Ritual Zero Proof Gin Alternative is aptly named. The product was created (and named) for those who miss the “ritual”of a nightcap. Or a drink with friends. Among the first American produced spirit alternatives, Ritual quickly earned itself some big backers and earned itself a following among Dry January subscribers and more.
Ingredients: water, natural flavors, cane sugar, xanthan gum, citric acid, sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate.
Calories: 0 / 1.5 oz. (< 1 g of sugar per serving)
Botanicals: Juniper, lemongrass, peppers, Siberian pine, coriander, angelica, hemp, basil, cucumber, green peppercorn, prickly ash, and peppermint.
Nose: Sweet cucumber, citrusy mint, with woody cedar and grass facets. The cucumber is the star.
Flavor: Sipped, early there’s strong notes of unripe banana, vegetable with a strong capsaicin type burn. Hints of cannabis and hops on the finish.
Mixed with tonic water, Ritual Zero Proof Gin Alternative has an aroma of green banana. Sipped, there’s still some strong banana notes to it, but also more gin like character. There’s a pleasant enough mild juniper flavor.
Compared to some other non-alcoholic gins, Ritual excels at simulating the perception of heat. The capsaicin note which is overwhelming when sipped neat is a pleasant trigeminal sensation with Q Tonic.
But like other spirit substitutes Ritual Zero Proof Gin Alternative is meant for mixing. Try it paired with assertive, bold mixers. The Gin and Bitter Lemon or Gin and Lemonade are good options.
If you’re exploring low ABV drinks, I suggest pairing it in proportion with other ingredients such that they compose more than 75% of the drink by volume.
Overall, Ritual Zero Proof Gin Alternative
I like the attention to the trigeminal effects. However, for a gin alternative it is ultimately rather light on juniper. For fans of contemporary style herbal/vegetal gins like Martin Miler’s or Gin Mare— this may be the alternative you’re looking for.