Not to be dramatic, but 2020 completely changed the way I drink cocktails. At the start of the pandemic, I invested in a bar cart and a few essential bar tools and learned how to make some of the classics. Now, instead of wandering into a crowded bar and ordering whatever specialty drink catches my eye, I make my own concoctions at home and almost exclusively enjoy them on the couch with my roommate.
Skipping the bar has certainly saved me money considering I was accustomed to paying upwards of $15 for a cocktail not long ago. But the alcohol and sugar content of unlimited margaritas, lemon drops, and dirty martinis can quickly add up, leading to unfortunate hangovers made even more unfortunate by the fact that they originated from a quiet night in.
So when I discovered Haus, a brand that makes low-ABV (alcohol by volume) apéritifs that promise to reduce hangovers, I was sold. Admittedly, it took me a couple of Google searches to understand what exactly an apéritif is and how best to enjoy it—my prior knowledge stopped at the Instagram-famous Aperol spritz.
It turns out that apéritifs are simply liquors that are flavored with roots, herbs, and botanicals. They’ve been popular in Europe for centuries, but we’re just catching up here in the U.S. Because of the lower alcohol content, apéritifs are easy to sip all night long without getting too drunk or feeling hungover in the morning. They offer complex flavors ranging from bitter to sweet, which you can enjoy over ice or mixed with soda, tonic, or even sparkling wine.
Haus apéritifs are inspired by traditional European drinks and are made in Sonoma County, Calif. with a base of Chardonnay grapes. The direct-to-consumer brand offers a variety of flavors, including citrus flower, lemon lavender, and bitter clove, made with ingredients like elderflower, star anise, lemon, cloves, and raw cane sugar.
To buy: $35; drink.haus
Since launching in the summer of 2019, the brand has introduced seven unique flavors and gained a growing number of fans. When it first released a sampler kit allowing customers to try their choice of four apéritif flavors in the fall, it sold out in less than a month, only to get restocked and sell out again.
After trying a selection of flavors, I know I’ll want this light beverage stocked on my bar cart for the foreseeable future. I love making refreshing, tasty drinks that won’t leave me with a pounding headache the next day. Plus, the stylish bottles that the apéritifs come in double as decor. I’ve even taken to saving them after they’re empty for a unique way to display dried flowers around my apartment.
Head to Haus to check out all of its flavorful apéritifs and discover new ways to drink them.
See what else I swear by.