The non-alcoholic beer market is exploding. From big brands like Heineken to small craft brewers like Big Drop… People are opting to drink dry more than ever before. As a father of two, there are occasions when I fancy a drink but can’t.
Maybe I need an amazing night’s sleep, maybe I don’t want to feel groggy in the morning, maybe I’ve still got the bedtime routine to get through, or maybe we’re just off on a family day out and I’m driving. Non-alcoholic beers should be the perfect thing, but are they?
With thanks from our sponsor DryDrinker.com, I’ve taste tested 24 different non-alcoholic beers to give you the lowdown on what’s worth trying the next time you throw a family-friendly BBQ.
Oh, and don’t get me wrong…they’re not all good. Watch out for one video where I almost throw up; I swear they messed up on that brew!
Rothaus Alkoholfrei vs. Birra Moretti ZERO
Birra Moretti ZERO (Blonde beer)
A little aroma. Absolutely nothing in terms of flavour. I love a Moretti but this Italian beer fails to deliver a single punch. It’s too light and tasteless.
Rothaus Hefe Weizem Alkoholfrei (Wheat beer)
Quite a bit of flavour and is damn gassy. A good head on it. Would go down well for the occasions when you can’t drink alcohol. The bottle holds a substantial 50cl too, whereas most non-alcoholic beers are the 33cl. That’s more bang for your buck.
Krombacher Weizen v Mikkeller Drink In The Sun
Nasty brown gunk. Dark cloudy complexion. Fruity aroma. Nothing to back it up by way of taste and mouthfeel.
Mikkeller – Drink in the sun
Fruity aroma (quite powerful). This is a solid beer. The aroma is backed up with fruity notes and a definite little kick to finish at the back of your throat. Drink this with a BBQ.
Bernard S vs. Palm NA
Wow. Amazing. Tastes like a real beer. A great crisp lager. No particular head on it.
A lovely beer here. Honey colour. Bit of caramel flavour. Little bit of a head.
Super Bock vs. Bitburger Drive
Crisp. Tad Wheaty. Tad Fruity. Light enjoyable beer. Has a solid beer aroma which many non-alcos don’t.
Lacks flavour. Lacks aroma. Definitely taste and feels like a non alcoholic beer.
Nanny State v Erdinger Alkoholfrei
Brewdog Nanny State
A lot of depth. Crisp. Very hoppy and strong tasting. A great hoppy aroma. Incredible for a non alcoholic beer.
A great wheat beer. Added isotonic, folic acid and vitamin B12. No aroma. Light crisp taste.
Cobra Zero vs. Heineken 0.0%
Not much aroma. Tastes and feels like an alcoholic beer. Bit gassy. Solid replacement for a regular lager.
Bit malty. Good malty aroma. Sweet malty taste. Too sugary. Slight plastic / cheap finish.
Big Drop Citrus Pale Ale vs. Bernard Cherry
Big Drop Citrus Pale Ale
Amazing! Hint of lime. Light caramel finish. Excellent crisp mouthfeel.
Cherry aroma, colour and taste. It’s not a beer, surely?!
Innis & None Pale Ale vs. Mikkeller Drink In Berliner
Innis and none IPA
Strange grassy / floral aroma. Includes Ginseng and Guarana. A little hoppy. The aroma is off-putting.
Mikkeller – Drink in Berliner
Horrible. Wheaty look. Tastes like gone-off lemonade. Gunk in the bottle. Strong off-putting aroma.
Clausthaler vs. Paulaner Munchner Hell Alkoholfrei
A tad malt sweetness. A solid crisp lager.
Paulaner Munchner Hell Alkoholfrei
The very first ever non-alco beer. Doesn’t have much of aroma or taste. Doesn’t offer much.
St Peter’s Without vs. Leeds Alcohol Free Pale Ale
Leeds Brewery Alcohol Free Pale Ale
Well rounded beer. Amber look. Not much going on in terms of aroma.
St Peter’s Without
Very malty. Smells malty. Tastes malty. A dark amber ale look. Quite still (not very fizzy).
Big Drop Chocolate Milk Stout v. Franziskaner Alcohol Free
Big Drop’s Chocolate Milk Stout
Enjoyed with oysters and BBQs. Strong stout. Dark chocolate aroma. Tad cocoa taste. Looks like Guinness Original (not Guinness Extra Smooth). Smooth on the palette.
Franziskaner Alcohol Free
Cloudy. A tad malty aroma. Very fizzy. Wheat / malt taste. No sweet after-taste. Crisp, excellent mouthfeel.
Becks Blue vs. Bavaria 0.0% Original
Like sparkling water. A brief taste of wheat. Not much going on here.
Nothing going on at all. No aroma. No flavour.
There were some amazing beers for me to test. I was genuinely surprised that I could enjoy these non-alcoholic beers. Month’s after tasting these various beers I now find myself regularly getting non-alcoholic beers as a healthier alternative to alcoholic beers.
The winner, is Big Drop’s Citrus Pale Ale. Close runners up included Brewdog’s Nanny State and Palm NA. With Nanny State being widely available, it’s a regular in my fridge now. Big Drop’s Citrus Pale Ale is a little treat, currently available at DryDrinker.com.