CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Alcohol has always played a dominating role in the American social scene, but now more consumers are looking to trade in their favorite spirits for a booze-less version.

The non-alcoholic beverage business has exploded in the last two years with sales of alcohol-free wine, beer, and even liquor rising by 33.2% in the past year totaling $332 million in sales, according to Nielsen.

A growing national trend, a gap in the Charleston market, and her own personal desire to cut back are what inspired Emily Heintz to launch Sèchey, a one-stop-shop for the booze-free drinker.

“[the concept] fits in perfectly,” Heintz said. “We are designed for the sophisticated consumer who wants an elevated experience.”

Heintz launched Sèchey online back in October, but said in the past few months, her business has skyrocketed. The product list featured about 15 brands at the start and now has nearly 30.

“It’s far exceeded our expectations,” she said, adding that the reaction from customers has been overwhelmingly positive.

“They didn’t know this existed and they didn’t know how great alcohol-free beverages could taste,” she said. “The feedback has been that they’re surprised by the level of sophistication in the beverages and that some of the brand-makers come from a sommelier background.”

Now, Heintz is expanding the brand with a physical storefront on King Street where shoppers can come in, sample one of her popular brands, then stock their at-home bar.

Founder Emily Heintz stands in her newly opened King Street location

One of her best-selling options has been a spiritless Kentucky 74 whiskey.

“You own your relationship with alcohol, we just provide alternatives,” she explained. “So, one of my favorite ways to sell the spiritless is halfsies, so mix it with your favorite bourbon and it reduces the alcohol content, you don’t really have a headache the next day, and you can enjoy your beverage.”

These alcohol-free beverages are designed to taste and feel like the real thing, with some even able to mimic the effects of alcohol in one’s body using adaptogens, additives, and eutrophics.

While the space primarily serves as just a bottle shop, for now, Heintz plans to convert part of the space into a dry bar, a place where drinkers and sober people alike can enjoy a night (or day) out. Her hope would be to have a dry-ish bar where the majority of options are nonalcoholic or low-alcohol.

“I’d like to open a beverage concept that flips the script which is led by unleaded drinks,” she said. “This is our cocktail menu, it just happens to not have alcohol.”

The dry bar and event space are set to open in time for Charleston Food + Wine Festival in early March.

Ultimately, Heintz has a vision for a more-inclusive drinking culture in the Lowcountry.

“Sometimes it’s just about having something in your hand that tastes great and it doesn’t have to have alcohol in it,” she said. “We want to make people who don’t drink or want to take a day off feel welcome and not judged.”

The Sèchey dry bottle shop located at 420 King Street opens this week.