By Sydney Mondry
Updated Jul 31, 2016 @ 10:45 am
Cocktails - Lead 2016
Credit: Zandy Mangold; Justin McCallum

This summer’s cocktail trend is perfect for people who hate hangovers (a.k.a. everyone). Over the past few months, we’ve noticed a significant increase in the number of bartenders serving low-alcohol beverages, also referred to as low ABV (alcohol by volume), or sessions. These sippers are typically made with low-proof liquor, which means you can enjoy two or three without fear of a heavy head or upset stomach the next morning. We love the idea of serving these tame tipples at a wedding, where guests can get a bit overzealous with the open bar, or at a daytime soirée.

Read on below for three low-alcohol cocktail recipes from some of our favorite bartenders in N.Y.C.

Take It Easy

“This is a low-proof cocktail that is reminiscent of an Aperol Spritz, only with a little more backbone to it,” says Nick Bennett, the drink’s creator and head bartender at Chelsea's Porchlight.

Take It Easy
Credit: Liz Clayman

The name says it all. Drink one (or three) glasses of this low-proof cocktail, which is similar to an Aperol Spritz, without worrying about tomorrow’s hangover. Get the recipe here.

Liz Clayman


1 1/2 oz pinot grigio
1 oz Aperol
1 oz Cocchi Americano ($16;
3 dashes orange bitters ($7;
Orange twist, for garnish


Build in a mixing glass and stir briefly to chill. Strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with an orange twist.

When Ginger Meets Grapefruit

Created by Jane Elkins of Dream Baby in the East Village.

Cocktails 1 - Embed 2016
Credit: Justin McCallum


3/4 oz Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur ($27;
3/4 oz Aperol
Schofferhofer grapefruit beer (find a seller near you, or use a grapefruit beer of your choosing)
Slice of grapefruit, for garnish


Combine Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur and Aperol in a mason jar or tall glass with ice. Top with Schofferhofer grapefruit beer. Garnish with a slice of grapefruit.

Watermelon Shandy

Created by Meaghan Dorman of The Bennett, Dear Irving, and The Raines Law Room, all in N.Y.C.

Clone of Cocktails 2 - Embed 2016
Credit: Zandy Mangold


3 oz fresh watermelon juice
Anderson Valley Briney Melon Gose ($10;


Pour watermelon juice into a 12-oz Collins glass. Top with Anderson Valley Briney Melon Gose.