“Always do sober what you said you’d do when you were drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut!”
– Ernest Hemingway
For many of us, socializing often revolves around drinking – from half-price drinks at happy hours, to bottomless mimosa brunches, to wine-filled dinners, alcohol seems to permeate all of our social outings. It even slips into activities that aren’t overtly alcohol-based – painting classes, bowling, and even movie theaters. Does this abundance of available alcohol mean we need to hide out and be hermits during January? Not at all!
Why do we go to bars? For the drinks? Maybe. For the food? Doubtful. Most likely, it’s for the comradery – whether you go in with friends, or make them on the fly, for many, the “bar scene” is a social outing unto itself. But what if you take away the alcohol? That’s the premise of “sober” bars that offer either an exclusively alcohol-free environment, or one that caters to both drinkers and non-drinkers alike.
Check these out*:
- Sansbar, locations nationally
- Listen Bar, NYC
- The Other Side, Crystal Lake, IL
- Pop’s Blue Moon, St. Louise, MO
- Sober bars Portland, OR
Look for sober bars in your area and let us know what you find! (Hint: Search Instagram for #soberbar #sobercurious #moderation to get started.)
The Rise of the Mocktail Menu
With the resurgence of crafted cocktails, bartenders and mixologists are honing their skills to deliver the tastiest blends of spirits, herbs, mixers and unusual ingredients to tempt their patrons. These same professionals want to apply their creative skills to mixing up delicious drinks for their non-drinking clientele as well. Mocktail menus that rival the best cocktail menus are increasingly available. No mocktail menu? No problem. Learn to peruse the cocktails and ask for your own curated drink based on available ingredients, such as:
- Mint + Ginger + Lemonade
- Ginger beer + Lime
- Ice tea + peach juice
BYOB (Alcohol-free that is)
Paint and sip. Crafts and cocktails. Bowling and beers. Many activity-based social outings also assume participants will be drinking. Most of these entice us with the BYOB model, so take advantage and bring your own non-alcoholic beverage of choice. While you may not be able to whip up a mocktail worthy of a Brooklyn hipster bar, there are options beyond water that will get you excited to show up.*
Scour your supermarket aisles, explore your area’s Indian, Mexican, and Asian markets for exotic juices that you can combine with seltzer or tonic for a drink that is truly unique.
Just Say “Yes!”
Remember, during Dry January, you’re not drinking alcohol but you are drinking something! Focus on what you can have, what you can create new, rather than what you are giving up. Flip the mental model from “can’t” to “can” to get excited about the new opportunities available to you! Who knows, your local bar just might name drink after you – alcohol free of course!
*Moderation Management is not affiliated with these products, bars or organizations and provides references for informational purposes only.
Post Submitted by: Heather