August 24, 2020
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Sober Bars Are Finally Becoming A Thing

The local pub is one of the best places to socialize, meet new people, hang out with old friends, and relax.

When you’ve decided that you’re no longer using alcohol, the loss of this space can feel isolating. There’s suddenly a big gap in your social life, and you’re not sure how to fill it. Is there a such thing as sober bars?

Where do sober adults go to hang out? The library? Homegoods? Malls are going out of style, so those aren’t the answer either.

There are plenty of fun events and outings for sober adults, but they either have alcohol available or they’re expensive (or both).

Luckily, sober bars are a thing. They’re growing in popularity as more and more people come to terms with the fact that they might be drinking too much alcohol, even if they don’t identify as alcoholics.

Keep reading to learn more.

What Are Sober Bars?

This might sound backward. How is it a bar if it’s sober? An alcohol-free bar isn’t really a bar at all, is it?

Well, is this really a new concept, or do we just perceive it as new? What’s the difference between a coffee shop and a bar aside from the different styles of drinks? Are they not both places to socialize, congregate, and eat and drink?

What about the soda shops that used to be in every city? Not too dissimilar to alcohol bars, they were set up similar to bars but instead offered sugary drinks and sweets for a fun outing for all ages.

A sober bar is an evolution of those. You don’t initially start going to the bars to get drunk, you go to have fun and hang out with friends. Eventually, that turns into going to get drunk, and that’s where the problem begins.

Sober bars keep the fun and community but ditch the alcohol, making them safe spaces for everyone. They maintain the bar atmosphere, maybe sporting dartboards, pool tables, and the dark, secluded tables of the average dive, but the drinks are alcohol-free.

Clean And Sober
Clean And Sober Mocktail

What Do Sober Bars Serve?

What’s your favorite cocktail? Do you like a good daiquiri every now and then? Maybe a sex on the beach, or a piña colada?

The sober bars can serve those virgin-style, no alcohol required. You can still get your sugar fix but without the need for alcohol. There are plenty of alcohol-free drinks to order at the bar.

There’s also nonalcoholic beer available now for those who choose to abstain, so even if beer is your drink of choice, you’re covered.

You might be wondering, “Can’t I just order my drinks virgin at a normal bar?” Yes, you could. But how easy is it for a bartender to make a mistake, especially in a busy bar?

They can remedy it immediately if something is wrong, but do you think you’re far enough in your recovery to bring it to their attention?

Similarly, those drinks that everyone else has aren’t virgin drinks. A bar can be a triggering space for those in recovery (or even those just trying to cut back). While you can order a Shirley Temple or soda water with lime at any bar, their primary service is in alcohol and those virgin drinks are usually intended for non-alcoholics who happen to be designated drivers.

At a sober bar, there are no cocktailsOnly mocktails. Everything is safe.

Who Goes to These Bars?

Originally these bars had those who were in recovery in mind. For some people, this can be embarrassing. It’s isolating to be stuck in a space with only other alcoholics.

They’re safe spaces for the person in recovery and their supportive friends, but who else might want to go?

Well, not everyone chooses to partake in alcohol at all. Some people choose sobriety as a lifestyle even if they never had an alcohol problem. They have many of the same issues with socializing as adults in recovery. Where do you go if you’re not someone who drinks alcohol?

Presently, while we’re in the midst of the wellness movement, sober bars are becoming more popular amongst the general population. These people may drink but know that drinking isn’t a healthy activity.

Ordering a gin and soda without the gin at a sober bar lets them hang out with their friends in a fun public space sans the alcohol without feeling like the odd person out.

These bars aren’t just for recovering alcoholics anymore. As fewer Americans indulge in frequent alcohol use, they’re great congregating spaces for everyone.

sober curious
Are you sober curious?

How Can I Find Sober Bars?

These bars are growing in popularity, but that doesn’t mean that they’re going to be in every city just yet.

If you’re turning to Google for your quest towards alcohol-free bars, look into certain keywords. “Sober bars”, “alcohol-free bars”, “nonalcoholic bars”, and “mocktail bars” may point you in the right direction.

Otherwise, you may be able to find recovery-friendly bar events even if they aren’t brick-and-mortar bars that are always available. You can look for sober bar popups or even bars with sober nights.

If you’re not finding anything available to the public, check your local Alcoholics Anonymous group to see if they do sober bar popup events or even sober raves and club nights.

You Don’t Have to Miss Out: Find a Sober Bar Today

Being in recovery (or just abstaining from alcohol) doesn’t have to mean that you can’t go out with your friends anymore.

Opt for sober bars and get the “bar experience” without the alcohol. You can have a good time with other adults without the use of alcohol.

For more information on how to curb your alcohol use, visit our site today.

Sober Living
Sober Living

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About the Stop drinking expert

Craig Beck ABNLP. ABHYP. DhP. ICS. has been a professional alcohol cessation therapist since 2010. He has helped over 250,000 problem drinkers using his personal experience and professional training in the field of addiction recovery.

After struggling with his own alcohol addiction issues, Craig went on a journey of self-discovery and learning, studying the underlying causes of alcohol use disorders and how to overcome them. He has since become a board-certified Master Practitioner of NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), The American Board of Hypnotherapy certified therapist, and an ICS-certified life coach specializing in alcohol addiction recovery.

Craig's personal experience with alcoholism gives him a unique perspective on the challenges of quitting drinking and staying sober. He understands the emotional and psychological factors contributing to addiction and knows how to help people overcome them.

In addition, Craig's formal training and certifications provide him with the knowledge and skills to develop effective strategies and techniques for addiction recovery. The Stop Drinking Expert approach to alcohol addiction uses a unique combination of CBT techniques and NLP reframing.

Craig's qualifications are evident in his successful track record helping people quit drinking. Craig Beck is the author of several alcohol addiction books, such as "Alcohol Lied to Me" and "The Alcohol Illusion".
His website,, provides a comprehensive guide on how to quit drinking, including practical tips, strategies, and resources for recovery.

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