Business Hour

Entrepreneurial sisters Abigayle Clayton-Grimshaw and Sophie Birtwell are rewriting the rulebook on sober socialising with House of Clarity, the premium collection of sophisticated, award-winning non-alcoholic drinks from around the world. Photography: Kirsten Platt

To get the New Year off to a great start, lots of people will be embarking on ‘Dry January’, giving their bodies a chance to reset and reap the benefits such as better sleep and more energy, or perhaps you’re thinking of opting out of alcohol more permanently.

Ribble Valley based House of Clarity has an extensive collection of complex, alcohol-free beverages that don’t compromise taste, enjoyment or experience.

Whether toasting a celebration or pairing a delicious wine with a Michelin-starred meal, their impressive premium portfolio is unrivalled and celebrated by sommeliers and mixologists alike.

Behind the scenes at House of Clarity are entrepreneurial sisters Abigayle Clayton-Grimshaw and Sophie Birtwell, who have made it their mission to seek out some of the world’s finest producers of non-alcoholic drinks.

“We are seeing a moderation trend sweeping across global markets, with people preferring to moderate their choices, rather than opting out completely,” says Sophie.

Abigayle explains: “The US, Australia and parts of Europe are ahead of us in terms of emerging products. After trying many of these first-hand and becoming aware of the global recognition, we wanted to share them with the UK. Although we work mostly with businesses in London at present, the popularity is growing nationally and high-end venues across the country are becoming more aware of this necessity and the profitably it can additionally bring. Globally the no and low-alcohol market is now a multi-billion-pound industry.”

Since launching House of Clarity, Abigayle and Sophie have become trailblazers, forging a reputation for their extensive knowledge and their carefully curated portfolio, with both hospitality and event venues across the country.

They are the exclusive UK distributor of Prima Pavé, Italy’s most awarded non-alcoholic sparkling wine and recently received their largest shipment of Rose Brut, Blanc de Blancs and Rose Dolce, with extensive plans to launch the products to their partners over the coming months.

Retailing online and to the hospitality trade, other world-class names in the portfolio include Pentire, French Bloom and Wild Idol – unique in that it is naturally alcohol-free: “Wild Idol is produced using the same careful techniques found in traditional winemaking. Yet, unlike many other alcohol-free wines that are de-alcoholised, Wild Idol is made with such precision that it never creates alcohol,” says Abigayle.

These sparkling wines are crafted using traditional wine-making techniques, however they further require additional skills to manage the alcohol content. Whether that be close monitoring to ensure a product never reaches a state where alcohol is present or the complex method of de-alcoholising the wine to remove all traces of alcohol whilst leaving the product’s aromatic character and profile perfectly intact.

House of Clarity also has a collection of premium sophisticated seltzers from Double Dutch and Something & Nothing as well as the unique Jukes Cordialities created by wine expert Matthew Jukes.

“After over a year of internationally sampling and sourcing products, we shared these findings with industry experts to refine our range and create the specialist portfolio that we offer today.”

“Whilst some beverages may take on similar characteristics to traditional spirits and wines, the non-alcoholic industry is producing completely new beverages too that warrant their own category behind the bar from Kombucha to botanical aperitifs.”

House of Clarity supports venues in crafting sophisticated, margin-driving menus as well as listing their top premium drinks online for customers to buy directly. Another name in the House of Clarity stable includes Pentire – a collection of ‘outdoor inspired’ carefully distilled botanical spirits – well-loved globally by Soho House, amongst many others. The products are made by distilling unique plants native to the coastline of Cornwall, offering fresh herbaceous flavours thanks to key ingredients including rock samphire, sage, lemon citrus and Cornish sea salt.

All products are individually hand-wrapped in luxury, monogrammed packaging making them the perfect personal or corporate gift.

Wild Eve is another name that Abigayle and Sophie have tracked down on their travels to source the very best. Wild Eve is a premium aperitif made from plants foraged in the mountains of Harris in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides.

Abigayle and Sophie truly believe that luxury alternatives, like those featured in the House of Clarity collection, are not only shifting the mindset around moderation but are bringing awareness to the need for menus to meet wider customer preference: “This isn’t simply about abstaining from alcohol, the products meet broader requirements and provide greater inclusivity, with benefits such as being halal certified, vegan, gluten-free and low-calorie.”

“These exclusive drink variations are very complex, and venues offering them showcase a greater level of awareness and innovation and this resonates with the people who are actively seeking alternatives,” says Sophie.

“We want to give people the privilege of choice when it comes to non-alcoholic drinks and support venues to confidently move into this space. The demand from consumers continues to grow here in the UK and this is only propelling greater opportunities for businesses.”



Tedd Walmsley

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Tedd Walmsley managing director of Live Magazines shares his views on the latest topics in media.

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