There aren’t many downsides to the festive season, but we’ve thought of at least one: being the designated driver when everyone else is letting down their hair at the pub!
But while we can’t promise you the Dutch courage to be the life and soul of the party, we can pretty much ensure that thanks to a mocktail or two your night will be a little more enjoyable. After all, there’s no fun in filling up your glass with the same own brand fizzy drink time and time again.
So next time you host or attend a house party, mix things up a bit – quite literally – with some non-alcoholic cocktails. Here’s our pick of the best…
Serving four, this fruity mocktail takes just 10 minutes to prepare and is so easy to put together you’ll be wanting to give it a go with each meal. Refreshingly sweet but with a spicy kick, this drink combines the juice of two limes, a tablespoon of freshly grated ginger, two kiwis, ice, ginger ale and lime and kiwi slices.
Start by dissolving the icing sugar in around four tablespoons of water in a jug, before adding the lime juice and ginger and dividing between your glasses. Next, add the chopped kiwi and ice cubes to a glass, before topping up with ginger ale, to taste. You can now do the fancy schmancy part and decorate the rim of the glass with wedges of lime and slices of kiwi.
Okay, so this isn’t your standard pina colada, but an almost equally tasty non-alcoholic version. With the twist of fresh strawberries, this will magically transport you to an exotic island – whatever the weather outside - in just one sip. To whip this one up, you’ll need a large handful of strawberries, 2oz coconut cream, 5oz pineapple juice and a cup of crushed ice.
Pop all the ingredients in a blender at high speed, before pouring the mixture into a tall glass. Now, simply decorate with a pineapple slice or a maraschino cherry :) Honestly, you let your friends have a taste and you'll be asking the bar staff for a whole round next time!
Mulled Apple Juice
With the colder weather well and truly here and the festive season on the horizon, many of us will be giving refreshing, fruity drinks the cold shoulder and turning our attention to warm, comforting wintry mocktails. With that in mind, we love this delicious mulled apple juice – a non-alcoholic take on a classic mulled wine. In terms of ingredients, you don’t need many – just apple juice (a litre will do to make a few cocktails), some strips of orange peel, a cinnamon stick, three cloves and some sugar or honey, to taste.
To prepare, simmer the apple juice with the strips of orange peel and the cinnamon stick and cloves. You’ll want to do this for up to 10 minutes or until the flavours have infused. Now, simply sweeten to taste and serve each drink with a little orange peel.
It’s time to push that fizzy pop to the back of the fridge, then – the mocktails will well and truly top your list just as soon as you give them a go.