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Beer without alcohol – no, really.

So here it is: I’m off the sauce for 30 days. This is the kind of thing that might pose problems for a beer blogger, but it is what it is. I’m going to the Copenhagen Beer Celebration on May 11-12, and attending the warm-up beer ticker wet dream event Sour & Bitter on the 10th, and I just know that there are going to be MANY beers I want to sample. So I decided to detox but good for a month before what already promises to be the big beer event of the year. I also joined the gym (and I’m going, too – three or four times a week). I’m basically a walking turn-your-life-around cliché. But don’t worry, it’s only for a month. I’ll be back to my beer-swilling, sedentary ways in no time, you’ll see.

This preamble is to explain my newfound interest in non-alcoholic beer. Most non-alcoholic beers I’ve had coming from the big brands (Becks Blue and the like) have been universally awful and I’ve often found myself missing the Swedish tradition of lättöl (literally light beer, which are very-low-ABV beers that can often be surprisingly flavourful). So when I made my most recent trip to Utobeer to pick up some bottles of Hardknotts limited release Æther Blæc 2011 (hey, I said I wouldn’t drink, that doesn’t mean I can’t buy beer) I asked them what kind of non-alcoholic brews they had to offer. I came away with one bottle of Erdinger Alkoholfrei (which came highly recommended) and one bottle of Schneider Mein Alkoholfreies (Tap 3) (which was also recommended but not as highly) – in other words, two non-alcoholic wheat beers. So brace yourselves, folks, for London Beer Blog’s first non-alcoholic beer review!

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For my Swedish readers: 10 British breweries you’ll want to see at Systembolaget

Ok, so this post takes a bit of explaining. I’m Swedish, which you know if you’ve been paying attention, so as it happens many (ok, three of them, which still leaves them in the majority) of my readers are Swedish. And if there’s one thing I’ve picked up from the Swedish beer geek scene after observing it from a distance these past nine years, it’s that British beer gets a bad rap there. No Swedish beer geek I know really enjoys British beer except maybe for BrewDog (who prefer to be called Scottish, I’m sure, though calling them “British” will certainly go over better than calling them “English”) – British beer is generally thought of as bland, stale, sour (in a bad way, not in a Cantillon way) and only one small step up from generic lager.

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