Dry January is here again, and many observers will kick off the new year seeking non-alcoholic alternatives to their favorite cocktails. The annual tradition of abstaining from alcohol for the first 31 days of the year is part of a growing sober-curious trend to embrace a more booze-free lifestyle.
A 2022 Gallup poll found that 35% of adults age 21 and older identify as "a total abstainer" when it comes to alcohol. That is a large swath of adults seeking beverage alternatives around the country, and many restaurants have begun to take notice.
The so-called mocktail movement has been gaining momentum in the hospitality industry, with more businesses offering non-booze drink options to their customers—no matter whether they don't drink alcohol at all or are just looking for a fun, tasty alternative.
The following restaurant chains have begun to implement more mocktails into their menus. Be sure to keep them in mind the next time you're heading out for dinner and want zero-proof options.
The casual dining chain TGI Fridays has been capitalizing on the growing mocktail movement as part of its recent brand reimagining. Part of this strategy involved rolling out a new beverage menu in November that included a pair of seasonal mocktails.
The Chilled Cocoa is described as a "cool spin on hot cocoa," made with Ghirardelli cocoa, torched whipped vanilla foam, and graham cracker. Meanwhile, the Nice Blood Orange Margarita is a riff on the classic sour cocktail made with alcohol-free tequila.
TGI Friday's CEO Brandon Coleman told Nation's Restaurant News in August that the chain is partnering with the nonalcoholic brand Spiritless to develop more beverage offerings for abstainers. So, be on the lookout for more booze-free options in the new year.
Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay owns several restaurant brands across America, including Ramsay's Kitchen, with locations in Boston and Naperville, Ill. Among the many beverages you can choose to accompany your meal is the Lychee Cooler, a mocktail made with lychee purée, grapefruit juice, elderflower syrup, lime juice, and a grapefruit peel for a garnish. It offers that perfect refreshing citrus vibe while still packing a punch with flavor.
Legal Sea Foods
A premium seafood dinner is often accompanied by a glass of wine or cocktail, but at Legal Sea Foods, you can also pair it with a mocktail. With locations in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, the restaurant chain features signature dishes of fresh seafood on its menu and a wide selection of alcoholic beverages.
If you aren't in the mood for a glass of white wine, or you don't drink any alcohol, you can find some great nonalcoholic alternatives, like the No Proof Required. This beverage is made with Enroot Strawberry Lavender Rosemary Tulsi cold brewed tea, plus raspberry, blackberry, lemon, and sugar. It's all a part of why Legal Sea Foods is so highly rated among seafood restaurant chains.
If you live near a Flight Club, you may know it as a go-to chain to grab a bite to eat and a drink, while you play a round of darts with friends. The chain is found in Boston, Chicago, Houston, and Las Vegas. Not only can you order a round of drinks to accompany your darts competition, but mocktails are featured on the menu as well. One of the highlights at Flight Club is the Midway Splash, made with Seedlip Grove 42, a nonalcoholic citrus-flavored spirit. Blended with pineapple and lemon tonic, it's the perfect refreshing sip to enjoy with your meal.
Smith & Wollensky
The high-end steakhouse chain Smith & Wollensky can be found in major cities like Las Vegas, Boston, and Chicago. It is perhaps best known for its selection of steakentrées, including delicious steak dinners for two, and for serving meals made with high-quality ingredients. Among many great beverage options to pair with dinner, customers can try the No Taxi Needed, a mocktail made with Enroot Strawberry Lavender Rosemary Tulsi cold brewed tea, plus raspberries, blackberries, lemon, and sugar.
Gordon Ramsay Burger
When you're craving a juicy burger, Gordon Ramsay Burger can be your go-to solution in Boston and Chicago. For mocktail fans, the chain serves a Grin & Tonic, made with Ritual zero-proof gin alternative and Fever Tree premium Indian tonic. This simple mocktail proves that you don't need a ton of ingredients to come up with a suitable cocktail substitute.