Bar Talk: Get creative with non-alcholic spirits
After taking a dive into the mocktail scene in Aspen, finding a little inspiration, and paying $14 to $16 for a cocktail with no alcohol in it, I decided to go back to at-home bartending this week and see what I could create with a bottle of zero-proof spirit.
The spirit I’m working with this week is Spice 94 from Seedlip. I was able to find a bottle at The Grog Shop for $38, plus tax.
Seedlip distills its three varieties (Garden 108, Grove 42, and Spice 94) in London. All three are free of sugar, sweeteners, and artificial flavors and boast the tagline “What to drink when you’re not drinking?” (which is accurate for my current situation).
The spices that make up Spice 94 are allspice, cardamom, oak, cascarilla, grapefruit, and lemon — making it fragrant and warming with a bitter finish. Like all of Seedlips offerings, I find it offers a stronger aroma than flavor, which is why I tend to go for the 2-ounce pour in my drinks to get more of the flavor.
If you’re new to the world of non-alcoholic cocktails, Seedlip has an extensive list of recipes on their website featuring all three varieties with lots of flavor profiles. Even if you don’t follow their recipes to a T, they can be a good starting point for creating your own mocktail.
To make things a little more fun, I challenged my Dry January partner to try and create a NA drink with me and see where our creativity could take us.
Inspired by a Rocky Mountain Soda Co. beverage I found at the grocery and the fact that so many people seem to be getting sick right now, I went for an elderberry cocktail. Elderberry is said to help boost your immune system and is filled with antioxidants and vitamins.
Elderberry Spice Cocktail
2 oz Seedlip Spice 94
2 oz Rocky Mountain Soda Co. Evergreen Elderberry Soda
1/2 Tablespoon elderberry syrup
Squeeze of fresh lemon
Add one big ice cube to a rocks glass. Pour in the spirit, soda, syrup, and stir. Add a squeeze of lemon, and stir again. Enjoy.
My “drinking” buddy said he was going for a simpler and more traditional flavor profile for his drink. Made with lemon juice, ginger beer, and Spice 94 — the combination prompted him to comment “I’d enjoy this as an actual cocktail, too” upon first sip.
Simple Lemon Ginger Spice Cocktail
1.5 oz Seedlip Spice 94
3 oz Rocky Moutnain Soda Co. Golden Ginger Beer
juice of ½ lemon
Add ice to a rocks glass. Pour in the spirit, soda, and lemon juice and stir. Enjoy.
There you have it: Two tasty, fun, super-easy-to-make mocktails to savor at home while you relax and check another week of Dry January off your calendar.
If you’re looking to get into the non-alcholic game but hesitant on spending a lot for non-alcoholic liquors you’re not sure you’re going to like, a lot of zero-proof spirits on the market are celebrating Dry January with discounts on their websites, free shipping, and more. Making now a great time to buy and try. Seedlipdrinks.com is currently offering 20% off sitewide.