So, I'm doing the Dry January thing.
I've done it before, a few times. I've never done the whole month. Last year's American shenanigans on January 6 had me reaching for a Pinot Noir right quick. (I know, I know.)
But here I am again. So why do I do it?
First off, being in the wine industry, it is ALWAYS around. It's easy to pay no mind to consistency, but a couple glasses a day add up. And, of course, there are the days where we really go for it. It's easy to not give that much thought to 30-60-90 days of having drinks in a row.
Normally (NORMALLY!) it's in check, but I'm always hyper-sensitive to how wine/booze affects me. I get paranoid. I check in with my family doctor and get bloodwork done often, mainly to keep tabs on the ol' liver. It's always fine and healthy, which I attribute to eating well, a bit of exercise, and - I dunno - luck?
But more than anything, a break from booze certainly can't hurt. I find it's a good way of recalibrating myself.
What makes things MUCH easier these days is the accessibility of well-crafted, zero-proof beer, wine, and spirits. The category has exploded over the last few years and I'm sure the benefits reverberate wide.
So here we are, with a couple German drops I sourced locally at The Drive Canteen, here in Vancouver.
Leitz Zero Point Five Pinot Noir is tasty, but to me it's really not that much of a departure from really good (like really good) grape juice. It's not particularly sweet like Welch's, but it definitely tastes VERY PURPLE with not much else going on. It's not particularly 'wine'-y, but I'd imagine with something rich and salty - a wild mushroom and parmesan risotto, maybe - it'd balance things well.
Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Sparkling Non-Alcoholic Riesling, simply put, blew me away. My (admittedly odd) marker of how good a low-booze/no-booze option is to think if I was at an event or party, a drink or two in, and someone passed me said drink. Were I to take an initial sip or two of this wine without paying too much attention, I can pretty much assure I'd think it was a legit Riesling that happened to be low-alcohol. That touch of spritz to it lifts up all those key limes, Granny Smith apples, and dollops of marmalade well.