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A closer look at 10 low-alcohol products

Trends

A closer look at 10 low-alcohol products

Because moderation is always in good taste, there’s now an even larger and more varied selection of low-alcohol products available in stores. But how do they hold up flavour-wise? Here, we examine this very question.

Published on January 24, 2024

In order to dispel the myth once and for all that less alcohol means less flavour, here are 10 amazing low-alcohol options prooving that you can lower your alcohol intake without compromising on taste.

Jardin Verde Gin Tonic Zero

How it tastes: Just like a classic gin and tonic! It delicately balances sweetness and acidity, featuring the subtle aromas of cucumber, mint, rosemary, and basil. 

How to drink it: Straight up or on the rocks, garnished with a slice of cucumber and a sprig of rosemary.

Good to know: This low-alcohol gin and tonic is another big hit from BluePearl Distillerie, whose business is located in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district. This canned beverage is part of their 30% alcohol gin series, which was launched nearly four years ago.

What our customers think: 

“This low-alcohol cocktail is so good! My friend had me taste it after our hockey game—it’s super refreshing and really hits the spot!” —Hubert

Spritzol 0.5

How it tastes: Bubbly, refreshing and slightly bitter—as any good spritz should be—this cider-based cocktail deftly combines citrus, sweetness and bubbles. It’s an outstanding low-alcohol version of the classic Italian aperitif! 

How to drink it: Enjoy it anytime, poured into a large coupe glass filled with ice, garnished with an orange slice, and served with snacks like nuts, crackers and olives. 

Good to know: Just like Verger Hemmingford’s regular Spritzöl, its Spritzöl .5 is vegan and gluten-free, with 100% natural ingredients and no artificial colours. 

What our customers think: 

“Compared to all the others that I’ve tried from the SAQ, this is by far the most balanced and the closest in taste to a real Italian spritz.” —Julien

Noroi Havana Mojito Framboise

How it tastes: Like a tropical cocktail flavoured with raspberry, mint and lime, with a touch of sugar to balance the acidity. A textbook mojito, only with less alcohol. 

How to drink it: Straight from the can or on the rocks. It’s a heavenly happy hour drink, especially when paired with something bright and fresh like scallop and salsa bites.

Good to know: Distillerie Noroi has its own lab and R&D team. It tries to push the envelope in Quebec’s alcoholic beverages market by offering low-alcohol options that are just as exquisite as their traditional equivalents. 

What our customers think: 

“Refreshing and not too sweet. This mojito is a delightful low-alcohol alternative!” —Ariane

Vi-no-Ze-Ro Müller-Thurgau

How it tastes: It’s made entirely from Müller-Thurgau grapes, which are famous for their fresh, light taste—just like this soft, fruity white. Its delicate aroma has notes of very ripe yellow pear.

How to drink it: It’s excellent with light dishes like a Waldorf salad or a grilled shrimp, mango and avocado salad, as well as Asian sweet-and-sour dishes like Asian pork and vegetable stir-fry noodles.

Good to know: Vi-No-Ze-Ro Müller-Thurgau is produced by Ewald Theod Drathen, a vineyard that’s known for its commitment to quality and innovation in the production of low-alcohol wines. This vintage is one of the pioneers in the category and has been available at the SAQ for over 20 years.

What our customers think: 

“This little gem was a revelation. Wow! It’s better than alcoholic wine.” —Nancy

Boréale Hors Sentiers IPA

How it tastes: Like a low-alcohol beer, but more flavourful. This thirst-quenching beverage features notes of mango and pineapple. It has an impressive amount of fruity hops (Citra and Mosaic), which are perfectly balanced by a refreshing malted body.

How to drink it: Whenever you want... off the trails! Also delicious with a poutine.

Good to know: Brewed with 100% natural ingredients and a healthy dose of know-how, this is the perfect beer if you want to try something new without sacrificing flavour. Boréale’s innovative brewing method allows it to make a low-alcohol product with the same great taste as its craft beer. 

What our customers think: 

“A tasty, refreshing low-alcohol beer that’s a great alternative to alcoholic beer.” —Johanne

Noroi Esprit-de-London

How it tastes: Like juniper berries, coriander, angelica root, elderberry flower, ginger, bitter orange, lemongrass, fresh orange, and fresh lemon. A sophisticated spirit whose complex aromatic profile matches that of regular gin. 

How to drink it: Mixed with other ingredients in a cocktail like a low-alcohol version of a gin and tonic, Bee’s Knees or Budding Genius.

Good to know: Thanks to its one-of-a-kind technology, Distillerie Noroi is able to offer incredible low-alcohol spirits. In particular, they use a still that allows them to extract subtle aromas from ingredients that would have been lost or altered had they opted for a more traditional distillation process. 

What our customers think: 

“The low-alcohol trend is here to stay, and products like this one make it that much more appealing. Thanks, Noroi!” —Anne-Christine

Martini Vibrante

How it tastes: It’s there in the name: vibrant, balanced and bursting with flavour. This complex and refreshing aperitif is made with Italian bergamot and natural botanicals. You can taste bitter citrus, star anise, herbs, and a hint of saltiness. 

How to drink it: It’s delicious with some tonic water, plenty of ice and a slice of orange, or with a shrimp cocktail.

Good to know: This vermouth preserves the essence of the Italian aperitif, but without the alcohol. It’s a true tour de force by the legendary Martini, who made its grand entrance into the world of low-alcohol products with two superb offerings. The secret to their authentic flavour is that the wines used are the same as the ones in their regular vermouths, but are dealcoholized later on in the process.

What our customers think: 

“What a wonderful surprise… A nice and tasty aperitif. I even like it better than the regular Martini.” —Renée

Leitz Eins-Zwei-Zero

How it tastes: Like a bright and fruity German Riesling with notes of lime and other citrus, hints of rhubarb and red apple, and a surprising touch of minerality. It’s a crowd-pleaser whose sweetness is well balanced by an acidity that’s typical of the varietal. 

How to drink it: Chilled—between 2 °C and 6 °C—at happy hour or paired with a variety of dishes. Its fresh and fruity flavour goes beautifully with anything that mixes sweet and salty, like crostinis with ricotta, figs and honey, an Asian salad, chicken or pork recipes, or even spicy food. 

Good to know: Leitz is known as a world-leading vineyard when it comes to alcohol-free wine. Made from the same high-quality grapes as their regular wines, these products go through a rigorous dealcoholization process that preserves the flavours and aromas. The result is alcohol-free wines with character that reflect the essence of the grapes and the terroir they’re grown in. 

What our customers think: 

“It tastes fresh and lively, with a perfect balance of sweetness and acidity that’s typical of German Rieslings. ” —Sébastien

Torres Natureo 0.5

How it tastes: Like elderberry flower, fresh grapes and orange blossom water. Its floral and fruity notes are reminiscent of the Muscat grapes it’s made with. The taste is sweet and fruity, and the little bit of residual sugar gives it the classic mouthfeel of regular wine. 

How to drink it: As an aperitif or alongside Asian dishes like ginger bok choy with spicy Rice Krispies or teriyaki salmon fillet.

Good to know: Made by the eminent Bodegas Torres, this dealcoholized wine is known for its exceptional quality, making it one of the Spanish vineyard’s top sellers among even its regular products. It’s perfect for wine lovers who want to reduce their alcohol intake without compromising on flavour. 

What our customers think: 

“One of the best low-alcohol wines at the SAQ.” —Jason

Martini Dolce 0.0

How it tastes: Sweet, fresh and balanced. Fruity, with notes of peach and citrus. 

How to drink it: Its sweet, fruity flavours are divine with dishes of all kinds, from light appetizers to desserts. It can also be enjoyed as an aperitif or digestif—just as long as it’s nice and chilled.

Good to know: Made from top-quality Italian grapes, this sparkling wine is the second low-alcohol product to be made by the world-famous Italian company. 

What our customers think:

“Excellent. Not too sweet. Very tasty.” —Nicolas

Dealcoholization is a process that reduces the alcohol content of a product while preserving its original qualities as much as possible. 

There are different ways of achieving this, such as vacuum distillation, reverse osmosis and spinning cone column (SCC) distillation. 

In partnership with: BluePearl Distillerie, Boréale Hors Sentiers – Non-alcoholic beers, Distillerie Noroi, Familia Torres, Les Grands Chais de France, Martini Non-Alcoholic, Société Commerciale Clément, and Univins and Spirits. 

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