“Make mine a pint of pure performance”

Scientists have found that a post-match beer can aid recovery – as long as it’s low on alcohol. We asked Tim Hampson, author of The Beer Book, what to order. And they’re not bad, either...

Bitburger Drive 0.05% abv

“The beer of choice for the German national team, it’s a fully matured Bavarian lager and best served well-chilled. It delivers some nice, malt, biscuit notes on the palate and little bitterness.”

Holsten Pils 0.02% abv

“Easy-drinking, and with pleasing texture, there are layers of dry biscuit and sweet malt flavours. Good carbonation gives it a bubbly personality.”

More after the break

Erdinger 0.5% abv

“The use of wheat gives this classy beer oodles of crisp refreshment. The nose is pleasantly earthy. That’s because Erdinger use classic German Hallertau hops.”

Kaliber 0.05% abv

“This Irish brew was one of the first alcohol-free beers in the world. It’s best served well-chilled, which softens its sugary, malty tones.”

Jever Fun 0.5% abv

“First you brew a classic Jever Pilsner, then you extract the alcohol. Golden to the eye, it has a pleasant, lemony nose, a nice malt body and a welcome, floral, lager-hop finish.”

Super Bock 0.5% abv

“Almost black to the eye, it’s made with lots of dark malts, which impart chocolate and caramel flavours. However, the sweetness is balanced by a pleasing bitterness.”

Clausthaler 0.5% abv

“This won the 2013 World Beer Cup in the alcohol-free category and is rightly regarded as one of Europe’s best. It’s a well-rounded, refreshing, German lager-style beer with a pleasant aroma.”

But why is it good for you?
“After a tough football match, electrolytes and muscle glycogen stores are depleted and you’ll be dehydrated,” says Louise Davey, a specialist exercise performance dietitian.

“Choosing a non-alcoholic beer that contains around 6-8g of carbohydrates per 100ml unleashes the same refuelling benefits as an isotonic drink.

“It also strengthens your immune system, a recent study attributing its antioxidant properties to lower incidence of colds in marathon runners drinking 2-3 daily pints of non-alcoholic beer.

Although non-alcholic beer in that quantity would boost hydration, it’ll also leave you feeling bloated. Water, squash or isotonic drinks are much better choices.”

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