Tips on non-alcoholic drinking from 5 St. Louis industry pros
Recent years have seen trends like Dry January and Sober October gain traction as more adults of drinking age choose to avail themselves of socially sanctioned opportunities to curtail their alcohol consumption. Whether the expansion of thoughtfully crafted non-alcoholic (NA) spirits is helping drive this trend, or the other way around, increasing numbers of bars and restaurants are offering well-curated NA wine, cocktail and beer lists.
Beverage director, STL Barkeep and The Vandy; brand advocate, BARE Zero Proof Spirits
“Lagunitas makes an incredible non-alcoholic IPA, [Golden Road Brewing’s] Mango Cart NA is solid, Heavenly Wheat from WellBeing Brewing is awesome. And for those hot days in STL, a Busch NA really still hits the spot.”
Beverage director, The Lucky Accomplice and Press STL
“I think the most fun and flavorful way to experiment with NA cocktails is through shrubs. There are endless combinations of fruits, vinegars, sugars, herbs and veggies to arrive at any flavor combo you are after. Heirloom [Bottling Co.] is a local company that makes great syrups and shrubs.”
Beverage industry consultant
“NA doesn’t even have to be not drinking for the evening. Sometimes it’s a great way to pace yourself. With all the NA beers on the market now, I’ll have one of those to offset a glass of whiskey. I love the [Hellraiser Dark] Amber from WelBeing, and there are a lot of great CBD seltzers on the market now too.”
Executive chef, Union Loafers Cafe and Bread Bakery
“I mainly dig on NA beers. But when I’m really feeling fancy, I absolutely love what Proxies by Acid League is doing. [They’re] not dealcoholized like most NA wines; these are super special, thoughtful, curated beverages meant to really elevate the drinking and pairing experience. I was always more of a pink and white [wine] drinker, and these fit the bill. If we’re talking weeknight sipping, Ariel Chardonnay or Fre Rosé are what’s in my glass.”
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