The growing trend for alcohol-free drinks is unquestionably a good thing. Going out and choosing not to drink used to mean sipping pints of lime and soda, or battling your way through an overly malty, alcohol-free beer that left you feeling pretty-short changed.
It was this losing battle with alcohol-free beer that was the genesis for three friends – Eddy, Charlie and Felix – to create something altogether different. ‘How hard could it really be to make an alcohol free beer that actually tastes nice?’ they somewhat naively asked themselves one night in the pub.
Over 400 recipes and two years later they had found the winning recipe for their first alcohol-free beer, Freestar.
“We discovered that the mistake many alcohol-free beers make is by removing the alcohol. It is quite an aggressive removal process and often involves boiling or straining the beer through a membrane.” says one of the founders Eddy and former Finance Director of the hugely successful ProperCorn brand.
So rather than removing alcohol from beer, Freestar avoids alcohol altogether. The trick is that they simply blend together the great flavours that go into the beer without brewing them. They blend malted barley, perle hops, and alpha hops together overnight, cool the mix down and then carbonate for up to 12 hours.
“The critical difference” says Eddy, “is that we don’t add yeast, which in normal alcohol-free and of course alcohol-full beers is used to ferment the sugar which creates the alcohol but is then removed.”
The whole process is not only naturally gluten-free but more sustainable too. Freestar claims that it takes 5 to 10 pints of water to make an average can of beer but Freestar just needs over 1 pint of water per can. “It’s 70% less wasteful than any other beer production technique” Eddy concludes.
Sustainability is clearly a really important factor for Freestar, who are excited about their pending B Corp certification. Taste clearly matters too; it’s one of the best no-alcohol beers we have ever tried.
You can now buy Freestar beer at Farmdrop.com.