Local Dry Bottle Shop, Ceremony, Gears Up for Sober October

In 2010, Australia-based non-profit Life Education pioneered “Ocsober,” a lifestyle and fundraising movement geared towards the organization’s mission of preventative health and drug education.

Since its inception, other groups have adopted “Sober October” for their own charity campaigns with the same ideals in mind: reevaluating alcohol intake and lifestyle choices, setting a positive example for our youth, and reaping the general mental and physical health benefits of taking a break from alcohol for a month. While participating, many have taken up drinking mocktails and other non-alcohol alternatives instead.

But what is a non-alcohol drink? Non-alcohol beverages are defined as .5% or less ABV—like the alcohol content of kombucha, ripe fruit, leavened bread, and other items you may find in your fridge or pantry. Many non-alcohol wines and beers are produced through the same fermentation process as their alcoholic counterparts; however, they will go through an additional dealcoholizing process by distillation. Other options are built alcohol-free from the ground up, using natural ingredients to create the right flavor profile without requiring a fermentation process.

Ceremony is Hampton Road’s and Richmond’s first Dry Bottle Shop focused on curating non-alcoholic beverages for those wanting more than water, tea, or soda. Offerings include ready-to-drink options, zero-proof spirits, mixers, and bitters, as well as bar tools for making your own craft drinks. All products are offered in sustainable packaging.

Intentional living is at the heart of Ceremony, which offers options for more inclusive get-togethers, work, or alcohol-free events, or for when you may want to unwind without booze. For those who are sober, sober curious, are expecting or nursing, with certain health conditions, or are just looking for healthier ingredients, Ceremony has an option among their catalog of over 125 non-alcohol alternatives. They also feature an e-drink recipe book online to help you craft drinks and an array of curated playlists to fit the mood of your gathering.

Non-alcohol beers are easy to enjoy chilled, as are Ceremony’s premade mocktail options that can also be enjoyed on ice and garnished. Spirits, unlike their alcohol counterparts, are not intended to be consumed in shots—rather, they are used to build drinks that can be as simple or as complex as desired. A non-alcohol spirit mixed with club soda, tonic water, or ginger ale is an effortless way to build a booze-free cocktail that will still satisfy the want for something different.

Ceremony’s products are available for purchase online at enjoyceremony.com or in-person at any Less Than location:

* 803 Shirley Ave, Norfolk
* 24 S King St, Hampton
* 1 N Lombardy St, Richmond
* 1624 Laskin Rd #748, Virginia Beach, Booth F22