It’s hard to believe, but the holidays are almost here. Somehow we skipped past spring, flew through summer, and here we are, debating if it’s time to decorate our Christmas trees (it’s not) and attempting to navigate the Halloween candy aisle with some restraint. And with the impending holiday season comes, of course, holiday parties. It’s good news for anyone who likes to indulge in comfort food and tasty cocktails, but even if alcoholic beverages aren’t your thing, you can still be satisfied sipping something festive and delicious this season.
Before we dive into some seriously good, must-try mocktails, you should know that if you’re not into consuming liquor, especially at parties or bars, you’re not alone. According to global market research firm Mintel, more than ever before people, especially young women, are drawn to booze-free bars and elevated mocktails. Bars are popping up around the country, and even restaurants that also serve liquor are offering specialized, craft cocktails that contain zero liquor, but are still fun to sip and still deliver on the flavor front. In fact, “alcohol-free mixed drinks grew 35 percent as a beverage type on the menus of bars and restaurants from 2016 to this year,” according to data from Mintel.
Perhaps it’s for health and wellness reasons, perhaps it’s to be safe and cautious and stay alert and in control in an era of #MeToo. Whatever the motivation, there has certainly been a shift in terms of less focus on booze and more focus on
According to Fred Beebe, a bartender at Sunday in Brooklyn, “Hospitality is making sure everybody has a good time. Alcohol, for me, is not the most important part of a cocktail anymore. The cool juices and syrups and tinctures and mixtures and all that stuff makes a lot of the fun.”
So let’s talk about the most delicious, interesting, balanced and easy to make mocktails you should be serving at your next holiday gathering. Forget the FOMO and forget the liquor and instead try these cool cocktails that will help holiday sobriety seem a lot more manageable.
9Cranberry Pomegranate “Bellinis”
Typically a bellini involves a peach nectar or puree, but these “bellinis” have a fresh twist that involves season fruit and zero booze. This tasty mocktail uses sparkling water instead of Prosecco (of course you could choose to substitute champagne or Prosecco should anyone be interested in an alcoholic drink), and simple syrup created from a mix of cranberry juice, pomegranate juice and sugar. Fresh lime juice adds a little tart flavor to balance the drink, and the result is a bubbly treat that looks as festive as it tastes.