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MINDFUL JANUARY Non-Alcoholic Cocktails by Yusef

Hello Friends,

Dry January? I like to think of January as a time of renewal, a place in the calendar that says the first of the year, anything is possible, and the sky is the limit. Coming from a world of intoxication and being merry for the last 22 years as a bartender/now mixologist in NYC, Miami, and L.A., I can say this has always been a tough one for me. I say "yeah, I'm going to do this, not do this, try not to do this and maybe it will happen". LOL. But, this year, there is a complete and utter change that has been and is happening to me for the better. Being 50 years old and hitting that milestone last year really mentally, physically, and emotionally touched my soul. Change is inevitable and real. I am choosing to live a sober life and commit to it. Alcohol is a big part of my life, and has been and will continue in this line of work. Personally, I have had to make and bond a new relationship with alcohol.

"Everything All The Time" was a huge slogan of mine at The Cocktail Architect, with that said, IN MODERATION! I still taste my cocktails but I choose to spit, not swallow. Not to be kinky or anything.

My beautiful wife, Nandini Austin, is an Ayurvedic consultant and has helped me along the way to be strong, have courage, be diligent, learn from nature, and be in the present moment. I am presently learning to work with plants, being a gardener on my 3.5 acres in the mountains, learning new healthy meal recipes, being a loving and nurturing Father to my beautiful sons, jumping in the deep end, and trusting the unknown.

Inspiration can come from anywhere. Let us commit to this day, this month, and this year, to let go of everything that does not serve us and to fill ourselves with honesty, truth, compassion, creativity, friendships, and wholesomeness.

"To be a true artist one must be with the tippy toes almost touching the bottom, a bit uncomfortable, to grow and to be free." David Bowie

There are three recipes I have created for January 2023 that are spicy, flavorful, colorful, and non-alcoholic. Simply adding fresh water or seltzer to these adds depth and allows the drink to come alive without any booze. Remember it's all about balance in everything we choose to do in our lives.

Happy 2023!!!

Please check out our carefully crafted recipes below!


Yusef Austin

PS: See you soon in one of our classes.


The Protector

Cranberry + Rosemary + Cinnamon + Fresh Lime Juice + Water

Enhancer Recipe:

1. Take 1 cup of unsweetened cranberry juice to 1 cup of white sugar in a saucepan on medium to high heat,

stirring until all sugar is dissolved.

2. Take 2 rosemary sprigs, and 1 whole cinnamon stick(cracked) and bring to a boil.

3. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes.

4. Let cool. Strain.

5. Good for 1 month in the fridge.

Non-Alcoholic Recipe: 2 oz. Cranberry Enhancer 1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice Add ice to a shaker tin, add all ingredients, shake and strain over fresh ice in a highball/collins glass. Top off with spring water or seltzer water. Stir well. Garnish: Fresh rosemary sprig Notes: Rosemary can increase your circulation. Also a stress reliever, pain reducer, and protector of the nervous system.



Blood Orange + Habanero + Lime + Lemon + Agave Nectar + Mole Negro

Non-Alcoholic Recipe: 2 oz. Blood Orange Juice

1 oz. Lime + Lemon Juice

1 oz. Spring Water

1/2 oz. Agave Nectar

1 Sliver of a Habanero Pepper

Add ice to a shaker tin, add all ingredients except Mole Negro, shake and strain over fresh ice in a Rocks glass.

Garnish: Take your Rocks glass and rub a lime around and all over half the rim of the glass, gently tap the glass onto a plate of the Mole Negro sauce. Let sit and harden while you make your N/A cocktail.

Lime wedge optional.


Fiber helps support the immune system and is packed with Vitamin C, which is also anti-inflammatory. Lower glycemic level than sugar, rich in iron.


Basil Awareness

Plums + Holy Basil + Orange Peel + Lemon Peel + Fresh Lemon Juice

Enhancer Recipe:

Peel half a lemon and half an orange. Bring a cup of white sugar to a cup of water to a boil until the sugar is dissolved. Add the peels and reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool. Strain. Good for 1 month in the fridge.

Non-Alcoholic Recipe:

2 Fresh Plums

1 Sprig of Holy Basil

1 oz. Orange Peel + Lemon Peel Enhancer

1 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice

1 oz. Spring Water

Take a shaker tin, and add two whole plums without pits, muddle til a pulp is acquired, and then add ice. Pour in the Enhancer, lemon juice, and water. Shake until the shaker tin is very cold. Double strain over fresh ice in a highball glass.

Garnish: Big sprig of Holy Basil


Tons of antioxidants regulate digestion and are amazing sources of fiber, lowers cholesterol, and Vitamin K is great for your heart!


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