Low Alcohol & Low Calorie

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Once a year, often around this time, I go on a short crash diet to keep my body shape in check and avoid having to buy a new wardrobe of larger sized clothes.

This year I’m going to give low-alcohol beers a try and bought a selection from Sainsburys. In case anyone else is interested I’ve arranged the beers in order of calories; alcohol; and in case of interest from any diabetics, order of carbs.

Calories (per 100ml)
Infinite 11, Doom Bar 13, Guinness & Pine Trail 17, Speckled Hen 22, Erdinger 25, Lazer Crush & Free Star 27
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ABV
Doom Bar & Guinness 0.0%, Lazer Crush 0.3%, the rest 0.5% (although Erdinger says <0.5%)
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Carbs (grams per 100 ml)
Infinite 2, Doom Bar 3.2, Guinness & Pine Trail 3.8, Speckled Hen 4.1, Erdinger 5.3, Lazer Crush 5.9, Free Star 6.1
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Naturally I’ll have to follow this up with how good they are 😉. I still want to limit myself to the equivalent of one regular pint each evening so this is my selection for tonight (total 192 calories). I’ll let you know how I get on.
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The first beer I’m trying is the Infinite. The can says to expect mango, apricot and a little caramel. The hops are Citra, Simcoe, and Mosaic. I do get the fruit aromas and maybe a hint of caramel sweetness. The beer itself is a nice colour but has no head and is a bit thin as you’d perhaps expect. To me there is also a bit of a soda water flavour in the background.

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The very best "Alcohol Free" beers I've come across are by "Williams Bros Brewing Co." in Alloa, Clackmannanshire. They are positively "different": Fermented (not mechanically alcohol reduced, but still <0.5% ABV) and "Biotransformed" using "Thiolised" yeast (I wouldn't normally get excited about such things, but what they do with it is ... 😲 ). The stuff on the first line of this:

https://williamsbrosbrew.com/collections/alcohol-free
They are doing "January Sales" this month, 10 or 15% off ("JAN24-10" £30+ OR "JAN24-15" £50+). Delivery (UK) £5.99 (ouch).

My next order is already in incase they sell out (again).

(Hey, you lot up there, I want some (cost) free cans of "Alien Form" in my next order for that plug!).
 
I often have a couple of cans of old speckled hen during the week but always have them early as being a driver I cannot risk having any alcohol in my system the day after, I am looking forward to the speckled hen review.

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The very best "Alcohol Free" beers I've come across are by "Williams Bros Brewing Co." in Alloa, Clackmannanshire. They are positively "different": Fermented (not mechanically alcohol reduced, but still <0.5% ABV) and "Biotransformed" using "Thiolised" yeast (I wouldn't normally get excited about such things, but what they do with it is ... 😲 ). The stuff on the first line of this:

https://williamsbrosbrew.com/collections/alcohol-free
They are doing "January Sales" this month, 10 or 15% off ("JAN24-10" £30+ OR "JAN24-15" £50+). Delivery (UK) £5.99 (ouch).

My next order is already in incase they sell out (again).

(Hey, you lot up there, I want some (cost) free cans of "Alien Form" in my next order for that plug!).
The very best?

I’ve placed an order, I want to try the very best.
 
The third beer is this Free Star with Mosaic and Amarillo hops. This one is not too bad and even has a bit of a head that persists as a light foam and a ring around the glass. There is a little body too - probably not a coincidence this beer also has the highest level of carbohydrates from my selection.

Edit: As I drank this one it started to taste a bit artificial, not too noticeable to start but seemed to build.

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I often have a couple of cans of old speckled hen during the week but always have them early as being a driver I cannot risk having any alcohol in my system the day after, I am looking forward to the speckled hen review.

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I’ll try that one for you in a few minutes…
 
A pint of Guinness is about 200 calories. A pint of zero Guinness is 97 calories. I've tried it and thought it was disgusting. If I was calorie counting in this fashion, I think I would just have half a pint of Guinness. Provided it was decent.
 
A pint of Guinness is about 200 calories. A pint of zero Guinness is 97 calories. I've tried it and thought it was disgusting. If I was calorie counting in this fashion, I think I would just have half a pint of Guinness. Provided it was decent.
Yeah but then you’d have another!

I’d have the regular strength by choice but while limiting calories the zero is a good compromise (for me).
 
The low alcohol Speckled Hen doesn’t quite stack up to the original I’m afraid. The aroma is quite promising at first but the flavour is quite different being thinner and having more berry notes than I remember for SH. It’s drinkable, and maybe you could get used to it, but it’s not the same beer in my view despite the label saying it’s been “brewed to deliver taste and aroma evocative of the original.”

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Yeah but then you’d have another!

I’d have the regular strength by choice but while limiting calories the zero is a good compromise (for me).
Each to their own, I suppose. For me it just tastes like a really bad pint of G. The difference between good G and bad G is night and day. Unfortunately it is getting harder and harder to find places that serve very good G on. Regular basis. Most places serve it far too cold.
 
Great thread H! After a rather punishing December, I’ve decided to go off the sauce for January this year too.
I’ve had a few Guinness 0.0 this weekend. There’s a Brew Dog AF box left over from New Years in my beer fridge that’ll get seen off at some point. And I was going to have look around to see what other options are available.
 
Great thread H! After a rather punishing December, I’ve decided to go off the sauce for January this year too.
I’ve had a few Guinness 0.0 this weekend. There’s a Brew Dog AF box left over from New Years in my beer fridge that’ll get seen off at some point. And I was going to have look around to see what other options are available.
Thanks Alastair. I have to say Guinness is the only one I’ve actually enjoyed so far, the others being thin and/or tasting artificial. The Infinite tasted like hop water and maybe if you think of it in that way it wasn’t so bad. I still have a few to try and I’m hoping @peebee ‘s recommendation will lead to some good/better beers - I’ll let you know what I think when they arrive.

I look forward to your thoughts on AF beers you try too.
 
Just tried these this weekend and it’s probably the most flavourful AF I’ve tried over the years (exception being the Guinness which I agree has great body but very different beer styles)


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I also had the St. Peter's Without Original yesterday (having had the Gold last year). Tastes like slightly fizzy unfermented wort.

Will give the Williams Bros. range a try.

I reckon I've had a least 50 different AF beers/ciders over the past couple of years. Of course compared to G it isn't the same, but on it's own merits it's by far the most enjoyable AF I've had.

There are some "craft" AF breweries, like Mash Gang, but the issue with those is the adjuncts and flavourings they use a lot of increase the calories so I've only had a couple of their lagers.

I've been trying to track down the AF Hoegaarden in shops for a while, but not found it yet.
 
Each to their own, I suppose. For me it just tastes like a really bad pint of G. The difference between good G and bad G is night and day. Unfortunately it is getting harder and harder to find places that serve very good G on. Regular basis. Most places serve it far too cold.
It’s the same when cask beer is not well looked after and the promise of a beautiful beer is dashed with the first sip.

It’s most disappointing to me though when pubs advertise themselves as selling Cask Ale or Real Ale and the only draught beer is Doombar or Green King IPA.
 
I have never ever drank a alcohol free beer/wine etc.

if i cant drink then i will just have squash. From reading this thread and others I still cant see the appeal.

I Do hear that Mash Gang do some good ones.
 
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