These New Low-Alcohol Beers Are the MVPs for Tailgating and More
We taste-tested beers from three breweries that have knocked light brews out of the park. Plus some of our other low-cal, low-alcohol favorites!
Let's be real—many of us are carving out some time for adult beverages these days. With sports like football and basketball back for your viewing enjoyment, you can jump right back into tailgating season. And what would tailgating be without beer? However, drinking heavy IPAs throughout the day can have less-than-pleasant side effects and repercussions.
Lucky for us all, three breweries have created new lower-alcohol beers that allow you to have the best of both worlds. Clocking in at 4% alcohol by volume or less, these beers are perfect to help you pace yourself, because day drinking is a marathon, not a sprint. Here are the new lighter brews worth trying, plus some of our other low-alcohol favorites.
Harpoon Brewing Fantasy League
This multipack from Harpoon Brewing contains four different 12-ounce low-alcohol beers for your drinking pleasure. This first is their popular Rec League beer, clocking in at 120 calories, 10 grams of carbs and 4.0% ABV. This one has the most fun packaging, and is an easy drinker if you like hoppy beers.
Their next beer in the pack, the Farm League, is a lighter take on a Belgian ale that's just 4.0% ABV and has similar nutrition to the Rec League. This is a great beer for citrus lovers, and has a nice bitter finish.
The third beer in the pack is the Bush League, and drinking it immediately took our minds to grilling and tailgating (even if it's just in the backyard). It is a nice, basic Pilsner with 115 calories, 9 grams of carbs and 4.0% ABV, making it perfect for any day-drinking occasion. Hello, football season!
Last but certainly not least in this variety pack is the Night League. It's the only dark beer of the bunch, but packs a flavorful punch that is well-balanced (it's not overly sweet or bitter). At only 125 calories, 11 grams of carbs and 4.0% ABV, this dark session IPA is a great choice for those who like more robust beers.
Allagash Brewing Little Grove
Allagash Brewing has gained national popularity for their light and bright beers, and the Little Grove collection is no exception. The first beer in this collection is the Sparkling Session Ale with Blackcurrants. It contains only 100 calories, 7 grams of carbs and 3.8% ABV, making it even lighter than its competitors. Its fruit-forward flavor might be an acquired taste for some, but we were impressed with how refreshing it is without being too bland or too sweet. We will definitely be drinking this one again.
Their second beer in this collection is their Sparkling Session Ale with Peach & Kombucha. For those who love the fizzy probiotic drink, rejoice! Similar to the ale with black currants, it contains only 100 calories, 7 grams of carbs and 3.6% ABV. It reminded us of a Belgian ale, with delicious fruit flavor but not the sweetness you may be expecting from peaches. This beer screams pool days and grilled foods like sausages and pork all the way.
New Belgium The Purist
New Belgium set out to make a beer with ingredients that are just as the name suggests: pure. This ″clean" beer is made from organic, traceable ingredients so customers can be sure they're getting the highest-quality product. It contains only 95 calories, 3 grams of carbs and 3.8% ABV, making it the lightest beer we tried. Its light taste makes it a perfect stand-in for classic American lagers, like Bud Light or Budweiser, just in time for football season.
Other Low-Alcohol Beers We Love
Beyond the new beers we tasted, these are some of our tried-and-true favorite beers for when you want all of the flavor without all of the alcohol or calories.
Dogfish Head Slightly Mighty
We think this beer by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery is very aptly named. This beer is an easy drinker that I've had in heavy rotation for basically every season. It's a hazy, fruit-forward IPA that has only 95 calories, 3.6 grams of carbs and 4.0% ABV. Whether it's at the beach or in the ski lodge, this is a beer you can enjoy without getting ahead of yourself.
Bell's Light Hearted
This beer is Bell's Brewery's low-cal, low-alcohol answer to their wildly popular Two Hearted Ale. It contains only 110 calories, 8.7 grams of carbs and 3.7% ABV. As a Michigan native who is incredibly biased when it comes to Two Hearted Ale, I found this beer to be just as refreshing and flavorful, without the heaviness of the original. With citrus and pine as the primary flavors, this beer is a winner in the fall.
Blue Moon LightSky
The ever-popular Blue Moon wheat beer has gotten a makeover, and we are all here for it. Their low-alcohol brew LightSky is brewed with real tangerine peel that you can taste. It contains only 110 calories, 3.6 grams of carbs and 4.0% ABV. As a bonus, it is nationally available year-round for all of your beer-drinking needs.