ml measure contains just 0.2 calories.

Available from Selfridges £16 for 700ml and also from some venues in London including Clove Club.

Fantastical Botanicals make organic and natural soft drink syrups and botanical shots. Yes, shots! In some ways the idea is quite similar to Seedlip. Currently only available from Redemption.


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