Cheers! Where to Find the Best Mocktails in Philly
What these concoctions lack in alcohol they make up for in creativity, taste, and visual appeal.
There are many things you have to give up when that little plus sign shows up on the test– sushi, hoagies, your waist, and of course, alcohol. But at the same time, you want to show off the five minutes of that pregnancy “glow” (and your last remaining child-free days), and trip a little light fantastic on date night.
Luckily, some restaurants with fabulous drink programs have expanded to include mocktails! What these concoctions lack in alcohol they make up for in creativity, taste, and visual appeal. So if you’re abstaining while expecting, here’s where to make your reservations.
52 S. Second St.
Royal Boucherie’s “Temperance Cocktails” include fresh botanical concoctions like the “Lavender Bowtie,” the “Ginger Howard” lemon tea, and the light (and delightful) cucumber-infused “Easy East Side.”
220 S. 17th St.
Spice Finch’s modern and airy Rittenhouse location, and their fusion of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavors make it perfect for date night. Beverage director Michael Haggerty has crafted two mocktails that mimic the real thing: the “N/A Groni” approximates the distinct citrus flavor with sparkling chinotto and bitters, while the “Juniper & Tonic” is a non-alcoholic version of a gin and tonic, celebrating the plant from which gin’s flavor originates.
131 S. 13th St.
This noir-tinged vegan small plates restaurant in Midtown Village offers three mocktails with unique flavor blends. If you like your drinks with some bite, go for the “Spicy Apple,” which combines green apple and agave with cayenne pepper. Or if you want something more refreshing, try one of their two housemade sparkling mocktails: Basil Fennel Lemon Soda or Blackberry Ginger Soda.
237 St. James Place
James Beard Award winner Michael Solomonov is, himself, sober, so naturally the menu at his first and most celebrated restaurant has a whole section of inventive non-alcoholic beverages. Like Zahav’s cuisine, these beverages pay homage to Israeli (and Middle Eastern) flavors—spices like turmeric and cardamom make appearances, as do coffee and tea infusions. Our personal favorite is the indulgent “Good Morning, Istanbul!” which combines Turkish coffee with rich sahlab and spice. The refreshing Mint Lemonade is a perennial favorite, as well.
If you find yourself in Rittenhouse, Solomonov’s Abe Fisher (1623 Sansom Street) also has non-alcoholic options.
1221 Locust St.
This upscale vegan spot by native Philly chefs Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby is a favorite among foodies, whether or not they typically follow a plant-based diet. Like Vedge’s food, the drink menu changes seasonally while retaining some year-round favorites. One new drink this season is the Seedlip Sour, a “virgin whiskey sour” that gets its name from the unique non-alcoholic distilled spirit it contains—and that “egg white” texture is created with aquafaba, a chickpea liquid! All year, the restaurant offers its Gingerbeer, a refreshing classic made with ginger, demerara, and lime.
126 S. 19th Street
Another vegan spot by Landau and Jacoby, this Rittenhouse restaurant is more laidback than Vedge, taking its inspiration from global street food. Fittingly, their non-alcoholic “refreshments” also have global flavors—the Scandanavian-influenced “Northern Lights” adds lingonberry to its complex lemonade base; while the fruity and creamy tiki-style “Neko Jump” has Thai iced tea (made with oat milk), pineapple, and blood orange.
Lead photograph courtesy of Royal Boucherie.