By Erik Kennedy Special to OnMilwaukee Published Aug 23, 2018 at 6:01 PM

Although I have never been to Spain, I feel like each time I go to Hotel Madrid, I become more inspired to learn more about the culture and food – especially through its mocktails.  

Hotel Madrid’s mentality is "to stand, eat and drink" as a culture, which means they are committed to providing an unique experience every evening. They strive to bring the best food and drink possible while helping you experience Spain in the heart of Milwaukee.    

"Having a great bar means having great everything from wine to cocktails to non-alcoholic, so what we do is treat our mocktails like any other part of the bar, not as an afterthought – and we get tons of guests ordering those," said Ryan DeRosa, beverage director at StandEatDrink.

Two of those Hotel Madrid mocktails are the Sin and Tonic and Strawberry Lemonade, selling for just $6.  

The former – Hotel Madrid's signature cocktail – features lime juice, grapefruit juice and Top Note Indian Tonic, mirroring a Spanish Gin and Tonic. My friends and I commented on how flavorful and refreshing it was thanks both to the citrus and the warmth of the spice. We also agreed that this mocktail has got versatility, easily paired with your meal, an event or simply hanging out. Plus this drink can and should be ordered year-round.

The only "sin" for some is that there is no alcohol in it. For a teetotaler like me,  however, it is heaven.

Meanwhile, the Strawberry Lemonade features strawberry juice, kiwi juice, lemon, water and a dash of love. My friends and I commented how fresh and sweet it was while being the perfect blend of citrus and sweet. It's definitely the perfect Hotel Madrid patio drink for taking in the music, heartfelt conversations and delicious food with loved ones.

  • Sin and Tonic: Lime juice, grapefruit juice and Top Note Indian Tonic along with a basil leave, slice of lime and a star anise.

  • Strawberry Lemonade: Strawberry juice, kiwi juice, lemon, water and a dash of love along with a strawberry and orange peel garnish.

The story of how StandEatDrink came together began – fittingly – at a bar in Spain, when friends reunited over cañas and tapas. Now, they look forward to providing the same type of culture in Milwaukee through Hotel Madrid and Movida. Through the ambiance, soulful music and attentive service, you too will become inspired to learn more about the culture of Spain – especially when you cool down with a refreshing mocktail.