Smashed Lager will be available in 330ml bottles and cans and will join two other alcohol-free drinks in the Smashed range: Smashed Apple Cider and Smashed Citrus Beer. The lager beer is billed as refreshing and pale gold, with a clean taste, which perfectly balances with a hint of barley malt, complex aromatic floral notes and a mild hoppy bitterness.
The range is vegan-friendly and gluten-free where possible, with each product boasting less than 100 calories.
The product will be brewed in Robinson’s Brewery in Stockport, using Drynks Unlimited’s cool vacuum distill (CVD) plant, in which the firm invested £1.5m.
The CVD process is designed to gently remove alcohol from premium craft drinks without affecting the flavour and aromas in the original, fully alcoholic beer and cider. The method takes longer to produce alcohol-free drinks – up to eight days to make a bottle of Smashed Cider or Lager.
Low- and no-alcohol lager growing strongly
Citing Mintel data from August this year, Drynks Unlimited claimed sales of low- and no-alcohol lager were growing by 57% year-on-year.
According to the numbers, growth is being dominated by no- and low-alcohol lagers from established alcohol brands, but there is space for a British brand focusing entirely on 0% drinks.
Drynks Unlimited also plans to launch two 0% drinks in 2020: Smashed Hops and Smashed Berry Cider. The business has secured listings in all Booths stores and in wholesaler Matthew Clark’s outlets, both from January 2020.
In the on-trade, Smashed products will also be available in Redemption bar, London, and Brunning & Price pubs.
“Since we built the UK’s first and currently only cool vacuum distill in Robinson’s Brewery, we’ve been busy producing what we believe to be some of the best truly alcohol-free drinks on the market,” said Richard Clark, founder and managing director of Drynks Unlimited.
“We are so confident in the premium craft 0% drinks we are producing, that it was the natural step to add a Smashed Lager to our portfolio, which will help us compete with the category leaders.
“We are passionate about producing 0% drinks that taste as good as their alcoholic counterparts and that are genuinely sessionable. Our Smashed range ticks the boxes for low-sugar, low-calorie, vegan-friendly and gluten-free (where possible) alcohol-free drinks that appeal to a wide audience. Our aim is to get more consumers to start rethinking drinking.”
Pete Newton, beer and spirits buyer at Booths, said: “Smashed really stood out from the crowd for its quality drinking experience, pioneering dealcoholisation process and craft provenance.”