- What are Zero-Proof Drinks?
- Benefits vs. Drawbacks of Zero Proof Drinks
- Where Can You Get Zero-Proof Drinks In New Jersey?
- I Need Help Getting or Staying Sober. Where Can I Find Drug or Alcohol Treatment In New Jersey
- Zero-proof drinks are a growing market segment of low-to-no ABV beverages that appear to be real alcohol but aren’t.
- Zero-proof drinks can be a resource for people in alcohol recovery, or they can be a hindrance. It’s up to you to know your limits.
- There are plenty of places to get zero-proof drinks in New Jersey.
- If you are addicted to alcohol in NJ, seek treatment at Absolute Awakenings.
Zero-proof drinks are an increasingly popular option in NJ because they taste like normal alcohol but have little to no alcohol-by-volume (ABV). It may be a great option if you’re recovering from alcohol addiction because it allows you to have fun in a social atmosphere without drinking real alcohol.
However, since zero-proof drinks still look and taste like real alcohol and are often served close to real alcoholic beverages, it could pose a danger for relapse if the sight, smell, or sounds of other people drinking are triggers for you. Be aware of your limitations before you start consuming zero-proof drinks.
What are Zero-Proof Drinks?
Zero-proof drinks are part of the emerging sober-curious movement. They are drinks that look, taste, and feel like alcohol but with little to no ABV. They have similar packaging, branding, and containers.
Many makers of zero-proof beverages use the process of distillation to recreate the familiar taste and smell of alcohol. They use alcohol to extract botanical flavors or aromas and then heat it past 173° to vaporize the alcohol. Since water and alcohol have different evaporation points (212° vs. 173°), the water stays behind while the alcohol is sequestered.
The zero-proof beverage market has seen explosive growth since the Covid-19 pandemic. Zero-proof sales are up 90% to $6.1 million, while the entire “low-to-no alcohol market” is estimated to have grown from $8 billion in 2018 to $11 billion in 2022.
Some drinks in this category are zero-proof drinks, mocktails, kombucha, kefir, or ginger ale. The biggest growth in this category is not from abstainers but rather from people who’d like to take a night off drinking without sacrificing their social life.
Benefits vs. Drawbacks of Zero Proof Drinks
While we believe in saying “no” to drinking alcohol, we should still be able to say “yes” to having fun. While it’s crucial to develop alternative sober activities in your sobriety journey, it’s still nice to be able to maintain the traditions of old relationships, such as having an evening cocktail with friends or Saturday brunch mimosas.
Choosing to drink zero-proof drinks means you get to have fun in a social atmosphere without resorting to drinking real alcohol.
While some establishments in New Jersey only carry zero-proof drinks, most establishments offer them alongside their alcohol-rich beverages as a mocktail alternative. This means you’ll be near people who are drinking the real thing.
If you have an addictive personality, the sight, smell, and sounds of people drinking real alcohol could be a relapse trigger. A relapse can set your sobriety journey back weeks, months, or even years. Know your limits, and only drink zero-proof drinks if you can handle it.
Where Can You Get Zero-Proof Drinks In New Jersey?
The Mercantile 1888
New Jersey’s first completely zero-proof cocktail bar opened in Collingswood, NJ, in 2023. They have a good vibe and a cool atmosphere, all while serving only NA beers, cocktails, and other mixed drinks.
They use only fresh ingredients from the local Collingswood farmer’s market to create seasonal, authentic drinks. During your recovery journey, this is a great spot to go to have fun, but not put yourself near any alcohol. Stop by to check out their latest zero-proof offerings.
Located inside the General Store Cooperative in Maplewood, this business is part of a locally curated assortment of rotating and permanent businesses. Established in 2021, they’ve increased zero-proof beverage offerings yearly since they opened. If you’re in Maplewood, stop by today for an eclectic shopping experience, including dry goods, baking, and NA drinks.
The Farm and Fisherman Tavern
A 2012 James Beard semifinalist for “Best New Restaurant in America,” this restaurant is committed to working with local farmers, brewers, and food artisans to create legendary food in a family-style tavern restaurant.
They have a whole section on the menu dedicated to low-to-no alcohol beverages, including drinks specifically crafted to be NA rather than just leaving the alcohol out as an afterthought. They are even experimenting with regular and fermented tea!
Located just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, stop by F&T today if you’re in the Cherry Hill, NJ area.
Samba is a hometown restaurant in Montclair serving authentic Brazilian fare. Step inside and expect soothing Latin music and rustic decor with beautiful murals. But what you’ll keep coming back for is the incredible food. Their drinks menu features a variety of juices and zero-proof drinks, including one called “Amazonia Detox.” Stop by today to get fantastic food and drinks.
An elder statesman in the zero-proof movement, Seedlip was founded in 2014 and bought by a multinational alcohol company in 2019. It was voted the best-selling and top-trending NA brand of 2022 by Drinks International.
Founder Ben Branson stumbled upon a centuries-old recipe for distilling tinctures used by physicians and used it to make zero-proof alcohols for the modern age. It’s taken the world by storm, and it can be bought in many places in New Jersey.
Use the store locator today to find some Seedlip products near you.
South + Pine
Located in the heart of Morristown, this cozy restaurant has everything you need to have a wonderful time catching up with friends. It has seasonal cuisine, fresh ingredients, rustic decor, an open kitchen, a wide patio area, and zero-proof drinks.
Most of their mocktails are low to no sugar, which makes it easy to stay healthy while having a good time. Stop by today to enjoy their chill atmosphere.
Willow and Whisk
Open for breakfast and lunch in Wyckoff, NJ, the Willow and Whisk is a family-friendly restaurant that serves great food by putting thought and soul into every bite. They use only the freshest ingredients to guarantee a sublime culinary experience.
They have a spot on their menu reserved just for house-made mocktails. These options will keep you returning to try them all, whether over breakfast or lunch. Stop in today for some mouthwatering food and good, zero-proof drinks.
The Fox & Falcon
Located in downtown South Orange, the Fox & Falcon serves modern yet upscale American cuisine. They do everything from lobster dumplings and grilled swordfish to chicken wings and giant Bavarian pretzels.
They have a small mocktail menu, which is likely to grow as the market for NA products increases. Check them out today.
The Junto Attic Bar
This one’s a treasure. In Jersey City, the Junto Attic Bar is a hidden cocktail bar above the Franklin Social Restaurant, accessed only through an unmarked door on Mercer Street. It’s got prohibition-era vibes and a wide selection of alcohol-rich and zero-proof options.
It’s meant to be a simple gathering place for friends and neighbors, inspired by Benjamin Franklin’s social club of the same name. They make mocktail versions of their regular cocktails. Keep your eyes peeled on Mercer Street for the unmarked door leading upstairs. It’s hard to find, but that’s half the fun!
No other restaurant in New Jersey feels like it was delightfully tractor-beamed from Paris, transported across the Atlantic, and deposited on our soil fully intact.
Using timeless French cuisine and the warmth of his late grandmother’s touch, chef Thomas Ciszak serves up timeless food and drinks at the restaurant, that is the wellspring of his heart’s delight. They also have a few zero-proof drinks on the menu.
If you’re in the mood for authentic French cuisine in New Jersey, stop in today at Brasserie Mémère in Closter, NJ.
Ritual Zero Proof
Started by three friends in Chicago in 2019, this zero-proof brand has defied all expectations amid its meteoric rise as an NA juggernaut.
They don’t just offer alcohol varieties like tequila with the alcohol taken out. They painstakingly recreate the taste profile using single-origin botanicals and a distillation process that creates out-of-this-world flavors.
Ritual Zero-Proof can be purchased online by the unit or through a mix-and-match subscription service they offer.
I Need Help Getting or Staying Sober. Where Can I Find Drug or Alcohol Treatment In New Jersey
Due to the toxicity of alcohol, an alcohol addiction, on average, robs you of 24-28 years of your lifetime. Staying sober is difficult because it involves a complete reinvention of yourself, your hopes, your dreams, and your future. You have to find new, sober allies to be your friends, as well as institute alternate sober activities to replace the ones that contributed to your addictive behavior.
For many years, Absolute Awakenings has been providing world-class alcohol addiction treatment in New Jersey. We can help you, too.
We have unwavering standards of care combined with a compassionate recovery team that knows what it takes to heal from alcohol addiction. Our treatment programs and therapeutic modalities are grounded in science and will be curated to form an addiction treatment plan that is as unique as you are.
We incorporate physical exercise, yoga, meditation, and a healthy diet to get you on a sober trajectory in your recovery journey. No matter how far your addiction has taken you, we can travel with you step by step–no matter how small the steps are–to get you healed and whole.
Frequently Asked Questions About Zero Proof Drinks in New Jersey
The main fear of drinking zero-proof drinks is the potential to trigger a relapse of past alcohol addiction.
Since zero-proof drinks have little to no alcohol, there are none of the same health risks associated with drinking alcohol-rich drinks. But, if you have an addictive personality, the smell, taste, and sight of zero-proof drinks could make you desire real alcohol.
An addiction relapse is serious and could set back your recovery journey for months or even years. Be aware of what your limits are.
Yes–in some US states, but only with your parent’s permission.
Federal law does not indicate a legal minimum ABV for a “malt beverage.” And, to get uninterrupted highway funding, every US state legislated the legal drinking age for malt beverages to be 21 years old. However, different states have different regulations concerning the maximum ABVs of non-alcoholic beverages and minimum ABVs of alcoholic beverages.
In New Jersey, non-alcoholic beverages of 0.5% ABV or less may be bought and consumed by people under 21.
Zero-proof alcohol is usually made of water, botanicals, bitters, and other food products.
Alcohol is added at the beginning of the distillation process to extract the flavor profile. However, it is extracted during a secondary distillation where the mixture is heated above the evaporation threshold of alcohol (173°) and below the point of water (212°).
The alcohol evaporates, condensing into liquid in another container, leaving the zero-proof alcohol behind.
 Zero Proof, Explosive Growth. Market Watch. (2023, March 28). https://www.marketwatchmag.com/zero-proof-explosive-growth/
 Aswani, S. (2022, December 15). No- and low-alcohol category value surpasses $11bn in 2022. IWSR. https://www.theiwsr.com/no-and-low-alcohol-category-value-surpasses-11bn-in-2022/
 Westman, J., Wahlbeck, K., Laursen, T. M., Gissler, M., Nordentoft, M., Hällgren, J., Arffman, M., & Ösby, U. (2015, April). Mortality and life expectancy of people with alcohol use disorder in Denmark, Finland and Sweden. Acta psychiatrica Scandinavica. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4402015/
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