Mindful drinking

Updated: Jan 9

Many will have enjoyed a bit of excess over the Christmas and New Year breaks and this is likely to include an excess of alcohol. We tend to associate alcohol with de-stressing and a marker for a bit of "me time" but in actual fact, consumed over time, alcohol causes stress.


'Alcohol is a chemical depressant' and 'disrupts the delicate balance of chemicals and processes in your brain, affecting your thoughts, feelings and actions– and sometimes your long-term mental health.'(drinkaware.co.uk)


For parents, carers and educators de-stressing is such an important part of our lives. Taking care of others is all consuming and we require ways to draw a line under our work life and enter our personal time.

Thanks to Club Soda, since giving up alcohol in 2019, I have been able to explore a variety of alcohol free drinks that feel more grown up than a diet coke or orange juice and pubs and bars are now more likely to stock a wider variety of options. It is having this variety that enables us to join in with the many different occasions we associate with alcohol.


Dry January is becoming more popular but whether you are stopping for a month, cutting down long term or giving up altogether Club Soda has lots of ways to support you. Their latest endeavour is London’s first alcohol-free off-licence. I popped in to try a few different drinks (it’s always nice to try before you invest!) and now feel I have a range of alcohol free drinks I can enjoy for most occasions...



FIZZ

Alt, Vinada and REAL Kombucha. All perfect if you are attending a wedding or celebrating something special at home. Get out the flutes and try these three tasty alternatives to Prosecco and Champagne.


COCKTAILS

Gimber. I love this in a Virgin Margarita (my cocktail of choice back in the day). The heat from the Gimber really makes this a grown up drink and one that is truly special. Add the salt on the rim of the glass and I am not kidding, this is the closest to being tipsy I have been since giving up. High on life!

Lyres. This company provides many ingredients for alcohol free cocktails and there are lots of recipes on their website. We tried the Amaretti Sour recipe this New Years and it was yummy!


BEER

For beer drinkers the alcohol free market is booming with amazing options. Lucky Saint is perfect for an after work drink or post kids' bedtime. Refreshing, tasty and hearing that bottle open helps to mark the start of down time.


WINE

Ariel. If you are a wine drinker then there are lots out there but I have to admit I am yet to find an alcohol free white wine that fills the gap in my previously wine loving life. However when it comes to reds Ariel Cabernet Sauvignon drank at the right temperature made for a perfect companion this Christmas.


If you want to know more about mindful drinking you can check out our podcast episode with Dru Jaeger (co-founder of Club Soda) where they share lots of tips on how to make that change. We also recommend reading How to Be a Mindful Drinker.


Dru and Laura, the co-founders of Club Soda have a really supportive and non-judgemental approach to mindful drinking, ensuring we are all more likely to have a long term, healthy relationship with alcohol.


Please do check out London’s first alcohol-free off-licence. It really is an experience to be had! You can find it at 59 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 7LJ until 30 January 2022.