Remember the days when the only non-alcoholic option you could get in a pub or bar would be water, Coke or maybe an orange juice? Fortunately, those days are long behind us. Over the last few years, there has been an explosion in the number of exciting alcohol alternatives, whether it’s well-crafted soft drinks, non-alcoholic spirits, or even low and no cocktails.
In the low and no pre-mixed cocktail space, there’s been considerable progress as well. You no longer have to drink an entire week’s worth of sugar in one hit, with plenty of fantastic options for fans of bitter, savoury or sour drinks.
Brunch fans will rejoice at Savyll Beverage Company’s alcohol-free Bellini cocktail, which earned a Gold medal and an impressive 96 points at the IWSC’s 2022 low and no tastings. Described as, ‘An excellent low ABV take on the traditional Bellini,’ it’s not overly sweet and has plenty of depth.
If you’re not into your brunch Bellinis, perhaps you’re more of a Bloody Mary lover. Scoring just as highly, The Pickle House Spiced Tomato Mix with Pickle Juice packs all the flavour and savoury deliciousness of a Bloody Mary, with tomato, horseradish, celery, spice and fresh cracked black pepper, with that needed kick of tabasco. The judges praised its ‘great texture and warmth on the palate, with an overall well-balanced profile.’
For those with a love of bitter flavours, there’s the Suze Tonic. The judges described it as having, ‘Bright citrus notes [which] complement a beautiful structure that has a powerful bitter character.’ It scored 95 points and a Gold medal.
At the other end of the spectrum, fans of the modern classic Pornstar Martini cocktail are well served with De Kuyper’s 0% version. It has all the classic vanilla and passionfruit characteristics, with a ‘creamy texture and a smooth finish.’ It scored 91 points and a Silver medal in the tasting.
All low and no alcohol drinks were assessed at a dedicated tasting, with judges including Laura Willoughby, founder of the mindful drinking community Club Soda, and Camille Vidal, drinks expert turned yoga and meditation teacher and founder of La Maison Wellness. Read on to discover the best alcohol-free pre-mixed cocktails from the IWSC 2022.
How do we judge these drinks?
We run a tightly structured, rigorous low and no alcohol tasting process. That means that each drink sample is pre-poured into numbered glasses and assessed blindly by the judges. Most importantly, our IWSC low and no judges are experts in their field, who work across all sectors of the alcohol-free drinks industry. For evidence, see our full list of judges.
How do we score these drinks?
Only the best low and no alcohol drinks sampled receive a Gold or Silver award. For example, to win Gold, spirits have to score between 95 and 100 points. Meanwhile, Silver winners range from 90 to 94 points. Click here to read more on our scoring system.
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