Collab Cans - Set

Scots brewery is part of alcohol-free beer series

A Scots brewery has teamed up with renowned beer expert, Melissa Cole to produce a limited edition range of alcohol-free beers.

Fyne Ales from Argyll is working with Big Drop Brewing Co, which has launched the first in World Collab Series of 0.5% ABV collaboration brews.

Available from early November, the creation of a Raspberry Gose, India Pale Lager, Hibiscus Saison and Black IPA is the first of a world collab series planned by Big Drop.

Bringing together craft brewing expertise from across the nation, the collaboration saw Fyne, SALT from West Yorkshire, Harbour Brewing Co from Cornwall and Fourpure from London work with Big Drop.

Headed by Big Drop’s master brewer, Johnny Clayton and beer expert, Melissa Cole, the brewing day held in London was an opportunity for everyone to share their extensive knowledge and to create beers of 0.5% ABV without use of artificial extraction of alcohol, vacuum distillation or reverse osmosis.

The final brews selected, which will be available from early November in four and 12 packs of 440ml cans.

Big Drop and Fyne Ales’s Jam Session: Raspberry Gose, is spritely and refreshing with a nose of sour berries, rhubarb and raspberries jam. Flavour is lightly tart with under ripe berry and freshly harvested wheat all brought to the savoury finish of natural sea salt.

The other three are Big Drop and Fourpure, with an aroma of chocolate, a little coffee with a hint of oak woodiness and pineapple. Flavour is hop forward with just a hint of chocolate and roast coffee before a lingering, clean bitter finish.

Big Drop and Harbour Brewing Co have created Going Swimmingly – Hibiscus Saison, which appearance: pink champagne. Brewed with hibiscus flowers and a carefully selected blend of botanicals, this has a hint of tartness balanced with spicy and herbal notes. It has a floral sweetness and sour from the hibiscus along with some cherry esters and a light fruity yet spicy backing from the pepper and juniper.

Big Drop and SALT have created Lil IPL – India Pale Lager. A fusion brew of two different classic styles from around the world brings the malty backbone of a Helles with the unique zesty, citrus character of New Zealand Motueka hops found in many of today’s popular IPAs.

Big Drop’s co-founder, Rob Fink, said: ‘Since we launched in 2016, not only have we wanted to make delicious alcohol-free craft beer but we wanted to be at the forefront of making low and no drinks interesting and innovative.

‘It is important for us to change perceptions that some may hold of alcohol-free beer being without character, or that it’s made without the depth of care and skill that goes into making a full strength craft beer. If anything, you need more skill to make a great alcohol-free craft beer.

‘We’re excited to, not only, be collaborating with a range of craft brewers here in the UK but we are planning a series of these projects to work with brewers from around the world. Big Drop has recently launched in Canada, Sweden and Norway so on our visits we’ve been in talks with some incredible brewers in those countries.’

Award-winning beer and food journalist and author Melissa Cole, who brought the breweries together and helped develop the recipes, said: ‘It’s tough to create firsts in such a busy and innovative market as beer but, as far as I’m aware, this is the first ever collaborative alcohol-free four pack.

‘I’m also just so pleased with how all the beers turned out and I hope it helps people rethink alcohol-free beer as less a necessary evil when they are driving or deciding not to drink for whatever reason and instead look on them as a genuinely tasty choice.’

Big Drop’s World Collab Series #1 has an RRP of £12 for 4 x 440ml cans and will be available from Beer Hawk, Bottle Apostle and from the first week of November 2019.

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