Wellness is the name of the game these days. Maybe you have an early flight or board meeting, are still breastfeeding, on a new medication, or need to get to that early hot yoga class that you just can’t go to hungover even though your friend’s birthday is the night before. Enter the zero proof cocktail.
As of this post, it’s been fifteen months since I chose sobriety and it hasn’t been easy. Not because of the baggage of the thing. I mean, let’s be honest, it’s more like a Louis Vuitton trunk. It’s also because my hometown is really slow to embrace the fact that alcohol is just not a part of some of our lives. Perhaps with this post I can save someone from being told to “find the water fountain in the hallway” at social events, and from standing around with a less-than-celebratory soda water with lime. Lame.
Here are a few hits I’ve found around Orlando:
Deeply Coffee - I’m a BIG fan of barista Brett Ware. Newly released Spring Crushers (pictured above) are perfection. See how simple it is to make something beautiful and zero proof?
Sette - Newly opened and packed nightly, this Ivanhoe Village sister to Se7en Bites has a long list of house-made sodas that are lovely, refreshing, and celebratory. Try the pistachio flavor or blood orange for a pick-me-up that won’t let you down. (Fancy Luxardo cherry included!)
Umi Winter Park - Surprising and delightful are the bartenders at Umi. Muddled berries and mint mixed with flavored soda waters and fresh juices that are on point. Celebration turned up to 10!
The Nook - All local Florida drinks available, including local kombucha and Framework coffee. Both excellent for the cozy vibe of this place.
The Courtesy - Definitely inventive and tasty. Be sure to use descriptive words like “bright” and “floral” or “spicy” for what you want.
Stardust Video & Coffee - This local watering hole is the scene of Nerd Nite, book launches, birthday parties, and studying galore. Grab an Italian soda with Rose Monin syrup or a French soda with the same and cream. It’s pink and festive and you’ll start a new new trend.
Have suggestions of your favorite places for zero-proof? Add ‘em in the comments below!
Stock your event with alt-bevs for those that are sober-curious:
Juices (mixed with tonic or soda and a garnish and it becomes a pretty good sub.)
Teas (herbal, green, Publix)
Lemonade - you can use Butterfly Pea extract to make it blue and edible glitter to make it unbelievable.
Cold brew coffee (Lineage)
Curious Elixirs pre-mixed zero proof craft cocktails, shipped right to your door. NUMBER 3!!
Smiling Goat Goods Shrubs (I’m a fan of the Flamingo Pride and Bee’s Knees.)
Tonic water, soda water, lime, lemon, grapefruit, strawberries, fancy cherries, and garnishes galore.
Seedlip distilled non-alcoholic spirits. WHAT?! It’s a great time to be alive.
You can also have that booze-free Chardonnay taste without the shame.
Coca-Cola is getting in on the game with Bar None. Currently only in Atlanta and by mail.
So, are your wondering how you can switch up your wellness game, or maybe sober-curious?
Here are a few reads to get your started:
Non Alcoholic Cocktail Quest (READ THIS FIRST)
Tell Better Stories (blog)
Are women using wine to cope with the patriarchy? (podcast)
Why the Zero-proof Cocktail Will Be Your Go-to This Year
Now, There Is Zero Proof That Alcohol Is What Makes A Great Cocktail
Hip Sobriety (workshop like none other)
How Many Cigarettes Is a Glass of Wine? (science)
Sales of nonalcoholic booze are on the rise (business)
Think you drink a lot? This chart will tell you. (whoa)
Big Alcohol Is Bracing for a More Sober Future (reality check)
Against the grain: Please don’t call it a mocktail (Orlando Weekly)
What Does Sober Curious Mean? Here's Why You're Seeing That Term So Much Lately
Mindful Drinking and the Rise of the Sober Curious
High Sobriety (help)
Making the Best Zero-Proof Drinks (lady knows her stuff)
6 Booze-free Cocktail Recipes That Impress
The Rise of Zero-Proof in Atlanta
The Rise of Elective Sobriety
“I used to think I lost my social anxiety after I had the first drink. Now I realize, the first 15 minutes of anything is just awkward. Once I adjust to the environment and start chatting with someone, I relax. And it’s amazing to see that happen across a whole room of people who aren’t drinking. We’ve been giving alcohol a power it doesn’t really have.” -Joy Manning
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