Dry January’s low-abv and soft-drink launches: Kopparberg, Dalston’s and beyond

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If your customers are demanding more non-alcoholic and low-abv options as the new year picks up speed, you’re in luck – a flurry of new brands, cans and bottles are making their way to market just in time for Dry January. Read on to discover the dry(ish) drinks hitting the on-trade this month


Kopparberg creates sparkling water infused with booze

Fruit cider producer Kopparberg has launched an alcohol-infused sparkling water dubbed Balans Aqua Spritz.

At 4% abv, the ready-to-drink product isn’t technically Dry-January-friendly, but it promises to appeal to health-conscious drinkers by clocking in at 60 calories or less per 250ml can.

Indeed, the company is promoting Balans as an alternative to the vodka, lime and soda – though the base is made from fermented apple juice, like Kopparberg’s other products. It’s available in two flavours: lime, and mandarin.

4% abv, RRP £1.70/25cl, Balans, info@balansdrinks.co.uk

Dalston’s unveils new soda range aimed at millennials

East London-based softs brand Dalston’s has released four new drinks this month – two core-range sodas and the first two of its new millennial-oriented Soda Lights.

The latest additions to its core range are Fizzy Rhubarb and Fizzy Blackcurrant. These flavours join six other sodas already available on the market: Cola, Lemonade, Cherryade, Elderflower, Ginger Beer and Orangeade.

Meanwhile, Dalston’s Soda Lights line kicks off with Real Squeezed Elderflower and Real Squeezed Rhubarb. Made with no added sugar or sweeteners, each can contains less than 20 calories. The brand plans on adding to the range in the coming months.

‘Millennials are losing their taste for sugar and placing even more emphasis on health. That’s why we chose to develop our new range of Lights,’ said Duncan O’Brien, Dalston’s founder.

RRP £1.99/33cl, Dalston’s, dalstons.com

Speciality brings Symmetry Tonics to the UK

Speciality Drinks has introduced South African drinks company Geometric’s line of Symmetry tonic syrups to the UK.

Symmetry’s range features three flavours: Floral, Citrus and Spice. Each was developed using botanicals meant to reflect the company’s origins in the Western Cape.

The syrups are designed to be combined with soda and served as a soft drink, or used in alcoholic mixed drinks and cocktails. Imbibe sampled each flavour in a ratio of one part syrup to two parts soda water.

First up, Floral blends quinine with lavender, chamomile and the rose-scented pelargonium plant, indigenous to the mountainous areas of the Cape. The characteristic bitterness of the tonic is underpinned by earthy and rosy notes and a caramelised sweetness.

Spice aims for a more herbaceous palate through the use of cardamom, clove, ginger and kapokbos, a South African shrub. Cardamom shines through at the beginning, with the quinine’s bitterness emphasising clove on the finish without cloying the palate. It’s our favourite of the bunch, and would make a satisfying drink accompanied by a simple lemon twist garnish.

To round out the range, Citrus combines lemon, grapefruit, lime and ginger with buchu, another of the Cape’s flowering plants. The grapefruit is at the forefront, backed up by an aromatic, piney, evergreen quality, and it’s far less sweet than a typical tonic.

£12.71/50cl, Speciality Drinks, specialitydrinks.com

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