One in five U.S. adults told pollsters they planned to go the whole first month of 2023 without alcohol. It’s the same in the United Kingdom.
Why swear off booze for a whole month?
“One, I needed to, personally, I wanted to take a month off completely from drinking,” said Chura, a 45-year-old father of three. “But secondly, I wanted to create a challenge for a group of people that wanted to try for the first time or do it again. And I couldn’t have it without myself doing it. This is a very unique experience that someone can come here.”
“Here” is Go Brewing, the craft brewery that Chura started in Naperville last October that brews only no- and low-alcohol beers — the first in Illinois.
Regular readers might be aware that every January is Dry January for me — and February, and March, and on through the year. For the past 17 years, which means I remember when you were lucky to find O’Douls at a bar. Now you can buy Bud Zero at Wrigley Field and there are shelves of exotic NA IPAs at Binny’s.
Four hundred people signed up to do Dry January with Chura, and Go Brewing offers regular activities like CrossFit-style workouts and live-band karaoke nights. (The pub does offer several full alcohol guest beers for those who just won’t be denied.)
When Chura opened his doors, he expected his average customer to be a “40-year-old who is gaining weight and wants to be healthy.”
”The brand was built around that,” said Chura, who was surprised by who walked in.
“Week one, 50% or more of the people who came in here were in recovery or couldn’t drink for health reasons. I looked at them and thought, ‘Holy shit, I got this wrong.’”
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