Words: Richard Holmes
It’s 2019, and after a very festive festive season your liver’s begging for mercy. But there’s no need to stick to kale juice and water – these no- and low-alcohol options will add a little pizzazz to your sober sundowners.
Devil’s Peak Hero to Zero
Despite worldwide demand growing sharply over the past few years, alcohol-free beers aren’t much to get excited about: insipid, bland and often downright undrinkable. But not when they’re made by JC Steyn, the talented head brewer at the Devil’s Peak Brewing Company.
Although light in body, this 0% alcohol pale ale packs in plenty of flavour thanks to the Citra, Cascade, Columbus and Amarillo hops used in the brew. The result? A crisp and refreshing beer that’s alcohol-free and perfect to see you through the thirsty days of January.
Billed as the world’s first alcohol-free “gin” and tonic, The Duchess arrived hot on the heels of the craft gin revolution in 2016. Made using re-distilled juniper berries and layers of local botanicals, these mixers offer the pleasing bitterness and aromatics of a traditional G&T, without the Mother’s Ruin.
The Duchess is currently offered in three flavours. The Duchess Botanical is closest to a traditional G&T, with classic juniper and botanical notes, while The Duchess Floral uses extracts of citrus blossoms and indigenous honeybush to create a sweeter, more fragrant G&T. The latest addition is The Duchess Greenery, which uses garden extracts of rosemary, cucumber and lime leaves.
Van Loveren Almost Zero Wonderful White
Robertson winery Van Loveren has long been famous for their pocket-friendly quaffers and the new “Almost Zero” – 0,33% alcohol – ticks the same boxes, just without the booze. Made from 100% sauvignon blanc, the wine is fermented and vinified as normal, before the wine is “de-alcoholised” and bottled. That process does strip away some of the primary fruit flavours, but you’ll still pick up apple, litchi and citrus on the nose and palate. It’s best served chilled, and does well over ice. It also boasts 75% fewer kilojoules than a normal glass of wine.