It’s a market that is underserved in an industry where service is king.
A sober bar will open its doors in Kelowna next month and co-founder Alex Viol says there are fantastic producers who have upped the game in the non-alcoholic beverage industry which will provide for more variety when it comes to going out in the city.
Viol is a sommelière by trade who is also studying non-alcoholic wines.
“There is huge demand for non-alcoholic beverages, but the market is playing catch up with the consumers because people want great options and in the past, there haven’t been a ton of good choices,” he said.
But, that is all changing.
SOBAR will open on Dec. 1 and collaboration between Somm Zero, a local zero-proof drink specialists and Just Peachy a Kelowna smoothie and wellness bar.
The new establishment will be about inclusivity and offer non-alcoholic options that will intrigue the minds of the sober-curious and differ from past restaurant menu items of cranberry juice and soda.
“As a good somms, you should cater to everyone and you should give your guests good options or better than everyone else who is at the table. If you haven’t done your homework in finding alternatives or solutions then that is a shame, and you underserving customers and cheque average,” explained Viol.
The team behind SOBAR believes that attitudes toward alcohol are changing and there needs to be good alternatives for beverages.
“I believe it is long overdue that there is a nightlife alternative in Kelowna that isn’t focused on alcohol. They are popping up around North America and Europe, and are hugely popular,” said Viol.
So, after the smoothies session is done at Just Peachy located on Bernard Avenue, SOBAR will open its doors about 7 p.m., Tuesday to Saturday, for as long as it’s popular, but will start with December and January. The bar will be open as long as the market demands it.
There will be nights with entertainment, games and the possibility of Sunday brunch with non-alcoholic mimosas.
Somme Zero will also soon be launching an online store where people from all over Canada can purchase non-alcoholic wine and beverages.
“We taste and assess all of the products we are selling to ensure the quality level and that it is at a place where we are happy. It also has to help contribute to that positive change in perception for this market category.”
The company will also host events for those wanting something a little different at their parties.