In case you weren’t quite aware, March has rolled around again. What does that mean? Well, that the months of February and January have passed. As in, FebFast and Dry January are now finally over — you can drink again.
It may be that after one or two months of total sobriety, you’re looking to ease yourself back into drinking. If you didn’t take part in either of the months (guilty!), perhaps you’re intrigued by mindful drinking or even experimenting with being sober-curious. Or you’re a bit concerned that a new study shows Australia leads the world in drinking.
Although it’s trending, low-alcohol isn’t technically a “new trend”. Euromonitor raised it as one of the top six trends in alcoholic drinks in 2016. In 2019, La Trobe University found that one-third of 120,000 Australians reported they’d reduced how often — or how much- alcohol they’d drank that year.
Last year low-alcohol options were one of the predicted drinking trends. Even Neilsen in the US predicted a trend towards “healthier” drinking. In the UK, one in three young adults has cut down on their alcohol consumption.
As for 2021? Well, analytics company Global Data found that 71% of drinker are drinking less alcohol than they did before. Market research firm IWSR says the consumption of no and low alcohol drinks is expected to increase by 31% by 2024 across 10 markets — yes, one of them is Australia.
If you’re interested in trying out a low alcohol beverage — and as someone who has tried them, I recommend them — here are a few options for you. And don’t worry, there are some ideal food pairings for them as well.
Moscato & Charcuterie
First up, there’s the Dean & Monroe Icon Series Moscato — with a 6% ABV. It balances sweetness and acidity; it’s perfect for a good charcuterie board (and who doesn’t love one of those?). Fill up the board with cured meats, soft and hard cheeses and savoury crackers.
If you’re pairing it with a main meal, pair it with something spicy — the sweetness pairs beautifully.
Sauvignon Blanc & Pan-Fried Fish
The Hour Glass Sauvignon Blanc is only 5% alcohol. It’s fresh, crisp and light, with a lingering taste of florals and tropical fruits. As for what it should be accompanied with? Pan-fried fish and leafy greens.
One reviewer on Dan Murphy’s recommends pairing it with chicken schnitzel and crunchy salads.
Pinot Grigio & Calamari
Another delicious light drink that’s only 5% alcohol. The taste of The Hour Glass Pinot Grigio? Crisp apple and pear. The pairing? Grilled calamari, or any other seafood dish.
Always consume alcohol responsibly.