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We’re five days into Sober October, y’all! (I say “we”, meaning anyone who’s decided to lay off the sauce this month and/or beyond, aka maybe me? Your narrator Megan Burns? I skipped the first two days but am currently on track for a little abstinence.) You may be flyin’ high with your new dry routine (maybe even partially thanks in part to these great tips we got from our friend Molly Ruggere), but maybe some of you are starting to feel the slightest twinge of boredom. In which case we vote you make things a bit more interesting by scooping up some of the city’s best mocktails!

I asked our very own Marissa Rubenstein to help me out with this one since she’s got loads of great recommendations; here are her picks for spots to try out:

The Royal 

I love love love love love The Royal. When the BYT offices were nearby I was there almost every day. Not only do they have super creative coffee and espresso drinks (if you’re feeling like caffeine instead of the massive amounts of sugar that is most zero proof drinks), but just tell the bartender you’re looking for a mocktail and they’ll whip up something fun and delicious. 

Wild Days 

Sometimes they have a non-alcoholic drink menu, sometimes they don’t. But they usually have seedlip available (in fact a bartender there once told me they can barely keep it in stock as it’s so popular, which makes me so happy people order it) and can make you something “fun and non-alcoholic”. Which is what I ask for because I hate the word mocktail. 


The restaurant with the world’s worst SEO (NOT THE GYM!) has really great zero proof cocktails; you have to ask for them, but they can usually make one of their highlighted cocktails just without the alcohol. 

Elizabeth’s Gone Raw

One of my absolute favorite restaurants in DC (now offering dine in AND carry out) this vegan restaurant is one of the few that highlights a mocktail offering on the carry out menu – I might just treat myself to dinner and a Blushed (with raspberries, lime juice, coconut water, and mint) this weekend.  

Coconut Club

Okay so in takeout cocktail realness – Coconut Club not only offers Caribbean sodas but also is currently offering a 32oz jug of pina colada mix – filled with coconut cream, pineapple, and lime, and it can EASILY be made non-alcoholic by just…not adding alcohol. 

Five solid options right there, but just in case you’re not feeling inspired yet, here are a few others for your consideration:

The Gibson

While it’s scheduled to close indefinitely on October 31st, you’ve got a whole month to enjoy two of their amazing non-alcoholic drinks – Phantasms Such As I ($7) features cranberry-maple shrub, aromatic bitters and lemon tonic, while Mad Reveller ($7) contains raspberry, lemon, celery bitters and ginger ale.

O-Ku Sushi

O-Ku has a nice trio of spirit-free beverages on its menu, including Golden Ox (mango puree, orange juice, lime juice and ginger beer), House Thai Tea (black tea, vanilla, cardamom and cinnamon) and Lotus (hibiscus soda, strawberry syrup and lemonade); each is priced at a reasonable $6.

12 Stories

If you’re in the mood for some major views, there are two solid non-alcoholic options at 12 Stories; there’s the Ginger Snap (fresh ginger juice, pineapple, agave, lemon, mint + soda water) and the Raspberry Ricky (raspberry, cucumber lime + soda water), both of which sound ultra-refreshing and clock in at $8 a pop.

Artechouse’s AR Bar To-Go

Every weekend since late August, Artechouse’s AR Bar To-Go has been offering some great drinks, one of which is non-alcoholic; Albaricoque by Colada Shop features a tasty combination of apricot puree, lime juice, mint syrup and coconut water.

Columbia Room

There’s a v. sophisticated $8 zero-proof cocktail available via Columbia Room’s menu; the Bay Leaf Soda includes the obvious (bay leaf soda) along with citrus ash oleo and acid phosphate. 

Have you got any go-to’s? Let us know about them! Feel free to email [email protected], or tweet them to @BYT

Featured image via Columbia Room