THE GUIDE TO A BOOZE-FREE CAPE TOWN EXPERIENCE
Research by the World Health Organisation reveals that South Africans are the sixth-biggest drinkers in the World. There are many factors weighed in the equation: ridiculously cheap drink prices, the world-famous wine farms, the inclination of the unemployed population towards alcoholism. For all we know, the rate of alcohol consumption in major cities is not to be underestimated, especially in Cape Town. The question is, is it still possible to enjoy going out in Cape Town even if you are not a fan of alcohol. Here is a non-alcoholic Cape Town guide with all the answers you need.
HOW EASY IS IT TO FIND NON-ALCOHOLIC OPTIONS IN CAPE TOWN?
When you are going out in Cape Town, your options depend on the type of venue you are visiting. That being said, many restaurants will have alcohol-free items on their menu. In fact, alcohol-free and halal restaurants are quite widespread in Cape Town, as there is an immense Muslim Cape Malay community in the city.
As for the pubs and night clubs, you can find fizzy and alcohol-free drinks like Appletizer, Grapetizer, coke, sprite, and many locally-crafted drinks
LOCALLY MADE NON-ALCOHOLIC PRODUCTS IN CAPE TOWN
Here is a list of local alcohol-free drinks with a high level of creativity, an essence of Africa and - obviously- no alcohol.
The Duchess Virgin Gin and Tonic
Just because you don't drink alcohol doesn't mean you can't enjoy a tasty tonic. Don't let the name fool you, the Duchess does not contain gin, although it has a bitter taste resembling gin and tonic. The taste is acquired by a special crafting technique using orange peel, aniseed, devil's claw, and various other native plants. You can find the Duchess at many restaurants and pubs in the city centre. The Secret Gin Bar is among the places that serve it. Other places include Giovanni's Deli World, Haasi La Petite Tarte, The Shortmarket Club, and Sneaky Sausage.
In a world where finding a beverage that is delicious, healthy and a good fit for nightlife is difficult, kombucha provides everything in one package. This special type of iced tea contains fermented tea and natural root extracts as well as fruits. These extracts are beneficial for the human body as natural detox reagents and immune boosters. The brand Theonista produces kombucha without sugar, preservatives and any other type of additives. It also comes with various flavours like rooibos, ginger, guava, and buchu. While it is easy to order bottles of it at many restaurants, you can also find tap-kombucha at Clarke's and Loading Bay.
Authentic craft soda is one of the tastiest alcohol-free beverages you can ever taste, especially if it is made of locally produced fruits. For that purpose, the brand Fizz is making use of the local fruit farms. For their apple-flavoured soda, they pick apples from Elgin. Another option is the Pineapple Fizz, where pineapples are obtained from Bathurst - known for its massive pineapple production farms. Besides water and compressed fruit, Fizz only contains carbon dioxide for a little fizz (as the name suggests) with no preservatives or extra sugar in it. Fizz is more commonly found at coffee shops and cosy restaurants like Deluxe Coffeeworks, Jason Bakery, and Tamboerswinkel.
Lautus De-alcoholised Wine
Wine is one of the biggest highlights of South Africa, so it would be sad if you missed out on that. Even though the alcohol level in many high-quality wines is intimidating, you still have the opportunity to discover the distinct wine taste without taking in alcohol. Lautus has been producing alcohol-free wines since 2016 through novel production techniques. The processing of grapes is just the same as any alcoholic wine except for the additional alcohol-removal step, where the mixture is centrifuged under low temperature and the alcohol content is phase-separated and vacuumed out. Grape juice is added to compensate for the loss in volume. Although this process doesn't remove 100% of the alcohol, it reduces it to below 0.5%. The brand has white, red and rose products sold in 750 ml at groceries and wine farms.
You don't need alcohol to uplift your mood and gain energy. The locally-crafted cocktail brand Artemis has the whole package to offer something much better than alcohol. The indigenous Western Cape shrubs are generous when it comes to Sceletium and Sutherlandia, both known as natural antidepressants with proven effects and little-to-no side effects. Artemis infuses these mood-boosters into a blend of lemon peel and grapes with a pinch of green peppercorn. It also generates a vodka-like taste without containing actual vodka. The green-labelled and recyclable bottle complements healthy content and gives an overall uplifting experience. You can find Artemis in many bars, restaurants, and shops as specified on their website.
CAPE TOWN BARS WITH ALCOHOL-FREE DRINKS
As more people are becoming alcohol-conscious, new places keep getting opened in Cape Town. Here is a list of our favourite spots with unique and tasty alcohol-free drinks.
The Gin Bar: As a chocolatier by day and a gin bar by night, this hidden gem is famous for its special gin & tonic recipes. Luckily, they do offer non-alcoholic cocktails that are just as refreshing.
Panchos: This vibrant Mexican restaurant in Observatory is renowned for its virgin cocktails with a diverse selection and affordable prices.
Pajamas and Jam: Although Strand is a bit far from the city centre, the cordials with many flavoured options are definitely worth a try.
Greenhouse: Greenhouse is a perfect alternative to wine-tasting at the famous vineyard Babylonstoren in Franschhoek. Their drinks are made with freshly-picked-on-spot fruits and vary depending on the season, bringing an element of surprise whenever you visit.
Orphanage Cocktail Emporium: This elegant cocktail bar on Bree Street has a large mocktail menu consisting of tea-infused drinks, alcohol-free Martinis and more.
For those who want to stay away from any place with alcohol consumption, there are still many activities that can be enjoyed at night.
Labia: This vintage movie theatre shows both old and new movies, as well as hosting special film festivals
Danskraal: Bellville in Northern Suburbs is home to a traditional Afrikaans ballroom, where families with kids can enjoy the traditional Sokkie dance.
Fugard Theatre: Founded by the famous South African playwright Athol Fugard, Fugard Theatre shows a large collection of national and international plays.
Bonus: Mindful Drinking Festival
The Mindful Drinking Festival takes place every year in October in the stunningly-beautiful Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden. Newly-produced local drinks are introduced along with fun activities and concerts throughout the day.