Published: Tuesday, Jun. 21st, 2022

Dry Wedding Drinks: Non-Alcoholic Wine, Beer, and Spirits for Your Ceremony and Reception

Illustrations by Jessica Levey

Offer your wedding guests an alternative to the same old boozy open bar options


You want your guests to actually remember the most important day of your life, right? You’re paying a lot of money to make the wedding day memorable, in fact. 


So why not offer your guests a few mindful alcohol-free drink alternatives at that open bar, instead the same-old, boring, boozy options? 


They’ll remember way more about your big day this way. Not to mention their photos will actually be in focus, and those inevitable impromptu toasts and speeches won’t wander into NSFW territory while your grandparents are still in the room… 


Related: Avoiding a Terrible Wedding Toast -- What *Not* To Do


Alcohol-free cocktails, wines, and beers are gaining in popularity at events like weddings, vow renewals, and engagement parties faster than you can say ‘hold the vodka.’ (And not just during Dry January!) They’re creative, refreshing, healthy, and often much, much less expensive than their boozy brethren. 


Non-alcoholic beverages are creative, refreshing, healthy, and often much less expensive than their boozy brethren.

stylized illustration of colorful non-alcoholic and alcohol free mocktails to serve at a dry wedding


Don’t forget about the unity toast!


 Many couples also prefer a non-alcoholic option for their unity ceremony toast. 


Wine and cocktail toasts are a fun addition to a wedding ceremony, but many couples leave them out in order to stay clear-headed while they exchange their wedding vows. Alcohol-free alternatives give these couples the option of a unity toast, without the risk of cloudy thinking.


An Important Note for hosting strict non-drinkers:

Most ‘non-alcoholic’ beers, wines, and spirits still contain trace amounts of alcohol. While some people won’t have an issue with this, many people in recovery from alcohol and substance abuse and addiction choose to strictly avoid alcohol as part of sober living, even in trace amounts. To support these guests and any others who wish to completely avoid alcohol, including guests who are allergic to alcohol, it’s helpful to label all non-alcohol drink options that contain trace amounts of alcohol. 


stylized illustration of lemons, lime, and cherries to be used in non-alcoholic drinks


Here are a few suggestions to help you start planning the perfect non-alcoholic wedding offerings. 


Non-Alcoholic Drink Options for Your Ceremony and Reception



1. Non-alcoholic wines 


Keep things simple with a wine alternative that tastes and looks just as good as the real thing. Non-alcoholic wines come in all your favorites – reds, whites, roses, and sparkling varieties. 


Fans of booze-free drinking rave about brands like Acid League, with their celebrated Wine Proxies; Thomson & Scott, with their Noughty Alcohol-Free Sparkling Rosé; Ariel, with their Cabernet Sauvignon Non-Alcoholic Wine; Rondel Zero, with their bubbly Non-Alcoholic Cava; Surely; Stella Rosa; and countless others.



2. Non-alcoholic beers


Non-alcoholic beers have come a long way since your uncle’s ‘near beer.’ Modern options are as hoppy, flavorful, and varied as their alcoholic siblings. 


Try Brooklyn Special Effects Hoppy Amber Non-Alcoholic Brew; Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier, with their NA twist on the classic wheat beer; Clausthaler, who boast the original non-alcoholic brew; Sam Adams’ Just the Have, a booze-free IPA out of Boston; Athletic Brewing, and their All Out Stout; Hairless Dog Brewing Company; Suntory; and countless others. 


3. Non-alcoholic cocktails in a can 


If you want to serve cocktails without the clean-up (and bartender), consider dry cocktails in a can! 


Try Partake Radler, a Arnold-Palmer-style sipping beverage out of Calgary, Canada; Recess Zero-Proof Margarita; Casmara Club Leisure Sodas, with their sparkling amaro sodas; Proteau, with their zero-proof plant-based beverages;  Spirity Cocktails, with negronis and Moscow mules made from fermented teas; and many others.




4. Mocktails with all the frills 


If you want a beautifully prepared mocktail to use during a unity toast, or to serve at a full bar during the reception, consider a few mocktails with all the frills. We’re talking tiny umbrellas, salt rimmed glasses, olives, twists, and more! Holding back on the booze doesn’t mean holding back on style! 


You’ll find a number of non-alcoholic recipes online, or order a copy of a gorgeous print book to keep as a memento of the day. We recommend The Guide to Zero-Proof Cocktails, by Sharelle Klaus & Kira Bottles of Dry Soda Company. 



5. Soda staples that never go out of style 


No non-alcoholic drink list would be complete without a few timeless soda options. Strict non-drinkers, children, and other guests will be grateful for the option to drink a spicy ginger beer or sweet classic cola ‘on the rocks,’ and you’ll probably want to have a few of these around as mixers for your drinking guests, too. 


Try Barritt's, Reeds, or Rachel’s for ginger beers; Blue Sky, Coca-Cola, or Pepsi for a classic cola; Boylan, Fitz’s, and Virgil's for craft root beers; Topo Chico, Le Croix, and countless other for canned tonic waters, flavored seltzer waters, and more.  


illustrations of soda cans by Jessica Levey for a booze-free wedding or reception

Illustrations by Jessica Levey



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