The season is upon us! Winter is coming, and while not everyone will experience snow or bitter cold, we’ll all be around the festivities that come with the time. The winter season is filled with parties, and for most, more parties than any other time of year. And with the number of parties increased to a yearly high, the same is generally true for alcohol consumption. According to data from BACtrack, an app that monitors the consumption of alcohol, “December to March has the highest occurrence of days with the average blood alcohol content above .06%,” meaning the winter is the time when people drink to excess most often.
It can be difficult to avoid overserving yourself during the winter because it seems to be what everyone else is doing. It can be even harder to refrain from drinking at all. Yes, it is possible to avoid these situations altogether, but for most people, it is simply impossible to not go to any work or family gatherings where alcohol is around.
The best solution we’ve found when dealing with situations like this is to bring your own alternative, and if it’s company event, suggest one – something you can get excited about. During this year’s holiday season, bring your own spice to the party – choose from any of these awesome non-alcoholic drinks that are so delicious they surpass the expectations of a simple “mocktail”.
For this season, we have four hot drinks and one cold - take your pick, we know you’ll enjoy them just as much as us.
The Spicy Chai Latte
When the fall and winter hit, your local coffee shop will surely add their version of the Chai Tea Latte to their menu. It’s a hot drink that goes quite well with a cold day, and knowing how to make one will make a great addition to your drink arsenal. It’s fairly common for people to turn a drink like this boozy, so it’s easy to be prepared with this non-alcoholic option.
Here’s a great recipe from My Darling Vegan.
Another hot drink that gets increasingly popular as a chill gets in the air, you’ll find mulled wine at a lot of holiday parties this winter season. It’s a great drink that can be made with any number of ingredients, and it is extremely easy to make without alcohol.
The best solution to making non-alcoholic mulled wine is to pick a recipe you think looks great (we’ve listed two below), replace the alcoholic ingredient with your favorite non-alcoholic wine
Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate
Hot Chocolate has been around us during the winter since we were kids. Warmed chocolate syrup and milk, chocolate powder, chocolate sauce, anyway it was made it’s sure to bring back memories.
Hot chocolate can still be a staple of your winter drink diet, and there are so many ways to change it up and experiment it’s hard to get tired of it. One of our favorite hot chocolates incorporates salted caramel to the mixture, giving it a savory boost of flavor. Check it out here.
A classic holiday beverage, eggnog is a combination of spices, eggs, and creams that has gotten more and more refined as the “foodie” movement takes hold. One that has particularly caught our eye is a vegan alcohol-free eggnog recipe that gently cooks the eggs to make the mixture rich and to kill bacteria. You can check out The Spruce for this perfect eggnog recipe for the winter season.
Drinking Horchata in December can seem pretty silly to some (especially to Vampire Weekend), but it’s actually a great winter option, especially if you want to surprise a friend or loved one with something unique.
This simple winter warm-up takes a traditional summer drink and turns up the heat. A recipe from The Washington Post details how to make this delicious hot drink, and making their instructions alcohol-free is as easy as not buying any at all. You don’t need replacement ingredients or substitutes – we followed the instructions, skipping the alcohol-infusing, and found the results to be rich in flavor and spices, making it preferred over eggnog for those with a more adventurous pallet.