Funkin cocktails founder Alex Carlton is now selling non-alcoholic spirits

The founder of cocktail mixer company Funkin has entered the low-and-no category and launched two of zero-proof spirits.

Alex Carlton said the new product is the “first…credible alternative” to spirits-based drinks.

Working in partnership with Tom Soden — owner of Nine Lives, The Gunmakers and The Lion & Lamb — Stryyk has secured listings in bar and restaurant groups including Nine Lives, Caravan Group, Bounce, Puttshack and Clos Maggiore, as well as with The ministry Creative Workspace; a new members’ club and co-working space launched by The Ministry of Sound’s parent company earlier this year.

Carlton said the cocktail base “offers the trade not only non-alcoholic options on serves, both classic and new, but also higher margins than on traditional soft drinks.”

So far, the Stryyk portfolio features just two products, Stryyk Not Gin — which contains botanicals like juniper, rosemary and basil — and dark “spirit” Stryyk Not Rum, made with clove, oakwood and grapefruit.

Soden said that until recently, “dry and tannic flavour profiles have been neglected within the non-alcohol sector.”

“The ability to provide intense flavours in shorter serve styles opens up exciting options for non-alcoholic drinks.”

The move comes as a number of large-scale drinks firms are beginning to enter the no-alcohol spirits category, which has grown rapidly since the launch of Seedlip in 2015.

Following the successful launch of Seedlip’s first botanical drink, Distill Ventures, a Diageo-funded spirits innovation group, bought a minority stake in the business in 2016.

And earlier this month Pernod Ricard signed a deal to launch and distribute South African/Swedish brand Ceder’s in the UK, which describes itself as a “non-alcoholic alt-gin made with classic gin and South African botanicals”.

Some 10 separate non-alcoholic “spirits” were showcased at London’s Mindful Drinking Festival over the weekend, but drinks entrepreneur Alex Carlton claims that Stryyk, his new range of no-ABV cocktail bases, is the “first truly satisfying and credible non-alcoholic alternative to spirits.”

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