The best spots for alcohol-free brews, beers and booch in and around Leeds
Whatever January has in store for you, there are plenty of venues in Leeds that stock a great range of low and no drinks alongside their full-strength products. While January is often a month of sobriety, we reckon it’s worth finding alcohol-free drinks that you can enjoy throughout the year. They can be a great tool for moderating your drinking, scratching the itch for something flavourful but with none of the booze.
Eat Your Greens is a great spot for anyone who is looking for something interesting to sup but without the alcohol. It stocks a selection of alcohol-free beers, including brews from Lervig and some European lagers and wheat beers. Its hot drink selection is vast, including coffee beans local roasters Echelon Coffee and Girls Who Grind Coffee, a company supporting women throughout the coffee industry. A variety of teas from Birdhouse Tea and iced coffee from Minor Figures are also available. Soft drinks options include seasonal homemade sodas, Shozu probiotic seltzer, and a number of kombuchas, some of which are from Equinox. This organic kombucha producer is located just down the road in Hebden Bridge and its drinks are packed with organic acids. The team at Eat Your Greens also serve a selection of wine alternatives and pressed organic juices.
The venue serves a selection of dishes that celebrate the best produce of the season, and also operates a shop where you can buy fruit and veg, tinned goods, and a carefully curated selection of clothing and homeware. A truly unique spot in the city centre.
Eat Your Greens 42 New York Street, Leeds, LS2 7DY
From perfectly seasoned okra fries to dank IPAs, Bundobust is known for delivering flavour bombs. This is true of its alcohol-free drinks also, there’s something for everyone. The carefully curated non-alcoholic cocktail menu is full of Indian influences, with lots of mango, coconut, and cumin. Try the Nimbu Pani for a real taste of Bombay, this spiced lemonade is a popular refreshment on hot days in India. You’ll also find the smoothest lassi in town, as well as a variety of juices and sodas. This month they have a collaborative soda made with Cloudwater Soda, a spiced tropical fruit medley called Spiced Fruit Chaat. And of course, a staple in any Indian home, the House Chai is made with a secret spice blend. Check out the beer fridge for a selection of the best in low and no brews from across the UK and beyond.
Bundobust 6 Mill Hill, Leeds LS1 5DQ
The Hedonist bar is an award-winning spot in the city centre, and is perfect if you’re trying to cut down on your alcohol intake. It has added a number of cocktails to its menu which have been designed to contain just one unit of alcohol. Perfect if you plan to enjoy a few but want to minimise the impact. The team is friendly and always happy to come up with drinks that suit your needs, so get chatting about what you enjoy and they’ll be able to come up with something delicious and booze-free. The Hedonist is a seasonal concept bar, which means that each season it changes its theme, taking inspiration from around the world. The bar has taken on a number of identities including a gin kitchen, wintery liquor store, and ski lodge. We can’t wait to see what it does next.
Hedonist 156 Briggate, Leeds, LS1 6LY
Okay, okay, it’s out of town, but if you want an exceptional dining experience with the best alcohol-free drinks menu I have ever seen, it’s worth the journey. This is a drinks menu that makes you feel just as important as those spending money on wine, there really is something for everyone, with over 50 options available. It offers the usual hot drinks, juices, and softs. Then there’s an extensive beer selection, a few wine alternatives, and the likes of Real Kombucha, a premium booch popular in fine dining spots. It even stocks digestif-style spirits, so you can enjoy that slow sipping drink after your meal.
The Moorcock Inn Moor Bottom Lane, Norland, Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire, HX6 3RP
Arcadia does an exceptional job of serving its non-drinking customers, and it also gets bonus points for having a strict "no Otley Runs" policy. The venue is also accessible to wheelchair users, and there’s a really strong sense of community amongst regulars. It’s the kind of place you can go on your own and enjoy a natter with the bar staff and the locals, as well as meet some good dogs. Sounds pretty perfect, right? Now add in what is probably the city's most extensive list of alcohol-free beers and you’ve got yourself the ultimate mindful drinking destination. The beers cover a range of styles, including the likes of Erdinger Alokoholfrei, Jever Fun, and Flensburger Radler. There's even a milk stout from Nogne in the fridge. There are also some local brews including Virgin Mary, a crisp 0.5% pale ale from Ilkley Brewery. For something more tropical, try the collaborative IPA from North Brewing Co and Brulo, which is bursting with mango and guava.
Arcadia 34 Arndale Centre, Otley Road, LS6 2UE
Speaking of local brews, have you tried the alcohol-free beers from Ridgeside? It recently released Littler Bitter, a 0.5% take on a best bitter. This pours a stunning chestnut shade, and showcases rich, dark malts and English hops. It also makes Light & Sound, a 0.5% light and hazy IPA. But my favourite in the range has to be Nothing But The Rain. The hop additions are changed every time this pale ale is brewed, which means it delivers something new and exciting every time. We see breweries doing this all the time with full-strength beers, creating a range of releases that excite customers every time. I love that Ridgeside is delivering that same experience for its non-drinking customers.
Ridgeside Brewing Co Unit 24, Penraevon 2 Ind. Est, Jackson Road, Leeds, LS7 2AW
This is a popular spot with bartenders, and for good reason. The cocktails are fantastic, and there’s also a section on the menu called ‘Sobriety Social Club’, where you’ll find sparkling teas, alcohol-free cocktails, and homemade shrubs. Shrubs gained popularity during the prohibition era when vinegar was already being used to preserve fruits, and to make water more palatable. When the consumption of alcohol was banned, people looked for alternatives. Using sugar, fruit, and vinegar, shrubs pack a punch and usually present with well-balanced complexity of sweet and tart flavours. We love the care and attention the Watermark puts into developing its homemade drinks.
The Watermark 3 Cross Belgrave St, Leeds LS2 8JP
MOJO make a selection of Cocktails using Lyres Spirits. Lyres is an Australian company and has the most extensive range of alcohol-free spirits of any brand. Its range even includes an absinth alternative. This makes its products perfect for reinventing classic and modern cocktails with none of the alcohol. MOJO also make a CBD cocktail called Mellow Mood, using apple, pineapple, mint, lime juice and CBD oil. If cocktails aren’t your thing, you’ll find a few alcohol-free beers in the fridge.
MOJO 18 Merrion Street, Leeds, LS1 6PQ
Where to buy alcohol-free drinks in Leeds
You’ll find a few bits in your average supermarket, but here are some spots that stock some more exciting products. Caspar’s Bottle Shop has a range of over 30 alcohol-free beers and ciders from the UK and the wider beer world. You’ll find a style for everyone, whether you’re a lager drinker, or prefer something sour, or dark. Another great spot for alcohol-free beer is Brownhill & Co, and this January you can enjoy free shipping from its online shop. It stocks some great locally brewed alcohol-free beers, and usually has some exciting offerings from Europe in the fridge as well. Harvey Nichols has its Foodmarket on the fourth floor, and this is the best place in the city to buy a broad selection of alcohol-free products. It stocks a number of premium alcohol-free spirits from brands such as Fluere, Seedlip, and Caleño. You’ll also find some of the best wine and sparkling alternatives on their shelves, and a selection of sought after European beers.
Caspar’s Bottle Shop 65 Potternewton Ln, Leeds, LS7 3LW
Brownhill & Co 30 Central Rd, Leeds, LS1 6DE
Harvey Nichols 107-111 Briggate, Leeds, LS1 6AZ
Read again: Alcohol-free drinks: what’s the point?
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