CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Two women in Charlotte are proving a cocktail can taste just as good, even if it doesn’t contain alcohol.
What You Need to Know
- Kerry Boyd and Kerri Fitzgerald created 86 Spirits
- It’s an online store and distributor for non-alcoholic whiskey, gin, vodka, wine, beer and more
- Dozens of restaurants currently offer the drinks in North Carolina
Kerry Boyd said she met her friend Kerri Fitzgerald seven years ago. Boyd is an avid runner and usually jogs on her own, but during one race they ran into each other.
“We met running a race,” Kerry Boyd said. “It was a 10k Marine Corps Mud Run. It was super hard, but very fun.”
The pair immediately hit it off and became good friends. After races and during the week, they often celebrated with alcoholic beverages.
“At the end, it was almost every day,” Boyd said. “I would have a glass of wine almost every day after work.”
But soon they realized the consistent alcohol consumption didn’t fit their active lifestyle. That’s why eventually they started drinking non-alcoholic beverages.
“After Superbowl weekend I woke up on Monday, and I was just like I am done,” Boyd said. “I don’t like the way it makes me feel.”
The transition to a sober lifestyle was not easy. It was the most challenging when they went to a restaurant or bar.
“When we’d go out, I started bringing out ritual products in mason jars, and we would pour it in our own virgin drinks,” Boyd said.
This was an inconvenience, and the two women thought there must be a better way. They convinced local bars and restaurants to serve zero proof cocktails through their new business 86 Spirits.
“A lot of times, people are afraid to stop drinking or to go out after they stop drinking because they are missing out on what is in your hand, and then people ask you why you aren’t drinking,” Boyd said.
Dilworth tasting room in Charlotte is one of the locations serving up the special mocktails.
“We have an awesome mixologist like Alejandro, who can make a very good tasting drink that tastes exactly like an alcoholic drink but without the alcohol,” Boyd said.
And they hope more places join in on the trend.
To learn more about the spirits and where they are served visit their website.