The Food Network has got us blushing as pink as our alcohol-removed Rosè wines. We feel so honored to have been included in their recent article "The 14 Best Zero Proof Bars and Bottle Shops from Coast to Coast". Sèchey, along with several other fabulous stores and bars, was featured as one of the top shops in America! Writer, Layla Khoury-Hanold wrote a beautiful account of our brick-and-mortar store that opened in February 2022. It highlighted a few of our favorite brands and even gave credit to our own particular Sèchey vibes!
In the News
Food Network: The 14 Best Zero Proof Bars and Bottle Shops from Coast to Coast
Featured as one of the top shops in America on Food Network!
Food Network: The 14 Best Zero Proof Bars and Bottle Shops from Coast to Coast
As seen in Vogue
Booze-Free Bottle Shops Are Making Dry January Easier Than Ever
Forbes: This One-Stop Shop Will Help You Finish Dry January Strong
The number of zero-proof options has become downright overwhelming. From a trickle a few years ago to a flood, you can now find many variations on everything from tequila to whiskey. To weed through the offerings, I spoke (via email) with Emily Heintz, who just last year founded Sèchey, a Charleston, S.C.-based web store and soon-to-be physical space dedicated to non-alcoholic social drinks. Sèchey has quickly become a one-stop shop including everything from classics like Seedlip to the exploding category of functional beverages.
“I call the functional beverage space the gateway drugs to alcohol-free alternatives,” Heintz says, noting that her first adult non-alcoholic beverage was from Kin Euphorics, a line containing a blend of adaptogens and nootropics designed to destress, relax or energize you, depending on the formula. “Functional beverages replace the temporary ‘feel-good’ sensation of alcohol with healthier alternatives, often with plant-based ingredients.”
Businesswoman Emily Heintz recently launched a Charleston-based company called Sechey earlier this year, which distributes many of the same brands that Spirited Away stocks in New York. Sechey is among the first retailers in the Southeast to stock these products.
The name Sechey is based on the French word “secher,” which means “to dry,” she explained, and while Heintz embraces the sober community, “it’s less about that than introducing women to alternatives they didn’t know existed.”
“We’re open to everyone,” she said. “You could just be taking the day off. You could be doing a 30-day cleanse.”
To that end, Heintz and Watters both are anticipating a busy new year, when millions of American adults are expected to take part in “Dry January.”
“It’s tied to overall health and wellness,” Heintz said. “And I think for women, as you age, your metabolism slows down, your tolerance for alcohol is lower and you feel the effects more. Women love to socialize and connect but you don’t want to have a headache. Working women have to wake up in the morning.”
Southern Sips for Dry January (and Beyond)
Nonalcoholic offerings have never tasted better
I knew there was something wonderful happening in Charleston when I walked into our Garden & Gun holiday party at the Ordinary this year. Why? Because as I handed a bottle of chilled, nonalcoholic sparkling Riesling to the bartender to share with my other non-drinking colleagues, the restaurant’s James Beard Award–winning chef and co-owner Mike Lata strolled over to say: “Isn’t that Leitz great?!”
If you know, you know. And indeed that nonalcoholic Leitz is great. I found out about it through sommelier and wine director Sarah O’Kelley at Charleston’s Edmund’s Oast Exchange. Which just goes to show that a serious nonalcoholic movement afoot in the food and beverage world has finally made its way to Charleston.
I couldn’t be more thrilled—I gave up booze more than two years ago and haven’t looked back. For other folks trying out dry January (and beyond), the choices continue to be more and more delicious. And more popular: New York has welcomed nonalcoholic-focused bottle shops like Boisson, Los Angeles loves No & Low, and this summer Sèchey will debut in Charleston.
For Sèchey founder Emily Heintz, the thrill lies in these discoveries. “We are really excited to be the first stockist of All the Bitter in the Southeast soon,” she says. “It’s a collection of small batch bitters crafted by Michelin-trained sommeliers specifically made for nonalcoholic cocktails.” The most Southern option in the collection is All the Bitter’s New Orleans recipe, inspired by the anise and cherry notes in Peychaud’s.
The Post and Courier
Charleston non-alcoholic drink curator hopes to open dry bar by Dry January
During the pandemic Emily Heintz thought everyone was drinking too much. She was, too.
She had just moved to San Francisco for a job promotion with a boyfriend she later broke up with, and then COVID-19 derailed her plans of meeting friends and getting embedded into the city.
An evolving cocktail culture
INTERVIEW “Holy City Sinner Radio” Featuring Emily Heintz (Sèchey) and City Council Candidate Stephen Bowden
“We are responding to an evolving cocktail culture and the at-home bar movement from the pandemic, where our customers are exploring sobriety, healthy lifestyles and more mindful drinking,” said Heintz. “The innovation by brands in the non-alcoholic and functional beverage category is impressive, and provides a variety of ways to socialize without alcohol but still enjoy a flavorful, stylish craft beverage.”
The assortment at Sèchey includes a connection to Charleston artist Chambers Austelle, who designs the label art for the female founded non-alcoholic beer, Busty Lush.
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“My goal was to build a community in Charleston around this idea and to let people know there are options and you can still be social."
Count on 2
Local business owner brings non-alcoholic beverages to Charleston
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Emily Heintz always dreamed of starting her own company and when she started drinking less two years ago, she discovered a need for non-alcoholic options in the Lowcountry.
She was already experimenting with a 30-day alcohol-free challenge called the “Alcohol Experiment” and noticed how much better it made her feel to replace her normal wine and beer with the non-alcoholic versions.
“I really noticed from a health perspective that I slept better, I was able to be social because I had alternatives and didn’t feel like I was at an event and missing out because I was drinking water,” Heintz said.
“My goal was to build a community in Charleston around this idea and to let people know there are options and you can still be social,”
"There's never been a better time to explore non-alcoholic spirits."
Spirit-Free Bottle Shop Sèchey Opening on King Street Next Month
Sèchey want to give drinkers an alternative option
Fatherly: The Non-Alcoholic Spirit Boom Is Here. These 8 Bottles Are Worth a Try
Whether you’re looking to cut down your alcohol consumption, or simply curious about all these mysterious new bottles popping up on back bars and store shelves, there’s never been a better time to explore non-alcoholic spirits. In fact, according to the International Wine and Spirits Record, low and no alcohol drink consumption is set to increase 34 percent by 2024.
Entrepreneur Emily Heintz will bring Charleston’s first alcohol-free bottle shop to King Street in February. Heintz recently launched online store Sèchey (French for “to be dry”) and thinks more people are interested in exploring a spirit-free or less-boozy lifestyle.
Heintz knows that Charleston has a reputation as a not-so-sober town, but she also thinks that with the influx of newcomers each day, there’s probably a population of non-drinkers that will appreciate a more sophisticated hydration selection than soda water. “I’m not trying to get you to never drink,” she says, “I just want to give you options for when you want to take a night off.”
Spirit-free bottle shop Sèchey will open at 420 King Street (right next to Blue Bicycle Books) on Monday, February 14. The space will offer shelves of spirit-free wines, beers, and “liquors.” Brands like Jukes, Seedlip, Ghia, Kin Euphorics, and Curious Elixirs will be in heavy rotation.