I invited my Instagram followers to ask me anything and here are some of the questions that I got in response.
If you could only pick one alcohol-free wine, what would it be?
This is a tough question because there are so many amazing alcohol-free wines. In fact, one of the things that I love most about my work at Sans Drinks is being able to try new products so that I can make recommendations to my customers.
Having said that, if I had to pick one thing, it would have to be Thomson & Scott Noughty. Even wine critics say that it is the closest alcohol-free wine gets to a French Champagne.
BBC Good Food recently said that this wine "raised the bar” for the industry, and the famous wine writer Jancis Robinson said that it is the best alcohol-free sparkling wine she has ever tasted.
Do you ever drink beer?
Of course I drink non-alcoholic beer! I can see why you’d ask though. I do love my alc-free wine! But there are sometimes when only a beer will hit the spot – especially on a sunny afternoon. Some of the new beers hitting the store have blown me away with authentic they are in flavour and mouthfeel – and they’re also low in sugar and calories.
One of my fav Australian beer brands is Sobar, who were the first brand to make alc-free beer in Australia. They use native ingredients such as lime finger and Pepperberry so as well as being tasty and refreshing, their beers also have interesting flavour profiles.
Why did you stop drinking alcohol?
I had an epiphany! At Nourished Life, my first company, I passionately championed toxin free makeup and beauty products. But I was still drinking alcohol, in fact, I even had a wine cellar chock full of premium wine.
Then one evening it suddenly occurred to me that alcohol is a toxin. I decided then and there to take a break and investigate alc-free options. I haven’t looked back.
How do you respond when people say ‘what’s the point’?
It’s a cliché, but I genuinely wish I had a dollar for every time a naysayer has asked ‘what’s the point?’ I like to flip the question on it’s head and ask ‘what’s the point in alcohol?' I’ve yet to hear a decent argument.
Seriously though, the point is that there are lots of reasons a person might not want to consume alcohol, and why should they be stuck with lemonade? The fact that alc-free is the fastest growing trend in the drinks sector, ever, says a lot too – a trend doesn’t generate millions of dollars if there isn’t a 'point'.
Is there an alcohol-free gin that actually tastes like gin?
There are lots! But if you are just starting out with alc-free then I recommend Lyre’s pre-mixed G&T. I’ve seen people blind taste test this alongside a traditional gin and most of them couldn’t tell the difference.
What is mindful drinking?
Mindful drinking is about having a healthy relationship with alcohol – it means that when you decide to have an alcoholic drink you stay present and in control of your drinking decisions rather than being swept away by the situation. For example, mindful drinking is going for a drink after work and sticking to one or two alcoholic drinks rather than feeling pressured into an evening of binge drinking.
Alcohol-free drinks can help you drink more mindfully by offering an easy substitute. Try alternating an alcoholic drink with a non-alcoholic drink or switching to alcohol free when you have finished your allocated mindful drinks.
Are alcohol-free drinks full of sugar?
No! This is one of the most common myths about alc-free drinks and I think it's a bit of a hangover from times when grape-juice was the best wine alternative. These days things have moved on dramatically and alc-free drinks have much less sugar in them than alcohol. In fact - some alc-free drinks are totally sugar free. You can find out more in this blog post on alcohol and sugar.
Why are so many of your products 0.5%? Shouldn’t alc-free be 0.0%?
Legally, products are classed as alc-free when they are 0.5% and under. Don’t worry – 0.5% is essentially the same amount of alcohol that you find in fruit juice. If you’re looking for something totally alcohol free, there are lots to choose from, including our best-selling Tost.
Thanks for your interesting questions! Let's do this again sometime.