Coltivare recently unveiled a special menu of “zero-proof cocktails.” You may also know their stage name: mocktails.
The reason for the new drinks?
Said Morgan Weber, co-owner and beverage director of Agricole Hospitality, which runs Coltivare: “My wife is pregnant.”
Say no more, buddy. When my wife was pregnant she didn’t necessarily miss alcohol, but she sure enjoyed that a bartender would take time to craft her a mocktail as layered and flavorful as any alcoholic beverage. Having a ready mocktail list is a solid move for any restaurant, but adding those drinks to the menu shows you’ve thought about your customers—and we’re not just talking about pregnant women here, but simply those who don’t drink alcohol.
Every few years it seems mocktails are about to infiltrate the scene, but then some other booze craze leaps ahead and we forget all about the process of just making great drinks, regardless of alcohol content. So, on the heels of this Coltivare move, we scoured Houston for some on-menu mocktails. Whether or not you drink alcohol, here are some you should try:
Coltivare: Garden Fauxsé
Bar manager Sarah Crowl-Keck and bartender Robin Aguilar collaborated on this herbal summer delight using lemon and lime juice, hibiscus syrup, simple syrup, tonic water, egg white, basil, and fennel pollen. With its hibiscus-pink hue it may be mistaken for rosé … thus the name.
The Pass & Provisions: Virgin Mary
The virgin bloody mary dates back to around the 1940s, so there’s nothing necessarily innovative about making this popular brunch cocktail a mocktail. That said, The Pass & Provisions uses yuzu kosho (chili and citrus paste) and togarashi (a spicy assortment of chili peppers) to push the tomato drink into the danger zone. It’s a fresh take on a well-known option.
Yauatcha: Strawberry Moon
The Chinese tea house inside the Galleria includes mocktails on its drink menu as “tea coolers” and “fruit blends.” There’s plenty of variety, but try this sweet, cool concoction with yuzu juice, hibiscus, and fennel-infused strawberry syrup. Topo Chico (nearly a mocktail necessity) and mint top this baby off (along with a lot of ice).
Benjy’s: Get Figgy With It
The brunch menu includes a dedicated mocktails list, and all the drinks here are made with few ingredients. That’s no issue with this fig drink, boosted by a healthy dose of orange zest and mint leaves. The peach-colored drink is quite refreshing and goes with just about anything on Benjy’s’ daily brunch list.
Dish Society: Virgin Mojito
Basically, this is “hold the rum,” but it’s wildly effective. The reason? Have you ever enjoyed a slightly sweet club soda with mint and lime? It’s perfect for a hot summer day … or really any time of the year. It’s under Dish Society’s “house elixirs” menu, along with a tart lemonberry.