HOME > Chowhound > Beer >

Lower Calorie beer with actual TASTE

y
yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 09:25 AM

Do these exist? My wife loves the idea of drinking these lo-cal beers, a la Becks Light, and it makes me sick to have to watch this. She really can appreciate the taste of a Sunset Wheat, Sea Dog, etc.. but gets turned off by the high calorie content.

Is there anything you would suggest for her? It really is hard to watch someone you love drink a watered down, awful excuse for a brew.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Josh RE: yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 09:49 AM

    Guinness is pretty low in calories. I believe it's 210 calories per pint.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Josh
      y
      yankeefan RE: Josh Aug 24, 2007 11:09 AM

      Actually even less and I am personally a Guinness fanatic. I have seen their ads saying they are like 140 or somewhere like that in a pint. Unfortunately, too heavy for my wife. I know, shes a pain in the ass.

      1. re: yankeefan
        l
        LStaff RE: yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 12:42 PM

        Maybe your wife just thinks its heavy because of its dark color? Guiness is really a light bodied beer. Kind of watery too if you ask me.

        1. re: LStaff
          Josh RE: LStaff Aug 24, 2007 02:47 PM

          Yeah, I was going to make the same comment. The color is deceptive.

    2. b
      bosanova99 RE: yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 10:03 AM

      Sam Adams light is really tasty and does not feel like it's low cal.

      Delious!

      1 Reply
      1. re: bosanova99
        l
        luniz RE: bosanova99 Aug 24, 2007 10:28 AM

        second sammy light...can't really comment on searching out other low cal beers, all I know is it tastes like beer and has light in the name.

      2. Chinon00 RE: yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 10:19 AM

        There is no need to drink any "Lite" beer including Sam. Hefe Weizen (i.e. Paulaner Hefe Weizen, Tucher Hefe Weizen, etc) is relatively low in calories too have plenty of flavor. English milds and bitters (e.g. Conniston Bluebird, Adnam's, Young's Dirty Dick) are also lower in calories.

        6 Replies
        1. re: Chinon00
          Jim Dorsch RE: Chinon00 Aug 25, 2007 03:00 AM

          Why would hefeweizen have fewer calories than another beer of similar strength?

          1. re: Jim Dorsch
            Chinon00 RE: Jim Dorsch Aug 25, 2007 04:00 AM

            IIRC Paulaner hefeweizen has under 110 calories per 12 oz serving. Again IIRC your lowest light beers are around 90 calories per 12 oz. You simply can't close that gap and retain much flavor. So I'd suggest hefe for lower calorie beer.

            1. re: Chinon00
              Jim Dorsch RE: Chinon00 Aug 25, 2007 02:38 PM

              I'd have to research this, but it makes no sense that a wheat beer would have appreciably fewer calories than, say a pilsner of like strength. But let me see if I can find some information before spouting off further.

              1. re: Jim Dorsch
                b
                bulavinaka RE: Jim Dorsch Sep 30, 2007 02:26 PM

                According to that chart that Mojoeater offered on his reply below, heffes do tend to be on the lower end of the caloric scale - in the 150s. Maybe wheat has less starch than barley? Less starch might equate to less uncoverted starch in the beer? Whatever the case, it's great news for me. About all I've been drinking are Belgian/Belgian-styles and heffes with an occasional Japanese brew here and there.

                1. re: bulavinaka
                  Jim Dorsch RE: bulavinaka Sep 30, 2007 06:38 PM

                  It appears to me, from the chart, that calories are roughly proportional to alcohol content, which is what one would expect. Strong wheat beers are more caloric; same for barley beers.

              2. re: Chinon00
                stellamystar RE: Chinon00 Sep 29, 2007 12:29 PM

                I like the way you think - lower cals, higher alcohol content, german tastiness.

          2. j
            jmorga11 RE: yankeefan Aug 24, 2007 10:25 AM

            If you can get it, New Belgium (Fat Tire) has a summer seasonal beer, Skinny Dip that only has 110 calories and has some actual flavor.

            1. JessKidden RE: yankeefan Aug 25, 2007 05:27 AM

              Gotta say, I never really understood the concept of "low calorie" beer, especially in light <g> of the fact that, unlike soda where the calorie different between the diet and regular was "0" to "100" (and that's using their unrealistic "8 oz. serving"), light beer is only 20-33% less.

              If you like the taste of your current beer, why not just pour beer from a 12 ounce bottle into an 8 ounce pilsner glass if you want 1/3 less calories? (And, in this case, since Yankeefan's drinking with his wife, he can be drinking from an imperial Nonic pint, and use that extra 4 ounce to top off his pour.)

              Seems to me that a LOT of light beer is consumed in this country by folks who just want a relatively tasteless, ice cold beverage and aren't really concerned with calories as such (judging by what's on their plates and/or their waistlines). Light beer brands, after all, are 4 of the 5 best selling beers in the US, and those 4 brands alone (Bud Light, Miller Lite, Coors Light and Natural Light) are 40% of all beer consumed in the US- throw in all the other "lights" and it's probably close to half.

              For many years, there was a "common wisdom" belief in the brewing industry that "20% of the beer drinkers buy 50% of the beer" (with varying percentages, but you get the idea- supposedly it was never factually proven, just a "gut <g> feeling" by brewers) and many breweries tried to appeal to those "beer drinkers". Thus the famous "Schaefer is the one beer to have when you're having more than one" slogan, etc. The concept is also discussed by A-B brewers (as "palate fatigue" from stronger tasting beers) in that article LStaff discusses in the "Domestic beers- then and now" thread.

              And, while "diet beers" had been tried for several decades before Miller got a hold of the "Lite" beer formula (most famously, and supposedly the same formula as Lite, Rheingold's Gablingers), Miller's success with the "style" was emphasizing not "low cal" (too feminine) but "Less Filling" - i.e., one could drink a LOT of it (MACHO to the max).

              4 Replies
              1. re: JessKidden
                y
                yankeefan RE: JessKidden Aug 25, 2007 10:19 AM

                well said, my friend.

                1. re: yankeefan
                  abu applesauce RE: yankeefan Aug 29, 2007 07:52 AM

                  My father made me try Michelob Ultra something, claiming that Consumer Reports (his bible) rated it #1 lite beer. I must admit, it wasn't terrible, it just wasn't particulalry tasty, which I imagine is the problem with all light beers (I wouldn't know--I'm still young and drinking ales, guilt free).

                  1. re: abu applesauce
                    l
                    LabRat RE: abu applesauce Aug 29, 2007 10:47 AM

                    Michelob Ultra Amber? My dad likes it too and it is usually what he has on tap when I go down to visit. Personally, I'd rather drink real beer and spend an extra 20 minutes on the eliptical machine.

                    1. re: LabRat
                      abu applesauce RE: LabRat Aug 29, 2007 11:04 AM

                      Agreed

              2. peetoteeto RE: yankeefan Aug 29, 2007 07:57 AM

                Skip the nachos. Drink better beer.

                1 Reply
                1. re: peetoteeto
                  abu applesauce RE: peetoteeto Aug 29, 2007 11:08 AM

                  I puleld this chart off wikepdia re different Michelobs (I AM NOT A MICHELOB FAN). It demonstartes (if accurate) that the light beer is significantly lower in carbs, in addition to lower calories...and yes, this is a tiny sample...

                  Michelob: 5 % alcohol, 155 calories, 13.3 carbs

                  Michelob Golden Draft: 4.7 % alcohol, 152 calories, 14.1 carbs

                  Michelob Golden Draft Light: 4.3 % alcohol, 110 calories, 7 carbs

                  Michelob Ultra: 4.2 % alcohol, 95 calories, 2.6 carbs

                2. m
                  mojoeater RE: yankeefan Aug 29, 2007 11:16 AM

                  A lot of decent beers are relatively low in calories. Here's one resource that shows many under 200:

                  http://www.realbeer.com/edu/health/ca...

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mojoeater
                    Chinon00 RE: mojoeater Aug 29, 2007 11:22 AM

                    Good info but "relatively low" to me means at or below 125 calories per 12 oz.

                  2. Chinon00 RE: FrankJBN Aug 29, 2007 11:40 AM

                    Well I believe that the point of the OP was that the only reason his wife is drinking "watered down" beer is because of calories and not because she particularly "enjoys" it. As a matter of fact the OP states that she likes "good" beer. Therefore I believe that our friend wishes to please his wife both in terms of "real beer" flavor (which she apparently enjoys) while being lower in calories.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Chinon00
                      y
                      yankeefan RE: Chinon00 Aug 29, 2007 11:46 AM

                      I thank you kindly, and you are pinpoint on my intent.

                      the fact is she loves beers like Ayinger, Blue Moon, and Leffe but eventually looks up the calorie content and is hesitant to keep drinking them because of guilt.

                      Thanks again Chinon. well said.

                      1. re: yankeefan
                        n
                        naven RE: yankeefan Sep 30, 2007 10:17 PM

                        That was an interesting little link. Anchor Steam is only 150 Calories. It's good to know that one of my all time favorites is relatively light on the waistline.

                        1. re: naven
                          y
                          yankeefan RE: naven Oct 1, 2007 05:57 AM

                          I was actually very surprised by that as well, that is one of my all time favorites and always thought it was much thicker and hearty. Same goes for guinness.

                          Some breweries (sam adams site, dogfish head for example) actually have calories on their sites for all their beers. I thought it was funny when I looked one up for Dogfish that is renowned (120 minute IPA) and it was 450 calories. Now thats a beer!

                    2. m
                      missfunkysoul RE: yankeefan Oct 4, 2007 03:36 PM

                      kind of late, but i have to add:

                      yuengling light is actually quite palatable for a light beer. and believe me, i am no light beer fan... but if i had to pick one, that would definitely be it.

                      1. 4maxwelz RE: yankeefan Oct 21, 2007 01:27 PM

                        Try Rolling Rock Green Light. Not too bad.....if you can't have the good stuff!

                        Show Hidden Posts