The non-alcoholic beer market has been increasingly well served by quality products that put to shame the foul-tasting N/A beer of the past, but there are still gaps in terms of the flavor profiles of N/A beer that are widely available. It’s not difficult to find non-alcoholic versions of light lager, for instance—most of the bigger manufacturers now make them. But non-alcoholic stout? That’s harder to come by, and that means there’s a potential hole in this market—one that Guinness fittingly aims to fill.
The iconic Irish stout manufacturer today has announced the creation of Guinness 0.0, a non-alcoholic version of their classic stout that is the result of four years of development and research to create an N/A stout that they claim tastes just like the original. Owners Diageo clearly sunk a lot of time and effort into this project, which will be rolling out worldwide in the immediate future. Diageo is also talking up the proprietary “cold filtration method” that Guinness developed to remove alcohol, post-fermentation, as something that preserves more of the original stout’s flavor. With that said … we have to note that Guinness is hardly the most flavorful Irish stout on the market in the first place, and that an even drier version would probably struggle to taste like anything at all. Which is why we have some reservations here.
“We know people want to be able to enjoy a Guinness when they choose not to drink alcohol without compromising on taste,” said Gráinne Wafer, Guinness’ global brand director.
Even without the gimmick of being N/A, Guinness 0.0 would likely still be of interest to some for the fact that it’s also very low in calories—just 70 per standard can, rather than the 154 in a regular draught can of Guinness stout, thanks to the lack of ethanol. Will that be enough to tempt curious consumers?
The “0.0” name, meanwhile, certainly looks to be cribbed directly from one of the N/A beer sphere’s most popular products, Heineken 0.0. We can only presume that “0.0” was deemed too general to be copyrighted.