Business Premier customers wanting a sophisticated drink without the punch can now order blended cocktails made with boutique Kiwi distillery Ecology & Co’s alcohol-free spirits on flights between Auckland and San Francisco throughout July.

Air New Zealand’s Senior Manager Customer Experience Niki Chave says the alternative aperitifs are inspired by customer feedback.

“Indulging with a delicious drink is a travel ritual many customers enjoy, but 11 percent of our customers tell us they don’t drink alcohol and around one in ten say they enjoy spirits but would never drink spirits in the air, as they want to avoid becoming dehydrated or feeling sluggish at their destination.

“There’s also a rising global interest in ‘cleaner’ drink choices to complement the growing clean eating movement, while many customers just want to hit the ground running.

“Like Ecology & Co, we want to give customers fresh flavours so we’re very excited to be able to add its Asian Spice and London Dry distilled spirits to our cocktail selection.”

Ecology & Co co-founder Di Miller says there’s been tremendous interest in the sugar, carbohydrate and alcohol-free spirits since they launched in October last year.

“Unlike traditional gins which use alcohol to preserve taste, our spirits are made exclusively of distilled botanicals and spices which we hand blend to create our unique flavours. The result is a sophisticated, adult drink, without the hangover.

“We could only have dreamed of the global exposure our Air New Zealand partnership will give Ecology & Co. It’s a brilliant showcase for a Kiwi product that literally began in our garden shed and we can’t wait to see how it goes down onboard.”

Air New Zealand will serve the Muriwai Mule with Ecology & Co Asian Spice and the Tahi Rua Tonic with Ecology & Co London Dry on NZ7 and NZ8 until 31 July. The alcohol-free spirit will also be available with soda and ice for those wanting a zero-sugar beverage.