Adnams Brewery has made a strong tilt at the growing alcohol-free/low-alcohol market with Ghost Ship Alcohol Free, a 0.5% version of its best-selling pale ale.
On being exclusively tasted at the brewery last week Imbibe found the new release to have a lush malt character, hints of lemon and lime on the nose, a medium body and a peppery, bitter and dry finish.
In other words it tastes like beer.
According to head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald the reason for the beer’s taste is the use of reverse osmosis, where normal fermentation occurs and then alcohol and water are filtered out leaving the flavours of the beer behind.
‘We wanted to get closer to the flavour of a full-strength beer,’ he told Imbibe.
‘It’s for people who enjoy the taste of beer but for whatever reason don’t want to drink alcohol on that occasion, whether that’s because they need to drive or are just reducing the amount they drink.’
While many pubs already stock no-alcohol beers, they tend to be lagers. ‘There aren’t many pale ales out there doing the same thing,’ says Fitzgerald.
The brewer also hopes to produce low-alcohol versions of other beers in the brewery’s portfolio.
Read about Small Beer Brew Co's low alcohol launches here.