There are still a few days left of dry January and if you’ve been putting it off, Seedlip distilled non-alcoholic spirits make a good argument for a dry February and beyond.
The zero-calorie spirits are distilled at higher temperatures to burn off the alcohol and are made from botanicals that come in a variety of flavors. Seedlip Spice 94 is a blend of Jamaican allspice berry and cardamom distillates with two barks with a bright citrus finish. Mixed with ginger syrup and fresh lime juice, it makes for a refreshing Spice Mule.
The Garden 108 is a floral blend of hand-picked peas and homegrown hay from founder Ben Branson’s farm in the U.K., with traditional garden herb distillates that makes a kickass No Groni mixed with nonalcoholic vermouth and bitters; it could even fool a gin drinker. The Grove 42 is a citrusy blend of oranges that matches well with ginger and apple juice. The How Soon Is Now is a uniquely flavored drink combining Seedlip Garden 108 with blackberry fassionola shrub, cinnamon, orange and lime. The No Booze Cruise is a blend of Seedlip Spice 94, passion fruit, hibiscus and grapefruit served in a Greta Garbo glass.
“We see the focus on health and wellness here in L.A. and even Sydney and London,” Branson told L.A. Weekly during a mocktail demonstration and lunch last week overlooking the pier at the Malibu Beach Inn, where Seedlip is served.
“You have some of the best bars in the world here, as well as highly recognized chefs and bartenders and people who want to limit their alcohol consumption. But they still want to go out to socialize and sip a grown-up drink. The world is starting to change its relationship with alcohol — it’s not just about getting drunk,” Branson says.
The Seedlip story started in Branson’s English garden when he was trying to solve the dilemma of what to drink when you’re not drinking. He came across a book from the 17th century called “The Art of Distillation,” which was a recipe book for medicine. He bought himself a copper still and started experimenting with the peas, rosemary, camphor and other herbs in his garden and the business took off. He brought Seedlip to the United States about a year ago and cocktails are being served at Otium, Inko Nito,
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The bottle labels are illustrations intertwining the magic found on his family farm, including wild hares, pea tendrils, ginger root, wild foxes and squirrels.
Find local Seedlip purveyors at seedlipdrinks-us.com.