A few weeks ago I reviewed a legend among beer drinkers – alcohol-free Stella which was surprisingly decent so it was with a degree of optimism that I tried another legend within the beer world – alcohol-free Budweiser (aka Bud Zero.
Budweiser “Zero” (previously known as ‘Prohibition Brew’) is created by Anheuser-Busch, part of AB InBev and uses the classic beer ingredients of water, barley malt, hops, rice (a fermentable ingredient used for a subtle taste) and natural flavours. It is also one of the healthiest alcohol-free lagers and comes in at just 46 calories per 330ml can.
So is this Bud worthy of a position on My Dry Bar or one to be avoided? Well, you’ll just need to read my review below to find out.
Is alcohol-free Budweiser any good?
To be honest it’s a bit of an insult to its full-strength cousin. The taste of Bud Zero is significantly lack-lustre. It literally tastes like a glass of strange tasting carbonated water … where have all the beer flavours gone?? I would have expected some malty flavours and perhaps some bitterness. Nope. Nada. A very poor and weak alternative to an alcoholic Budweiser and should be avoided.
Aroma & Appearance
There is a vague similarity in aroma to the original Bud but that’s about it. Like the flavour, the aromas coming out of a Bud Zero are weak. In the glass, I suppose you could be forgiven in believing it’s a Bud as it has a light amber look and a short frothy head.
Well, the good news is that you won’t be putting on any pounds when drinking this beer as it’s low in calories. Budweiser Zero is also vegan friendly, and has zero alcohol but is not gluten-free. Due to it being part of the AB InBev company this alcohol-free beer is available in most supermarkets and online specialits.
Buy alcohol-free Bud
At the time of writing, you can buy this alcohol-free lager from most supermarkets as well as from the online specialist below.
Proof No More is a great new alcohol-free retailer that brings all the latest and greatest beers, spirits and more to your door. Check out their extensive collection of non-alcoholic drinks.
COST (at time of publication) – $2.99
– per 330ml
Brewery – Budweiser
Country – USA
Alcohol content – 00%
Calories – 46
Ingredients – water, hops, barley, yeast, rice, natural flavours
Vegan friendly? – yes
Gluten-free? – no
Availability – easy
Alcohol-free Budweiser vs alcoholic version
Well to be honest there is no contest. I have been known to enjoy a bottle of Bud in the past. It is light, malty and refreshing … that is not the case with alcohol-free Bud. As mentioned above, there is no ‘body’ to the beer so it tastes like fizzy water. Ok, it may look vaguely similar but that’s where the similarities end. It is worth pointing out that an alcoholic can of Bud has 5% ABV and Bud Zero has 0% so there was always going to be a loss in the bitterness and body but I wasn’t expecting such a dramatic difference.
“Drunkenness is nothing but voluntary madness.”
-Seneca, AD 50 BC