What to buy in M&S (spoiler – not a lot!)
Unlike other supermarkets we’ve reviewed, Marks and Spencer’s don’t sell the kinds of popular and easily recognised brands we are used to, so we were interested to see what M&S had on offer.
- Lots and lots of soft drinks. They have soft drinks with interesting flavours
- Some low and no sugar options were on sale
- Their non-alcoholic sparkling juices were £2.50 – much cheaper than your average bottle of wine
Lots of room for improvement:
- Their website does not make it easy for you to find any non-alcoholic drink of any kind – they really do only want you to ”View All Wine, Beer & Champagne” and nothing else
- A search for ‘no alcohol’ or ‘non-alcoholic’ gives you no results! Come on guys, a party needs more than wine…
- There are little to no low-alcohol wines, ciders or beers listed on the website or in store
- Sparkling grape juice is not a non-alcoholic wine, although we are pleased it is there
- For a store that wants to reduce its food miles, M&S shows little promise in its drinks department – there are UK made craft sodas as well as beers
- This is the worst of the UK supermarkets we’ve reviewed so far for range and choice.
Low-alcohol M&S wines?
Described on their website as ‘The Non-Alcoholic Refresher’, M&S do indeed have a range of sparkling juices, some of which would be a good substitute for wine. They have rosé grape and white grape flavours in particular, which might be a closer alternative to everyday wines.
M&S also stock a few Alain Miliet drinks, one of which features similarly a ‘Merlot Red Grape’ flavour (which Laura’s tasted and found it was very nice, not too sweet). But these are more of a nectar for topping up with fizzy water, rather than a real de-alcoholised wine like Eisberg or Torres’s, but they do make for a mature alternative to alcoholic wines.
We found some Owl’s Brew, a ‘tea crafted for cocktails’ and some Blossoms Syrup in grenadine flavour. If you check out their website, you can find a few mocktail recipe suggestions that sound pretty decent – Owl’s Brew’s recipe ‘The Cleanse’ for example, sounds like it could be interesting. As a mocktail ingredient or mixed with fizzy water or tonic, these are a great alternative to traditional cordials.
M&S beers and ciders
We could find nothing under 3%, and definitely nothing at 0.5% or below. All that craft ale and they could not find one non-alcoholic beer to sell – tut tut M&S…
This is where M&S really do well. They have such a range of soft drinks in store that you’ll surely be able to find something you like. They have the fairly common flavours like elderflower alongside more risque ones like ‘hibiscus and lemon’ which is also sugar-free.
Marks and Spencer’s non-alcoholic drinks choice – so disappointing! It’s a shame about M&S’ lack of low alcohol beer and cider options, but you are okay if you want some fizzy soft drinks – unless you want to order them online for a party, then you just won’t be able to find them.
For more drink ideas, why not read some of the blogs from our Drinks section?