Teatotaling

by S&M

I know I’m not the only lightweight on the blog. I wonder if anyone’s tried some of these non-alcoholic beverages.

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57 thoughts on “Teatotaling

  1. Yep, I am seeing this in a lot of places. I’m not surprised — most older adults I know have lost the taste for many sweet things, including sodas. My dad has drunk tonic water and lime for years. And most people don’t have wine/beer with every meal. So I have been seeing a lot more froo-froo sodas and virgin mixed drinks on menus over the last year or so.

    Alas, it doesn’t do anything for me, as I don’t like carbonation. Although some of the virgin cocktails can be really good.

  2. I had trouble making it past, So she was gutted. Eye-roll.

    Anyway, this sounds like a great idea. At a nice restaurant they will have hundreds of different wines, all with their own specific, taste along with the ability to make hundreds of cocktails. It seems odd that they only have a very limited number of non-alcoholic beverages.

  3. I’ve been seeing this more & more too. Also seeing “low alcohol” cocktails more too, which I like. I’m actually pretty surprised French Laundry doesn’t have a non-alcoholic pairing program. It seems that it has gotten pretty common at those types of restaurants in the past few years.

    I can’t remember if this was the original source, but I’ve made this virgin sangria a few times. It is pretty good – the tea makes it less sweet.
    http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-non-alcoholic-sangria-170254

    When I was pregnant, I found non alcoholic wine to be completely vile, but NA beer wasn’t too bad. The only problem is when it was in the back of the bar cooler for years & got skunked.

    Mostly though, when I go out to dinner, I definitely want alcoholic drinks. Often I have a cocktail and then a glass of wine or beer. Or DH & I split a bottle of wine. And I love beer too – we like to hit up brewery taprooms and things like that.

  4. My non-alcoholic froo-froo drink of choice is a cranberry juice with a bit of Sprite and a splash of lime. I was recently out to eat at a nice french restaurant. They had several mocktails to choose from. I went with one that had lavender and grapefruit. Quite tasty.

  5. grapefruit

    For some strange reason I hate grapefruit juice but I love greyhounds. I think someone about the vodka counteracts the awfulness of the grapefruit.

  6. “For some strange reason I hate grapefruit juice”

    I thought I hated eating grapefruit, until last year when I had Star grapefruit while in Florida. Wow, it was amazingly sweet and tangy. For some reason Ruby grapefruit is everywhere and it tastes awful.

  7. I had trouble making it past, So she was gutted. Eye-roll.

    No kidding. I don’t drink much and I’m not a foodie, but I find that a nice meal tastes just as good with water.

  8. Um, I definitely had a glass of wine once a week with dinner when I was pregnant so I’m not the target market here. I like a glass of wine (or two) with a nice meal and once in a while I’ll get a cocktail if one looks good (I like gin based cocktails that aren’t too sweet) I like Mexican coke and good root beer but other than that I’m not a fan of sweet drinks (I love my Pellegrino).

  9. My mother would like this as she requests non alcoholic cocktails. My kids would too as they would like to drink something different when we go out. The adults will stick to their wine or craft beer.
    I cannot forget how a colleague tried to out me when I was pregnant. She was waiting to see if I drank alcohol at a team outing.

  10. When I had my gallbladder attack wasn’t sure what it was, I wasn’t drinking for DH’s birthday and they made me a mocktail at our favorite restaurant with cucumber and lime and some other stuff. SO GOOD. I could have had about 5.

  11. I don’t drink alcohol at all anymore and I am a total foodie so there. haha. I have started drinking ginger beer because I love gingerale and it’s just interesting enough to get me a pass on the ‘but why aren’t you drinking’ crowd.

  12. “My kids would too as they would like to drink something different when we go out. ”

    DS loves going out for Mexican and getting agua fresca as long as the flavor is something appealing (most are).

    “I cannot forget how a colleague tried to out me when I was pregnant. She was waiting to see if I drank alcohol at a team outing.”

    It’s just so ridiculous. This never happened to me – thank goodness. I think most people could have cared less if I was pregnant or not. But I just don’t understand why certain people care so much about other people’s business.

  13. My kids love those fancy sodas. My particular favorite isn’t so fancy, but is a little unusual : Schweppes Bitter Lemon. I also like San Pellogrino Limonata, although it is a little sweeter than the Bitter Lemon.
    A couple of years ago, we went to some place in Washington DC that had those handmade nonalcoholic drinks, and I had something with lime and herbs in it which I really liked. It was lunch, and I don’t like to drink alcohol during the day even in nice restaurants, so I really appreciated it.

  14. LaGirl – So funny how opposite our takes were to the article and yet we both end up liking gingerale.

    My kids do like fizzy juices, like Izzy’s. I think peach is their current favorite.

  15. I was and still am a drinker. I like alcohol. That being said, a craft drink sans alcohol would be great. I would love to see expanded menus outside a Shirley Temple.

    I look forward to when these menus make it down to the restaurants I go to.

    I rolled my eyes at the woman upset about her pregnancy. Oh get over it. Alcohol isn’t the end of the world.

    Though now they make alcohol test strips for breast milk. It tells you if your milk is safe to drink. My mom just attended a baby shower where the mom received those. Sadly it wasn’t a joke. The Mom to be fully intends on keeping her pre baby life.

  16. Houston – the different brands are so different but i believe they are less sweet.

    and I ended up losing a whole group of friends when I stopped drinking. And mind you I was never much of a drinker anyways but when i realized it gave me heartburn and i didn’t like the taste i was like why bother just to do it.

  17. There are for want of a better word craft ginger ales. They try to give you your money’s worth in ginger. Some of them are strong and very gingery. World Market has those.

  18. “alcohol test strips for breast milk”

    “I ended up losing a whole group of friends when I stopped drinking”

    I say “good grief” to both.

  19. “The Mom to be fully intends on keeping her pre baby life.”

    My SIL, the non-married, child free one who has very weird sleep habits (she’s basically nocturnal) once asked my why I didn’t simply train my babies to sleep so they were on my schedule. She wanted me to wake them and make them go sleep when convenient for me. If only.

  20. The only mocktail I like is tonic water with lime. Otherwise if I’m not drinking wine or a G&T I just stick with water.

    I rarely order cocktails out. DH has perfected the G&T – no one makes it better than him so I don’t even bother anywhere else, unless I want to try a specific gin.

    I’m still fascinated by how much more I drink than the rest of y’all, and I only have about 5-6 drinks/week.

  21. I’m still fascinated by how much more I drink than the rest of y’all, and I only have about 5-6 drinks/week.

    I’m going to do what every primary care doctor does and at least double the reported amount.

  22. LOL, but that really is it. DH opens a bottle of wine for me on Sunday, and I usually finish it on Friday. (He’s more likely to drink a beer) (we have that air vaccum thing that keeps the wine fresh all week). How many servings in one bottle?

  23. Lark – I have probably 5 or 6 drinks per week too. I know a lot of people who drink way more than that so I feel like a teetotaler in comparison (we have a friend who drinks one to two bottles per day himself and admits it).

  24. “I’m still fascinated by how much more I drink than the rest of y’all, and I only have about 5-6 drinks/week.”

    Oh, I definitely drink 6 drinks a week, just not with dinner on Monday night. ;)

  25. I usually drink a glass of wine almost every day so that’s 5-6 drinks a week. Then, I feel like so am drinking too much and cut back to 2-3 glasses a week.

  26. If you like good wine and delicious food, those wine pairing dinners are fabulous, and I can see why this lady, if she’s a wine person, would pass on the French Laundry, and the wine country as a whole, if she can’t drink the wine – it’s part of the experience. That being said, usually, fine restaurants are prepared to accommodate people with various food issues, and I’m sure they would have done their best to make it worth her while. We’ve enjoyed a few wonderful wine pairing meals, but, as a bit of a lightweight, I find that seven courses with seven different wines is just too much food and alcohol for me. I’ve got to pace myself and just take a taste of each one, otherwise I’m in trouble.

  27. I don’t really like frou frou drinks without alcohol. If I am going to use up the calories, I want some alcohol. Otherwise I will stick to sparkling water.

  28. Craft ginger ale. I had no idea. I’ll check them out.

    I drink about 5-6 drinks a week, too

  29. Oh boy! If I drink a glass of wine or cocktail every day of the weekend, I start feeling guilty, and alcoholic, and I don’t drink the next weekend.
    I legit get high over a glass of wine nowadays.
    However, if DH opens a bottle of sangria or rosé on Friday, it’s certainly gone by Sunday.

  30. My local grocery store is BAD. They usually have free wine samples and the retirees that run the sample tables are charming. I end up with bottle of wine. Now they are opening a wine counter/bar at one end of the store.

  31. I have to watch myself. During the last push of my PhD I became a functioning alcoholic. I made a large container of sangria and would come home and pour myself a PINT glass. And drink it all. Sometimes I’d have seconds. It got to the point where I *had* to have it. I realized then and there that the alcoholism gene prevalent in my dad’s family was alive and well in me. Dumped it all out. Now I make a point to drink alcohol when out (which isn’t often) or a mixed drink that I have to care to make at home. I may have wine with my mom.

    My liver is happier. And I think 3 years of limited drinking when pregnant/breastfeeding helped reset things.

  32. I have a friend who went to Napa while pregnant (her BIL was living out there at the time) and her dr. told her it was fine to have a glass a day while she was out there.

    We went to the French Laundry for DH’s 30th birthday (so a while ago) and we didn’t do the wine pairings if I remember correctly (probably due to the exorbitant cost), but I do like them when they’re available. Dh and I will often split one pairing.

  33. This is where having a very unrefined palate is a nice feature. I have no interest in spending the money for high-end wine pairings and such because I can’t tell the difference between any of the wines, or how they compliment the food.

  34. Off topic: I’m always fascinated by how people get ahead in the world. Playing to their strength, being at the right place at the right time, raw unadulterated chutzpah, etc. With that in mind, the new Austrian Chancellor is 31. He’s been the Foreign Minister since he was 27.

    The road to that goal could be said to begin when Mr. Kurz, at age 16, called up the People’s Party office in the working-class neighborhood of Vienna’s 12th District where he grew up, Mr. Kurz tells how he offered them his services.

    “It didn’t go too well,” he recalled, pacing and looking pensive in an open-collared shirt. “They gave me the sense that I should get back to them in a couple of years.

  35. I am interested in some of these drinks when I see them on menus, but I don’t like to waste calories on non alcoholic drinks. I’ve tasted a few when DD orders something special, but I would rather save my calories for alcohol or dessert.

    I think it is a great idea because my DH won’t drink when we are driving other people’s kids and he doesn’t like to always have soda or water. There is definitely a customer for these drinks, and I bet the margin is high even with the extra labor for some of the crafted drinks.

  36. Fever Tree Ginger Beer. Love it. A really crisp not sweet and not beer-y hard cider is my favorite light alcoholic drink at home. 3-5 drinks a week for me. I like plain seltzer best to go with meals. I don’t like to spend money on soft drinks whether ordinary or frou frou.

  37. May I offer two future post ideas?

    1. For the politics thread: Matthew Yglesias recently tweeted his 150 of his unpopular opinions. What are your unpopular opinions?

    2. For the regular thread: Advice for getting ahead in the world featuring the accumulated wisdom of The Totebag.

  38. The test strips for the breast milk are a huge pet peeve. (Almost everything to do with drugs and breast milk makes me shabby due to proliferation of bad information.)

    If you get drunkity drunk drunk (and you are not a raging alcoholic at baseline) your BAC might be 0.20 or even 0.25 (0.30 is enough for coma for many people, 0.08 is legal driving limit).

    Drunk mommy is 0.25 BAC. If 100% alcohol moved into breast milk (breast milk never concentrates anything), breast milk would be 0.25% alcohol. Really, only 80% moves, so it is about 0.20% alcohol.

    Things that are 0.20% alcohol:
    -Fresh fruit juice (can legally be double that!!)
    -A gallon of water with (3700ml) with 7ml alcohol in it, or 2 teaspoons vodka.
    -A fresh orange is around 0.60%
    -Wine, diluted with 50 parts water to 1 part wine.
    -Bread dough
    -kefir

    If you are just a regular not-quite-safe-to drive drunk, you are 0.10%
    -A beer, diluted with 60 parts water
    -Fruit juice, diluted with 5 parts water
    -vanilla extract (35%), 1/8 teaspoon (.625ml) in a 1 cup of milk (240ml)

    IF YOU HAVE GIVEN A CHILD HOMEMADE HOT COCOA IT IS AS BAD AS DRUNKMOMMY BREASTMILK

    If you can hold a baby safely, your breast milk is completely safe for a child. Anyone who tells you otherwise is trying to sell you something.

  39. @Ada – I remember reading something like you said (maybe it was you) when DS was born. I was so thankful to have that info, even though I was frankly too exhausted to drink much alcohol when he was an infant. I did have my 10 year college reunion during that time though, and that was the only time I ever “pumped and dumped”. (I could have still held my child, but I couldn’t have driven.)

  40. I laughed when I read about them. To me, they scream “yes I’m a momma, but I’m going to drink it up like I’m 21 again and don’t have kids!” I don’t have many years of parenting experience, but I do know that (1) I rarely have time to drink anymore and (2) those little beasties still get up at the crack of dawn whether or not I’m ready for them.

  41. “most older adults I know have lost the taste for many sweet things, including sodas.”

    I guess I’m not an “older adult” yet. I still love sweets, including sweet drinks like sodas.

    However, my MD recommends I avoid sweet drinks, and cutting soda out of my diet was the one thing that seemed to help my blood test results, so, regretfully, I no longer partake.

    I really wish more places would have unsweetened drink options as well, e.g., unsweetened iced tea.

  42. “most older adults I know have lost the taste for many sweet things, including sodas.”

    Aren’t the elderly famous for their love of candy? Werther’s Originals, ribbon candy, hard candy, etc.

  43. “This is where having a very unrefined palate is a nice feature. I have no interest in spending the money for high-end wine pairings and such because I can’t tell the difference between any of the wines, or how they compliment the food.”

    So 2-buck chuck for you?

  44. “I really wish more places would have unsweetened drink options as well, e.g., unsweetened iced tea.”

    Come to NY. Unsweetened is the default option here. Pre-sweetened tea – yuck.

  45. Rhett — When my mom was in assisted living, they had an ice-cream or cookie social event every single afternoon. One of the workers told me that as people get old, their ability to discern various kinds of non-sweet tastes dulls, but the ability to discern sweet tastes does not. So non-sweet food starts to taste bland, but sweet food still tastes good. Hence the daily availability of cookies or ice cream.

  46. they had an ice-cream or cookie social event every single afternoon.

    Or? I hope they put me in the one where they have both cookies and ice cream .

  47. If I’m in assisted living, I don’t think I’ll be depriving myself of things like sodas, ice cream, and cookies for health reasons.

  48. So 2-buck chuck for you?

    If I actually drank wine, but I just don’t care for it at all.

    If I’m in assisted living, I don’t think I’ll be depriving myself of things like sodas, ice cream, and cookies for health reasons.

    I tell my patients at their stage in life to eat whatever the hell they want.

  49. I almost always drink water. I’m fascinated by people who have to drink something that has a taste. I have a couple of glasses of wine when we go out and would never even bother with these kinds of drinks. I do occasionally enjoy a glass of apple or orange juice when I fly.

  50. It sounds like I need to find better restaurants. The only place I’ve encountered anything like these drinks is a brewpub (now closed, though the brewery continues) that served a house-made soda. We both like Izzy, Peligrino sodas, etc. I grew up drinking milk with every meal (during the meal, washing the food down). Drinking water with a meal was new to me when I started losing weight over a year ago.

    Rhett, have you heard about the AirBerlin pilot taking a victory lap around Dusseldorf? http://www.faz.net/aktuell/gesellschaft/air-berlin-pilot-dreht-spektakulaere-ehrenrunde-ueber-duesseldorf-15250741.html

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