Raise your glass to 2015
They call it the Dryathlon… we prefer Banuary… or the Winter Wagon. Anyway it involves keeping off the booze during January in order to a) recover from your Christmas excesses b) save money and C) maybe even donate a little to charity.
All very admirable if you’re into that kind of thing. Personally the thought of facing a cold, wet January with nothing to warm yourself with other than the box set of Mad Men, doesn’t sound very appealing.
For people like us, dedicated to downing one or more fine cocktails as often as possible, going not-so-wild-turkey would probably be too much of a shock for our systems to bear.
In fact, January is one of our favourite months for visiting bars. This is mainly because most of them are simply delighted to see you as their regular punters stay away in a desperate attempt to stick to their New Year’s resolutions for health, wealth and sobriety.
More than that, many bars actively encourage you to drop in for a drink or two with some seriously tempting offers and happy hours. And finally, many of the busiest, crowded bars have room to breath, find a seat, enjoy the surroundings and engage the staff in detailed conversation about weighty matters such as how to make the perfect Martini and whether Gin really does make you depressed.
However, in the interest of fairness, if you are embarking on the Dryathlon we thought we’d serve you up with our suggestions for the best alcohol free cocktails around.
1) – to start with, The Beaufort at the Savoy are taking the sting out of going on the wagon with their “Bees Buzz” cocktail, consisting of pressed apple juice, honey, ginger beer, essential almond oil and lime.
2) – Galvin at Windows, as well as having great views over London also has some great mocktails, amongst them the deliciously fruity Orion Orion. This full cup of mixed berry fruits, stirred with equal part of vanilla syrup and lemon and topped up with a generous splash of ginger ale certainly sweetens the alcohol free deal
3) – One of our favourite bars in town, the Zetter Town House is offering a deliciously refreshing Dandelion Lemonade made with dandelion tincture, sugar, lemon juice and lemonade. This is one dandelion which will blow you away and help you pass the time.
4) – If you’re after a mocktail that takes you away from the cold, wet winter then head for the Bassoon bar at the Corinthia Hotel which is offering a tasty, tropical, alcohol free Maui made with Passion Fruit, Apple Juice, Rose Marmalade and Ginger Beer.
5) Everything seems to be about the cloud these days – so why shouldn’t your alcohol free cocktail be the same? All Star Lanes are offering their very own Cloudy Berry – a cheerful crimson combination of raspberry, cranberry, elderflower and lemon juice.
So, enjoy your dryathlon if you can. In the meantime we are trying to coin a phrase for the drinking man’s January. So, far we’ve only come up with Dramuary, can you think of anything better?