Best Non-Alcoholic Bars in Sydney

Updated 1 month ago

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Whether you're going dry in July or giving up grog for good, the days of nursing a soda water at the bar are well and truly behind us. The market for non-alcoholic drinks has exploded in recent years, and Sydney – which is home to the country’s first physical booze-free bottle shop – has embraced the trend towards mindful drinking with typical gusto.

Now, there are plenty of world-class cocktails bars and classic pubs around town devoting entire sections of their menus to full-flavoured and, if we do say so, exciting non-alcoholic drinks. So put that soda aside – this list of the city's best will help you keep the good times flowing in July and beyond.

  • One of the world’s best (and perhaps most dapper) bars, Maybe Sammy puts the same care and attention to detail into its booze-free drinks as its naval-strength Martinis. The spritz, Virgin Mary and espresso tonic are all here. But we suggest the Angelino, a shaken number with lychee, egg white, verjuice and non-alcoholic gin.

  • The country’s first alcohol-free distillery and “So-Bar” is set within a spacious warehouse in Brookvale’s industrial area. Try the distillery’s beach-inspired spirits in a G&T, or choose from a range of other local and international booze-free drinks. For a cocktail, go for the Freshie. It’s made with Seadrift Coast, lemon, and non-alcoholic sparkling wine.

  • Extravagant, fun and hidden in plain sight, Saga serves both non- and low-alcohol cocktails alongside its stiff selection. If you’re abstaining entirely, the Piece of the Island’s Heart is a Tiki-inspired number befitting Saga’s jungle aesthetic, featuring Lyre’s Dark Cane spirit, pineapple juice, cream and makrut lime syrup shaken to high-heaven and served long.

  • Formerly known as The Wild Rover, this cocktail institution has seen its fair share of booze-fuelled nights. But after a recent glow-up, it’s a little less wild and a little more refined. You can be too, with a No-Groni or a Beatie Brow mixing Seedlip Spice 94, banana, honey, lime and bergamot soda.

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  • Need an inner-city pub with more than just non-alc suds? The Paddington has you covered. Alongside Heaps Normal’s game-changing Quiet XPA, there are cocktails such as the Ruby Collins (Seedlip Spice 94, watermelon, citrus and verjuice) and the Rosalita (Seedlip Spice 94, hibiscus, passionfruit and soda).

  • A breezy, freshwater favourite with a serious non-alcoholic offering. As well as craft beers (light and dark styles), there are fancy house-made sodas and convincing booze-free cocktails such as the Pinetree Punch, mixing Seadrift Classic, pineapple skin cordial, lime rosemary and soda.

  • This nautical-themed neighbourhood bar dedicates a huge chunk of its extensive drinks list to mocktails all year round – and they’re no afterthought. Reductions, foams and house-made syrups all feature, plus you can try the entire Seedlip range matched with premium tonics.

  • Stitch set the tempo for what a Sydney small bar could be. Unsurprisingly, it’s embraced the non-alc movement with booze-free takes on the classic Dark’n’Stormy and Bees Knees cocktails. Helpful if you’re steering clear of the “Rye” component of the bar’s “Rye and Dry July” offering.

  • Reinvented, non-alcoholic classics served at high-altitude. Choose a spritz built with Lyre’s Italian Orange, kombucha and frozen grapes; or an Americano mixing Lyre’s Dry London, Italian Orange and Aperitif Rosso. Combined with cracking 22nd-floor views of the CBD, you definitely won’t notice the absence of booze.

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  • Merivale’s snazzy speakeasy sticks to the prohibition theme with its alcohol-free creations. Say hello to a Southside shaking up Seedlip Garden 108 spirit, mint, lime and sugar syrup; and a No-Groni stirred with Seedlip Spice 94, verjuice and orange bitters.

  • Once upon a time, the idea of a gin bar serving booze-free cocktails would’ve been tantamount to sacrilege. But times change, and Gin Lane is thoroughly in-step. It’s serving a long, Italian-style spritz and a Negroni (both heavy on Lyre’s spirits), plus locally made kombucha poured over ice with lemon.

  • On a dazzling Sydney day, there’s no better place to pull up stumps for a cold tipple. Luckily, Opera Bar serves a solid range of booze-free creations to keep you upright for longer. The Espresso Martini – shaken with Lyre’s Dark Cane spirit, cold drip coffee and caramel – might keep you up all night.

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  • There’s no velvet or faff at this humming diner from the team behind Bistecca and The Gidley. Order a Riverine sirloin steak – aged and butchered in house – and it’ll be on your table in 15 minutes. The brutalist, art-filled space also packs in a bar with the energy of east London, and serves what might be the coldest Martini in Sydney.