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Is making (and marketing) the first "no-carb" beer in the U.S. possible?

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What does "no carb" beer mean to you?

  • not worth my time

  • a market opportunity

  • beer with no residual sugar, but with alcohol

  • a marketing gimmick. Alcohol has carbs


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ZakW

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We know its been done in Australia (by Americans at that) with Burleigh Bighead.
We know the American market is trending towards low-carb, low-alcohol beers.
Put these together, it seems the American market would be receptive to a "no-carb" beer. I am at a loss to find any brewery doing "no-carb" in the U.S. What am I missing?

I am interested to hear your thoughts on the following:
  • Even if you eliminate all the residual sugars, alcohol still has carbs. With this said, are there regulations preventing the "no-carb" label from being used (from a marketing perspective)?
  • With all the "low-carb" beers our there, why have breweries stayed away from "no-carb" production?
Thanks for sharing your opinions here.
 

Gnomebrewer

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Yeah, ethanol doesn't have carbs.

I don't think it would be possible to brew a true zero-carb beer. The laws in Australia let foods be advertised as zero carb/sugar/fat or whatever if the amount per serving of the nutrient in question is below a certain limit. The laws might be different in the US.

Low-carb beer is extremely popular in Australia. They're typically lowish alcohol (about 4%abv) and taste like water.
 

bracconiere

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alcohol has calories 7 per gram, but it 's not a carb....and have you seen the Brüt IPA thread? it's no carb beer....and i make no carb beer all the time by adding gluco amylase......
 

Robert65

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Yeah, ethanol doesn't have carbs.

I don't think it would be possible to brew a true zero-carb beer. The laws in Australia let foods be advertised as zero carb/sugar/fat or whatever if the amount per serving of the nutrient in question is below a certain limit. The laws might be different in the US.

Low-carb beer is extremely popular in Australia. They're typically lowish alcohol (about 4%abv) and taste like water.
The laws are similar in the US. Less than 1g of anything "per serving" is rounded down to zero. Makes it possible for producers to label products as zero-anything they like just by choosing a convenient but entirely unrealistic definition of "serving" for labeling purposes. Maybe at least you have more rational regulation of this in Australia.
 

RPh_Guy

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ethanol has calories but is not a carbohydrate
A carbohydrate is a molecule consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. So yes, ethanol technically is a carbohydrate.

However, metabolically ethanol doesn't seem to have the effects of other dietary carbohydrates which are typically sugars and starch. So nutritionally we exclude ethanol as a carbohydrate.
 

eric19312

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Ive been making very low carb beer since I went on keto diet about a year ago. One batch of a miller lite clone (@Schlenkerla recipe) and ten batches of brut IPA. I'm really digging the brut IPA and pretty much have my recipe down for them.
 

Schlenkerla

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Ive been making very low carb beer since I went on keto diet about a year ago. One batch of a miller lite clone (@Schlenkerla recipe) and ten batches of brut IPA. I'm really digging the brut IPA and pretty much have my recipe down for them.
This is recipe eric19312 is mentioning for a low carb beer.

It's a Miller Lite Clone with considerable more flavor with 3 actual hop additions. Heck, if you used a late cryo-hop addition even more so.

https://www.northernbrewer.com/collections/cryo-hops

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/forum/index.php?threads/123937/
 

Gnomebrewer

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A carbohydrate is a molecule consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. So yes, ethanol technically is a carbohydrate.

However, metabolically ethanol doesn't seem to have the effects of other dietary carbohydrates which are typically sugars and starch. So nutritionally we exclude ethanol as a carbohydrate.
Ethanol isn't polyhydroxy (and has fewer than three Carbons), so isn't a carb. Or at least that's my understanding of Carbohydrates from studying chemistry decades ago!
 
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bracconiere

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A carbohydrate is a molecule consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. So yes, ethanol technically is a carbohydrate.

However, metabolically ethanol doesn't seem to have the effects of other dietary carbohydrates which are typically sugars and starch. So nutritionally we exclude ethanol as a carbohydrate.
and here i've been calling it dicarbohydroxide....lol
 

Schlenkerla

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Any chance you could post it? I'm interested in low alcohol, but still decent brews....
The Miller Lite Clone is a good option. It's can be a unique beer as it stands or with a variance in hop or your base barley malt. It doesn't require much hops to hit 18 IBU.
 

eric19312

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Any chance you could post it? I'm interested in low alcohol, but still decent brews....
My bruts run about 7% ABV

Basic recipe is

2-row or Pilsner or combination 85%
Flaked corn 15%
30-60 min boil...I’ll do 30 min boil when not using much pils
Target OG 1.050
10 IBU from hop extract at 30 min
10 IBU from 5 min addition

10 oz hops in whirlpool (16 gallon batch) 30 min at 170F
6 mL glucoamalyse (BSG) after whirlpool during chilling, add at 130F
Ferment with US05 at 66F
Dry hop 8 oz hops on day 3
Dry hop 8 oz hops when gravity about 1.010...prob day 5 or 6...bump temp to 69F
FG should get to 0.998 or lower by about day 8
Crash, Keg and carb to 3 volumes

Key for this discussion is that FG...

At o.998 there are still a fair amount of carbs...about 6 in 12 oz. but o.995 is 4 grams and either way manageable on a low carb diet if you limit quantity to one or two. At 7% ABV it’s not intended to be a session beer, but dang they are easy drinkers for sure.
 

AkTom

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While bottling one time... a bottle got left filled no cap for 2 days. Warm, no carb, aaand delicious! probably won’t be a regular practice for me. I can see how some might like it.
Shoot! Some people even like lagers :ban:
 

triethylborane

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A carbohydrate is a molecule consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. So yes, ethanol technically is a carbohydrate.

However, metabolically ethanol doesn't seem to have the effects of other dietary carbohydrates which are typically sugars and starch. So nutritionally we exclude ethanol as a carbohydrate.

"Technically" as through the view of organic chemistry? No.

Ethanol is a primary alcohol and is not technically a carbohydrate in any sense. Initial organic chemistry considerations such as bonds and functional groups separate ethanol and the large array of carbohydrates into different groups. A considerable portion of organic chemistry can be reduced to carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, so equating compounds as technically equivalent on this basis would have the fields of organic and bio chemistry at an impasse with progress.

There are carbohydrates that have hydroxyl groups, the sugar alcohols, but the stereochemistry, properties, and reactivity are still not technically equivalent to ethanol.
 
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ZakW

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Yeah, ethanol doesn't have carbs.

I don't think it would be possible to brew a true zero-carb beer. The laws in Australia let foods be advertised as zero carb/sugar/fat or whatever if the amount per serving of the nutrient in question is below a certain limit. The laws might be different in the US.

Low-carb beer is extremely popular in Australia. They're typically lowish alcohol (about 4%abv) and taste like water.
Thanks for the reply Jayjay1976. It appears the zero carb beer has been accomplished. This is from Burleigh Brewing in Australia: https://burleighbrewing.com.au/our-beer/

"We reckon that’s how man first landed on the moon. It’s also an approximate explanation of the genesis of Bighead. Brewing a full-flavoured, full-strength beer with no carbs seemed impossible. But just because nobody had done it before, it didn’t mean it couldn’t be done (at least not to us). And the result is something we’re truly proud of. Not that we’re getting a big head about it."
r: 230769"]ethanol has calories but is not a carbohydrate[/QUOTE]
 
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ZakW

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alcohol has calories 7 per gram, but it 's not a carb....and have you seen the Brüt IPA thread? it's no carb beer....and i make no carb beer all the time by adding gluco amylase......
this helps!! Thanks for the referral to Brut IPA
 

Jayjay1976

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i like to brew and I like to drink whole beer. in case you missed it, here is the period >.<

anything else can pass the lingual muscle across my spheres, capitan...
 
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