Non-booze drinks taste great in January

A few Central Oregon options that won’t test your resolution

By Beau Eastes / The Bulletin / @beastes

How are those booze-free New Year’s resolutions going for you?

Welcome to Dry January, that time of the year when you give your palate a week or two — or maybe even an entire month — to recover from Drunkember. (Trust us, Dry January is so much better than Betty Ford February.)

Thankfully, we live in Central Oregon, where the microbrew scene’s penchant for innovation and creativity also extends to its nonalcoholic brethren.

So here are some of our favorite drinks that might help get you through Dry January without breaking your resolution. Cheers!

Chocolate marshmallow malt from Tastee Treet in Prineville: Is this the best drink in Central Oregon? Maybe North America? I’m pretty sure my father-in-law visits us only because there’s a chance we might take him on a drive to the Ochocos that inevitably involves a stop at the Tastee Treet.

Espresso from Lone Pine Coffee in Bend: There are a lot of great coffee options in Bend, especially downtown, but Lone Pine pulls one of the best espressos in town from beans they roast in their Tin Pan Alley shop. The $7 “espresso drink and sandwich” deal is also spectacular.

Root beer from Rogue Brewing: Yep, the brewery that produces Dead Guy Ale and Shakespeare Stout also makes one heck of a root beer. A staple at Growler Guys’ east-side location inside the Stop and Go Shell gas station at U.S. Highway 20 and 27th Street, Rogue’s root beer is available on draft only in Oregon and Washington.

Crazy Dave’s ginger brew: Good ol’ Crazy Dave has his brew in select locations in Central Oregon; check out Nature’s and Devore’s for bottles and Jackson’s Corner usually has it on tap. This microbrewed ginger ale makes for a great non-beer substitute over pizzas or pub food. I’d even go out on a limb and say it’s a worthy quaff after a particularly grueling workout, like 10 Barrel’s Swill or Goodlife’s Sweet As.

Kombucha Mama’s lemon ginger: No delicious booze-free list would be complete without Kombucha Mama, the fermented tea company in Bend that helped launch a local kombucha movement. Wonderful for all the right reasons — tasty, healthy and the fizz feels nice on your tongue — Kombucha Mama’s lemon ginger has become my go-to drink during Dry January.

Raw milk from Windy Acres Dairy Farm near Prineville: You’re either all in or all out with me on this one. Awesome in coffee, mixed with chocolate or just in a pint glass by itself, Windy Acres’ unpasteurized raw milk almost feels like a meal unto itself. Available for purchase through a “herd share” program — if you own part of the cow, you can do whatever you want with the milk, including drinking it raw — there are a few hoops to jump through to get your milk, but it is well worth it.

Coffee, coffee and more coffee: Since your budget for booze is zero this month, swap those savings for high-end coffee drinks. Goodbye drip, hello macchiatos.

— Reporter: 541-383-0305, beastes@bendbulletin.com