Holiday “Mock-Tails” for Grown-Ups

Are you GUILTY of the GLASS BIAS? Have you SNUBBED your SOBER friends? Have you let DOWN a DESIGNATED DRIVER?

Are you wondering what I am talking about? I am referring to the all too common practice of treating your friends like second-class guests if they don’t want booze. How? By serving them dull drinks in Dixie cups rather than fancy glasses like everyone else. It’s almost like telling your friends they have to sit at the card table in the other room while the grown-ups play.

I know it sounds funny, but it happens more often that you might realize. You serve wine and martinis and beer in special glasses with interesting shapes, while at the same time, handing over water in plastic bottles and soda in plastic cups! You might even have special holiday cocktails like spiked eggnog and mistletoe martinis which will upstage diet soda and spring water.

I was at an event recently where a spotlight was actually given to several “mock-tails” or non-alcoholic drinks. Perhaps you might like to try a few and offer some to your friends and guests at your next holiday party… And don’t forget to serve them in the “fancy” glasses!

Basil Lemonade (thanks to Casual Gourmet for this recipe)

  • Basil simple syrup (make ahead: equal parts sugar and water with a few fresh basil leaves… Heat the water and sugar slowly until the sugar dissolves. Allow to cool and add a few ripped basil leaves)
  • Fresh lemonade (or use limeade for a twist)
  • Fresh Basil for garnish

Fill a shaker with ice, fill ¾ with lemonade or limeade and add the basil simple syrup to taste. Shake well. Serve in a rocks glass over ice with your fresh basil garnish! You can also mix everything up in a blender and serve in a martini glass with a sugared rim!

Sparkling Fresh Fruit Fizz

  • Sparkling water (flavored or not)
  • Fresh fruit like pomegranate, blueberries, blackberries, orange slices, watermelon…
  • Real fruit juice: grape, orange, lemon

Fill a tall glass with ice. Add fruit and top with sparking water and a splash of juice.


  • 4 cups white grape juice
  • ½ cup cranberry juice (the real stuff!)
  • Sliced lemons and oranges (you can add strawberries
  • ½ cup sparkling water

Mix the grape juice and cranberry juice in a large pitcher or decanter. Add the citrus slices and chill. Just before serving top with the sparking water. Pour over ice in a large wine glass with fruit slice to garnish.


If you have a favorite grown-up mock-tail, please share your recipe with me: 



About Cat Wilson

Cat Wilson is "That Girl" on Cape Country 104 – a Cape Cod native and longtime Cape radio personality. She is a passionate supporter of Military and Veteran causes on the Cape and also hosts local music spotlight program, “The Cheap Seats” on Ocean 104.7.
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