Dry January: Help, I miss my favourite drinks!

Dry January might be making you realise you don’t crave ‘alcohol’ – you crave your favourite drinks. They might suit your mood, time of day, or the occasion. When water or soft drinks won’t cut it, don’t worry. As Dry January’s official online partner, Dry Drinker has got seven alcohol-free options to fit your fancies and help you stick with Dry January, whatever the occasion.

1) CRAVING CRAFT?

Hoppy? Malty? Citrus notes? You enjoy savouring interesting, complex brews. And yes, you can get them alcohol-free, thanks to clever craft brewers in the UK and Europe. Some, like inventive UK entrepreneurs at Nirvana and Big Drop only brew alcohol-free, and each have four great beers to choose from. Others have added to their range – like St Peter’s Brewery with the malty joy of St Peters Without, Without Gold, and Without Organic, and BrewDog with its super-hopped Nanny State. Get exploring!

2) WISHING FOR WHEAT BEER?

You love the unique refreshment of a chilled wheat beer. Well, smile, because Weisse really works alcohol-free. Especially if you drink it ice cold and let it breathe for a minute or two. Mmm. Traditional German wheat beer breweries, such as Erdinger, Paulaner, Maisel’s and Schneider, have used masses of brewing experience to add alcohol-free to their ranges. And forget energy drinks – alcohol-free wheat beer is the ideal low-calorie isotonic after exercise.

3) LUSTING AFTER LAGER?

You like to relax with a lighter lager. There are many more alcohol-free brands out there than you might see in the pub. Europe is way ahead of the UK when it comes to easy drinking alcohol-free. For example, Spain has got it sussed – try a taste of the Med from Moritz and Estrella Galicia. Big names like Budweiser Prohibition Brew and Heineken 0 are also on the case. And if you want a punchy lager with US hops try Pistonhead Flat Tire. Yes, it is non-alcoholic!

4) FANCY FIZZ?

You love to raise a toast and celebrate but sparkling mineral water doesn’t quite cut it. Well, alcohol-free bubbles are not just fizzy grape juice. Scavi & Ray’s alcohol-free prosecco is made with the same grapes as the ‘real’ stuff and the aroma alone says ‘cheers’! Bees Knees has got a green tea take, and champagne expert Richard Juhlin put his name behind the premium RJ Jubilee & Blanc de Blancs. And the bottles look great as a party gift too.

5) SEEKING STOUT?

You find the dark stuff comforting at this time of year. It’s a bit like drinking pudding.

Well, for Dry January and beyond, sink into a Nirvana’s Kosmic Stout or Big Drop Chocolate Milk Stout. Or turn to the Portuguese for Cheers Preta or Super Bock Stout.

6) ICE AND A SLICE?

You want to sit back and slowly enjoy a G ‘n’ T, without the alcohol. Well, Teetotal G’n’T is for you – made with the botanicals that flavour a good quality gin and tonic, without the alcohol. Just pour over ice and enjoy. Or, there’s the sensational Seedlip. Two non-alcoholic distilled spirits  – one spicy, one herbal – with no sugar, no sweeteners and NO calories, but so much flavour and finish. Serve with a good quality tonic, or use as the base for mocktails.

7) WANT WINE?

Alcohol-free wine making is a serious business, not an afterthought, for winemakers like Torres, Vintense and Ariel. They use the best grapes, ideal growing conditions and modern processes to craft Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah Rosé, Merlot, Chardonnay, ready for your tasting notes!

Take home tips:

  1. Forget alcohol-free beers or wines you tried in the past. Things have moved on!
  2. Remember that the same ingredients, care and skill go into making alcohol-free beers and wines as their boozy brothers and sisters.
  3. Explore and try something new – Dry January is about change and adventure after all!
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