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Sober October and Sober Curiosity

Updated: Oct 13, 2023


I’ve had my fair share of party nights, but on the whole I don’t drink an awful lot as alcohol just doesn’t agree with me. Add chemotherapy into the mix and it’s not a cocktail I fancied very often. Though I did have a little tipple once in a while.


Not wanting to drink when socialising in the UK has always been a difficult experience unless you have health, pregnancy or driving as an excuse. But Macmillan's Sober October and the sober curiosity movement have thankfully made it more permissible to not go out and get pissed. I personally find it easier now more than ever to lay off the booze, and so I thought I’d share my favourite non-alcoholic options with you to stimulate your sober curiosity. I've also gathered some discounts for you as going sober isn't always the cheaper option.


I think my friends will back me up when I say that if one person is going to throw up on a boozy night out, it's going to be me. And it has happened after only two glasses of wine. I stopped drinking white wine after what I can only describe as a minor anaphylactic response, and the wrong glass of red can bring on a sense of queasiness pretty quickly for me. I'm also sad to say that my favourite wine, rosé can turn my stomach into a basketball sized bulge. And so I choose my booze options wisely.


Add chemo into the equation, which already comes with nauseating consequences, and I found the thought of alcohol only entered my mind once my symptoms eased. A small glass of pinot noir by the water was beautiful to my lips. I savoured every sip. But I wasn't in a hurry to try much else, and even when the chemo was over I've only had one or two here and there. And so my sober curiosity, which has always been present was heightened during this time, which led me to seek out more alternatives than I had before.


So whether you're driving on a night out, are avoiding alcohol for health reasons, raising funds during Sober October or are just Sober Curious, I thought I'd share my alcohol free favourites with you.


Wine

Let's start with the big bottle alternatives, which I'm afraid only contain bubbles, as I find most wine alternatives too sweet for me.

Freixenet do a 0% sparkling wine which leans more towards the driest I've tried. You can buy a case of six on Amazon or Tesco sell it individually. There's also a sweeter, fruitier rosé version if that's more to your taste.

L.A. Brewery have a beautiful wine alternatives including their sparkling English Blush. You'll find more information on them nestled down in the kombucha section below. It is hands down my favourite.


Beer

I'm a big fan of Lidl's Perlenbacher Pils Alcohol Free and Corona Zero but I'm not a beer drinker per se, so others might notice a difference that I don't. I also enjoyed the Brewdog IPA 0.5%. The Budweiser and Peroni versions aren't bade, and I've also been really pleased by how many bars and festivals now stock no or low alcohol options.


Gin

I love Tanqueray's Flor De Sevilla Alcohol Free Spirit which is currently on offer at Amazon. It's definitely lighter in flavour but its orange deliciousness is mouthwateringly good.


Alternative Spirits

Three Spirit Drinks have a few tipples to their range. You can buy bundles to see which ones suit your fancy and your reason for drinking. I'm a fan of the Livener for an evening out.

Use my code MISSMARMAS to get 15% off as an introduction to something different.


Kombucha

Now whilst it has a hoppy influence I see it as more of a choice to drink it rather than an alcohol alternative, but it provides an alcohol feel on a night out. Besides its health benefits, each company and bottle dishes up quite a different experience. I've been drinking kombucha for years now, and I am pleased to say the flavours have improved.

Here are my favourites:


HipPop: not only do I love it but I'm also proud of how much this company has grown. You can join their Booch Club and they have an altruistic essence with the community support they also provide. Use my link to get £10 off your first order

The benefits of this brand (I just love them):

  • Probiotic Living Cultures

  • No Added Sugar

  • 100% Natural with No Sweeteners (beware, some brands are more deceitful re: sweeteners)

L.A Brewery: OMG they are the most delicious I've tasted. They have their fruity range of small bottles with my favourite being the Strawberry & Rhubarb. And their gorgeous wine alternatives are to die for. Dive right in to see what you find and tell me I'm wrong.

They're currently doing 50% off subscritions throughout October. They also have a great FAQs page to inform you more about Kombucha than I can.


My hope in writing this post is to either stimulate your sober curiosity or add new flavours to your existing stash. I prefer some of these to their alcoholic alternatives now, especially as I don't react with bloating, hangovers and other weird reactions. But don't take my word for it.


I think it's important to note that you don't have to have health issues, be driving or doing Sober October to not drink booze. That's what sober curiosity is all about. If you're interested in learning more, you might like to read Ruby Warrington's Sober Curious book. London on the Inside also have a great list of alcohol alternatives in their Sober October article.


And of course, if you like a boozy tipple, it's not my purpose to stop you. By all means, enjoy yourself, but always remember the balance. You are worth looking after yourself!


Wishing You Well

Marie

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