Sadly my hollow leg days are gone so I am far more mindful about my alcohol consumption. I’m not the only one, there has been a massive boom in the NoLo (No and Low Alcohol) market alongside the rise of the ‘Sober Curious’*. Even British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has recently given up alcohol until his wife gives birth at Christmas.
*Sober Curious is a term created by journalist and author Ruby Warrington
“[Being sober curious] means, literally, to choose to question, or get curious about, every impulse, invitation, and expectation to drink, versus mindlessly going along with the dominant drinking culture.”Ruby Warrington, author, Sober Curious
I have no intention of giving up alcohol entirely and it’s not a term that I personally use but if I’m all for prioritising my wellbeing and finding healthier options to choose from. I’m also picky as hell. Over the last year I’v been exploring what’s out there. Many of the NoLo drinks I’ve tried have felt rather Emperor’s New Clothes. For me, drinks that pitch themselves as alcohol alternatives, must deliver with complex flavours, and a grown up experience (sans tipsiness and hangover).
One of the reasons that alcohol is used in perfume is that it holds on to flavours so well, it also increases flavour intensity and thickens. Which is why alcohol-free drinks can taste and feel so insipid.
Never fear, I am here to find the best and will be sharing my finest NoLo finds. Today let’s have a sip of Sea Arch, the best alcohol-free gin alternative I’ve tried.
Sea Arch Coastal Juniper (non-alcoholic distilled spirit)
First impressions? What a beautiful blue bottle. With the wooden cap, recycled cardboard box, and solvent free paint, it is also an ecofriendly packaging dream.
On to what’s actually in the bottle.
Sea Arch Coast Juniper is inspired by the sea and made with botanicals from the Devon coast. Described as a non-alcoholic distilled spirit, which means it is made using traditional distillation processes, and then the alcohol is removed.
When I drank it neat, to be honest, my reaction was ‘meh’. When swigged by itself, Sea Arch tastes like a fragrantly flavoured water – which is nice but not what i want from a gin alternative. But add a good tonic or put in a cocktail and magic happens. It tastes fantastic.
It has a slightly spicy meets seaweed flavour. Botanicals used included sea kelp, samphire, coriander, cardamon and blood orange. I have served it without telling guests it was not actually gin and they were staggered when I revealed the truth.
Sea & T
Just launched are ready mixed ‘Sea & T’ available in original and rose flavours.
Brand new ready mixed cans, perfect for picnics.
In particular the Rose Sea & T is one of the best things I’ve drank all year. It has a crisp floral meets fruity flavour that is truly delightful. Perfect British summer in a can.
Sea Arch is the best alcohol-free gin alternative I’ve tasted. Think gin without the sin – it’s alcohol, sugar, artificial sweetener and calorie-free! Cheers to that.
For more information, visit seaarchdrinks.com
Are you sober curious or have you tried any NoLo drinks? Let me know in the comments.