The holidays can be a gluttonous time. Celebrations abound, drinks flow freely and calories don’t count. Whether at a company party, a friendly reunion, or as a refuge from family, imbibing is a popular way to pass the time in the November and December months. But now that the holidays are over it’s time to reign it back in.
Deemed “Dry January,” the first month of the new year is bursting with resolutions and intent to reform. With a better self in mind, those who participate in the Dry January challenge are determined to go a month without alcohol.
Endeavors for improving your health are always a worthy cause, and many local restaurants are supporting participants with special offerings.
If you are trying to recover and reset in the new year by refraining from alcohol, here are our top 10 suggestions for an painless and pleasant Dry January:
L.A.’s first walk-up bar, Prank is located on the corner of 11th and Hope in DTLA’s South Park neighborhood. Offering organic, antibiotic-and hormone-free, non-GMO bar food in addition to an intriguing menu of non-alcoholic beverages, Prank is a go-to for enjoying the bar scene without indulging in the bar. Our Dry January suggestions? Sip on the Anti-Inflammatory made with pineapple, ginger, agave, limonene terpene and cayenne. Or try the Super Immunity, a drink full of healthy ingredients like apple cider vinegar, garlic, turmeric, horseradish and habanero, which will help to kick that pervasive winter cold to the curb.
Easily one of our favorite eating atmospheres, Salazar vibes along the Los Angeles River in Frogtown. While they specialize in Sonoran-style BBQ, bar manager Adan Maldonado’s non-alcoholic offerings deserve a great deal of recognition. Our Dry January menu favorites are their agua frescas, including their dragon fruit-based La Fruta del Dragon and staple Thai coconut milk horchata.
Set high atop the recently-opened Santa Monica Proper Hotel, Calabra is within blocks from the beach, offering Mediterranean-inspired dining along with an upscale bar and lounge scene. Their highlighted Dry January non-alcoholic beverages are the Fountain of Youth, made with raw honey and orange juice, and the Alchemist, a healthy blast of kale, spinach and aloe vera. Come here to enjoy the ocean breeze and raise a sober glass to a healthy 2020.
Through January, this modern robatayaki is offering an exclusive Dry January cocktail menu for patrons of its Arts District establishment. These special non-alcoholic beverages are made with Seedlip, a proprietary non-alcoholic spirit base that offers complex flavor for a more sophisticated mocktail. Our Dry January INKO NITO favorites are the Spring St. Punch, made with yuzu, shiso, pineapple and tea, as well as the Sakura Girl, a (non-)intoxicating blend of lemon, ginger, sakura and cranberry cordial.
We get it, part of the allure of participating in Dry January is avoiding the bar scene altogether, which is why we are adding Cafe Gratitude’s juice cleanses to our list. While their juices have always been non-alcoholic, they are offering half off of all cleanses started during the month of January, which lends to the financial appeal of alcohol abstinence. When coupled with the health benefits of the juice, it’s a viable option for your 2020 resolution goals.
Located in the Malibu Beach Inn, the CBC is celebrating its third annual Dry January by partnering with Seedlip Distilled Non-Alcoholic Spirits and offering a wide assortment of handcrafted drinks that are arguably more delicious than any cocktail you’ve ever had. The menu includes five non-alcoholic cocktails with clever names, such as the “No Booze Cruise.” Each drink is curated by resident bar director Josh Curtis and designed to be enjoyed along with the dreamy views of the ocean.
Inspired by New Orleans, it may be hard to imagine a visit to this DTLA restaurant without indulging in their cocktail menu. Hear us out, however, as Preux & Proper expertise extends beyond soul food and strong drinks. Embodying southern culture in full, Preux & Proper’s hospitality shines through in their inclusion of Dry January to their regular menu. Five specialized non-alcoholic drinks created by beverage director Kassady Wiggins are available throughout the month of January. Piquing our interest is the Preux Palmer, with it’s freshly squeezed lemonade, lavender and black tea and the aptly-named Off The Sauce with pomegranate juice, lemon and fennel sugar.
One of the best bars for a drink, this Pasadena establishment’s innovative menu includes non-alcoholic offerings. Brady Weise, a bartender with Raymond’s 1886 bar since it opened, has created a limited mocktail just for Dry January. Called the Cinnabark Swizzle, this non-alcoholic cocktail is made up of cinnamon syrup with pineapple, grapefruit, and cranberry juices all shaken and poured over ice. The winter feel of the drink along with the ambiance of the historic building creates the perfect seasonal moment to sip and anticipate the year ahead.
This family-owned Southeast Asian Restaurant & Bar is known for its bone broth. The flavor doesn’t end there, however, as manger Eric Tjahyadi (brother to executive chef Erwin) proves with his unique Dry January creation: the Dragon Fruit Lychee Lemonade. Made with pink dragon fruit concentrate, lychee juice and fresh lemonade, each sip packs a punch to your taste buds. If you’re looking to elevate your senses, add this Pasadena restaurant to your Dry January list.
Rounding out our top 10 list is one of West Hollywood’s best restaurants: WeHo Bistro. A gourmet French Bistro and craft cocktail bar known for its ambiance and attentive staff, their Dry January menu is one of the best we’ve seen, with multiple distinct offerings each with their own flavor and feel. Created by in-house bartenders Jimmy Seargeant and Wrennie West, the menu includes the Pina Nojito, Rose Bud, Peach Mocktini and our favorite, the Whitehound: a sparkling drink made with grapefruit and rosemary.
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.