Cocktails vs Mocktails

Which side are you on?
Written by: Adele Halsall

Cocktails. Mocktails.

What’s the difference?

And why choose one over the other?

Simply put, a cocktail is a carefully crafted blend of ingredients, including alcohol, that makes a good-tasting and well-balanced drink.

A mocktail, meanwhile, is that very same thing - but sans alcohol. They were once typically popular amongst pregnant women, children and recovering alcoholics, but in recent years mocktails have trailblazed their way into bars and clubs everywhere as the serious new going-out trend.

There are tons of benefits to choosing a mocktail over a cocktail, but do they replace the classic celebratory beverage?

Here’s our comparison: cocktails vs. mocktails.

1. Avoid the hangover.

Good Morning

One of the most obvious benefits of going alcohol-free, of course, is that there’s no hangover the next day.

A mocktail allows you to enjoy the feeling of holding a drink in your hand, as well as the typical sweet and invigorating tastes that normally come with a cocktail.
The big difference is, of course, that you won’t spend the next day in bed.

2.  Mocktails are cheaper.

baby throwing money out of window payday spending

Another great benefit of mocktails is that they’re cheaper than alcoholic drinks. I mean, they’re still on the pricier side when compared to your typical soda and lime...and when you realise you’re essentially paying for a concoction of sugar and water.

But if you’re choosing between a mocktail and its alcoholic counterpart, you’ll definitely save yourself some dollar.

3. Cocktails get you tipsy.

Cocktails Tipsy

One of the biggest reasons to choose a good ol’ fashioned cocktail is that they of course give you dat buzz. That means you’ll be able to dance like you mean it, speak more truly and lower the inhibitions that normally keep us locked into our everyday routines.

That often makes for some pretty great times, and though you may wake up with a smidge of a hangover, it’ll likely all be worth it.

4. Cocktails feel so stylish.

1st Week Of Jan Drinking

There’s something so stylish about cocktails, isn’t there?

So many of our favourite movies and fictional characters are known for sipping on their preferred tipple, so whether you enjoy a Manhattan, a Martini or a White Russian, It’s hard not to feel equally as glamourous when you’re drinking of your own.

5. Mocktails can be equally as stylish (and satisfying).

I Love That

The great thing about mocktails is that they’re whipped up often to look just as fancy and impressive as a cocktail.

In fact, nobody would even know the difference unless you told them, and they can definitely be a handy deterrent to those annoying “What? You’re not drinking?!” comments.

Mocktails can be just as satisfying too. Not only do they contain many of the same exotic ingredients as cocktails; many new alcohol-free beverages are being created that mimic their alcohol-infused relatives more closely.

6. Mocktails can go down too quickly.

Empty Drink

Because they’re mostly sugar, water and herbs, and not fortified by alcohol, mocktails can go down the chute all too quickly - like most soft drinks.

This might mean that you end up ordering more of them to feel satisfied, and in turn spend more so you can always have a drink in your hand.

While cocktails might be more expensive, they do tend to be sipped more slowly, so it (sort of) balances out.

7. Mocktails are sugary.

Sugar In Drinks

Some people might be deterred from drinking mocktails all night, due to the fact that they are, after all, quite sugary

This can be a real bummer if you’re on a low-carb diet or want to keep blood sugars balanced.
Considering there’s no buzz, it might not be worth it to spend £8 on what is essentially a soft drink, which you could indeed make yourself at home. (Though, cocktails can also be made at home, FYI.)

8. Alcohol is, too, a carb.

Drinking A Cocktail

If you think alcoholic beverages get you out of the sugar-trap, you’re sadly mistaken.

Alcohol is, of course, a carbohydrate, so can’t ever really be considered a health beverage. And cocktails are mixed with many of the same juices, sodas and syrups as mocktails are. So apart from a buzz (and a hangover, eventually), you’re not really gaining anything.

9. You don’t need to feel left out.

Group Drinking

Mocktails allow you to still be sociable and enjoy the company of those that drink...without needing to drink yourself.

Not only is this great for pregnant ladies and those recovering from addiction, as mentioned’s also great if you’re moving towards a healthier lifestyle, have an early start in the morning, or are just sick of the hangovers.

Ultimately, we feel cocktails and mocktails should have a firm place on every bar menu. Cocktails are great for those looking to kick back and lose themselves a little. Mocktails work for those who don’t want to drink and are a fabulous alternative to Diet Coke or soda water.

What do you guys think? Cocktails or mocktails?

Check out some of our favourite cocktail bars in London.

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