After the whirlwind of winter holidays and the food and drink that come with them, plenty of people resolve to cut back on rich foods and alcohol to get back on track with their regular routine.

Some people participate in Dry July while raising funds to support services for cancer patients, while others take short sabbaticals from consumption throughout the year for health or other reasons. This can be problematic for restaurant, bar, and club owners reliant on alcohol sales to bring in customers and maintain profitability.

The good news is that you can offer inclusive, non-alcoholic alternatives that encourage non-drinkers to frequent your establishment. By making it easy for the dry crowd to socialize, you give them a reason to get out and spend for the experience.

Of course, you should approach it with intention. Adding club soda with lime or a Shirley Temple to your bar menu isn’t going to cut it. You have to follow the latest trends in the mocktail market and deliver innovative, spirit-inspired blends. Here are a few current flavors and ingredients sure to excite a sober-curious audience.

 

Amaro Alternatives

This Italian digestif has steadily gained popularity in the States over the last several years, alongside the ever-growing interest in mixology. It’s no surprise, considering how flexible the beverage is.

Both bitter and sweet, this libation typically features sweet syrup and grape brandy infused with a blend of herbs, florals, citrus, and spices that could include almost anything. It’s up to each mixologist to create their own Frankendrink.

This makes the Amaro a perfect choice for mocktail creation, with a water and sugar infusion standing in for the alcohol. Simmered with a laundry list of ingredients, ranging from bitters and orange peels to allspice and peppercorns to cardamom and elderberry and more, the result is a flavorful concoction as unique as the person brewing it.

When shaken with lime juice, poured over ice, and topped with bubbly ginger ale, the result is a seductively complex, alcohol-free stand-in for the brandy-based drink. It’s sure to attract non-drinkers seeking spirit-free alternatives.

 

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Euphorics

Are there non-alcoholic beverages that can give you a buzz with no negative side effects? While they don’t rival alcohol, per se, there’s a burgeoning market for euphorics, which use natural ingredients to produce targeted effects.

Model Bella Hadid’s Kin Euphorics, launched in 2022, is leading the way with canned and bottled beverages. These concoctions feature stress-busting adaptogens, brain-boosting nootropics, and botanicals that elevate flavor and create a balanced experience.

Laid-back Lightwave features ingredients like Reishi mushroom and L-tryptophan to mellow the mind and offers a flavor profile with notes like lavender, vanilla, passionflower, and sea salt. 

Kin Spritz energizes and elevates mood with Rhodiola rosea and 5-HTP, not to mention an invigorating blend of ginger, bitters, citrus, and hibiscus. These beverages are easy to mix or drink as is, and they promise to create a “mood” without any assistance from alcohol.

 

Related: Quenching the Thirst for Flavor: Exploring the Latest Flavored Water Trends

 

Tropical Vibes

Espresso martinis dominated 2023, but Dry January is kicking off with a widespread interest in island-style beverages that take taste buds on a tropical vacation. Think pineapple, passionfruit, guava, and the like.

According to the 2024 Bacardi Cocktail Trends report, current consumers of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are seeking gustatory adventure. Margaritas, daiquiris, piña coladas, and passion fruit martinis are leading the pack.

 

Don’t Neglect the NoLo Crowd

The NoLo (no and low alcohol) market is projected to grow by an incredible 67% (to $359 million annually) by 2026, according to Mintel research. Jumping on the bandwagon now provides opportunities to become a leader in this beverage market. 

If you’re new to the space, get creative with flavorful, complex mocktails, mood-boosting euphorics, and tropical trends that transport patrons to a virtual island paradise.

 

To learn more about our products and insights, get in touch with our team at Symrise today, Contact us here! 

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