Last week, we talked about how we approach “resolutions” for the new year--we don’t so much love the stress, pressure, and unrealistic standards of the whole tradition of declaring oft-repeated resolutions. But we do wholeheartedly endorse entering a new year with intention. We like to look forward to certain trends, movements, events, occasions, goals, and activities. We think it’s good and fun and healthy to have ideas about what we’d like to strive for overall as the calendar flips.
So, it stands to reason that we view the specific resolution of a fresh, healthy start with the same flexibility, that we see this as something that must be open to interpretation. What makes for a fresh, healthy start, after all, is different for every person. This should be less of an ironclad promise (threat?) that comes with baggage like being too hard on yourself or judging your progress against what you think you see from others on social media. What it should be about--all about--is doing what will make you happy, and what complements your health and wellness, physically, mentally, and emotionally. Whatever that looks like for you, whatever makes you feel truly and sustainably good, that’s what we wish for you.
And when you apply that to adult beverages, it’s going to look different for different folks, anyway, right? Because, alcohol is never going to be “healthy.” But, it’s important to remember a few things: it’s completely fine and natural to have things in your life that aren’t strictly health-focused, it’s just about moderation and indeed having a healthy relationship with these things; what you can do to make a huge difference is make choices based on natural ingredients, environment- and human-friendly practices, and dietary restrictions and preferences like vegan or gluten-free; and, you get to decide when you maybe want to take a break and for how long that break lasts--we’re in a golden age of craft non-alcoholic beer, to boot.
We’re thrilled that we’ve got tons of brands on TapRm absolutely perfect for whatever kind of reset works for you. Break from booze? Getting more active and want a little reward for yourself after a workout or hike or run or swim or dance or game? Paying more attention to what’s on labels and what’s inside cans and bottles? Enjoying what you’d always enjoy, with moderation, intention, and a good amount of enthusiastic savoring? We’ve got all your bases covered. So, let’s kick 2023 off with some celebration-worthy reset options.
Non-Alcoholic Beer from Athletic Brewing Company
If you want your 2023 reset to cut booze but not flavor, we have three words for you: Athletic Brewing Company. You’ve probably heard of them, considering they’re the brewery we have to thank for bringing non-alcoholic beer into the 21st century, blowing the doors wide open on booze-free beer’s flavor and style potential, and fusing the worlds of alcohol-free and craft so that no one has to sacrifice the quality and experience of craft beer just because they don’t want to imbibe.
You can relax and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you’re going to have a delicious beer with Athletic, and that experience sans booze is still a relatively new phenomenon. So it’s exciting to think about how you can take a break--again, however long you want and however you want to do it--from alcohol but can still keep enjoying tasty craft beer. Do #DryJanuary, go booze-free certain days of the week, swap out some of your alcoholic beers for non-alcoholic beers, skip the sauce for an open-ended period of time--the possibilities are endless, even more so when you have options like this. Especially great for cold, snowy January? The All Out Extra Dark, an ale with chocolate, coffee, and roast notes. And hazy IPA lovers, rejoice: Free Wave proves you don’t need alcohol for a hoppy, juicy treat.
Non-Alcoholic Beer from Untitled Art
We’ve got more dreamy craft options in the non-alcoholic category, too! Untitled Art emphasizes creativity and innovation, and brings some of the most popular craft styles and substyles into the booze-free segment, right where they belong. Another stellar stout option especially for the first wintry part of the year (though we also love this option for nighttime campfires in the summer, but that’s another post for another month!) is the N/A S’mores Dark Brew.
Booze-Free Kombucha from UpDog Kombucha
Relax. Rejuvenate. Refresh. Reinvigorate. Reset. Kombucha centers wellness awareness, mindfulness, and intention in a very delicious place. And UpDog takes that to the next level with attention to detail, creativity, and an insistence on inspired flavors achieved through a commitment to craft ingredients and methods. These kombuchas--non-alcoholic, by the way--are thirst-quenching and satisfying and exciting, absolutely perfect for however you feel like engaging with them. As a swap for a cocktail, as a post-yoga wind-down, as something to sip while hanging with friends, as a mid-day break--a hand-crafted, small-batch, low-sugar drink like this is so clutch to have in your fridge for when you want something tasty and intriguing but don’t want alcohol or artificial ingredients. For those aforementioned cocktail moods, try the Sphinx Mojito, or go for those botanical, aaaah, tea vibes with Happy Baby Jasmine Lavender.
Non-Alcoholic CBD Cocktails from FLYERS Cocktail Co.
Speaking of cocktails, FLYERS is one of the most exciting brands in the beverage space. In these convenient little cans are genius cocktails, dreamed up, sourced, mixed, and perfected like the snazziest cocktail at the snazziest cocktail bar. Only instead of waiting a while at the bar and paying a pretty penny and having to imbibe, these sophisticated and complex yet easy-drinking cocktails can pour right into your favorite glass--as low-key or as elegant as you wish--and come free of booze. There is CBD, which is a game-changer: these cocktails still offer a bit of buzz, a bit of that kick-back feeling, but prove it doesn’t have to come in the form of alcohol. No hangovers here! These are so great for alternating for some drinks or all drinks or having on hand for friends or all of the above depending on how you feel and when you feel it. Try the Sydney Spritz, a highball with botanical bitters and mandarin; the Tokyo Margarita, with yuzu, bitter orange, and chili; and the BKLYN Gold, with oak, vanilla, and bitters.
Boozy Teas with Actually Natural Ingredients from Owl’s Brew
Now, let’s say you do plan on having some booze as a chill-with-friends, wind-down, celebrate option, depending on the occasion and your mood and your cravings. You want to imbibe mindfully and intentionally, which means delicious drinks worth savoring that add to the experience and never take away from it, that never leave you feeling icky, that come from community-minded brands, that are unique, that are made with natural ingredients--like, actually natural ingredients.
Owl’s Brew Boozy Teas tap into the wonder of tea, how complex it can be, how incredible contrasting and similar flavors and aromas can be harmonizing together, how good it can make you feel, and makes it, well, boozy. The founders of this women-owned brand realized that the real ingredients that go into tea offer so much more flavor than anything artificial ever could, so these conveniently canned cocktails are bursting with beautiful notes all from tea. Spiced Chai Cranberry, Matcha, Darjeeling Tea with Hibiscus & Strawberry, and many more are must-haves for any kind of approach to imbibing.
Organic Hard Seltzer from SolSet
While alcohol is indeed an indulgence, some genius brands are figuring out ways to enhance drinks with added benefits. One of those brands is SolSet. They make flavor-bursting hard seltzer totally organic, and they infuse it with electrolytes and antioxidant vitamin C. The result is a cleaner drinking experience that never leaves you feeling depleted--in fact, these are adult beverages with some rejuvenating properties. Want to celebrate conquering a new workout challenge? SolSet is an excellent contender up for that task. Want to drink more mindfully in general? Even better! Get refreshed with flavors like Tropical Citrus, Lime Zest, and Black Cherry.
Hard Cider from 101 Cider House
“Dry January is common because it is assumed that consumption of alcohol is inherently bad for you, and abstinence for a month shows willpower,” says 101 Cider House’s Grant Manley. “But in my opinion, if you're looking to actually build a better habit in the new year you should switch to an alcohol option that would allow you to indulge in fermentation as you like, without the guilt or ill-feelings that can come standard with essentially every other adult beverage.”
101’s ciders are made from raw juice, which they produce by working with local farms using fresh source-verified ingredients. The juice is then pressed in small batches and wild-fermented for a beverage that’s naturally alcoholic and certified probiotic. Gunpowder Guava, made with green tea, Cactus Rosé, with antioxidants and vitamins, and Sunlit, combining all the best flavor properties of hazy IPAs and wine in a fresh, easy-drinking form, are all ready to help transform how you imbibe with intention.
Natural Beer from Soonish
Soonish brings all of this intention, mindfulness, emphasis on indulging in a way that is still kind to your body and overall wellness in terms of imbibing, and also a concentration on good, clean ingredients to beer. Soonish is natural beer, made with bananas, ancient grains, and honey. The taste is a clean, crisp, refreshing brew with a touch of satisfying sweetness, merging all the best things about beer, cider, and hard seltzer without any of the negatives. It’s just 4.2% ABV so you can keep things a bit lighter, and it’s so friendly to dietary restrictions, choices, preferences, and plans--it’s gluten-free, unfiltered, non-GMO, 110 calories, and free of preservatives and additives.
Gluten-Free Beer from New Planet Brewing
New year, new you, New Planet, bay-bee! We love the idea of getting to know a brewery that can be part of a whole new lifestyle. New Planet Brewing feels like the kind of simple, effortless beer switch that could suddenly have us springing off the couch to hike and camp and kayak, soaking up the wonders of this, well, planet, and stopping to quench our thirst with some super thoughtfully made craft brews along the way. We’re already envisioning how incredible the Pale Ale would taste at a mountain’s summit, or how extra tasty the Blonde Ale would be lake-side. What makes this all even easier and also authentic is that New Planet’s beers are gluten-free, clocking in at a moderate 6% ABV, and are lower in sugar and carbs.
IPAs, Stouts, and Sours, Oh My! Full-Strength Options
There are a few reasons you might be shopping for full-strength options in January:
- You completely ignore #DryJanuary, and maybe are frankly annoyed we’re still talking about it.
- You’re doing #ModerationJanuary, or #MindfulForever, or whatever version of this, and, as we’ve been discussing along the way here, are more carefully weighing things like ingredients and alcohol contents and brand missions, and are also simply balancing when, why, and how you drink. So, you need those full-strength splurges in the fridge right next to those low- and no-alcohol options!
- You’re planning a party for this month or soon after.
- You’re getting a gift for someone not doing any form of Dry January.
- Any mix / all of the above.
Because we believe so wholeheartedly in options, options, options, we’ve got to remind you about all the big hop bombs and indulgent stouts in the same breath as our non-alcoholic cocktails and post-workout beers, right? Right! There’s a time and place for everything. You’re in good hands whatever you pick on TapRm--from 0.5% to 11.2% ABV, you can rest assured you’re shopping and sipping with intention--and we’ve got too many specific recommendations to list here. A few shout-outs: Nuclear Nugget Imperial IPA from Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery, Fish Out of Water Sour Ale with Passion Fruit, Papaya, and Banana from Rally Cap Brewing Co., and Peanut Butter Multiple Infinities stout from Artisanal Brew Works. Happy shopping, and happy whatever-you-want-it-to-be January!