Non-Alcoholic Cocktails ~ Sober shouldn`t mean Somber!
The rapid rise in cocktail mixology over the last decade has created a large platform for the appearance of amazingly creative mixed drinks across bars, restaurants, pubs and clubs. However, non-alcoholic cocktails, or mocktails, as they are also known, seem to have been left behind to some degree. In my opinion, it has always seemed a little unfair that the majority of these unique cocktail creations have been strictly off-limits to people who abstain from alcohol. Whether for health reasons or lifestyle choice, abstinence from alcohol has become increasingly common in recent years and hence it seems somewhat out-of-step that this growing demographic often has their options limited to soft drinks, juice, water, tea or coffee. Undoubtedly, there are non-alcoholic cocktails available in many bars, however, they are often lacking any real sense of creativity or flair or passion and many non-drinkers find the typical mocktails boring and sometimes even condescending!
To create greater interest in non-alcoholic cocktails, bartenders must first acknowledge that there is a strong and growing demand for this type of drink. Alcohol abstainers aside, good quality non-alcoholic cocktails will also appeal to pregnant women, people on temporary medication, those on a training regime and to people who drink but tend to stay clear of alcohol during working hours. One good way to spike interest in such drinks may be to use unexpected ingredients, such as agave nectar, kumquats and other exotic fruit. Another method is to play with colours, flavour combinations, textures, temperatures and unusual twists. Although most trained mixologists will be happy to create a “virgin” version of a cocktail, for example they often use orange blossom water in place of gin, I feel the real strength in this category will lie in the enthusiasm to make and develop non-alcoholic cocktails from scratch.
We have a section on our website for Non-Alcoholic Cocktails and we took a few hours at the weekend to pick out our Top 5, so here they are (images will be in place shortly)
The Orange Julius is an amazingly tasty frozen mixed drink which pairs orange and vanilla. Quite a retro flavour.
1 cup of Orange Juice, 50 ml Milk, 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract, 2 tablespoons Sugar, 1 scoop Vanilla Ice Cream
Ginger and cranberry strike the right balance in this refreshing cooler.
50 ml Fresh Lemonade, 25 ml White Cranberry Juice, 25 ml Ginger Beer
Another “old-school” inspired creation, with vanilla, cherry and cola creating a taste sensation.
200 ml Cola, 1/4 teaspoon Vanilla Extract, 1/2 teaspoon Cherry Juice, Lemon Wedge
A creative and unusual creation , featuring the delicate agave nectar and floral lavender soda.
25 ml Cranberry Juice, 75 ml Grape Juice, 1 teaspoon Agave Nectar, Lavendar Soda
Decadence in a glass with this mixture of chocolate, coffee and cinnamon flavours with a nice creamy texture.
100 ml Coffee, 50 ml Cream, 5 ml Chocolate Syrup, 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon