Trying to Drink Less? 10 Non-Alcoholic Beers You Need on Your Radar
These are the best non-alcoholic beers in Canada, which taste arguably better than the real thing.
Best non-alcoholic beer Canada
Since the start of the pandemic, alcohol sales have skyrocketed. A recent StatsCan survey conducted in January 2021 found that nearly a quarter of Canadians who drank alcohol before the pandemic increased their use. According to Emily Jenkins, an associate professor of nursing at the University of British Columbia, who studied the connection between mental health and substance use during the pandemic with the Canadian Mental Health Association, we’re looking at about a 20 percent increase.
Jenkins points to the pandemic’s “unprecedented stressors” as the driving force behind increased rates of drinking. “People are stressed about job security, changing economic situations, relationship changes and challenges,” she says. “Then there’s the feelings of isolation, shifting changes on what we can and can’t do and then boredom as well.”
This increased alcohol consumption can exacerbate existing mental health challenges like anxiety and depression, says Jenkins. “Alcohol has depressant properties in our body, which means that it slows down activity in the brain and alters the chemical composition of the brain,” she says. “This impacts people’s mood, things like energy and sleep patterns that are really important to our mental health, concentration and memory.” Jenkins is most concerned about an increase in risky behaviour, aggression and self-harm that comes along with increased drinking. “Alcohol consumption can disinhibit behaviour—it puts people at greater risk for these kinds of actions.”
If you want to cut down on your alcohol consumption, here are some of the best non-alcoholic beers available in Canada.
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Bellwoods Brewery Non-Alcoholic Jelly King
Fans of Toronto-based Bellwoods Brewery’s Jelly King, a dry-hopped sour beer, can now try this non-alcoholic version. With the same tang that traditional Jelly King has (which comes from the yeast and bacteria used in the brewing process), this NA sour makes a great park-hang brew.
One for the Road Stone Sofa Kolsch
This clean and refreshing NA ale-lager hybrid is just what you want to crack open on a hot summer day. Brewed in Calgary, the Stone Sofa Kolsch pairs well with nutty cheese, bratwurst and apples or peach crisp.
$16/ 6 pack, soberlicious.ca
Mikkeller Limbo Raspberry
This beer from Danish brewing company Mikkeller is brewed with raspberries to give it a fruity and tart flavour, without the alcohol.
$18/6 pack, soberlicious.ca
Collective Arts Hazy Pale Ale Non-Alcoholic
From popular Hamilton, Ont.-based craft brewery Collective Arts, this NA option is brewed as a traditional New England hazy pale ale, but with a special yeast to maintain its light, slightly-hoppy taste.
One for the Road Brewing Proceed with Caution Amber
This non-alc lager showcases both malt and hoppy flavours for a great anytime beer.
$16/ 6 pack, soberlicious.ca
With notes of malted barley and a clean finish, The Naked Collective’s non-alcoholic drink also includes Beta Glucan which supports our immune health.
thenakedcollective.com, $30/12 pk
This award-winning brew uses fruity and floral hops and bright flavours like citrus and pine to create a deliciously dry and crisp alcohol-free beer.
drinkpartake.com, $30/12 pk
BSA Non-Alcoholic Beer Raspberry Sour
From Montreal-based Bière Sans Alcool, this pick is a raspberry sour that’ll satisfy even the pickiest sour beer lover.
Sober Carpenter Belgian White
This flavourful Belgian-style beer is rich and hazy. Sober Carpenter suggests pairing the brew with seafood or salads to bring out the drink’s orange and coriander flavours.
sobercarpenter.ca, $40/12 pk
Libra Hazy IPA
From Charlottetown, PEI, this 0.4 percent alcohol IPA has delicious flavours like mango and tropical fruits.
drinklibra.ca, $33/12 pk