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Booze-Free by Accident

bottle of non-alcoholic wine
A small sample of the selection of non-alcoholic wines that will be available at Bevees.

This weekend an old friend who we have not seen in many years is coming over for a BBQ. My husband asked me if I planned to drink. He was curious, because since beginning our research and sampling for Bevees, I have not had any alcohol, but he knows our friend drinks booze.

Without much consideration or hesitation, I surprised both of us by saying, "no." You see, quite by accident, I have become a non-drinker. Not because I had or have a problem with alcohol. Not because I decided to quit drinking alcohol. But simply because I have been enjoying my booze-free wine so much, I no longer have a desire to drink the stuff with alcohol.

I never considered myself a heavy drinker. Like most of us, I started drinking as a teenager to fit in. I masked the taste of the alcohol and drank to get drunk. I never much liked the taste of alcohol so by my late teens I drank mostly wine, the one thing I always did enjoy. By my mid-twenties, save the occasional Bailey's and coffee or tropical drink while on vacation, wine was pretty much the only alcohol I drank.

I enjoy everything about drinking wine. I love the glassware. In my opinion, the more delicate the crystal the better the wine tastes. I love the smell of wine. The obvious aroma of grapes, but also all the other complex hints of citrus, spices, nuts, wood, and berries. I love how as wine passes your lips to your tongue, rolls to the back of the throat and glides smoothly into your belly each moment is a different taste and body sensation. I truly believe that there is nothing quite like slowly sipping a glass of wine. It is a pleasure I never thought I would give up.

But along came Bevees and things have changed. I have spent the last four months sampling as many booze-free beverages as possible. Naturally, I have leaned towards wine. I have sampled about 20 non-alcoholic wines now (I only have a few hundred to go!) and I can honestly say there has not been one that I disliked. All have been enjoyable in their own way, and some are downright delectable.

Since I started sampling, I have had no interest in going back to wine with alcohol, and I have begun to think I never will. With the non-alcoholic wines I get all things I love about drinking wine – the glassware, the aromas, the complex tastes – without any of the negative side effects.

What I don't miss is the heaviness that comes with drinking alcohol. It makes your lips heavy - it's difficult to talk; your head heavy - it's difficult to hold up; your arms and legs heavy - it's difficult to walk. And your mind is dull, it's difficult to keep up. One too many glasses is accompanied by headaches and upset stomach. Then there is the sugar and calories – wine with alcohol is high in both. Drinking wine is a delicate balance between enjoyment and overindulgence.

But none of that exists with non-alcoholic wine. I can have a guilt-free glass midday – something I would NEVER do with booze. I can drink a whole NA bottle – something that would leave me drunk as a skunk with booze. I can drink NA wine in public places or have an open bottle in my car. It feels a little bit naughty to do all those things – but bonus! it’s not!!! There is also the added benefit of non-alcoholic wines having less sugar and fewer calories than wine with alcohol, not to mention more antioxidants.

The only downside to discovering non-alcoholic wine is that it is so delicious I drink too much of it. At anywhere between $15 to $30 a bottle, maybe I can drink a bottle a night, but my wallet says I still need to consume with restraint.

I'm booze-free by accident but enjoying every NA sip of it!!!

Racquel Foran

Director & General Manager, Bevees Ltd.

drinks for everyone, anytime!

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