Wine Wednesday: The Case for NA

Cut out alcohol without sacrificing flavor or fashion! We dive deep into NA drinks and why they are nothing to be afraid of! I have one of those older siblings that (while only 17 months older than me) annoyingly always seems to know the next big trend years before I do. This is true in all facets of life. Clothing… music… food and cocktail trends…she even manages to cut her bangs precisely before I get the same hankering, only to find out via Facetime right after. One night in 2019 (when I was fresh to the beer buying business) we were on the phone and she said, “you should get Athletic.”

“What’s Athletic?”

“It’s non-alcoholic beer. It’s delicious. If you’re out on the town, it should be your last beer of the night.” Normally, I took her advice with a healthy dose of perceived ambivalence (even I already knew she was probably onto something, like usual) but I wasn’t yet convinced folks would actually pay for booze-free beer. As usual though, her hunch proved correct.

Ever since tracking down and selling Athletic Brewing’s non alcoholic beers at Bartlett’s with wild success three years ago, the trend for booze free drinks has skyrocketed. I continued to be skeptical about alcoholic free beers, wines and cocktails for sometime. After all, the products cost just as much as the booze-filled versions. Why not just drink seltzer in between beers? Or water in between martinis? Well, anyone who has spent the morning in bed with a hangover after a fun wedding or night out can attest that this is easier said than done. This is where the magic of great quality products, a bit of planning and a little thing called the placebo effect all come together in guilt-free harmony.

You see, since the days of when O’Douls was the only non-alcoholic beer on the shelf, the world of non-alcoholic products has broadened into an expansive world where all alcoholic libations seem to have a seriously solid booze-free counterpart. Do you love Aperol Spritzs at brunch but day-drinking leaves you feeling useless? Or are you sleepy and lethargic after a few beers at the beach? Are some days so rough that you fantasize about drinking a martini on the way to the beach after work with your dog? These are all great times to go NA. Maybe you’re pregnant, and aren’t ready for the barrage of pink and blue that’s coming down the inlaw pipeline. Or maybe you are mid pink and blue barrage and need a ‘strong drink’ (NA beers and drinks look, smell and taste just like the real thing, so go ahead, fool them and yourself!). However you fit non alcoholic drinks into your program, know that you are doing yourself a great service. Cutting down or abstaining from alcohol is widely accepted as a great thing to do for your health so go ahead and give these guys a try. We think they will surprise you!


-written by Leah Mojer, Beverage Manager

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