Non-alcoholic beer ranges from 0.0% to 0.5% alcohol, and are gaining popularity as more people are seeking alcohol free alternative beverages for a variety of reasons. From Pilsners to Stouts and everything in between, low and no-alcohol beers are available from breweries around the world, and they are 100% worth celebrating. Here's what you should know about these alcohol-free beers, as well as a few favourites offered online at Beer Hawk:
1. They taste amazing
Don’t believe us? Order the
award-winning Stout from Big Drop Brewing Co, a silky smooth, unctuous stout,
with intensely roasted coffee aromas with a milky chocolate finish. Prefer a hoppy pale ale? Then it is
BrewDog’s Nanny State, a beer that defies the equation that alcohol = flavour. Infinite Session Pale is another hop
forward beer, and with the malt balance to back it up.
2. They are healthy…
As well as being low in alcohol, these beers are also isotonic
this great story about German Winer Olympians in the New York Times here). You’ll recognise the word
from sports drinks, and like them, they offer up energy and nutrients, as well as water. It’s also a good source
of antioxidants, magnesium and soluble fibre. And unlike many sports drinks, they don’t have stuff like sodium
nitrate, aspartame and beta-carotene, just malt, hops, water and yeast. Low alcohol beers also usually have
significantly few calories, often less than half, than full alcohol beers. No wonder that in Germany they are
sold as sports drinks
3. There’s loads of choice
You’re no longer limited to a certain German low-alcohol beer
that can, ahem, give you the blues. These days you can get [deep breath] stouts, wheat beers, lagers, sours,
IPAs, pale ales, and
even a Berliner Weisse, and a classic Kölsch from Früh. At Beer Hawk alone we have low or no alcohol beers from a dozen
4. Low-alcohol and alcohol-free means different
According to DrinkAware, in the UK, ‘low alcohol’ beers have an alcoholic strength by volume (ABV) of
between 0.5% and 1.2%. ‘Alcohol-free’ beers are those with an ABV of 0.05% or less. ‘Non-alcoholic’ drinks mean
no alcohol at all, such as sodas.
5. They’re brewed in different ways, and they’re not
There are two main ways to limit the alcohol in beer while
still leaving a liquid that tastes like beer. The first is to restrict the fermentation of the beer. This, in
turn, can be done in several ways: by stopping the fermentation by cooling the beer, by controlling the
fermentable sugars in the wort (the malty liquid that is fermented) or by mashing in at temperatures that the
malt doesn’t like. However, the problem with these methods is that the flavours may not fully develop or
characteristics that are usually removed through fermentation remain. A second method, and most common for
modern breweries, is to remove the alcohol from fully fermented beers through evaporation in a vacuum (that
doesn’t lose the flavours), reverse osmosis or dialysis.
6. Low and no alcohol beers are big
In Spain, low alcohol beers make up more than 10% of the whole
market. In the UK, it hasn’t even bothered 0.5% of the market, but given the investment by the big brands such
as Heineken, Guinness and Budweiser as well as the expansion of German breweries into the UK market as well as
homegrown breweries, we’re likely to see this increase.
7. More people are drinking less
More than three million people took part in dry January this
year. Non-alcohol beer sales rose by 19% between 2016 and 2017 according to Kantar Worldpanel, and low alcohol
beers regularly top Beer Hawk’s best seller list. The number of people who don’t drink alcohol, especially
16-24-year-olds, has increased by 7% between 2005 and 2016.
8. Low alcohol beer has always been
Everyone used to drink beer, even children, up to the 19th
century. They didn’t know it was because of the heating or boiling that killed the nasties, or the fact fermentation also helps, but small beer or table beer was drunk by
everyone. It was probably less than 1%. Eton and Winchester schools had their own breweries for this.
free beer can
help fight prostate cancer!
Did you know that 1 in 8 men in the UK is affected by prostate
cancer? Throughout the entire month of November 2020, Beer Hawk has partnered with Prostate Cancer UK and will
donate £10 for every £25 case sold of the PCUK low and
no-alcohol mixed case.
FIVE LOW AND NO-ALCOHOL BEERS
Yep, another list. But these are our
favourite low/no alcohol beers.
1. BrewDog Punk AF IPA
Enjoy this hardcore alcohol-free IPA with juicy, citrusy
flavours from the time you crack it open down to the very last drop. Available in a 12-pack.
2. BrewDog Nanny State
This 0.5% ABV offering will appeal to lovers of BrewDog's
characteristic style, using Cascade, Columbus, Centennial, Simcoe and Amarillo hops. With a light, bitter body
and flavours of citrus and pine, Nanny State is a refreshing low alcohol option.
A juicy, tropical American pale ale which is full bodied and
packed with aroma. Pale combines a smooth six-grain body, tropical New World hops and a refreshing
bitter flavour. 36 kcals a bottle.
4. Mikkeller Hallo, Ich bin: Berliner Weisse
A low-alcohol version of a Berliner Weisse, a slightly tart
German style from the cult brewery.
5. Schneider Tap 3 Mein
Isotonic thirst-quencher energizes
with 100% wheat beer taste at less than 0,5% alcohol.
Bonus: Low & Alcohol-Free Mixed
Not sure where to start? We've hand-picked this alcohol-free
beer mixed case so you can try some of the best low and no alcohol beers to find your favourite! Makes a great
beer gift for friends who live an alcohol-free lifestyle.
Father’s Day, 19th June 2022, is the special date in the calendar when we celebrate and give a nod to the Dads in our lives. It’s an excuse to spoil them with a little something to say thank you for being awesome. If you’re looking for inspiration for a craft beer-loving Dad, then check out our top 7 Father’s Day beer gifts.
Every year, Beer Hawk releases a lineup of limited edition craft beer mixed cases for the holiday season. This year's lineup of festive Christmas beer gifts is guaranteed to put a smile on everyone’s face.
Remember the childhood excitement of opening a new door on your advent calendar every day in the run up to Christmas? It gave each day a little sparkle of festive magic, even though those tiny chocolates behind the doors were always a bit rubbish. How would you like to recapture that childhood magic, but with bottles of delicious beer instead of powdery chocolate? Sounds amazing, right? In that case, you need to get your hands on our Craft Beer Advent Calendar.
Pairing beer and food together isn’t all rules and science. That would make for a terribly boring dinner party! Instead, it’s the art of taking a good beer, some good food and partnering them together to make something even better. It’s the adventure of discovering what works, what doesn’t and what you like. It’s you taking a bite, taking a sip and then declaring your undying love for that imperial stout and chocolate cake.
Barrel-ageing beers is not a new thing, but it is getting more and more popular, and has probably never been as inventive. Adrian Tierney-Jones explores the new wave of ageing beer in wood
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