The Next Round: What happens after you change your drinking?

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The alcohol-free version isn't a non-drinker's only option

The alcohol-free version isn’t a non-drinker’s only option

The low and no alcohol market has blossomed over the last few years, much to the delight of those of us who choose to cut down or quit the hard stuff. But the alcohol-free version of alcoholic drinks isn’t for everyone. For some, the taste of the drinks they used to love is a real trigger. The alcohol-free version may not contain the substance that caused problems, but the sensory anxiety caused might be turning some non-drinkers off.

While the soft drink has often been seen as the poorer choice, that market, too, has seen a radical transformation. Long gone as the measly options only offered to kids with their bar meals and reluctant designated drivers. As more people choose not to drink alcohol, so the soft drinks industry has responded with a plethora of tongue-tingling beverages to entice those who aren’t so keen on the alcohol-free versions of alcoholic drinks.

Club Soda founder Laura Willoughby spoke to some of the top soft drinks companies on the market. This podcast is sponsored by the British Soft Drinks Association.

Soft drinks vs alcohol-free drinks

We kind of took what everyone was doing in craft beer at the time and applied it to lemonade. At the time, it was completely radical to be brewing beer from fresh and introducing all these new and interesting flavours into it. And I really wanted to take that approach and apply it to soft drinks. So I started developing flavours that I liked and hoping that other people like them as well.

Robin, Square Root

It’s really actually a blurry line between what’s a soft drink and what’s an adult alcohol-free drink. We wanted to make sure that we didn’t miss out on some of the amazing drinks that are out there that actually help us as mindful drinkers. This episode is all about shining a light on those exciting, tasty soft drinks brands. The British Soft Drinks Association have helped us to go and talk to some of the really exceptional brands that produce high-quality adult soft drinks – we even managed to sneak into Square Root’s factory!

Who do we recommend?

The brands featured in this episode are:

These fantastic soft drink companies are just the tip of a delicious and diverse iceberg. If you’re trying the alcohol-free version of an alcoholic drink and it’s not doing it for you, keep looking. There are tons of brilliant soft drink options out there – so many that we’re looking forward to doing a second part to this podcast and featuring some new brands and brilliant creations, such as Bemuse who sweeten their drinks with honey.

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