Where To Go Out In Seattle When You’re Not Drinking
11 bars where you’ll have a good time and drink well without alcohol.
Whether you’ve signed up as the designated driver, are participating in Dry January, have an early workout the next day, or just simply don’t feel like it, you’ve decided to not partake in alcohol during a night out. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time. From spots with exciting activities to places that serve mocktails way more complex than a $12 glass of juice, here are the best bars to check out when you’re not drinking.
photo credit: Nate Watters
Kamp’s cocktail menu is for everyone, and we love that. Along with full- and half-proof drinks, there are zero-proof concoctions that are just as exciting and thoughtful as the ones full of liquor—like a completely non-alcoholic whiskey sour, tart and complex with velvety egg white froth, or a jalapeño-pineapple margarita with Seedlip Spice swapped out for the tequila. You can even order a bottle of de-alcoholized sparkling wine or beer. In a society that’s taking its sweet time transitioning into a sober-inclusive world, this is a huge win.
photo credit: Nate Watters
Dreamland Bar & Diner
The folks ladling a seemingly endless flow of strawberry-watermelon margaritas from a hollowed-out disco ball aren't the only ones who get to have fun at Dreamland. The same margarita is available sans booze, plus loads of other options, from spirit-free copycats of negronis or piña coladas to a complex cocktail shaken with seven different ingredients including guava, honey chipotle, and Thai basil shrub. And with a space featuring a disco ball ceiling, striped neon lighting, a physical menu in the form of a graphic novel, and a giant lion fountain that actually roars, this place proves that you don't need to do shots to have a thrilling Friday night.
Sign up for our newsletter.
Be the first to get expert restaurant recommendations for every situation right in your inbox.
Stampede Cocktail Club
Stampede Cocktail Club is Dreamland's sister bar, so they have just as robust of a non-alcoholic section on their menu. You'll find simple drinks like a tangerine shrub with strawberry, tonic, and Seedlip Grove, and more intricate ones like non-alcoholic red wine steeped in mulling spices and peppercorn syrup, a creamy salted orange mocktail splashed with four different spirit alternatives, and even a Seedlip Spice-based drink clarified with goat's milk.
Watershed Pub & Kitchen
Watershed is a great spot to do some Tuesday trivia, or pregame before a night skate at the Kraken Community Iceplex. And if you'd like to do that without alcohol, you're in really good hands. Sure, you could order a mocktail, like a gin and tonic with faux gin, or the Daydream with Seedlip Spice, pineapple, lime, and brown sugar cinnamon syrup. But the coolest part about Watershed is the fact that they list their entire selection of "spirits" on the menu, so you can get creative with your order—try something like a whiskey and cola with Lyre's American Malt, or a lemonade with Wilderton Lustre.
photo credit: Nate Watters
Everyone's making phony negronis these days, and we'll be the first to tell you that there are a lot of bad ones. But we're fans of Tio Baby's, made using homemade n/a gin, vermouth-less vermouth, and red Italian bitters. Does it taste exactly like a negroni? Not really. But the balance between sweetness and bitterness is just what we'd want in a stiff drink, plus the giant ice cube is a nice touch. And if you're not into that idea at all, grab a refreshing shrub—sip them alongside a platter of the city's best nachos.
Garage doesn’t have fancy mocktails—if you’re here and sober, chances are you’ll be drinking a Shirley Temple out of a slightly-chipped pint glass. But this is a bar with a bowling alley, and a few hours here is exciting no matter what you’re drinking. Knock over some pins, eat some garlic fries drizzled with lemon aioli, and maybe crack a couple The Big Lebowski jokes.
This South Lake Union speakeasy has an entire page of their directory-style menu devoted to "free spirited" drinks, taking full advantage of non-alcoholic spirit brands like Seedlip, Pathfinder, and Wilderton. The menu includes everything from a virgin pilsner shandy to a concoction with a booze-free aperitivo and verjus rouge. Plus, you’ll still feel like you’re getting Deep Dive's signature fancy cocktail experience, considering all of the mocktails are $16 each.
Nothing makes a dry night more irritating than trying to order fizzy water in a bar full of screaming people. You’ll never have that problem at Bottlehouse, the renovated home-turned-wine-bar in Madrona. Here, you have options like housemade thyme iced tea and persimmon vanilla soda. Both pair well with the snacks, too, like charcuterie plates and baguettes with ganache and chevre.
Add-A-Ball is the perfect place to go when you’re avoiding alcohol because the most interesting activity here has nothing to do with drinking. It’s a dive bar, but it doubles as an arcade complete with pinball, driving games, and a huge 10-person capture-the-flag game called Killer Queen. Spend your pocket change beating the high score of Ms. Pac-Man instead of blowing it on tall boys of Rainier that are basically just water anyways—and on Saturdays, you can catch Good Shape making personal pizzas and cheeseburger rolls.
Rachel's Ginger Beer
Rachel’s Ginger Beer might be the only bar in Seattle where the non-alcoholic options are even better than the ones with booze. This is some special ginger beer, which has a spicy kick and comes in a massive variety of flavors from passionfruit vanilla to cucumber tarragon. Sip on some while eating Ma'ono fried chicken sandwiches and shooting the breeze in their plant-covered space.
Hanging out at a brewery without drinking any beer kind of sounds like going to the Theo factory without sampling any chocolate. The Woods is the exception. There are a bunch of bar games to play like darts, foosball, hand-shuffleboard, and billiards, and non-alcoholic options to drink, ranging from cucumber soda to strawberry basil kombucha. And even your dog, who also isn’t currently drinking, is welcome to come along too.