I can't really tolerate alcohol since going paleo, but I miss the color (I know it doesn't make sense but I love the way light shines through a glass of white wine or champagne) and flavors of beer, wine, and cider. I get a buzz from one glass of wine now, and I really don't like it. What's a good substitute for a craving besides all of the non-alcoholic versions?
I am famous/infamous for using water kefir as my substitute. My friends call it my "hooch" because apparently they can smell a hint of alcohol when I drink it instead of the sodas/diet sodas/sweet tea I used to drink around them.
If you haven't heard of water kefir, it's a probiotic drink which self-carbonates if sealed. Here's a link to a YouTube video by someone else.
Option #2 is that I bought a Soda Stream (CO2 dispenser) so I can make my own carbonated water at home and just add a wedge of lemon or lime.
Oh man, you really can go all out with this one. Barring any allergies or things that might impede your goals in any way how about:
Use fun glasses - wine, high ball, double high ball.. whatever floats your canoe :)
Here, Green Tea Mojito NOTE: Don't want green tea? Use any tea you like :)
2 tsp. Matcha - powdered green tea
3 oz. hot water
6 mint leaves
5 tsp. lime juice
2 tsp. simple syrup - you can make using coconut sugar
2 lime wedges
Seltzer/Club Soda + Ice cubes
Cover matcha with hot water - not boiling and stir well. Pour into an ice-filled tall glass. In a separate mixing glass, muddle (smashsmashsmash) the mint and lime juice with simple syrup, then pour contents into the tall glass. Squeeze the lime wedges into the drink and top with soda water and additional ice if needed.
I drink lots of water with gas, easy to flavor with lemon juice/or wedge or any sliced fruit to add that touch of color you are looking for.
Drink it out of your favorite crystal as you would your wine, its a visual thing but it helps!
I like to drink sparkling water with a dash or two of bitters. My favorites are angostura bitters and Fee brothers. They are ingredients you can find at most bars, they add color and flavor, and only a little bit of alcohol.
Another thing I've been doing lately is a sangria of sorts. I have sparkling water with a splash of red wine. It looks like a sparkling rose and tastes great. I'll often add a squeeze of orange, lemon, or lime.
Ame makes yummy sparkling herbal beverages that are in some ways the same colors/flavor notes as wine: White, rose, red, etc.
I used to get them at Trader Joes, but I haven't seen it there in years. I found this place that still has it after a quick google search: http://www.janetbond.com/ame-sparkling-drink.html
Thanks for the ideas! I have an Isi club soda maker that never gets a day off, and I've experimented a lot with flavors and herbs. (I like Peychaud's bitters too!) The water kefir and Kombucha sounds like they might meet my needs...I get to piddle around with them and then drink it. (Mark's Daily Apple just posted instructions on making Kombucha) I used to brew beer and miss doing that as well. I'll probably break out that Green Tea Mojito recipe at lunch!