Non-Alcoholic Drinks You'll Want to Sip All Sober October
Stock up on wine, beer and spirits alternatives that are just as satisfying as their boozy counterparts.
On the surface, going alcohol-free for a month might sound like a basic social media challenge. But there's actually much more to Sober October (and Dry January) than you probably know.
What Is Sober October?
Sober October began in 2014 as a fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support, an organization that provides physical, financial and emotional support for people living with cancer in the U.K. And Dry January kicked off in 2013 by Alcohol Change UK to encourage people to evaluate their relationship with alcohol.
It didn’t take long for these campaigns to make their way across the pond. According to several surveys, one in seven Americans planned to take part in Dry January in 2021. While statistics aren’t as readily available for Sober October participants, we know it is becoming more and more popular every year — just take a look at your social media feed!
What Are the Rules of Sober October?
Give up alcohol for a month. That is basically all you have to do to participate. Ask your friends to join you, if you need a little extra motivation. If you want to take it a step further, you can raise money for the Macmillan charity. While it's not a requirement, there is a good chance the challenge will also inspire you to take a deeper look at your relationship with alcohol.
What Should You Drink for Sober October?
We can’t lie: This was the first question that came to mind, and "water" was not the answer we wanted to hear. If you don't want to go to a party and be stuck drinking a seltzer water, we feel you. Luckily there are plenty of non-alcoholic and alcohol-free drinks (no, the terms are not synonymous!) on the market today. So, no matter whether you enjoy a good beer, a nice glass of wine or a fancy cocktail, now you totally can all Sober October, minus the booze.
In business since 2017, Wellbeing’s purpose is brewing, obviously, but the brand’s mission is to create a more mindful style of living that combines "the social fun of enjoying a traditional beer with the intentionality of WellBeing." This brew nails it for Sober October, when you might be taking stock of your alcohol consumption but also wanting to enjoy a grown-up night by the fire pit with friends. This coffee-infused brew features hints of cinnamon for the perfect fall sip.
If you’re anything like us, it will be hard for you to pick a favorite here, so you might want to just opt for The Collection and try all three. These elixirs, as Three Spirit calls them, are vegan and alcohol-free drinks that are full of plants, adaptogens and nootropics. Livener is described as "the perfect party pick-me-up," Social Elixir is the "ultimate ... mood elevator" and Nightcap is a soothing way to "unwind at the end of the day," according to Three Spirit's website.
Blake Lively’s new non-alcoholic mixers are made with "only clean ingredients," including real juice and no artificial sweeteners or colors. While you certainly can mix them with alcohol, they’re delightfully fizzy and refreshing on their own. The mixers come in five flavors — Tonic Water, Sparkling Grapefruit, Meyer Lemon Club Soda, Sparkling Lemon Lime and Ginger Beer — but we’re partial to the Sparkling Grapefruit flavor, made with 24% real pink grapefruit juice for a tangy yet lightly sweet sip.
Say hello to your new favorite brunch guest! Woman-owned FAUXMO was launched in 2018 to fill the need for sophisticated, non-alcoholic drinks — and this alcohol-free mimosa does just that. Made with a blend of Grenache and Chardonnay grapes, it’s tart yet sweet and deliciously bubbly.
Our love for Athletic Brewing runs deep; honestly, we have enjoyed every craft NA we have tried from this company. Our only complaint? Everyone else loves their beers too! Limited-releases, like their Oktoberfest, sell out quickly. If you aren’t lucky enough to get your hands on their autumnal brew, opt for this variety pack. You’ll get 24 stellar sips — almost a beer a day for the entire month.
Let’s get one thing straight: Non-alcoholic wine is not just like juice. These Proxies feature "all the complexity of great wine, and none of the alcohol," according to Acid League’s website. They make three fresh bottles every month, which makes joining the club sound quite appealing. Spend the evening sipping from a glass filled with fruity notes, acidity, spice and body, and never have to worry about how your head will feel in the morning? Count us in.
A zero-proof tequila might sound too good to be true, but it’s not. This non-alcoholic spirit features lime and guava flavors and a smoky finish, making it as good on the rocks as it is with your favorite margarita mix. You can even sip it with a lime-flavored seltzer for a skinny marg mocktail!
If you love the smell and taste of gin but need a booze-free option, this is your best bet. This spirit is less floral than other non-alcoholic gins on the market. We also love how it allows the flavor of mixers like tonic to come through and makes a more balanced mocktail.
There’s just something about an oatmeal stout that makes a chill in the air a whole lot more bearable. Lucky for those of us skipping the alcohol this month, Bravus Brewing has made a brew that tastes just like a smooth, alcoholic stout. It features hints of coffee and caramel and will go perfectly with a bonfire.