Non-Alcoholic Cocktail Recipes for Hudson Valley Get-Togethers

Try out these creative, booze-free sips if you want to start off the summer on a healthy note. P.S. They're incredibly delicious.

In the Hudson Valley, summertime is all about fun in the sun, from outdoor day tripping to backyard barbecues with all the bites and booze you can imagine. But what if you just don’t feel like drinking? That’s where Beacon-based brand Curious Elixirs comes in. Since its inception, Curious Elixirs has crafted delicious, zero-proof cocktails for those who want to enjoy their beverages without a buzz. “It gives people the opportunity to ask themselves, ‘What would life look like if I drank less? Would it be more fun, more memorable?’” says John Wiseman, founder of Curious Elixirs.

While we can’t answer that question for you, we can guarantee that the following four non-alcoholic cocktail recipes are downright delicious, whether or not you’re markedly anti-alcohol.

Hot Hibiscus Toddy

Curious Elixirs, Beacon
Serves 4

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Alcohol-free drink

Ingredients

5″ fresh pine (or rosemary) branch (about ½ cup)
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
4 cups water
½ cup fresh ginger, peeled and sliced (½″ slices)
2–4 tablespoons agave syrup (to taste)
2 teaspoons whole cloves
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 tablespoons dried hibiscus flowers (not tea bags!)
Juice from 1 lime
Pine stem (or rosemary sprig) and lime for garnish

Preparation

In a medium saucepan, without adding water, put rosemary or pine stems on medium-high heat for 2 minutes, flipping often to toast the needles. Add coriander and peppercorn, toast 2 minutes more. Add water and ginger and bring to boil. Reduce to lowest heat possible, and add clove and cayenne. Steep for 20 minutes uncovered.

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Turn off heat. Add hibiscus and stir thoroughly. Steep 5 minutes more, covered. Add lime juice, then stir thoroughly and strain through a fine sieve, pressing ingredient mixture to release as much liquid as possible. Pour into mugs or heat-resistant glasses. Garnish your non-alcoholic cocktail with pine (or rosemary) and lime wedge.

Baby Bear

Scribner’s Lodge + Prospect, Hunter
Serves 4

Alcohol-free drink

Ingredients

1 oz. ginger lime syrup
3 oz. lemon juice
3 oz. Chamomile Honey Syrup
6 oz. apple cider
Club soda
Apple slices for garnish

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Ginger Lime Syrup

Ingredients

1 cup ginger juice
1 cup Demerara sugar

Syrup Preparation

Over medium heat, combine sugar and ginger juice.

Stir until dissolved, about 3 minutes.

Chamomile Honey Syrup

Ingredients

2 cups honey
1 cup chamomile tea

Syrup Preparation

Steep chamomile tea in 1 cup of boiled (212°F) water. Add honey.

Stir until dissolved, about 3 minutes (you’ll have more than you need).

Beverage Preparation

Shake ginger lime syrup, lemon juice, chamomile honey, and apple cider.

Once shaken, double strain into 4 glasses, top each with club soda and garnish with an apple slice.

Coconuts and More

Scribner’s Lodge + Prospect, Hunter
Serves 4

Coconuts and more

Ingredients

4 oz. toasted coconut syrup (recipe below)
3 oz. Aplós
3 oz. lime juice
Scant 2 oz. Demerara syrup
Club soda

Toasted Coconut Syrup

Ingredients

3 ½ oz. coconut flakes
1 can (13.5 oz.) coconut milk
4 oz. water
1 ¾ cups sugar

Syrup Preparation

Toast coconut in a pan over medium-light heat until lightly brown, stirring frequently.

Separately, bring coconut milk and water to a simmer. Add toasted coconut flakes and simmer for an additional 20 minutes.

Strain out the solids and add liquids back into pan. Continue to simmer while adding sugar for 20 minutes, until reduced to a syrup.

Demerara Syrup

Ingredients

1 cup Demerara sugar
1 cup water

Syrup Preparation

Over medium heat, combine sugar and water.

Stir until dissolved, about 3 minutes.

Beverage Preparation

Shake 4 oz. of toasted coconut syrup, Aplós, lime juice, and 2 oz. of Demerara syrup, double strain into 4 glasses and top with club soda.

Yuzu Flip

Oak & Reed, Middletown
Serves 4

Yuzu flip

Ingredients

8 oz. yuzu juice
4 oz. pineapple juice
2 oz. jalapeño simple syrup
4 egg white
½ lime
3 oz. gochugaru (Korean pepper flakes)
1 oz. Maldon sea salt

Jalapeño Simple Syrup

Ingredients

1 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup jalapeño peppers, sliced (use extra for garnish)

Syrup Preparation

Add water and sugar to a saucepan and bring to a boil.

Add jalapeños into the mixture. Lower the heat and simmer about 10 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved, and the mixture has thickened into a syrup.

Depending on your spice tolerance, let the peppers infuse in your syrup or remove them. Let cool completely.

Beverage Preparation

Mix gochugaru and sea salt, and add to a plate. Run the lime against the rim of the glass and dip into the chili salt.

Combine yuzu juice, pineapple juice, and simple syrup into a shaker. Add ice and shake vigorously.

Strain mixture back into glasses and discard ice.

Crack egg and separate the yolk. Add egg white into the shaker. Cover and “dry shake” (with no ice) for about 45 seconds to emulsify the egg.

Pour froth onto the chilled mocktails and garnish with thinly sliced jalapeños.

Now the only question left is…which of these non-alcoholic cocktail recipes will you try first?

Related: What to Keep in Your Pantry, According to Hudson Valley Chefs

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