Sober curiosity is on the rise with the mocktail, non-alcohol beers, and microbrews the new money maker. We are coming out of Pandemic years where alcohol consumption hit an all-time high, and some folks are ready for a break. It’s like waking up after your freshman year of college and that extra 15 pounds except your grown so it’s less cute.
People are shifting their focus from a constant party. Now they are investing their time, energy, and money into their wellbeing, both mental and physical. It seems like a no-brainer to add a flavorful non-alcoholic drink, known as the mocktail, to the non-alcoholic brews in your bar lineup. They will certainly bring you a better profit than a club soda or water.
Mocktails may seem like a trend, but my guess is it is here to stay, from mindful drinking to straight-up sober. The creation of alcohol-free spirits, NA micro-brews, and amazing mixer options like Bitters are on the rise. Even celebrities have jumped on board as sober icons like Brad Pitt and Jamie Lee Curtis.
According to NielsenIQ the first two weeks of January 2022, no and low-alcohol sales totaled $106 million with non-alcohol sales at $13.6 million and low-alcohol products at $92.8 Million. The proof is in the numbers with 22% of consumers saying they were cutting back on alcohol.
Nielsen also revealed that non-alcohol products are seeing a 19% increase in sales, whereas total alcohol sales are down 6.7%. Within this new year, non-alcohol products are already showing a heightened share with 0.5% share of total alcohol sales, compared to 0.4% during the same time last year.
Keep in mind that thinking an “all or nothing” decision to non-alcoholic purchasing is not the way to think. 78% of consumers who purchase non-alcoholic beverages still buy beer, wine, and spirits with alcohol. Having both options for your customers will make them comfortable to come more often knowing what they want on their daily whim is available. Ultimately customers want choices. I mean they want it All. So let them decide on alcohol or not and know they will appreciate the choices. But know that they are willing to pay more for your mocktail than the complimentary water and lower-profit soda you may be only offering them now. It just makes financial sense.
Drinking is a large part of our social society. But many in our society are going through a journey and not drinking might be part of their journey. Having the drink that looks like everyone else, sans the alcohol, takes away that uncomfortable scarlet letter of judgment felt by being the sober one. That glass of water or soda at the bar is a public declaration “I am the sober one.” Which then follows with why aren’t you drinking? Let’s stop this judgment before it even happens with a small selection of signature mocktails at your establishment.
Mocktails seem like a lot of work. But you can simply take your favorite drink recipes and just omit the alcohol or sub in tonic, bitters, or sour mix. The first mocktail that comes to mind is the classic Shirley Temple. But today’s modern mocktails are beyond this tried and true classic. These drinks get crafty really fast! Below are some techniques to put the craft in your mocktail.
Shrub – An acidulated drinking liquid made from the sweet flavors of fruit, sugar, and vinegar. Any vinegar will do, from white wine to apple cider vinegar. Sugar and fruit are combined with vinegar, cover the mixture and let sit at room temperature for 2 days, stirring occasionally. Then strain the mixture and keep the syrup. More vinegar is added slowly to the syrup until you reach the desired flavor. Finish it up with club soda just before serving.
Muddling – Crushing ingredients like fruits, citrus, and or herbs into the bottom of glasses releases juices and flavors.
Layering – Sounds simple, but can be difficult to create the stacked effect of different colored liquids on top of each other. Liquids with the most sugar content are the heaviest. Follow this up with an upside-down spoon close to the last poured layer, without touching, as you slowly pour the next layer.
Check out some Mocktail Recipes I recently created. Remember to ask your Ginsberg’s Sales Consultant about ingredients for your signature mocktail drinks.