Can a liquor with no alcohol taste as good as the real thing?
The short answer to that question is: yes (they can taste just as good) and no (they don’t taste the same). If you take a sip of any of Ritual's Zero Proof line, you’re not going to feel the exact same sensation as alcohol. Ritual doesn't attempt to achieve that when you drink it alone.
But if you mix Ritual’s Zero Proofs in your favorite cocktail recipe, you can get something that tastes similar, if not exactly the same (See our Gunmetal Heavyweight Cocktail Shaker.) With Ritual, you can enjoy the smooth feeling of alcohol with a subtle kick in the back of your mouth in a cocktail but without the alcohol.
...something herbal with light juniper notes
Ritual Zero Proof Gin is a satisfying take on a classic gin: it’s bright, herbal, and burns just a little bit to give you the sensation it’s alcohol. Ritual gets these tasting notes from the addition of juniper, angelica, lemongrass, and pine. The gin alternative doesn’t taste exactly like its alcohol counterpart: it’s not quite as juniper-y, and it’s a bit spicier. That is if you’re drinking it as a shot (which you shouldn’t). We mixed it with some quality tonic to balance out the flavors, making it taste like the real thing.
...something smoky, sweet, and spicy
Ritual Zero Proof Whiskey looks and smells like the real thing. The dark caramel color opens to smoke/mesquite, then hints of caramel and spice, reminiscent of rye whiskey. On its own, the texture is like light syrup with a decided spicy punch at the back of the mouth. Because it’s sweeter than rye whiskey, we recommend cutting down the added sugar in your cocktail recipes. We made a delicious alcohol-free Old Fashioned, and it barely needed simple syrup to taste like the real thing. Ritual Zero Proof Whiskey mixes well with bitters yet not quite as well with soda if you’re trying to get a flavor that 100% mimics the boozy version.
...bright and fiery, the perfect margarita base
Ritual Zero Proof Tequila reminds us of Anejo Tequila: a light color with a slightly smoky kick that lends itself to craft margaritas. The smell is grassy, smoky, and sweet, and the flavor starts with a bright note, turns to spice, and finishes with just the right amount of woodsiness. Like the other Ritual beverages, it’s not meant to be drunk without a mixer, as its spiciness lends itself to cocktails, not the rocks. Mixed in our favorite margarita, we couldn’t tell it was nonalcoholic.
...something fruity, peppery, molasses-y
Ritual’s newest addition to their line, the zero-proof rum, imitates dark rum’s slightly spicy and sweet flavor in a drink. It burns, but not too much. It’s a bit more peppery, fruity, and heavier than its alcoholic counterpart. You can mix it with cola or make yourself a Dark & Stormy or a Mai Thai: it gives you a molasses depth of flavor that will taste like the real thing.