It’s time to tell Shirley Temple you’re ready to see other people. There’s a rapidly expanding world out there for non-drinkers, largely thanks to a rising global interest in wellness. New takes on alcohol-free spirits and aperitifs are inundating the market, along with a wide array of sparkling water, kombucha, cold-brew coffee, and matcha drinks. Spirit-free bars are opening in big cities, creating spaces for people to connect over delicious drinks without the pressure of alcohol. Traditionally, we’ve called these zero-proof beverages “mocktails,” although the somewhat childish term doesn’t quite fit the complex and surprising non-alcoholic cocktails that are beginning to change the way we drink. Who cares whether you’re abstaining from alcohol full-time, looking to cut back, trying your hand at Dry January, or merely feeling curious about spirit-free drinks—there’s no need to settle for club soda and lime anymore.
(top right) This low-effort, Paloma-inspired mocktail can be made from pantry staples. Perfect for tacos on a weeknight.
1.5 oz fresh grapefruit juice
.5 oz agave syrup
.5 oz lime juice
grapefruit-flavored sparkling water
1. Combine grapefruit juice, lime juice, agave syrup, and a pinch of salt in a cocktail shaker with ice.
2. Shake vigorously.
3. Pour over ice in a salt-rimmed highball glass.
4. Top with sparkling water and garnish with a lime wheel.
(middle) A refreshing tea-based sipper that offers a nice change from tart citrus flavor.
6 oz. black tea, chilled
2 oz. milk (whole or nut milk)
1 oz. rosemary simple syrup
rosemary sprig, for garnish
1. Stir ingredients together and pour over ice in a tall glass.
2. Garnish with rosemary
HEDGE YOUR BETS
(top left) A sophisticated shaken cocktail built from a base of Seedlip Spice 94, the pioneering distilled non-alcoholic spirit.
1.75 oz. Seedlip Spice 94
1 oz fresh grapefruit juice
.5 oz. lemon juice
2 bar spoons of seasonal preserves
1. Shake all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a coupe glass.
Photography by Jivan Davé