Orlando's Tapa Toro offers nonalcoholic specialty cocktails for 'Dry January'

click to enlarge Tapa Toro's "Virgo Russian" and "Fauxjito" - Photo via tapa Toro/Twitter
Photo via tapa Toro/Twitter
Tapa Toro's "Virgo Russian" and "Fauxjito"
The concept of "Dry January" is always a fabulous idea, especially after the excesses of the holiday party season and, of course, New Year's Eve. I-Drive tapas bar Tapa Toro just announced via Twitter they're featuring two new "mocktails" each week throughout January – "in solidarity!" with fellow winter teetotalers.

Until Jan. 9, they are serving a "Virgo Russian" (frothed milk, chocolate, Coca-Cola and espresso) and the Tapa Toro "Fauxjito" (lime, mint, simple syrup, sour, Sprite), but offerings will change each week. The special drinks are $9, so you still feel like you're buying an alcoholic beverage.

From Jan. 10-16, the specials will be the Barceloneta Beach, made with grapefruit juice, grapefruit soda, simple syrup, fresh rosemary and ginger, and non-alcoholic Sangria (pineapple, orange and cranberry juice, fresh fruit and Sprite). Jan 17-23, it will be the Bright & Sunny (ginger beer, lime, bitters, simple syrup), and the Hole In One (iced tea, simple syrup, lemon juice, pomegranate syrup). Finally, from Jan. 24-31, they will serve La Piña Picante (pineapple juice, ginger beer, habanero and lime with a salt rim), and the Fresa Maria (strawberry purée, ginger beer, Sprite, lime and dehydrated orange.
click to enlarge Tapa Toro's "Bright and Sunny" and "Hole In One" - Photo via tapa Toro
Photo via tapa Toro
Tapa Toro's "Bright and Sunny" and "Hole In One"
In 2018, we urged readers "Please don’t call it a mocktail," as alcohol-free drinks with the essential cocktail balance of tart or bitter with sweet or herbal could just be called drinks, right?

"Well, no, that doesn't quite convey the complexity of the drinks we're talking about," said food and beverage journalist Julia Bainbridge. "A drink could reference a cold-pressed apple juice or a lapsang souchong tea or, hell, a glass of water." Bainbridge noted "no one likes the word mocktail, but we need something to signify that this is more than just a Coke or a cranberry-seltzer."

Whatever you call them, when Orlando restaurants and bars (especially destination joints on I-Drive) offer seasonal nonalcoholic beverages, it creates a more complete experience of drinking out with friends, supporting healthy habits and people in recovery from addiction.

Tapa Toro is located at Icon Park, and has a full-service bar with flamenco dancing and a 12-seat paella pit. You can take a virtual tour of the place to see it's a visual treat inside and out.

You can visit their website, tapatoro.com, to see the rotating Dry January list. An "evening in Spain" without booze? You got this.
click to enlarge Tapa Toro's "La Piña Picante" and "the Fresa Maria" - Photo via tapa Toro
Photo via tapa Toro
Tapa Toro's "La Piña Picante" and "the Fresa Maria"
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