Alcohol-free beer specialist – Big Drop Brewing Co – can now lay claim to the world’s most awarded beer, alcohol free or otherwise, with their Galactic Milk Stout winning the World’s Best No & Low Alcohol beer at the World Beer Awards – https://www.worldbeerawards.com/.
This year’s medal haul for Big Drop includes the ultimate acclaim of ‘World’s Best’ for two of its 0.5% ABV beers – Paradiso IPA and Galactic Milk Stout. Now with seven ‘World’s Best’ titles under its belt including Pine Trail Pale Ale winning World’s Best Pale Beer Low Strength in 2017 & 2020, three of them for Galactic and two for Paradiso IPA, Big Drop tops the table of no & low alcohol brewers.
Galactic – described as rich, unctuous and an absolutely decadent treat of a beer – has won 20 of Big Drop’s 70 international beer awards since its launch in 2016.
Not all these awards have been specifically for AF beer, however, with both of this year’s winners having previously beaten full-strength rivals in blind tastings. Paradiso, for example, was the UK’s winner in the Specialty IPA category of last year’s World Beer Awards, nudging 6% ABV entries into second and third place. Likewise, Galactic was out-performing regular stouts in the World Beer Awards before it had its own AF category.
Rob Fink, Founder and CEO of Big Drop, commented: “When we started out, we decided that we shouldn’t be aiming to make AF beers better but, rather, creating great tasting beers that just happen to be AF. As there weren’t many awards around for AF beer at the time, we entered the normal categories instead. The results speak for themselves and reinforce our belief that AF beers, made in the right way by expert brewers using carefully selected ingredients, don’t have to compromise on taste.”
Fink claims the secret to Galactic’s success is its ‘brew-to-strength’ or Reduced Amylase Brewing technique, pioneered by Big Drop and seen as a game-changer for the category, which has often been considered a ‘distress purchase’. This technique allows the beer to be fully fermented without the need to extract alcohol once it has been brewed. By remaining under the ‘alcohol free’ threshold of 0.5% ABV throughout the whole process, Big Drop can retain the flavours and texture that would have traditionally been stripped out by removing the alcohol.
Big Drop’s Galactic Milk Stout, brewed in Melbourne, can be found in most good online no-alcohol and beer retailers, as well as on https://au.bigdropbrew.com/.