Meet Christie Knight, no & low alcohol extraordinaire.
We sit down with Christie Knight to ask about her experience working within the ever-growing no & low category.
What's your name and where do you come from?
I’m Christie – I’m originally from Glasgow but the accent has got a little lost along the way.
What’s the most Glaswegian thing about you?
I am the offspring of a Glaswegian celebrity.
How did you get into the no and low category?
I vividly remember first trying Seedlip at a trade show back in the early days and being massively intrigued. When I saw the look on my Mum’s face after tasting some booze-free cocktails that I made her with a bottle I brought home – I knew this was revolutionary.
For so long those not opting for alcohol had such poor options and that landscape now has totally shifted. When Diageo purchased Seedlip I made a beeline straight for the role.
What has surprised you most about working in this category?
I still get surprised by the knee-jerk negative reactions of some people to alcohol-free spirits, but nothing satisfies me more than the look on their faces after trying a banging cocktail made with Seedlip. It’s like the penny drops and they totally get it.
Are there any common misconceptions surrounding no and low that you want to clear up?
That it’s only for tee-totallers. Alcohol-free or low ABV cocktails are so versatile and can really help make big lifestyle changes feel like the easiest thing in the world. Oh, and that “Seedlip is an alcohol-free gin.” There is no juniper in any of our Seedlip expressions and none are based on the profile of gin, therefore none taste remotely like a gin.
What can you tell us about the audience engaging with no and low?
It’s massively varied. There’s definitely lots of interest from the younger generation (not sure if I can include myself in there anymore!) It’s far more popular now than ever to be into healthy living and wellness, which brings with it an intrigue to drinking better. There’s a huge surge in people being more aware of the damaging effects of the overconsumption of alcohol, and just in general lots of people wanting to reduce their intake. In my mind, the easiest way to do that is to replace your favourite alcohol rituals with an alcohol-free alternative. You don’t get FOMO when you’re still at the pub having a yummy cocktail!
On our menu, the iconic Mildreds have teamed up with Seedlip & Tanqueray 0.0%, do you have a favourite of the three cocktails?
I’m OBSESSED with all 3 – right now it’s probably the cucumber & jalapeño gimlet. That balance of sweet, sour, and unbelievably fresh is just so damn tasty.
Can you tell us about another bar that has used Seedlip in a creative/forward-thinking way?
I am forever inspired by the bar community here in London, I’m constantly coming across people using Seedlip in new and creative ways. Merlin Johnson chef of Osip restaurant which recently was awarded a Michelin Star created a sorbet with Seedlip Grove 42 as a palette cleanser for a 12-course tasting menu he did at The Connaught Grill. It sounded delightful. Stephen Muttley at London’s top zero-waste restaurant SILO has also created 4 unbelievably delicious cocktails each using Seedlip inspired by the flavours in natural wine. It means you can still have a “wine-pairing” with your tasting menu even if you are steering clear of alcohol, and the drinks are just so good.
When you’re not sipping no or low, where do you go for a cocktail and why?I’m based in Dalston, and we really are spoilt for choice around here. I love High Water for their creativity but still simplicity of using few ingredients but using them so well. Discount Suit Co has the best cosy cocktail vibes, Hacha’s Mirror Margarita is a firm favourite, but right now I’d have to say TT Liquor. The space there is so versatile – you can watch a movie in their retro cinema, sip on a cocktail in the speakeasy downstairs, or enjoy a drink by Sasa on the rooftop. He’s just done two delicious Seedlip serves up there that I just can’t get enough of.
What cocktail would you like to drink for the first time all over again?
A cocktail from the old menu at High Water called Age of Explorers, it was made with rum, mezcal, fig and white wine. I think about it very regularly.