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Buy the bottle, hold the booze

Three nonalcoholic recommendations from Shy Bird’s Andrew Holden

Ghia, a zero-proof cocktail mixer at Shy Bird in Boston, is a good substitute for gin.Erin Clark/Globe Staff

At Shy Bird, bartenders serve nonalcoholic spirits on their own or mixed into cocktails. “Our teams tasted through an enormous amount of products before we decided what to work with,” says owner Andrew Holden. Here are three he recommends (all can be ordered online, but for a good local source for nonalcoholic spirits, he suggests Love Child in South Boston):

Gnista: “It’s a beautiful product made in Sweden. We work with their Floral Wormwood alcohol-free spirit. They also have an oak-aged one [Barreled Oak]. You could use the Gnista as a whiskey substitute in almost anything.”

Ghia: “In almost any cocktail where you’d be using gin, you could probably use the Ghia aperitif. Sometimes I’ll have that at home over ice. Ghia could also be a substitute for vermouth, with anything in the Negroni family. They also started making canned spritzes; in the restaurant, we serve them over ice with a little orange zest.”


Aplós Calme: “Another one that’s really beautiful. It’s a hemp-infused spirit that has yuzu and calamansi lime in it and has tastes and aromas like cucumber and shiso. I drink this on its own. I just put it over a couple of ice cubes or even just drink it chilled neat.”

Aplos, a zero-proof cocktail mixer.Erin Clark/Globe Staff

Devra First can be reached at devra.first@globe.com. Follow her @devrafirst.