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Enjoy yourself … safely

With New Year’s Eve a day away, everyone is ready to ring in a new decade, likely in the traditional way with friends, music, merriment and a few drinks.

With New Year’s Eve a day away, everyone is ready to ring in a new decade, likely in the traditional way with friends, music, merriment and a few drinks.

On that same night, police everywhere will be scouring the streets for drunk drivers, using check stops, roving patrols or calls from concerned drivers or friends. Before you know it, a night of fun can come to a screeching halt in either an accident or a courtroom with a hefty fine and a one-year driving prohibition.

Still, no one wants to be the one drinking water, ginger ale or de-alcoholized beer all night long. If you’re the designated driver and want to get your friends or family home safe tomorrow, try mixing up one of these drinks instead. Yes, there’s no alcohol, but it will taste better than a belly full of cola.

2 to 3 oz. non-alcoholic beer or malt beverage

2 to 3 oz. de-alcoholized dry white wine

Combine beer and wine in roughly equal measure (to taste) in a champagne flute or tulip glass.

Makes one serving.

1 can tomato juice

1 oz. lime juice

3 oz. club soda

3 shakes of Worcestershire sauce

2 pinches of cumin powder

1 shake of celery salt

1 tsp. horseradish

Mix all ingredients except club soda into a large pitcher. Salt the rim of a highball glass. Add club soda to the glass, then add the Bloody Mary Mix (from step 1). Garnish with celery stalk and top with lemon pepper.

2 oz. cocoa crème

3 oz. orange juice

1 scoop vanilla ice cream

Strawberries

Whipped cream

Mix cocoa crème, orange juice and ice cream in a blender with ice. Pour over strawberries in glass. Stir with a straw to create a festive design. Top with fresh whipped cream and a strawberry.

2 oz. Sweet & Sour mix

2 oz. Sierra Mist Soda

4 oz. of raspberry purée

Whipped cream

Place ingredients in blender and add ice. Mix until desired thickness. Pour into a tall glass and top with whipped cream.

3/4 cup peach sorbet

1/3 cup orange juice

1 c. sparkling water

3/8 tsp. almond extract

Crushed ice

Blend sorbet, juice and extract until smooth. Stir in sparkling water. Pour over crushed ice and serve.

3 oz. Sunny Delight

3 oz. Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice

Splash of 7-Up

Garnish: orange slice or cherry

Pour ice into a double old-fashioned glass. Add equal parts of Sunny Delight and cranberry juice. Top off with a splash of 7-Up and garnish with an orange slice or cherry.

1 64-oz. bottle Ocean Spray 100% Premium Juice Blend of Cranberry and Granny Smith Apples

1/4 c. sugar

2 - 3 inch cinnamon sticks

1 tsp.

Whole allspice

Garnish: orange slices and clover

Mix all ingredients (except garnish) into saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer five to 10 minutes. Strain heated punch into punch bowl. Garnish with orange slices and clover.

4-5 oz. chilled ginger ale or ginger beer (see cook's notes)

1/2 oz. grenadine or pomegranate syrup (non-alcoholic, see cook's notes)

Cracked ice

Optional garnish: 5 to 7 pomegranate seeds

Combine ingredients (except garnish) in glass measuring cup. Stir to combine. Strain into chilled martini glass. If desired, garnish with pomegranate seeds. Serve immediately.

Cook's notes: I like to use ginger ale with attitude, such as Vernors or Stewart's Ginger Beer, but any ginger ale will work. Grenadine is pomegranate syrup. Make sure you use one that doesn't contain alcohol. Pomegranate syrup is sold in Eastern Mediterranean markets.

3 oz. orange juice

1/2 oz. undiluted grapefruit concentrate

1 oz. coconut cream

1 oz. half-and-half

About 3/4 cracked ice

Place all ingredients in shaker. Shake vigorously. Pour into tall, chilled glass.

3 oz. blood orange juice (see cook's notes)

3 oz. raspberry seltzer or lemon-line soda

Ice

Garnish: Slice of blood orange.

Place orange juice and seltzer (or lemon-lime soda) in tall, thin glass. Gently stir. Fill with ice. Garnish with thin slice of blood orange.

Cook's notes: Blood oranges have red-streaked flesh. The juice is almost as red as tomato juice.

4 oz. alcohol-free white zinfandel (see cook's notes)

1/2 oz. pureed and strained raspberries (see cook's notes)

2 1/2 oz. lemon-lime soda

1/2 oz. grenadine (see cook's notes)

1 tsp. sugar

Cracked ice

Put all ingredients in tall glass. Stir to combine.

Cook’s notes: Most ‘alcohol-free’ wine contains less than half of one per cent alcohol by volume. It is often labelled de-alcoholized. To make raspberry puree, process frozen or fresh raspberries until pureed, then strain to remove seeds. Grenadine is pomegranate syrup. Make sure you use one that doesn’t contain alcohol.

1 small sugar cube

Several drops angostura bitters

Sparkling non-alcoholic apple cider, chilled

Place sugar cube in champagne flute and sprinkle with bitters. Top with chilled sparkling cider. Serve.

Cook’s notes: Angostura bitters are sold in the liquor section of most markets with the mixers. They are a distillation of herbs, barks, roots and plants and contain a small amount of alcohol. Only one to two drops are used in each drink.

4 c. water

1 c. dried hibiscus flowers (about 1-1/2 oz.) (see cook's notes)

1/3 c. sugar, or to taste

2 c. ice

In saucepan, bring water to boil and add flowers. Simmer mixture five minutes and remove pan from heat. Let mixture stand 30 minutes to infuse. Pour infusion through sieve into glass pitcher, pressing on solids, then discard flowers. Add sugar and ice, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Chill cooler and stir before serving over ice in tall glasses. Makes six cups, about four servings.

Cook’s notes: Dried hibiscus flowers are sold in Mexican markets.

2 c. cranberry juice

2 qt. apple cider

1/2 c. sugar

1 orange studded with six whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks, about 3 inches each

Garnish: orange slices or cinnamon sticks.

Combine all ingredients (except garnish) in slow-cooker. Simmer, covered, on low setting 1-1/2 hours. Serve in warmed mugs. Garnish each with orange slice or cinnamon stick. Makes 10 servings.

6 oz. Pina Colada mix

1 oz. pineapple juice

1 oz. strawberry preserves

Ice

Garnish: pineapple wedge

Put all ingredients and ice into blender. Blend until desired consistency. Pour into glass and decorate with pineapple wedge. Add more pineapple for a more fruity taste.