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If you’re not drinking alcohol for a while or just for an evening, you might be hesitant to go to a party or join your friends at a bar. You know you can practice responsible drinking and have fun without alcohol, but you don’t want to spend the evening sipping on plain seltzer water or a sugary Shirley Temple.

Thankfully, with a bit of creativity, you can create impressive non-alcoholic drinks. You can also find more bars these days making creative cocktails without booze, or you could ask a bartender to whip up your favorite unique concoction. Having some great non-alcoholic drink recipes is also helpful when hosting your own parties.  You can offer designated drivers a delectable drink to help them stick to their commitment and avoid the consequences of drinking and driving.

Non-Alcoholic Cocktail Basics

If you’re stocking a bar or experimenting with new recipe ideas, here are some ingredients to keep on hand.

  • Seltzer or club soda
  • Ginger ale and other soft drinks
  • High-quality fruit juices
  • Limes and lemons
  • Simple syrup (plain or infused)
  • Fresh herbs
  • Apple cider vinegar

When you’re drinking alcohol, the alcohol often adds dryness to traditional cocktails, which is why some non-alcoholic drinks can seem overly sweet. When making a booze-free beverage, make sure to add something to balance the sweet ingredients, like citrus juice or a splash of apple cider vinegar.

For non-alcoholic drinks, it’s crucial that they feel festive (bubbly drinks, bright colors, and tasteful garnishes help with that), and offer a sophisticated blend of flavors to keep you interested.

Non-Alcoholic Drink Recipes

Here are some drink ideas to get you started. These are all easy to whip up at home, and any good bartender should be able to make something similar for you when you’re out at a bar.

Lemonade-Mint Spritzer: This bright, bubbly drink makes an excellent mocktail for a summer barbecue. Make the mint syrup ahead of time, and you can quickly whip up a batch of spritzers during your party.

Cucumber, Mint, and Basil Soda: This is another refreshing drink for summer gatherings. It’s a sophisticated, not-too-sweet mocktail.

Maple-Ginger Cider Switchel: This unique drink uses apple cider vinegar to add tang and balance out the sweet maple syrup and spicy ginger. You can use plain water or make it pop with soda water. It could even make an intriguing warm drink for winter.

Mocktail Mule: Some classic cocktails lend themselves very well to removing the booze, and this is one of them. With lime juice, honey, and a non-alcoholic good ginger beer, your palate won’t miss the alcohol.

Rise in Non-alcoholic Drinking

Whether for health reasons, or to avoid drinking and driving, some people are interested in non-alcoholic drinks, and bars and restaurants are responding with creative concoctions that appeal to everyone. In trendy Greenpoint, Brooklyn, an entire non-alcoholic bar has opened to cater to a young crowd. Bartenders across the country are jumping on the trend, crafting non-alcoholic drinks with the same care they put into classic cocktails. With a little research, you can steer your friends to a bar where drinkers and non-drinkers can all enjoy quality beverages.

Remember, avoiding drinking when you need to drive, and making sure your guests do the same, is a serious responsibility. You can make being a designated driver easier by offering exciting non-alcoholic drink options. At a bar, you can encourage your bartender to get creative and enjoy a great night out without alcohol.

At Draeger, we are committed to making the roads safer by promoting responsible drinking, meaning drivers should never get behind the wheel if they have consumed alcohol. For more information on responsible drinking and our ignition interlock devices, contact us.

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