Guinness 0.0 had a stuttering start in life. Back in October 2020 they launched it only to take it away again, sighting microbiological contamination.
The makers of Guinness, Diageo, then spent much of the next year trying to re perfect Guinness 0.0 and got around to relaunching it in the middle of 2021.
This is actually my second go at reviewing Guinness 0.0. At the start of my journey I reviewed Guinness 0.0 and Draft, side by side and thought they were nearly identical.
I was very impressed, but now i’ve over 100 more non alcoholic beer reviews under my belt and i wanted to have another look incase i was too hasty in my 9+/10 score.
How is Guinness 0.0 made?
Guinness tell us that they make Guinness 0.0 with a “cold filtration” method.
Cold filtration can also be known as reverse osmosis. Guinness use very high pressures instead of heat which can degrade the aromatic compounds.
The beer is forced against a very thin membrane filter which separates water and alcohol from the beers aromatic components.
There are many reasons why some non alcoholic beers are 0.0% and some are 0.5% due to the processes and cost involved in making them.
For a review of which companies brew 0.0% or 0.5% and exactly why, click here to read more about it
I have a full article on how non alcoholic beers are made which you can read here
What type of beer is Guinness 0.0?
Guinness 0.0 is an Irish styled dry stout.
The hallmark of an Irish dry stout is roasted barley, which develops the characteristic colour and flavours.
The flavours developed are roasted coffee, chocolate, sweetness from the malt and bitterness from the hops. Guinness is known the world over for its flavour but also creamy appearance and mouthfeel.
Can Guinness replicate this in their Guinness 0.0?
Is Guinness 0.0 really alcohol free?
You see a lot of terminology on beer bottles and cans. There are specific laws as to what can be called alcohol free and non alcoholic but jurisdictions overlap so even this is not full proof.
The easiest way to tell if a beer is alcohol free is to look for the “0.0%” on the labelling as that can’t lie.
A true alcohol free beer will have 0.0% alcohol by volume, but this means it can have a tiny amount of alcohol as long as it is less the 0.05%.
My full article on just how alcohol free Guinness 0.0 is, can be read here
Like any big brewery, Guinness struggles to just include the basic 4 beer ingredients – water, barley, hops and yeast. Normally this leads to a very chemically type taste but Guinness are one of the few that can achieve a great beer with lots of extra ingredients
Guinness 0.0 includes…
- Malted barley
- Roast barley
- Natural flavourings
A stout would traditionally have lactose (milk sugar) to add sweetness, great head and velvety mouthfeel but then the beer is not vegan.
Guinness have switched to fructose, a plant sugar, which isn’t converted to alcohol by the yeast, to achieve the same result.
As you can see they elevate the humble barley but malting and roasting it to generate the characteristic colour and flavour.
The nitrogen is rather unique and comes from the widget inside which greats the settling and creamy head.
In times gone by, Guinness has been considered everything from a full meal to actual medicine. When you taste the creamy texture and mouthfeel you can be forgiven for thinking it will be laden with carbs and calories but not so.
Alcoholic Guinness is relatively low in calories, carbs and sugar compared to peers so i would be hopeful that Guinness 0.0 would have a very good nutrition profile.
|||Values per 100ml or 100g|
The calories in Guinness 0.0 is about 50% lower than the equivalent Guinness Draft. Draft has 35kcal per 100ml versus 17kcal per 100ml in Guinness 0.0. That is a huge saving per drink for basically the same taste.
I have reviewed over 100 beers and the calorie average of all non alcoholic beers is around 23kcal/100ml so Guinness 0.0 comfortably beats that too.
The carbs in Guinness 0.0 is slightly higher than in Guinness Draft. This is often the case and the difference is only 0.8g/100ml.
Again to compare the Guinness 0.0 carbs of 3.8g per 100ml to my database of non alcoholic beers, their average comes in at 5g per 100ml so Guinness 0.0 is comfortably in the lower half of non alcoholic beer.
The sugars in Guinness 0.0 is only 0.5g per 100ml higher than Guinness Draft and a stout coming in at 0.7g/100ml is one of the best in all the non alcoholic stouts i have reviewed.
The average non alcoholic beer has around 2g/100ml so Guinness 0.0 has well under half the sector average.
To read more about the calories in Guinness 0.0 then read my article on it here
You can read all about the calories, carbs or sugar in non alcoholic and alcohol free beers by clicking on the links to my articles. I have analysed just about everything you will want to know from my data set of over 100 beers.
The can is unmistakable Guinness Draft black but with the added blue trim and “0.0” to make it stand out as the alcohol free version.
When you pour it you get the same anticipation as the settling happens. The head is just as big and creamy looking and is going nowhere until you drink it.
I suppose you can say there are a few more bubbles in the Guinness 0.0 head versus Guinness Draft but that is splitting hairs.
The colour is the usually deep ruby red, verging on black. Well it is a pint of the “black stuff” isn’t it?
This can is a slightly unusual 500ml whereas the usual Guinness Draft is 440ml for some reason.
You might think that the tick creamy head would form a cap to the aroma getting up your nostrils, but no. The best way to describe it is, it smells exactly like a pint of Guinness!
You have that deep roasted malt smell, with hints of chocolate and you could talk yourself into some coffee. It smells smooth and creamy, if that is possible. There is nothing sharp or acidic but just a hit of bitterness.
Oh boy. Im writing this review just before the 2022 6 Nations Rugby Championships, where it is basically the law in Ireland to drink lots of Guinness whilst watching it.
For me, this tastes basically identical to Guinness. I struggle to tell the difference in a blind taste test and i have drank more than my fair share of the alcoholic one over the years.
The first thing you note is just how smooth and creamy the mouthfeel is, which is a hallmark of a good Guinness. Next all those roasted and dark malted barley flavours come rushing in.
The flavour is primarily roasted malt but you can pick up hints of chocolate and coffee.
Mixed with the roasted malt is some hop bitterness but that is a background flavour that just accentuates the grains. There is a slight undertone of sweetness from the malting but as the added sugar is under 1g per 100ml and the carbs are also very low, this is not overly sweet by any means.
The body is good, again if i have to be critical, it might be slightly thinner than an alcoholic Guinness Draft but not a large degree and certainly not enough to make me think this is a thin beer.
If you like cans of Guinness Draft, you will love this, it is that simple. Guinness have absolutely nailed this in terms of flavour, body and creamy mouthfeel.
Of all the big brands that have produced a 0.0% alcohol free version, Guinness 0.0 is by far the best i have tried and i have reviewed every one i can buy.
9/10 – I would give it more but the only improvement might be when i try it via the MicroDraught system in a pub. Let’s be honest, the best Guinness is always in a pub.
Find out where this beer ranks compared to all the beers i have reviewed on my updated “Best Non Alcoholic Beers” page
Does Guinness 0.0 taste the same as Guinness Draft?
I have tasted these both side by side and you can read the full article here
The executive summary is…
Yes, Guinness 0.0 and Guinness Draft basically taste the same, which is brilliant. I had myself and a few other tasters try them both back to back and it is very hard to tell the difference. They both have the distinctive Guinness taste and creamy mouthfeel.
From being active in the non alcoholic beer social media community, i have observed that the Guinness 0.0 has gone down a storm and is a resounding success.
Where to buy Guinness 0.0?
Guinness 0.0 is available at many supermarkets and is currently spreading out across the world.
Follow this link to buy these from Dry Drinker in the UK
You can try these at Wise Bartender as well, a brilliant non alcoholic retailer
For UK readers, Light Drinks has this and others, if you use code OPENINGTHEBOTTLE you get an additional 5% off
*Affiliate Disclosure – if you click on the links and buy from these providers, i might receive a small commission*
Is Guinness 0.0 gluten free?
No Guinness 0.0 is not gluten free. The barley contain gluten and no mitigation has happened to remove it.
I have an entire article on non alcoholic beers and gluten if you want more information. This includes how beers can brew gluten free beers as well as try to remove the gluten once brewed.
Is Guinness 0.0 vegan?
Yes and it is confirmed on Barnivore.com via the company
For more on vegan beers see my article on the matter. Why beers may or may not be and how to check.
How will Guinness 0.0% be served in pubs?
Guinness 0.0% can’t be poured via traditional beer lines so the boffins at Guinness have came up with the “Guinness Microdraught“
Guinness Microdraught uses an air pump, instead of a gas cylinder in traditional systems. It then pushes the liquid out of the can and through the standard Guinness Draught spout, into the waiting glass, on route to your mouth.
Any other questions you may have about Guinness 0.0 i have attempted to list and answer in this FAQ article
Quite excellent from the Guinness lads. A remarkable pint of the black stuff