Designated driver? On a bit of a health kick? Generally can't be that bothered with booze? A few years ago if you fell into any of the above, you were kind of stuck with a non-alcoholic lager or a fizzy soft drink. Roll forward to 2020, and we are now awash with alcohol-free choices that don't make you miss booze at all.
One of those choices is Caleño.
Caleño doesn't disappoint from the outset. For one, its beautiful bottle would stand proud in any drinks cabinet. A perfect blend of blue and gold branding, this bottle looks like a classy spirit.
Founded by Ellie Webb, age 29, who was frustrated by the lack of choice in alcohol-free drinks. Inspired by the vibrant and energetic culture of her Colombian Mother's Homeland, she set out to combine the sunny South America lust for life with her zesty and tropical non-alcoholic 'free spirit'.
And in our opinion, she succeeded.
Caleño, is a tropical infusion of juniper, citrus and spice botanicals, steam-distilled in stainless steel drums. The spirit neat is instantly refreshing, but it goes perfectly with an excellent tonic. Where does it get its tang from? Its vital ingredient and signature garnish is the South American Inca berry; sweet, yet tangy with pineapple and citrus fruit flavours.
The zesty and smooth liquid is balanced with Pineapple, Papaya, Lemon Peel, Coriander Seeds, Lemongrass, Juniper Berry, Green Cardamon and Peppercorn.
On first taste, it is truly a tropical hit. I expected a huge hit of juniper, but the Inca Berry really is the lead singer of this beverage band. For citrus fans (like me) this is a winner. You want tart and tangy, then this is your new fave,
If you are looking for a tropical non-alcoholic option this summer (or winter) then this South American Spirit: Caleño will be just the tonic.
Caleño is sugar-free, sweetener-free, allergen-free and made with no artificial flavours.
RRP £18.00 for 50cl
RRP £11.99 for 20cl
RRP £19.99 for 50cl Giftbox
Available from Amazon and Sainsbury's and www.calenodrinks.com
[Items in this article may have been gifted to Chatting Food. No financial payment has been made to feature in this article, and entries to the feature are made independently by members of the Editorial Team. This page contains affiliate links and we may receive a small commission for purchases]
Fancy trying a Caleno Cocktail?
Best Serves for Home Cocktail Enthusiasts
200 ml Premium Indian Tonic
Mix over ice in a highball, garnish with an inca berry (find in your local greengrocers – or lime if you struggle!)
10ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
10ml simple sugar syrup (dissolve 300g caster sugar in 150ml water over low heat. Leave to cool and bottle for future use in cocktails. Store in the fridge.)
Lemon Zest Garnish
Pour ingredients over ice in a Collins glass, top with soda and garnish with the zest.
20ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
20ml simple sugar syrup
20ml pineapple juice
6-8 mint leaves to garnish
Use a cocktail shaker to mix the ingredients, then strain over ice in a tumbler and garnish with mint.
Café de Cali
25ml espresso (try a Colombian one!)
10ml simple sugar syrup
Dash Premium Tonic Water
Mix the Caleño, espresso and sugar in a jug, then pour over into a tumbler, and top up with a dash of Tonic.
25ml Passionfruit Puree (available from Amazon – try Funkin)
15ml Vanilla Syrup (try Tesco or Amazon)
Mix ingredients together, pour over ice into a tumbler, top with soda.