If you’ve ever wondered “what to drink when you’re not drinking”, Seedlip is the exciting new non-alcoholic “spirit” that has the answer.
A mix of herbs, spices, peels and barks and then distilled, Seedlip allows non-drinkers to swap super-sweet mocktails for something that tastes just as good the real deal.
Whether you’re pregnant, teetotal, the night’s designated driver, keeping an eye on your health or simply don’t feel like dealing with a pounding head the next day – this clever, distilled drink means you don’t need to miss out on that espresso martini or cosmo.
Currently, there are three varieties to try: Garden 108, made with handpicked peas and traditional garden herbs, offering flavours of spearmint, rosemary and thyme; Spice 94, an aromatic blend of All Spice, bark and citrus; and Grove 42, a zesty combination of orange, lemongrass and ginger.
You can drink them with a simple tonic/soda mixer and garnish or make them into your favourite cocktails.
Oh, and they’re all sugar, sweetener and calorie free – bonus!
Luxury Escapes chats to Seedlip’s founder, Ben Branson, to find out more about this exciting new development in a world of boring soft drinks and calorific mocktails.
Where did the idea for producing a non-alcoholic spirit come from?
Seedlip didn’t actually begin as a business idea at all! Whilst looking into different herbs to grow at home I came across a book online, written in 1651, called The Art of Distillation. It documented distilled herbal remedies that were non-alcoholic. Out of curiosity I bought a little copper still and began experimenting in my kitchen with herbs from garden.
I was out for dinner a few months later at a nice restaurant in London — great food menu, amazing cocktails and I asked the waitress what they had that was non-alcoholic and she just looked at me rather sadly and came back with a horrible fruity sweet mocktail! I felt like an idiot, couldn’t finish it, it didn’t go with the food and the dots started to join…
Could I do something with my copper still, my experience in design, my family’s farm? Was I the only one who felt so disappointed with the options if you’re not drinking? I started researching the market and began to understand that the world was actually at the beginning of a paradigm shift in what we’re drinking and the mission became clear!
Solve the dilemma of what to drink when you’re not drinking, invent the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirits and continue my family’s 300 year legacy of working with the land.
Do you think there is a bigger demand these days for quality non-alcoholic drinks?
People are becoming increasingly mindful of their health, what they put in their bodies, where their food and drink comes from and ensuring we present our “best selves” on social media. These societal shifts are impacting whether we want to drink alcohol or not and are resulting in us globally drinking less but better, favouring more meaningful experiences over functional “let’s go out drinking” evenings. Sober is the new black as they say!
What is your favourite cocktail to make with Seedlip?
Oooh, that’s a tough one… I’m gonna choose two! We have just launched our newest product, Seedlip Grove 42, and I am really enjoying it with tonic and garnishing it with a slice of orange. Super simple.
We have also just launched a Cocktail recipe book with Penguin and 25 of the world’s best bartenders. There are simple recipes to make at home and then some really complex ones. I asked my favourite bar in Sydney, PS40, if they would work on a recipe. Michael & Thor, who own the bar, blew my mind with “Melondramatic” – it contains Seedlip Spice 94, Kola Nut Tea, Rectified Watermelon Juice and their Lemon Myrtle PS Soda, garnished with a Watermelon ball. Delicious!
As you said, mocktails can be so sweet! Is Seedlip a healthier alternative to sugar-laden juices?
Seedlip’s distilled, non-alcoholic spirits are sugar free, sweetener free and we don’t use any artificial flavours, so cocktails made with Seedlip begin without the sugary base that is traditionally used for mocktails, which are usually just a blend of sugar and fruit.
Seedlip cocktails are balanced, bitter & adult and explore pairing interesting ingredients to create grown-up flavour profiles, whether through a simple Seedlip & tonic or more complex recipes like our NOgroni®.
We take every element very seriously, from the glass chosen, the kind of ice, the perfect garnish, even to the name. All these parts add up to creating an experience for the guest that doesn’t feel like a compromise!
How is Seedlip going down?
Initially I made 1,000 bottles and had no idea what was going to happen! They sold out in just three weeks, the next batch in two-and-a-half days and the third sold out online in half an hour. It was crazy!
In terms of the biggest Seedlip drinkers? Well, pregnant ladies continue to be our biggest fans!
What, for you, is the perfect occasion for Seedlip?
There are two that spring to mind. Getting home from work on a Monday evening and making a Seedlip & Tonic is a great way to mark the end of the working day, start cooking dinner and begin to switch off. The second is if I’m driving and out with friends; being able to have a great cocktail, feel part of the group and not feel like I’m missing out is exactly the kind of occasion Seedlip was made for!
Sounds fab! Where can we get some?
Seedlip launched just three years ago and from small beginnings in my kitchen we are now working with over 6,000 of the world’s best bars, restaurants, hotels and retailers across 25 countries. The response we have had in Australia in such a short time has been strong evidence of the changes in behaviour and we are proud to work with the likes of David Jones, Dan Murphy’s and over 50 hatted restaurants in Australia.
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