While alcohol-free beers and wines have been around for a long time, non-alcoholic spirits are a relatively recent arrival at the party although some have been around for decades.
There have been whisky and rum substitutes originating in Spain that offered the flavours of those drink styles. They tended to be a little sweet and syrupy for seasoned spirit lovers but they did make excellent liqueur coffees.
The explosion in production in spirit substitutes is relatively recent. The competition opened up with the arrival of the non-alcoholic distilled botanical drink Seedlip. Despite landing on the shelves at around £30 a bottle, this was a game changer and became an unexpected success. People were prepared to pay £30 for a non-alcoholic drink made from peas.
Thanks in no small measure to a well-resourced marketing campaign, Seedlip carved a niche all of its own and the producers have since expanded their range with new blends.
It's not to everyone's taste – it does have a subtle taste of peas – but it's unquestionably been a success.
Since it became almost a household name, there have been countless copy-cat brands of distilled botanicals that morphed into a massive growth in the production of alcohol-free gin substitutes.
Most of them, like Seedlip, have carried a hefty price tag. Creating a distilled beverage of this nature and getting it to market is not a cheap pursuit.
Now the market is well tuned, the big names in the gin business such as Gordon's, Tanqueray and Whitley Neill have joined the foray. These alcohol-free versions of their famous brands have taken the wind out of the sails of many newcomers.
But new contenders in the field of alcohol-free spirits spring up almost weekly as the bandwagon rolls on, creaking under the weight of those jumping onboard.
More recently the focus has expanded to include dark spirits and there are now quite a few whiskey substitutes and rum alternatives worth trying if you like a wee dram or a warming after-dinner digestif.
Attention is moving too towards the Mexican drink tequila as a trendy tipple made from the agave plant and there are now some alcohol-free tequila brands that are making their mark.
There's so much to choose from and some super mixers to compliment your favourite non-alcoholic spirit. So check out what's in store now. You'll never again need to feel you're missing out.