Weaving an N/A

It has been a nine month journey but Three Weavers has three (fittingly) N/A beers in cans.  Three months of work each is my math is right for a lager, Eest Coast IPA and a Hazy IPA.

To add more math, the near beers will be sold in six-packs.

A Book & A Beer – Dr. No by Percival Everett

The book for April is not by Ian Fleming, it is by Percival Everett, and it is a clever modern day re-imagining of the old take over the world plot.

Dr. No introduces us to three main characters, Wala Kitu, Eigen Vector and villain John Sill) plus a very important dog named Trigo. And it is a rollicking read about nothing. More specifically, finding nothing and the power of nothing.

Now I am no philosopher nor do I like math but Everett makes both really interesting and thought provoking. And his dive into the character of Wala is fascinating because you don’t get a lead who is on the spectrum get to be both broad but also deep.

The elevator pitch for this book would be Bond meets Dr. Strangelove with a hearty dose of metaphysics. And I highly recommend it.

This would be the perfect time to break out the N/A beers since they are both beer and not beer at the same time. I would suggest finding the weirdest beer you could like a glitter N/A beer.

Take Care of Yo’ Self

Or treat yo’ self to a N/A beer from Three Magnets Brewing under their Self Care line.

Their IPA won a recent Oregonian newspaper N/A taste test AND they have a bubblegum glitter beer. You do have to buy two packs minimum so there you go for your first order.

Hoppy N/A Poppy

Figueroa Mountain Brewing is joining the N/A realm with their Hoppy Poppy IPA getting a sibling.

Hoppy Poppy IPA is brewed with the same bold hop flavors and aromas as the original Hoppy Poppy IPA, but with less than 0.5% alcohol. This allows beer lovers to enjoy the taste and experience of a traditional IPA no matter the occasion.”

Hope this is the N/A IPA one that uses lots of hops.

Go to N/A?

Still on the market for a really good (and consistent) Non-Alcoholic beer?  Well, I found another one, this time in Illinois in Go Brewing.

They have a Witbier, hazy IPA, pilsner, IPA and a nitro coffee N/A beer amongst other members only beers.

N/A in 2023

I am low alcohol beer curious and my go to is Athletic Brewing which has a variety of styles (brut IPA – juicy IPA) and tends to be the top of the line for me.

Vinepair has some recommendations for anyone else is curious. Most of these reviews seem way too positive, at least for the ones that I have tasted but it is a best of.

From this list, I am most interested in the Sam Adams and the Wellbeing, partially because I know I can find it here in Los Angeles. Barrel Brothers were mentioned twice and those sound good as well.

But don’t drink these just this month. They are good palate cleansers all year round and who knows, you might find your absolute favorite.

Near Hazy

Rick’s Near Beer launches Rick’s Hazy their second non-alcoholic craft beer this month. I don’t know if strict adherents to Dry January are cool with the contains less than 0.5% ABV.  But I am glad that their brand extending.

Here is the beer description from the press release, “Rick’s Hazy, full of citrus and tropical fruit flavor and aroma, is brewed with premium malted barley, flaked wheat, loads of Pacific Northwest hops, and Rocky Mountain water.”

Is 2023 the Year?

Predictions tend to either clump into educated guesses or a pundit re-wording the same thing they said the year before, and the year before that.

With that latter spirit in mind, let’s trot out some antiques and I will comment…

Pilsners will really be a thing this year – This is the biggest craft beer chestnut. The thing is, most places have a really good pils or a lager on tap. Highland Park Brewery here in Los Angeles has all kinds on tap. We can stop with this prediction because it is low key already proven.

Seltzers will lose steam – This has been the pandemic question each year. I never found one that struck me as anywhere near a beer replacement and have wondered how people thought they were drinkable. I think the category will lose additional steam this year. People will continue to buy them but they are not the song of the summer anymore.

Non-Alcoholic will gain momentum – This is pretty much a gimme as predictions go. More people are entering the market chasing that sweet deal that Athletic got from Keurig / Dr. Pepper. The beers themselves are still near beer in name only but the sober curious will buy them despite flavor flaws.

Mergers and Acquisitions – The era of big deals is on pause. This year, it will be the snatching up of closed breweries by those who need more production room. Perhaps in a different part of town or state to cut down on delivery costs.

Review – Rick’s Near Beer vs. Al’s Classic

The very retro can of Rick’s Near Beer goes up against Al and his classic. Who will come out on top?

Rick’s – lighter color with not a lot of bubbles. aroma is malty with a young / green smell. the taste is led by the usual N/A thinness which is followed by a nice crispness and corn flavor. overall a bit bland though inoffensive but lacks the pop that I associate with a Pils.

Al’s – much bubblier yellow which I take as a good sign. quite a weird smell to it almost like masa. this is even thinner but it has an herbal, sweet tart hoppiness which adds a second layer of interest.

I would probably choose the Al’s by a hair. It would have been less close if it had more heft to it and did not have that smell.