Updated: May 18
7 Bridges & Saigon Cider 'ZERO ALCOHOL' soda collaboration
With non-alcoholic beverages on-trend globally, the CEOs of Vietnam’s first female -founded craft beverage brands have stepped up to the challenge of quenching thirst without the booze buzz, launching the nation’s first entirely alcohol-free craft collaboration.
We saw there was a real need for alcohol-free drinks that could hold their own amongst the taps at any craft bar
We asked 7 Bridges CEO Saori Ushimi and Hannah Jefferys of Saigon Cider about the inspiration behind their new line of health-conscious craft beverages.
There is a worldwide trend towards consuming non-alcoholic drinks when socialising, especially amongst young people. I don’t think this means people don’t want to have fun, but rather the opposite – I believe many people are trying to reduce the amount of alcohol they consume because they want their fun to last longer & make better use of their time the next day.
Having so many craft beer and cider choices is great, but when it comes to non-alcoholic drinks, there just aren’t many exciting options. We saw there was a real need for alcohol-free drinks that could hold their own amongst the taps at any craft bar – something with a depth of taste and experience so everyone can enjoy drinks together, whether they drink alcohol or not.
Vietnam has a large population of adults who choose not to drink, so we thought this was a great opportunity to explore some new options for them. With health consciousness on the rise globally, normalising non-alcoholic beverage consumption in settings and occasions in which you’d normally expect to only drink alcohol, can’t be a bad thing, can it?
Hannah Jefferys and Saori Ushimi
(Photo of Hannah - Angeli Castillo from Karma Creatives)
Being several months pregnant, with alcohol not an option, I was reluctant to go to bars to socialise or for meetings only to then order a boring beverage. Water, a sugary soda, or a packaged fruit juice shipped around the world just doesn’t cut it when we have those very fruits right on our doorstep. Fresh juices are certainly amazing in Vietnam, but I craved something new. I still wanted to be able to drink something interesting that I knew had some thought behind it, and I realised that there really wasn’t much on offer in terms of locally made craft for those who permanently can’t drink alcohol or choose not to.
Craft beer and ciders are exciting to try and to learn about, especially in a taproom setting, it’s an experience as well as a drink, so why not extend that experience to those who want zero alcohol and create occasions for them too that they can also share alongside those sampling the alcoholic offerings?
So what exactly have they come up with?
After a team get-together and throwing around many ideas (and a few fruit), Hannah, Saori & teams have developed two locally inspired craft creations that are ready to hit Vietnam’s bars just in time for summer.
Vietnamese Herbal Limeade
Saigon Cider’s Vietnamese Herbal Limeade is an effervescent treat packed with local fresh herbs including mint, que huong, rau ram, and of course locally-grown limes. The bright natural green colour and slightly grainy mouthfeel indicate the presence of fresh ingredients, with the herbs coming through in a refreshing way, backed up with just the right amount of lime. This one is as complex and thought provoking as a soda can be, and just oozes healthy vibes.
Pink Guava Creme Soda
7 Bridges has developed a Pink Guava Creme Soda. In a nod to times past, this all-natural option builds on Vietnam’s subtle pink guava to create an old-fashioned creme soda. With its creamy mouthfeel, natural fruit flavour and just a hint of vanilla (and less than half the sugar of a normal soda), the bright pink sensation just pops off the bar in an explosion of (guilt-free) decadence.
Where can you try 7 Bridges & Saigon Cider ZERO ALCOHOL soda?
Drop into any 7 Bridges tap room in Hanoi, Saigon, Danang or An Bang, Hoi An from early May. www.7bridges.vn