537: Non-Alcoholic Beer

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:00

Hi. I'm Matthew. And I'm Molly and this is spilled milk, the show where we cook something delicious. Eat it all and you can't have any. Today

Molly 0:11

we are talking about non alcoholic beer and we are actually recording together in the same room for the first time in an age.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:18

Yeah, we're gonna be toasting. We took some rapid tests this morning, we're going to be toasting with with non alcoholic beer to to togetherness.

Molly 0:26

Yes, we wanted to wait and do this episode together. Because you know, drinking alone seems so sad.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:31

Yeah, I just knocked a sleeve of saltines onto the floor. Okay, it's okay.

Molly 0:37

Well, Matthew, um, Memory Lane, so. Wow, it's so weird to tape an episode.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:44

Yes. That's that's how he introduced that segment. So Memory Lane, so.

Molly 0:51

Okay, so I don't think I ever can I think like probably a lot of people in 2022. I never really considered purchasing a non alcoholic beer type beverage. Until the pandemic when I found myself drinking more alcohol than I previously had.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:11

Yeah, I never thought about No, that's not true. I do have memory like I but then so like my memory lane is way way back then it then it sort of hits a dead end and then restarts recent. Okay. So when I was a kid growing up in Southwest Portland, I used to go to whatever the supermarket was, like in the in the Vermont Hills shopping center. In the very corner of the beer section, there was one brand that I think was called a no beer. It might have been might have been near beer or but I think I think near beer is such a good name. I know. I think I remember it being called no beer was the brand. And they would sell it to kids. It tasted terrible. But we would sometimes buy it just because like, you know, we would feel like we were drinking beer and we would be cool.

Molly 1:59

Wait, do you think it tasted terrible? Because it actually tasted terrible? Or did it taste terrible? Because you guys were kids drinking something that tasted like beer? So

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:07

I think probably both. Okay. And we'll get into why I think that is when we get into kind of the history and technology of non alcoholic beer. Okay, but I think it was not a very good product. But also like we were not used to the taste of beer, but I think probably we bought it like two or three times at the most. But man, we thought we were cool.

Molly 2:27

So I don't think I had ever tasted non alcoholic beer until we were opening Delancey actually. And we wanted to have a non alcoholic beer on the menu. Which kind of surprises me now in retrospect, I don't know where we got that idea. But I'm glad that we did. Yeah, me too. And the one that we wound up carrying was Bitburger. Yes, I feel like it's called like Bitburger drive.

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:49

Is that right? Or is drive a different one? I think I think you're right. I can't

Molly 2:53

remember anyway. But that was the one we wound up carrying. And I remember feeling really glad because I actually have a couple family members who no longer drink alcohol and like it, yeah, it just felt really good to be able to have something on the menu for them. It's like such a small thing. But I feel like recently, there hasn't been a lot of talk about why one would choose to drink a non alcoholic beverage when there's an alcoholic version around.

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:19

Right. So I'd certainly like thought about like, you know, mocktails and like, you know, the the idea of choosing a non alcoholic beverage which I which I often usually do anyway, but had not thought about non alcoholic beer until you mentioned it like a couple months ago, it said that you liked athletic brewing, which I had never heard of and didn't realize there was such a thing as a non alcoholic craft brewery, there are several of them. Yes. And I went out to the store and bought some right away and it was great.

Molly 3:46

Well, I'm really excited to learn more about how this stuff is made. Because the part of me that also like there's always a part of me that's kind of like what is this stuff is like, is this? Am I actually drinking something that's like, I don't know, like, highly processed probably. No,

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:05

so it depends. We'll get into all the techniques. I

Molly 4:07

mean, I love drinking stuff. That's highly

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:10

like freestyle machine right remember we camped out in front of that coke Coke Freestyle machine and drove everybody crazy that pizza place okay, but

Molly 4:19

even so you know when we did our our white claw like boozy cider would no booze ease I know. Sorry, our sparkling What do you think? What are these called?

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:31

Sparkles seltzer? Alright, so sir, yeah, literally. You're not the only one. everybody's forgotten about hard seltzer at this point. I think I think the trend is over.

Molly 4:39

Wait, really? Oh, yeah. No, it's winter, man. Oh,

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:42

I guess but I hear I heard it was like way down last summer. Okay, and people were drinking. What instead? I don't know. boozy Cider.

Molly 4:51

Okay. Anyway, hold on, even though we've done a hard seltzer episode. Yeah. And I understand how that stuff is made. I've forgotten, so I'm glad you understand. I don't remember anymore. But anyway, even then, like when I taste it, I always feel like a little bit queasy. Like there's a sense that like, I'm drinking something that was never intended by nature. So whereas like beer and like alcohol is something that just

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:22

happens, right. So I think with hard seltzer if I recall correctly from that episode, for tax reasons, they're not usually made by just like mixing a little vodka with a bunch of of seltzer. Because then that's taxed at like a liquor rate. So they have like, brew it and then remove a bunch of stuff. I think the non alcoholic beer is less processed than that, because you're not trying to remove the things that make it taste like a fermented beverage, which with hard Seltzer, you are trying to remove those things right. And so there's going to be more processing to make that happen.

Molly 5:53

I don't know why I even care. Oh, yeah, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:55

don't like like, I drank a whole bottle of squirt the other day because I was sick. So

Molly 6:00

yeah, no, I mean, you hate me like, a can of Coke. And I'm like, Yeah, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:05

can't a coke is really good. Yeah, no, I think I think it's like the kind of an uncanny valley thing like because you because you think of you Don't you ever think of soda as a natural product but beer you know, it's got like a venerable history ages, like stir some grains up in a pot, and magically it becomes beer. And, you know, the idea that that's that process is being tampered with. And this is sort of like a like a Franken beer. A Franken beer. Like, I think that's what's kind of triggering that idea. But it's really not. Okay,

Molly 6:33

cool. Well, let's talk about it.

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:34

Okay. Can we like start tasting or do we have to save a taste? I think we can start tasting

Molly 6:38

because you know, if there's one thing that I feel pretty strongly about beer, it's that most of the time you want to drink it really cool.

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:44

Yeah, me too.

Molly 6:45

I mean, have you ever? Are you new to drinking beer? Matthew, I sound like I'm tasting something I've never tasted before. Have you had beer?

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:53

I'm excited for my first time. I'm glad we could. I've been waiting. I've been saving myself for this for this record

Molly 6:59

out of practice on talk about food. Well, I mean,

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:03

I mean, you know, it is true that like in in England, beer is often drunk at like cellar temperature, which is not ice cold. Yeah. Yeah. And that's not my favorite. It's not my favorite either. Sometimes I will often like put the glass in the freezer before pouring the beer, which is very satisfying. Okay, Matthew, I how do we cheese plate this? Okay, well,

Molly 7:21

so let's start out by saying what we've got. Yeah. Okay. So admittedly, we have we have sort of loaded the deck with a lot of athletic brewing. Yeah, athletic Brewing Company beverages, which we both really like. But I've also picked up a bottle of Lagunitas hop, which they used to sell, or they used to market it as like Lagunitas. Hoppy refresher. Okay, I remember I heard an ad on a podcast. Yeah, like three years ago, and I went out looking for this stuff, and I couldn't find it anywhere. Anyway. Now it's called Lagunitas. Hot but

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:51

your quest came to an end. You You went on a three year quest to find Lagunitas. Hop. And now it said to Lansing tried to throw you off by changing the name?

Molly 8:01

Yes, yes. Anyway, so what this is is more of just like hops flavored sparkling water.

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:09

Yeah, and I've had something like there's a there's a soda in Japan, I think called dacotah. It comes in various flavors, and like they did a limited edition hops flavor. And I sort of remember what that was like. And so I imagine this is going to be similar. We also have Oh duals Amber, why did I get the duals Amber rather than the original? Oh, duals I don't know. It's I think it's just because I like the idea of an amber ale. It sounds good. Okay. Okay. And so that's like a you know, a big mass market brand. I remember like my the rest of my memory lane is like remembering when like, oh duals and Miller sharps and like the big name non alcoholic beers came on the market. So I don't think I've ever bought Oh, duals before.

Molly 8:48

No, I haven't either. Okay, so

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:52

start with the hoppy refresh. Because that really a beer. I

Molly 8:56

think we should too. All right, Matthew. So open it up. So I should say that this is not a perfectly clear sparkling water, right? No, it's in a clear bottle. But when you look at it, it looks slightly yellow.

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:10

Yep. It's a slightly like yeah, if you if you brought this into the doctor, they would say you are drinking enough water. Yes. I kind of like that.

Molly 9:18

Well, so here's my thing. Like my first few sips of it. I remember the first time I had it Delancey Brandon very excitedly brought it over to show me that they had it and I have like I split a bottle of it with him and I really enjoyed it. So I went out and bought it and then I discovered upon drinking it at home and paying more attention to it that the aftertaste makes me feel weird.

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:41

Okay, I'm that say I'm listening for the aftertaste. I don't know like it is it is like, you know what? It's sort of like because it has like a sweet like soda note to it. It's sort of like a Shandy. Yeah, like I like a beer mixed with with lemon lime soda it almost

Molly 10:00

has a sweetness to it that reminds me of like stevia or like a like an artificial Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:06

I get I get that like I do think this would be refreshing it doesn't it doesn't satisfy like you know I want a beer. Yeah something different but I do like it.

Molly 10:16

I'm really enjoying it today but Yeah, well

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:19

I like the the fragrance a lot. Yes. Oh, it

Molly 10:22

smells like flowers. Yeah, thing. It's got like a elderflower kind of smell. When I first went out and bought it after having it at the lancy I was so psyched and then I wound up like giving four out of the six bottles to Brandon because I decided I don't know. Yeah, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:38

don't think it's something I'm going to go out and buy but I don't I don't buy a lot of like sodas in general. So but if like there was a you know, someone opened up a cooler and it was full of ice and there were a bunch of frosty bottles of Lagunitas hops sticking out of the ice. This would be really good if you were at the beach. Yeah, I was just gonna say the beach. Yeah, if you're at the beach and it's really hot and like, you know, maybe want something alcoholic but you also know that you're sweating profusely. Let's go to the beach this summer. It's gonna be really hot. We're gonna bring a cooler, full of ice. We're gonna open it up. There's gonna be Lagunitas hop inside the cops will come over and be like, Are you drinking beer at the beach? We're like, no, man. It's Lagunitas hop.

Molly 11:16

Okay, so what is this stuff though?

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:17

You will realize that our life is a commercial. What do we say?

Molly 11:20

What is this? Oh, what do we call it? No. What is this stuff? What is actually in there? Read the bottle.

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:25

Oh, okay. I've no idea what you're talking about. Made with hops, yeast and water. Life is uncertain. Don't sip. It does not have an ingredient list. Okay, wait, wait. A zero alcohol, zero carb and zero calorie refreshment made using everything we know about hops. It's a variation on a theme of 25 years of edgy brewing. Who? Yeah, they've been edging for 25 years.

Molly 11:50

God, I feel so good.

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:52

Yeah. Finally, yeah, that's why you're on that three year quest. I don't know. Oh, I did. Okay, sorry. Ingredients. Carbonated water, dried hops, nutritional brewers yeast natural flavors, so it has no sugar even though it has no artificial sweeteners, even though it tastes sweet.

Molly 12:10

But what natural flavors could not be stevia. I guess it could be stevia. Yeah, you're right. Okay. Anyway. Okay. I like it more this time than I did the other night. I don't know what my deal is. No, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:22

think I think it's okay. Okay. Okay. Let's do let's do Oh, duels. No, okay.

Molly 12:26

You should start telling me about these things. Oh, yeah. Yeah. So Oh, and I should say that the reason that I got interested in

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:37

Yes. I'm trying

Molly 12:39

to remember actually how I decided because the truth is when I am drinking alcohol at home, I tend to be a wine drinker. Yeah. And the occasional cocktail drinker. So I you know, I have like, a crony comes. Yeah, I have like a small bar, you know, so that I can make like a couple cocktails I like and then wine. But the thought of buying like a wine facsimile would never occur to me. So if I don't want to have alcohol, I feel like it becomes automatically like you're replacing it with some sort of fruity soda, fruity mocktail situation, and I saw somebody on Instagram. I don't remember who posting a picture of athletic brewing tan, and they said that it was delicious. And so I tried it and thus began my recent odyssey of non alcoholic beer. Okay, Odyssey with Odyssey have chained me to the mast. Yes, yes. All right. Okay. Cheers to Oh, duals.

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:38

This is tastes kind of like a mass market American beer. It does. Yeah, it does. Which is which like, is not usually my first choice, but it's certainly not something I dislike if you were at the beach. Yeah, exactly. It's like I've heard this called like a lawn mower beer. It's a little bit sweet.

Molly 13:53

It is a little sweet. Yeah. But that's also reminiscent of a beer, like a beer Beer.

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:59

Okay, so, you know, few beers are truly non alcoholic, although some of them are and we'll get to that. Okay. And so there's a lot of overlap in the history of non alcoholic beer and low alcohol beers, like small beers and session beers and that sort of thing. And the history sort of blends.

Molly 14:16

Small beers. Yeah. Is that like another word for a session beer?

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:20

I think so. I think a small beer is like, it's like the second beer you make with the same ingredients. And so it doesn't doesn't have dissolved sugar. And so it doesn't produce as much alcohol.

Molly 14:30

So it's like not extra virgin olive oil. It's

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:33

just it's the version. It's the Virgin beer. Yeah. So actual, like marketed non alcoholic beer goes back like to the mid 20th century. Well, okay, no, it goes back to prohibition. And so you know, prohibition established? Like the the line was you you could sell the product if it had point 5% alcohol or less, okay, anything anything below that was considered alcohol free and not subject to prohibition. So breweries started started learning to make non alcoholic beer. It was not a big, big part of the market after Prohibition ended until like the 60s and 70s. Okay, at least in the US, and does

Molly 15:12

that go with the rise of like the naming of alcoholism as a?

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:17

Yes, that's exactly right. And more so than that the naming of drunk driving? Oh, really? You know, Mothers Against Drunk Driving like, you know, really became a force in the in the 80s. Yes. And so you started to see in especially like late 80s, early 90s Oh, duelz Miller sharp Bitburger drive. All market is for this is the beer that you drink if you're the designated driver or if you have to drive Okay, that was that was like the key to the marketing it was not really like broader than that for like, you know, when you are choosing not to drink alcohol.

Molly 15:49

And it's interesting to general it's interesting to think to when I have bought non alcoholic beer here in the state of Washington, I get carded to do get carded? Absolutely. Do all states do that? Or are there places where minors can buy quote unquote, non alcoholic beer, even if it's point five? Yeah, it's varies by state. Okay. Okay. Can I have a saltine? Hmm. Okay, tell me more.

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:11

Right. So like I said, like when I was when I was buying gross non alcoholic beer in the in the 80s. Like that was before the big the big brands so it was available. You buying Why were you buying it then? Oh, God, because my dumb friends and I wanted to pretend we're drinking beer. Oh, okay. And so that was that was like prior to the launch of O'Toole. I love

Molly 16:32

that you wanted to pretend you were drinking beer. And so you bought non alcoholic beer rather than getting somebody to buy you real beer? Oh, yeah.

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:39

No, we really sweet that would have been well, okay, so actually, no one time. I was on a car trip with a friend and his dad let my me and my friend split a beer in the backseat. Oh, in the backseat. Maybe this wasn't like the best dad in retrospect. And we got fraidy drunk from half a beer because we were children. Yeah. Wow. So okay, that was yeah, that was that was like my first beer. Do you

Molly 17:06

remember? Like the the kids who had like the coolest slash in retrospect, bad dads growing up? Oh, absolutely. Yeah, I always felt a certain like, especially in high school. I always felt a certain like queasy feeling around those dads. Oh, of

Matthew Amster-Burton 17:20

course. Yeah. Yeah. You probably even more so than me. But if it Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Yeah. Like something is wrong here. But but also like, you know, I like admired their their independence spirit and their grit. And so I wanted to grow up to be a bad dad and hope that I fulfilled that American dream. Yeah.

Molly 17:40

Mm hmm. Okay,

Matthew Amster-Burton 17:40

then, you know, so the big the big companies like realizing that okay, like, you know, we need to take drunk driving seriously or as least at least as seriously as we can being a beer company. Like you know, Guardian on the action in the around I think go duels was was the first big one that was introduced in 1990.

Molly 17:57

And is it made by somebody else like by yours? Like that, which

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:02

which company it is, but all of the big breweries have multiple non alcoholic brands. Okay. Okay. It's like Miller sharps obviously made by Miller. Yeah. And so that really dominated the non alcoholic beer market in the US for several decades until about the last dozen years or so when non alcoholic craft breweries with a with a much broader marketing idea of like it's not not just for you know, this is this is the beer you're stuck drinking when you have to drive but like there are lots of reasons to choose a non alcoholic beer either some of the time or all the time so let's make a good one. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And so that's like athletic brewing Bray this well being and brewers from existing craft brewers like like Lagunitas I've never heard of bravest or I hadn't either started looking around but there are like I think there are probably these are like the three that I ran across just like with some quick Googling and all their stuff sounded good.

Molly 18:56

I'm curious to do something like go to Bevmo or something Yes. someplace that is exclusively beverages and see how much wider the selection there Yeah, no,

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:05

I think like if we had gone a longer longer quest if we if we like edged longer,

Molly 19:10

yeah. But we already waited 25 years now so how is this stuff made?

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:24

I will tell you if you let me open another camp, okay. Which by the way, I love how like my dining room is turning into like a sea of open beer bottles and cans, like a dorm room. very nostalgic.

Molly 19:36

And what I love is that I keep looking at this glittery birthday card that's propped up on the windowsill across from me and it's just a big 18 like we could pretend you that it's not your your child December who just turned 18 Your two. Okay, yeah, yeah, for my birthday. I love that. It's also right next to some trivets because every

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:00

That's right. That's right when she What did you put on your, your 18 year old registry besides trivets? Or was it just? Oh, I admit,

Molly 20:11

I put those those like candleholders that keep the wind from blowing out your candle. Yeah. Yep. Yes. called. I put those on my mic. Perfect straight. Yeah. Okay, cheers. What is this? This

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:22

is the cerveza Athletica copper ale. So I think it's supposed to be well, basically, I think supposed to be like, like, like a dough. saqi style. Okay,

Molly 20:33

that is the vibe I'm getting here. Yeah, it's got a nice head on it. If somebody told you that this was dosa keys. I believe anything. People are like, very trusting like Corona. Yeah, it's Corona colored this with a lime and right. Again at the beach.

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:49

It was right. I think I think it's what we're saying is it's been too long since we've been to the beach. I think that's the point of this episode.

Molly 20:56

Yeah. Okay. Um, what do you think of this one?

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:59

I think it's okay. Okay. Honestly, I think it's kind of similar to the Oh, duels. Yeah, it's a little bit more complex. It has a better head

Molly 21:06

it to me has a little bit more of a aftertaste than the tools. But yeah, it's it's not thrilling. Yeah. But it gets the job done. Yeah. Okay, go on, tell you

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:18

how this stuff is made. Okay. So there are a few different ways to make a non alcoholic beer. And with with one exception, all of them are in current use, and often like multiple different methods by the same brewery depending on like what they want to highlight in the finished product. Okay, so they are First you make beer and you remove the alcohol, that is one that is one overall method. And there are some sub sub methods within this. So the simplest way is to make a beer and then heat it to above the boiling point of alcohol, but which is 173 degrees Fahrenheit, but below the boiling point of water, which is 212. And the alcohol boils off.

Molly 21:59

I see a lot of problems with this. Yeah, the

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:01

biggest one is then you get cooked beer. Yeah, and it tastes bad, right? It

Molly 22:06

would be like making jam or something. I feel like it would

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:10

it would be like making jam. Exactly like man so it's so much fruit. This is probably the method that was used for the no beer that I bought when I was 13. Oh, so and so it would have tasted like a really lousy beer okay just with with like dead flavors. And then of course because like the the in most of these methods the carbonation is removed through the D alcohol method you have to re carbonate the beer as well okay, okay, through like forced carbonation. So another option is to do the same thing but in a low pressure chamber so that the boiling point of water and alcohol is greatly reduced.

Molly 22:47

Okay, so in so doing this, you could still boil off the alcohol but you wouldn't be cooking the flavors and all the

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:58

i By the way, this sounds like the opposite of distillation it is so mind me how distillate distillation is your your like your your capturing the the alcohol and like you know stuff that's that's dissolved in it in a in a separate chamber because that's the part you want. Okay, in this case, you want the stuff that's left behind? Got

Molly 23:15

it? Got it? Got it. Got it. Okay, and what do people ever sell? Like the remainder like the stole? is still

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:23

the answer is D or so there. There have been some like beer flavored liquors. And I don't mean like malt liquor, which is just a term for like a high alcohol beer but like, like a 40% like beer liquor that is made through distillation. I don't think I've ever tasted one. I don't think it's like a very popular class of product, right? But it does exist. Okay. Okay. So the beer nerds would definitely know more about than I do. Okay, so so when you do the low pressure method, like that is, you know, you still it's still gonna change the flavor of the product some because it's because it's still being has to be heated, but much less than heating it to like 170 degrees, okay? Or another method is to take your beer with alcohol in it and do reverse osmosis. Okay, so reverse osmosis is you you make a semi permeable membrane and force the beer through it. So that what what comes out you know, on the other side of the membrane is the is the water and alcohol and some and some dissolved acids. And then on the side of the membrane that you push the beer through, you get this beer flavored sludge. Oh, that sounds so good. Drinking, I don't know like which method was used for each of the beers. But

Molly 24:34

he said Beer Beer flavored sludge. What happens to that stuff? Is that what we drink?

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:38

Yes. So then you take the beer flavored sludge, which has all the beer flavors in it and you add carbonated water, and now you have non alcoholic beer. Wow. Oh, that seems like that's the best method. It's the most expensive method because you need like, you know, high pressure pumps and semi permeable membranes and stuff, but it is one of the best methods none of except for the, the, like, just boil the shit out of it method. All of these are good methods and like we'll get there in just a minute. Okay, okay. Another option is to stop the fermentation before alcohol is produced. That seems like it would taste very different. So it does, so that's closed hollers approach. One thing you can do is you can make make a wart which is like a, you know, a soup of malted barley and water, okay, and just not add yeast at all. So what you get there is a very sweet brew that doesn't taste much like beer. And like barley tea tastes, yeah, I've kind of been malted, so so it's more more flavorful than than barley tea, I'd probably richer, richer brew, okay, and this is and then you can carbonate it. This is not a good way to make like a beer Beer, but for making like a fruit beer or like something where you're going to be adding flavors, other flavors and acid, it can be a good base for that.

Molly 25:57

Okay, interesting. Okay, yeah, okay.

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:01

Or you can brew a less sweet Ward by using like types of malt that produce less sugar, then fermented all the way and just the full fermentation stops at less than point 5% alcohol because there wasn't much sugar in it.

Molly 26:15

Okay. And so it's this all how class taller is made?

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:19

Yes. Yes. Class taller uses all of these approaches. Interesting. Good. I wish we had some, yeah, I did not see any, okay. Or you can do regular brewers yeast, regular malt, and filter out the yeast when the fermentation has just started and not gotten very far. Okay. And so that's enough fermentation to produce some berry flavors, but not more than point 5% alcohol, okay. And again, like none of these is like the right one right way to do it. They just all produce different flavors. And you know, you think about like, what, what kind of product you're trying to make and how you're going to market it. And you choose and like how much money you have and what kind of factory and you choose the the de alcohols ation or non alcohol producing method that fits with that.

Molly 27:01

It's interesting to think about, for instance, the Lagunitas. Hop, aka hoppy refresher, and to think about how the beer flavor was achieved there, right, because it is truly a sparkling

Matthew Amster-Burton 27:13

water refresher. Yeah, I think the what you're tasting is only the flavor of hops, which is a big part of the flavor of beer.

Molly 27:20

Okay. And so, and you can get like, hops flavor,

Matthew Amster-Burton 27:25

I guess. I mean, can you get hops flavor? Sure. I guess we can probably get all kinds of stuff. That's true. Okay, so I learned a lot of this on the website that will link to have a non alcoholic beer brand called groovy. That's G are you with an OOM lout VI and I did not find any of their products. I would like to try them because on their website, they talk about which techniques they use, which are arrested fermentation, no fermentation and D alcohol Ising. I think I don't remember which type of D alcohol Ising. And they talk about how which of their beers are produced using which method and why they chose that method.

Molly 27:59

Okay. Okay, so now we've got the one that you and I both started out with. It's the athletic brewing upside Dawn, which they describe as their what golden golden. Okay,

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:10

yes, this I drank like a whole six pack of a couple weeks ago. Not all in one day.

Molly 28:15

What do you think of this? I think that this is delicious.

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:18

Bar, the best one, it's got. It's got the best balance of like, I don't like a very hoppy beer. Like a non alcoholic beer, I think needs to have like enough hops, so that it doesn't just taste sweet. And this is the first one that we tried that has really balance of sweetness and bitterness.

Molly 28:35

Yeah. Yeah. I agree. It's interesting, because when I ran out of my first six pack of this, I realized I had like a couple Pilsner, a couple cans of Pilsner from a local brewery that I and I've really loved that Pilsner. And so I opened it up one night when I wished that I had this non alcoholic athletic brewing beer. And I couldn't get over how much sweeter and thicker it felt. I think that one thing I do really like about at least what we've tasted so far of the athletic brewing, non alcoholic beers, is that there there is a slight thinner quality to them then alcoholic beer, but it isn't a negative thing.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:21

Yeah, I agree. It makes them I would say like more refreshing yeah, overall yellow like the next one we're going to try is a dark beer that I'm very curious about okay, okay, let's try it. So one like like I said, like, you know, you choose your your, your production method based on what your goal is, and that can be a flavor goal, but also it can be an amount of acceptable alcohol goal. So and specifically what I mean is like, you know, for sale in the US point 5% or less is the standard pretty much everywhere. That is not true. For example, in Iran, where non alcoholic beer is super popular, and it is illegal to sell any beverage that has any alcohol. So it has to be 0%. Okay, and so in Iran non fermented and industrially D alcohol iced are the only are the only acceptable methods.

Molly 30:09

How is athletic brewing? Man?

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:11

That's a good question and I don't know but I am going to guess that because they have a wide variety of beers like we're trying three of them, but they have at least 10 that they're using multiple methods depending on the flavor profile of the beer they're going for. Okay,

Molly 30:25

cool. Okay, so let's taste this last one. Yes. Is the all out. Is it a stout?

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:30

It's the Yeah, all that stout, extra dark. Okay. And I love dark beers. So I ordered this one online.

Molly 30:36

Wow. You really went the extra mile? Yeah. Okay. Nice color. So nice head looks

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:41

really good. So yeah, I gotta say, for me, to be honest, like I have been, I have been drinking less. Because like, I feel like this has to do with coffee at some point. Also, like, I just got to an age where like, every time I drink alcohol, even like one beer, like I feel crummy later. And like, but that's okay. Like it is

Molly 31:02

okay. It is okay. And I you know, there's a part of me. So I have always been someone who had quite low tolerance, or was at the low end. I like this. You like this? Okay. Yes. Oh, that's really nice. Really tastes like a stout. Yeah. And it also has that like, not as heavy. Like feeling in my mouth. Yep. Oh, that's really good. Yeah, that's so cool. That five more cans of that. Good. That's so cool. I think that my feeling is, and I assume this is like very common. For a lot of people during this pandemic time is my tolerance has gone up. And it's still not, I don't feel like it's a problem. But at the same time, I'm just very aware that it's gone up. And that bothers me. Yeah. It really it just like, bothers me. I remember a time like when I was straight edge in high school. Sure

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:54

did. Yeah. I didn't return your hands.

Molly 31:57

I didn't drink caffeinated coffee. And I remember thinking like, I never want to be dependent upon a substance. Like I couldn't imagine how I would ever allow myself to, to have coffee every day because I knew I would develop dependence. Sure. And I certainly have, and I love coffee, and I'm now like, whatever. I'm just gonna keep drinking my coffee. But I don't want to feel that way about alcohol.

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:25

Yeah, no, I totally get that. And so like I but but on the other hand, like I love having a beer, like just kind of the idea of it. Yes. You know, frosty glass. Like I love having beer with pizza. I love drinking a beer while making dinner. That's very satisfying. And I'm going to I'm going to be buying this more. I don't think I'm going to stop buying alcoholic beer. But I'm certainly going to leave Yes, buying this more often.

Molly 32:48

I now have been making sure that I always have this in the house. Because yeah, I think that a lot of us are used to having some sort of an adult beverage in that window of the day. That is like work is over the evening hasn't really begun yet. And there's sort of this transition period, right? Yeah. And, and I find that's when I really want something that feels special. And these actually feel like special.

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:16

They do like they're they're a little bit expensive. And yeah, they cost as much as as alcoholic beer, I guess as a criteria. Yeah, they do. I think I think adult beverage is a good term because like, to me this still feels like an adult beverage in the sense that kids would fucking hate it. Yes. Right. Like I offered like, you know, by my 18 year old like, you know, Can I pour you a little not alcoholic beer and they were like, no gross. So well,

Molly 33:41

and that is different to me from for instance, the Lagunitas hop, which still does feel more like something I would drink in the afternoon without your drink in the afterlife. But I I would drink Lagunitas hop in the afternoon. It feels like it's a different category. Not that I wouldn't drink a beer in the afternoon in the

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:01

afterlife. I'm learning to drink ambrosia Is that Is that a thing? Yeah.

Molly 34:05

Yeah. Although it's also like a weird salad salad like grapes and marshmallows and gelatin. I think maybe a coconut. Oh, yeah. Yeah.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:15

We know way too much about that. We do.

Molly 34:18

Okay, well, um, I'm really curious to hear from listeners who maybe are in other parts of the country, maybe with access to other craft non alcoholic beers. Hold on this one is this from? This is from Colorado? No. Where is it? Medic brewing is from San Diego California and Stratford Connecticut.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:35

Interesting. All right. Yeah. And like so the ingredients like because it's not an alcoholic beverage they have to put the ingredients and the ingredients are water organic organic Vienna malt malted barley, oats, wheat hops yeast. That is like for that's the dark beer. Love it. Love it. Yeah, it's but it's got like I was looking at the greens to see like I did they put like some coffee flavoring in which like, you know, beer like dark beer makers often do and no, it's just like the natural flavor of a dark malt. Well,

Molly 35:00

I mean, the other thing that that I have to remind

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:03

was that guy from The Phantom Menace, their bread bread face dark malt.

Molly 35:07

Yeah. The other thing is that even these which are expensive, quote unquote for beer, it's like what? Like between 1099 and 1299? For a six pack? It's still on par with a like a decent grocery store bottle of wine. Yeah, right. And anyway, I get way more evenings. Yeah, Kroger, brand wine. Just as everyone knows, is my favorite

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:33

tea. Like one thing I ran across and like, I kind of noticed this the first time like, I drank a whole can of the of the upside Dawn, like, your heel trashed, I felt like a little bit tipsy. Okay. This is a common thing, like, you know, that your the way you experience any substance depends a lot on how you expect to feel like, you know, that they talked about, like drug mindset and setting and like mindset is a big part of your response. So like, I feel like I'm not even like totally giving up the the intoxicating effect because I could enjoy the placebo effect. Yeah, yeah. Well, yeah, I'm not even joking.

Molly 36:11

Well, and the other thing too, is that I think for me, well, like a lot of foods, the first few sips, or the first few bites of something are often the ones that like really hit those pleasure centers, you know. And then there's this, you know, diminishing returns situation. And the first few sips have these really great non alcoholic beers are absolutely as pleasurable to me as their alcoholic counterparts. And so that to like that, that hit of pleasure is important to me. And I get that here.

Matthew Amster-Burton 36:46

Yeah. All right. Cool. I mean, maybe we can come back around to this topic, because like, we do this show every week, and we've done every food topic, so. Oh, we have yeah, I forgot I'd look yeah, I was looking at our list. And we've we've now done all the foods, every food, every ingredient every dish. Wow, everything it's over. So bye, everybody. Yeah, but I would like to taste more of these either, either on a professional or non professional base. Great.

Molly 37:14

Well, let's hang out Matthew.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:15

Yeah, let's let's send the beach. Yeah, let's let's drink these in a very unprofessional way. Next. Oh, great. Okay, okay. Well, I like spilling and like spraying each other with beer foam and stuff.

Molly 37:26

Okay, so it's time for segments.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:29

Let's start with spilled mail.

Molly 37:37

This one is from listener care

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:39

app. So the gist is that during our day perfect snacks episode, Molly said she did not want to make a burger for breakfast because of the lingering animal animal fat smell.

Unknown Speaker 37:48

Mm hmm.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:49

Yep. I'm so fun. Loser Kara goes on during the pandemic and working from home I've adopted the process the practice of eating any food any kind of day. For example, yesterday, I had some cold kielbasa and a pierogi for breakfast, which might normally be considered dinner. My thought process is why would I wait until dinner? D what I really want to eat now. My question to both of you is, are there any foods you only eat at a certain time of day? Or how do you feel about eating non traditional breakfast lunch dinner foods during other meal times? Ah, this is

Molly 38:17

a question. Yeah, I love this question. So I have always skewed sweet for breakfast, and therefore I don't tend to ever reach for what I consider to be like lunch or dinner foods at breakfast. Okay, just I love doing that.

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:33

I know you do. Yes. Why we're not American fist That's right. No, if we were if we were married like that, that would

Molly 38:39

never fly because you have to eat the same breakfast. Like that's

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:42

that's that's what Dr. John Gottman said in the emails and he said yeah, after you do your love maps Yeah, then you got to you got to my love language is the same breakfast every day our lives. Bite for bite like yeah, if we don't if we don't split this waffle it's over. Go on. Go on. I don't so I agree with Lister Cara that this is like my general my general philosophy is like if whatever you want to eat any time of day, like go for it, who cares. And I love pizza for breakfast is probably my favorite breakfast. Although I do also like a sweet breakfast like this morning, I had some Bob's Red Mill Peanut Butter Granola, which is very tasty. And it's basically like a like a granola bar that somebody punched. But I have noticed thinking about this that breakfast for dinner used to seem like a real treat maybe like 10 years ago. And over time, like it seemed like less and less like a viable option for some reason.

Molly 39:44

So I gotta tell you, I had a very recent experience with this. So growing up, so my mom was, you know, on diets all the time. And so I think I've talked here about our definition of breakfast for dinner when I was growing up we have but I don't remember. Okay, so I think this was actually Like a suggested meal and some diet my mom was doing and it was either like sauteed or steamed spinach with a fried egg on top and shredded cheddar cheese. Okay, that Okay, sounds good, really good. Except, I mean, I think that I think we always had it with steamed spinach. it much better with sauteed spinach. Anyway. So growing up that was what I thought of as breakfast for dinner. And I have had like a sweet breakfast for dinner very few times in my lifetime. And so recently, Ash and Jun and I decided that we were going to do breakfast for dinner and Jun was so excited because our main like special breakfast is pancakes. Okay, so this meant pancakes for them. Yeah. So I had some breakfast sausage cooked that up. We did pancakes. We wound up deciding not to cook eggs because we had all eaten eggs at lunch.

Matthew Amster-Burton 40:52

Sure. I was gonna say I love making myself an omelet for lunch. That's one of my favorite thing.

Molly 40:56

I love eggs for any meal of the day. Actually, I prefer eggs for lunch or dinner over breakfast anyway. So I made breakfast sausage and my usual pancakes. And I have to say it was the most joyous experience of eating pancakes. I think any of us have had like we sat in silence around the table. It was what do you think's going on? Like fun than having pancakes for breakfast?

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:21

I think the only conclusion is that you and I have become less fun. I was like, I have enjoyed this 10 years ago, and I don't think I would enjoy it today. And I'm like, What the fuck is wrong?

Molly 41:30

I think even Jun was kind of surprised by how we were all like. I think the truth is, is that I mean, I I think that my body? Well, I think both of us are some

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:43

I think my body is a wonderland.

Molly 41:44

I was gonna say, but I didn't want to. I think that both of us are people who are really aware of what we want to eat at any given time. Yeah. And I think that we have conditioned ourselves to want certain flavors at like certain times. Yeah, like, I want savory flavors at dinnertime. Yeah.

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:07

Like happy go lucky and carefree. Like, is there care? Oh,

Molly 42:10

I don't know. She's better than we are.

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:13

Okay, so that that's probably the answer to that she was looking for. And yeah, problem. So

Molly 42:18

I think another issue is that we always have some kind of like dessert after dinner. And if you've eaten pancakes for dinner, you kind of like don't want dessert. Yeah. And there's nothing sad about that. I agree. Like I love the the counterpart of like, you know, the savory dinner. And then dessert.

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:38

Yeah. All right. How about now but wow. Oh, okay.

Molly 42:49

Okay, so my now about Wow, for today is a new podcast. It's about a month old. And it's called the one recipe stop laughing.

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:57

What if we recorded all of these episodes and not released any of them and they just dropped them all on the same day? Like 575 episodes you are so mad. Yeah. It wouldn't make any sense. But it would be really weird. People would talk about it spirits

Molly 43:16

dumb things. Yeah. Okay. So I want to talk today about this new podcast called The one recipe. It's hosted by Jesse sparks, who's a senior editor at eater. And what I love about this is so for someone who like, I am a cook, who loves a repertoire, like I love to have, like this recipe that I always make for this kind of pasta. And like this recipe we always do when we want like chicken tacos or whatever. Okay, so what this podcast does the one recipe is that Jesse sparks talks to chefs and cooks from all over the world about their like, one go to recipe Nice. Okay, I think that it's gonna be really great. I am kind of amazed it's taken this long to get a podcast like this.

Matthew Amster-Burton 44:00

I'm really excited. I will subscribe. Yeah, so

Molly 44:03

anyway, it is it's put together by the same team as the people behind splendid table and you can find it everywhere you find podcasts. It's called the one recipe Our producer is Abby circuit tele indeed and you can rate and review us wherever you get your podcasts

Matthew Amster-Burton 44:17

and you can have like a chill good time with other spilled milk listeners by going to reddit.com/are/everything Spilled Milk and just like talk about whatever Yeah, bro. And until next time, thank you for listening to spilled Belk. The show that's been smooshed through a membrane and now we're just a delicious sludge in Mali Weisenberg Matthew Amster-Burton

I said this morning nevermind I was gonna try like remember and then retell a joke that I made this morning. Like the musical dear Evan Hanson, but maybe I was just like, let it go.

Molly 44:58

Okay. Okay. Let's start over sorry I'm gonna

Matthew Amster-Burton 45:01

clear my palate with it with a saltine you are so drunk