Off-The-Menu Summer Mocktails When You’re Not In The Mood For Alcohol
Let’s face it, drinking isn’t for everyone. At least not all the time. Sometimes people just do it to be polite. But what they really want is a tall order of Sprite or (gasp) ice water. How dare they.
But non-drinkers shouldn’t feel bad about not wanting to partake in the night’s debauchery. If they want to be free of hangovers or recovery meals at 4 a.m., they should have the option to choose their non-poison.
And with that, here are some places and drinks that have zero alcohol but look like they do so you’re free from judging eyes.
If you’re in the QC vicinity and are looking for a nice spot to just relax and take in a view of the Quezon City skyline, the Nautilus Whiskey Bar at the top of Prime Hotel along Sgt. Esguerra is pretty chill.
Ask the bartender, Paul, about his off-menu selection of signature mocktails and he’ll tell you that the Apple Mojito is awesome for this hot summer.
If you’re more of a margarita drinker, he makes this Cherry Margarita that’ll surely hit the spot.
For Ortigas dwellers, two spots that offer refreshing mocktails are On the Rocks at Industrie Food Loft and Tittos Latin BBQ & Brew. Not to mention they have a range of appetizers to choose from to enjoy your libations with.
On the Rocks, Industrie Food Loft
The Lychee Mojito is a top pick for people who are looking for something that closely resembles the real thing. They don’t scrimp on the lychee either, unlike some bars that just want you to taste a semblance of the fruit. Here, you get your money’s worth and so much more at P60/glass.
Their other bestseller is the Strawberry Blueberry Slushie which is essentially a frozen margarita without the tequila. It’s got the perfect elements for a summer drink—the divine cool of blended ice + fresh fruity goodness.
Strawberry Blueberry Slushie
All drinks at On the Rocks can be spiked into a cocktail for just an additional P75 for rum and tequila, P85 for vodka, P105 for gin and scotch. So if you suddenly find yourself craving for that kick, all you need to do is shell out a couple of bucks to get it.
At Tittos, the mocktail is also an off-menu pursuit, so you can call over the bartender and ask him for the Red Summer, a mocktail reminiscent of a sangria. It has blueberry, raspberry, and a hint of mint.
If you find yourself in Makati and not in the mood to do a crawl and you just want to stay put in one location, the Encima Roofdeck Restaurant at City Garden Hotel is a good place to hang until sunset. To get you in the mood for that, you can order the Annalisa.
If you’re looking for a more somber place to get your mocktail on, you can check out Lan Kwai Speakeasy along E. Abada in Katipunan or if you’re further down south, LIT at Serendra in BGC.
Lan Kwai is a small joint that looks straight out of a Wong Kar Wai movie. The red neon lights set the tone for a night of deep conversation and revelations. They offer a few juices and other non-alcoholic drinks, but the Citrus Fizz is what will quench your thirst.
LIT is one of the few whiskey bars around, not just in BGC. They specialize in Japanese whiskey to be exact. Their selection is top-notch, and their ambience feels like it transports you to the land of the rising sun itself
Mocktail is on the menu, but if you order it, the bartender, Aqui, will ask you what kind of drink you’re looking for before he offers you some of the mocktails available to suit your needs.
The Sakura City-pop is their take on simple tonic water, but with a special ingredient that fits its name—cherry blossom syrup. It looks sophisticated with the dried lemon garnish and the metal straw. Perfect for the person looking to enjoy the night without anyone suspecting they’re not drinking.
La Passionata is a tasty number that has real passionfruit pulp/seeds. It’s rare to get a passionfruit drink that’s made with the real thing instead of a ready-made syrup.
Even without the alcohol, do drink responsibly. Those calories can still rack up quite a danger! Cheers!
Restaurant Information: Nautilus Whiskey Bar Roofdeck, Prime Hotel, Sgt. Esguerra Avenue, Tomas Morato, Quezon City On the Rocks Industrie Food Loft, Second Floor, City Golf Plaza, Julia Vargas Avenue, Ugong, Pasig City Tittos Latin BBQ & Brew 16 East Capitol Drive, Kapitolyo, Pasig City Encima Roofdeck Restaurant Roofdeck, City Garden Hotel Makati, 7870 Durban Street Corner Makati Avenue, Poblacion, Makati City Lan Kwai Speakeasy 42 Esteban Abada Street, Loyola Heights, Quezon City LIT Ground Floor, Serendra, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City
Photos by Chris Clemente