Review: Abstinence Non-Alcoholic Cape Floral Gin and Spritzes

Review: Abstinence Non-Alcoholic Cape Floral Gin and Spritzes

Based in South Africa, Abstinence Spirits makes a variety of non-alcoholic spirits and ready-to-drink products, with a heavy focus on various NA gins. The company’s process is described as follows: “We extract flavours through small batch distillations without the use of alcohol, by using maceration, vapour infusion and hydrosols. Each batch is individually blended, tasted and tested before being bottled.” It’s unclear what Abstinence uses to give its products “bite,” but as we’ll see in the review of three products coming up, I have some theories…

Abstinence Cape Floral Non-Alcoholic Spirit – A “premium distilled non-alcoholic spirit,” made with the botanicals of South Africa’s Cape Floral Kingdom. Botanicals include juniper, rose geranium, angelica root, coriander, and lemon. Tons of citrus on the nose here, with a hearty but secondary floral quality underneath, definitely rose-adjacent. It’s clearly vinegary, but not overwhelming in sharpness. On the palate, the drink is rather thin with those vinegar notes becoming dominant and floral notes bringing up the rear. The bold lemon peel note helps make for a natural pairing with tonic, but juniper character is surprisingly lacking, making this come across more like a flavored vodka than a gin. Extremely mild, but very pleasant. Consume within 3 months of opening. B+ / $35 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]

Abstinence Blood Orange Aperitivo Spritz – A surprisingly on point recreation of a Spritz, boldly carbonated, heavy on the quinine, and backed up with ample orange peel and herbal elements that evoke rosemary and thyme. The bitterness is a little heavy at times — as is the hyper-orange color, courtesy of some beta-carotene — so consider a healthy squeeze of orange to help bring things into better balance. B+ / $18

Abstinence Lemon Aperitivo Spritz – Boldly yellow in hue, there’s an appropriate burst of lemon up top here, giving things a fruity attack instead of the heavy upfront bitterness of the Blood Orange expression. As it develops on the fizzy palate, the script is flipped, with the quinine note becoming stronger and more forceful. Again there’s an herbal rush on the finish, but it’s kept in check by enough of that lemon fruit to keep things interesting. I like it marginally better than the Blood Orange… but mixing the two together makes for a fun twist as well. A- / $18

abstinencespirits.com

Abstinence Cape Floral Non-Alcoholic Spirit

$35
8.5

Rating

8.5/10

Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

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