Listen up, fellow teetotallers. It’s about time we admitted something to ourselves. Non-alcoholic beer is absolutely fucking dreadful, no matter how many times we encourage our loved ones to take a poisoned sip because “it tastes just like it!”. Yes, it tastes likes beer, if beer was made from rust scrapings and old pencil sharpeners.
As I’ve been sober for almost three years, you can bet that I have tried and lied to myself about most of the non-alcoholic beer out there. At first, I thought it was all dreadful before I managed to convince myself otherwise, because I am apparently easily persuaded. I have only just wised up to the truth of it all: non-alcoholic beer is more or less just piss and brewers should be able to do better.
Looking for the non-alcoholic beer that will leave you feeling the least depressed? Here are my picks.
1. Fosters Radler Zero
This is just lemonade. Go out and buy some Sprite instead.
Disappointment rating: 1/5
2. San Miguel 0.0%
Genuinely not too awful. No, San Miguel 0.0% is actually quite passable. But then you remember that time you drank several pints of regular lager and threw up in your hands before laughing. Your family didn’t approve, they said it put them off their Christmas dinner. They always were a bunch of prudes.
Disappointment rating: 2/5
3. Beck’s Blue
I have probably had enough bottles of this over the years to amount to an actual beer in terms of units (most non-alcoholic beer has the tiniest trace of booze in it). That doesn’t stop it from tasting like a bag of Skips filled with metal burps each and every time, though. First sip is nice, to be fair.
Disappointment Rating: 2/5
4. Cobra 0.0%
After drinking Cobra’s non-alcoholic beer, you will probably wish that you had been bitten by an actual cobra. In fact, it’s so bad that I think there must be snake venom in it. If you hate someone, take them hostage and perform Chinese water torture on them but with this beer instead. They will give you anything you want within a few seconds.
Disappointment rating: 4/5
5. Bavaria Malt
Legitimately so bad that you will want to turn to drinking again to get you over the experience. Each sip feels like you’re drinking the ectoplasm from a ghost bee; that’s not as good as it sounds. Expect headaches and a taste in your mouth that is about as welcome as Nigel Farage at an EU meeting. Even if someone offers you this for free, decline. If someone tells you that you need to drink it to save your children from certain death, decline. Hell, if Gandalf comes up to you in his infinite wisdom comes up you and tells you that it needs to be drunk to save Middle-Earth, go back to the Shire. Your world as you know it will end, but at least you didn’t have to drink Bavaria’s non-alcoholic wastage.
Disappointment rating: 5/5
If any breweries are reading this, you know what needs to be done. Talk to teetotallers and recovering alcoholics about what they want from their non-alcoholic beers instead of farting in a vat and hoping for the best.
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