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Not Drinking? Here Are Our 6 Favourite No Alcohol Drinks for 2022!

Our Favourite Non Alcoholic Drinks for January 2022

With more and more people switching to no or low alcohol, we are proud to be part of the movement, helping make the switch to no or low alcohol drinking not only not a big thing, but an enjoyable, exciting and delicious experience. At Nirvana Brewery, we do this by creating truly delicious non alcoholic beers that make you feel like you are not missing out.

But, it's not just us making some great drinks. There has never been so many no or low alcohol breweries, distilleries and wineries trying to make great tasting drinks.

Being at the forefront of the no/low alcohol movement in the United Kingdom, we have come across a lot of amazing alcohol free drinks in the past few years, giving customers who are making a healthier choice with their drinking more exciting, healthy and delicious options.

We decided to tip the proverbial hat to some of our favourite NoLo drinks in the sector. In this list we tried to add a range of different styles and combinations of flavours and ingredients to create a list of drinks you can try again and again. Here are a few of our favourites, in no particular order.

Pentire

Hailing from the Cornish coast, this plant based spirit contains the essence of pink grapefruit, sea rosemary, woodruff and sea buckthorn (a really bitter berry that has a tropical passion fruit and lemon flavour), as well as wild seaweed. All the ingredients for creating the perfect no alcohol aperitif!

What we love about Pentire, is how clean and crisp the liquid is. The flavour profile reminds us of a really classy gin, such as Gin Mare.

The spirit isn't based on a sugar syrup, just pure essence of distilled plants and botanicals, ensuring a clean refreshing drink that isn’t cloying and keeps you wanting more. It is extremely light and delicate and the perfect replacement for gin or vodka with a tonic such as Fevertree or our friends at Double Dutch, garnished with some fresh sliced citrus.

With a deep love of the environment and the same emphasis on sustainability that we value at Nirvana Brewery, when we need something to elevate our tonic or a pick me up drink after a long hard day, we reach for Pentire.

Pentire seems to be all over the web, so if you are into your low alcohol options, you have probably seen their super classy videos target you on social media. If not, check out more about them here : https://pentiredrinks.com/

REAL Kombucha ​​

Kombucha is a fizzy, non-alcoholic drink made from sweetened fermented tea and a culture which aids the fermentation process, similar to the mother in a natural vinegar, known as a scoby, (short for short for a ‘symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeasts’, if you want to get technical). The bacteria and yeasts in the scoby ferment the sugar into alcohol and acetic acid or vinegar. The acetic acid is what gives the drink its distinctive sour flavour.

If you really want to you can make your own kombucha at home from distilled water, sugar, tea leaves and a scoby which you can purchase online. You soak the tea and sugar in boiled water and leave it to cool completely before adding the scoby. You then cover the liquid and allow it to ferment for a week. This is then poured into an airtight container, more sugar is added to aid a second fermentation, much like it is in sparkling wines such as Champagne – the longer the blend is left, the fizzier it will become. You can then add other fruits, spices or flavourings to the mixture to flavour the end drink.

If that all sounds like a bit of a faf, leave it to the professionals and reach for a bottle of REAL Kombucha. 

We first tried this kombucha back in 2018, just as the kombucha revolution was really kicking off in the UK, much like the trend of hard seltzers is now. To be honest, we had never tried anything like it. REAL Kombucha has a completely different flavour from what you might think would develop from tea, sugar and water, or indeed a drink based in vinegar!

Having tried other Kombuchas before and REAL Kombucha, it was obvious that there is skill involved in the process, much like brewing or winemaking. If you are into cooking at home and food and wine matching, then REAL kombucha is a great choice to add another dimension to your next dinner party.

Founder David Begg, came up with the idea of making his kombucha to replace wine pairing at the dinner table. This is where REAL Kombucha really comes into its own as the liquid has a similarity to natural wine in terms of its acidity and flavour profile, and with the acidity and tannins you get from the tea, it really holds up well on the dinner table.

If you are looking to try it, I would thoroughly recommend the Dry Dragon and the Royal Flush. The Dry Dragon has really grassy and vegetal notes like a good white wine, making it the perfect pairing for foods like cheeses, smoked salmon or seared fish at home. The Royal Flush is our absolute favourite, it’s made from first flush darjeeling tea. The buds that show first from the harvest.

The flavour is pure, clean and crisp. According to the REAL Kombucha website you can pair The Royal Flush with anything that you might use a sparkling or full bodied white wine such as a chardonnay with, so foods such as white fish, white meat, and cream sauces work really well.

The Royal Flush is also perfect with charcuterie as the acidity cuts through the fat. You can buy Real Kombucha in all sorts of places such as Tesco and Amazon or head over to their site here https://realkombucha.co.uk/

Served Seltzer 

Cutting down your alcohol, but not cutting it out completely? Served Seltzer Is a really good option. Whichever way you turn these days, whether it's on the tube or on billboards, there seems to be an abundance of Hard Seltzers being advertised.

If you haven't come across them before, Hard Seltzers are usually vodka or another neutral spirit, mixed with sparkling water or wine, to create a light mixed drink. Natural fruit juice or extract is used to sweeten and flavour the liquid, whilst avoiding refined sugar as much as possible, to protect the delicate flavour and texture of the drink.

The problem we find with some seltzers comes from the fruit extract. Some of the examples we have tried have nearly tasted artificial and bordering on perfumy, which end up being overwhelming and not at all pleasant. We came across Served last year and were instantly impressed with the flavour profile and how clean the palette was. This comes from using a house made gluten free spirit which is distilled 4 times from maximum purity.

The spirit is made from wonky beetroot that may not otherwise be used, and the fruit used to flavor and sweeten the seltzer is also wonky, meaning that it probably wouldn't make it onto the supermarket shelves, so Served get extra points for sustainability too. As a refreshing, ready to drink, it is great to have a few cans of Served in your fridge, sitting next to a mixed case of Nirvana beer of course, as your preferred non alcoholic option. Going to stock up on some Served? Head over to their site here https://www.serveddrinks.co.uk/

Everleaf

What do you get when you mix a conservation biologist who has experience as a bar owner? One of the best non-alcoholic spirits ranges on the market. The founder Paul Mathew, spent most of his working life as a conservation biologist, spending years observing the natural world, learning how best to interact with it. A few years later, Paul opened his bar and got to know the wants and needs of his customers, learning what makes them tick, the flavours that matter, and suggesting the perfect drink for their mood. This led to the creation of Everleaf and a completely new offering for the non alcoholic sector. Much like Pentire, this liquid is perfect for replacing the gin in your gin and tonic, but what we do love about Everleaf is the variety in the range. Everleaf currently have 3 different liquids featuring different botanicals from that specific geographical area: Mountain contains ingredients like strawberry and cherry blossom extract creating a floral, bittersweet cocktail, perfect for people trying to satisfy their pink gin craving. Marine contains over 16 different botanicals including citrus such as lemon and bergamot, as well as classic gin botanicals such as juniper berry. We really like the addition of olive leaf, which gives way to a delicious refreshing saline finish. Lastly there is Forest. This spirit has layers of flavours such as vanilla, orange peel and saffron. This Forest spirit creates the perfect liquid to use as a base for an alcohol free Old Fashioned or Manhattan. Definitely one of our favourites. Want to try Everleaf range? https://www.everleafdrinks.com/

Lyre

Being big fans of an Aperol Spritz or a Cosmopolitan, (yes, we sometimes like a cocktail too!) we were delighted when we came across Lyres' range of non alcoholic spirits. Made with extracts, distillates and essences sourced from around the world, Lyre spirits and ready to drink cocktails are really handy to have stocked up in the drinks cupboard. What we love most about Lyre is the variety, not only of flavour profiles, but of the range. They have created a selection of drinks that allow you to create a whole non-alcoholic liquor cabinet, so you are really empowered and excited to recreate all your favourite classic cocktails without the ABV in the comfort of your own home, or even get adventurous and try new ones. As with a lot of the other non-alcoholic spirits, Lyre have their own philosophy, which puts the want of the customer at the forefront giving them the products they need for that full cocktail experience at home and have their own excitement around the cocktails and serves they can create. Recently, Lyre opened up their range to include ready to drink cans, making it even easier to pop a few canned cocktails in a bag if you are going to a friend's house and want to make sure you are not tempted by their mixology skills! From a spirits point of view, we especially love the White Cane Spirit. In the ready to drink format, the Amalfi Spritz is amazing, as well as the rum and coke alternative with the White Cane Spirit . Want to try some of Lyres' range, head over to their site here. https://lyres.co.uk

Nirvana Beer

What can we say, we love what we do here at Nirvana and are especially proud of our beers and the quality in every bottle. Be it our Bavarian Helles, our flagship lager which is crisp, clean and beautifully balanced and according to our customers, stands head and shoulders above the rest of the non-alcoholic beers on the market, or our dark and rich stout, perfect as the evenings draw in or as an ingredient in our rich and dark braised beef, or our chocolate porter cake (Blog links) . It all started when our founder, Becky’s dad, decided to stop drinking alcohol. At the time, the range of alcohol-free beers on the market was not great and the flavour of these beers left a lot to be desired. We believed that people who choose not to drink shouldn’t be excluded socially, and should have an amazing drinking experience as well. Becky just wanted to see her dad’s face light up again with a decent bottle of alcohol-free beer and now, as a brewery, we want to do it for all the no and low alcohol fans around the world. If you want to be part of our journey or maybe send a gift for the beer lover in your life, head over to our shop and order your case of Nirvana Beer today. Shop Here.

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