Alcohol-Free Sports Beer?

After a hard game of football, you just want to twist the cap off an... alcohol-free sports beer? While most folks here in the US might be tempted to say "Gatorade" or "Powerade" here, if one European brewery has anything to say about it, beer might replace those traditional sports drinks. You'll find that this golden beverage has a lot to offer those who give their all on the field.

Erdinger Alkoholfrei sponsors a number of the top world athletes, but it's also loaded with health benefits. And since there is no alcohol, athletes can imbibe without worrying that it will impair their performance. According to the brewer, this beverage offers several key benefits over other sports drinks.

One of the benefits offered here is that the beer is all-natural. It's also a great source of carbohydrates, something that all athletes need to ensure that their body is fueled up for top performance. Top that mix off with loads of vitamins and the lack of caffeine, and you'll see a few reasons that this beverage is making waves.

Erdinger is not new. In fact, the beer has been on the shelves of European stores since 2001. However, it hasn't really made many inroads here in the States yet. Part of this is because, while the beer is marketed as alcohol-free, it still contains less than .05% alcohol, which means that some states won't allow minors to buy it. 

Another mark against this brew from Erdinger is the fact that sales of alcohol-free beers have actually fallen by a considerable amount over the past decade. Most Americans simply don't like this type of brew, as showcased by the declining sales of brands like O'Doul's and Sharp's. Currently, Erdinger has a license to market in 45 states here in the US, but that does not mean that the brew is going to be on the shelf at your corner store. If you do find it, be prepared to pony up a decent amount for the brew. You'll pay about $10 for a six-pack.

There is also some speculation about the company's health claims. While beer does contains B vitamins, carbohydrates, potassium and other elements needed for physical recovery after a workout or event, most brews simply don't have enough to do an athlete any good. It remains to be seen just how beneficial the brew is. In the meantime, if you work up a sweat, you might decide to try this German no-alcohol beer and see what the fuss is about.

Posted on March 27, 2011 and filed under Beer Styles and Trends.