I like a drink. I'm not a big boozer, but I do love a glass of beer, lager or wine at the end of the day. As I've only just had a baby, I've not had a drink since I found out I was pregnant in September. That. Is. A. Long. Time.
I never found it difficult to avoid drink when I was pregnant, but now that I've got a newborn and with it the breastfeeding, lack of sleep and endless work, I'm starting to feel that having a drink at the end of the day would be the best thing in the world.
The other day, I buckled under the pressure of a bottle of 'very fine red wine' my husband had bought. I'd fed my son, then had dinner. I had half a glass of the wine (Oh. My. God. It was BEAUTIFUL), expecting that I'd not have to feed him for another 2 hours by which time I'd have metabolised the alcohol. Nope. The second I finished the wine, my little one woke up wanting to feed. I'm sure it would have been fine to feed him, but I'm a normal, paranoid mum, so I drank 3 pints of water and walked him around for an hour with him crying in the hope that most of the alcohol would be gone... I vowed never to even think of drinking again until I've finished breastfeeding...and shouted my husband for having the cheek to buy such a nice wine when he KNEW I shouldn't drink!So you can imagine how pleased I was this week to get some Hoppers - the non-alcoholic alternative to beer by Juice Brewery. Like Jenny Cornish, "if I'm going to drink beer, I want it to BE beer"... But after my wine debacle the other night, I really don't want to even think about alcohol right now.
I decided to taste test the three Hoppers flavours -- Citrus, Blackcurrant and Apple -- with my 12 year old son and my mum.
First up: Citrus flavour.
I told my son to sniff it first, he said, 'I've got a blocked up nose, so I can't really smell things.' Not much help. really. I thought it smelled 'hoppy', my mum thought it smelled a bit like 'beer and apple juice'.
After the first sip my son declared that he preferred Citrus Hoppers to beer. 'What beer have you had?!' I asked. 'Guinness. That's too bitter. Tiger beer. That's not very bitter. Oh! And I had a taste of a Black Velvet which is champagne and Guinness.'
I didn't want to dwell on wondering where exactly my son had tasted a Black Velvet, so asked my mum what she thought of it. 'It tastes better than it smells. It's rather refreshing. It would be nice on a hot day.'
On to the Blackcurrant flavour.
My son has never liked blackcurrant, he hates Ribena and gives me all the black Wine Gums. I am a huge blackcurrant fan. My mum is American, so doesn't really have much experience with blackcurrant, so I wasn't sure what she'd make of it.
My son had his first sip and said, "This is GOOD! And it looks like a dark beer!" My mum tried some and thought it was too sweet and preferred the citrus, though said, 'I'd choose this over a cola any day." I thought it wasn't blackcurrant-y enough. I told them that I thought the citrus one was more refreshing, though the blackcurrant one might taste better with a dash of blackcurrant cordial and my son, after he'd finished his glass, said, 'Actually, I might prefer a Ribena to that.'
On to the Apple flavour.
Immediately, this looked more like lager, it even had a good head of foam on it. We all agreed that it smelled most like lager out of the three of them - there was a definite smell of hops.
My son thought it tasted like cider - though he said he'd never tried cider, so was just guessing. There was a definite apple undertone to it though. My mum said that if she wanted something with more of a lager taste, she'd choose the apple one, but still preferred the citrus flavour. I thought it would be perfect on a hot day over some ice - which isn't really a 'beer thing', but I felt it needed to be just that much colder to be perfect.
In the end, I liked Apple the best, then Citrus, then Blackcurrant. My son and mum liked Citrus, Apple, then Blackcurrant.
All-in-all, I thought Hoppers was rather nice and look forward to drinking some more! It's certainly not a beer clone, but it's got a much more grown-up taste than plain old fruit juice. I'm fed up drinking lime and soda or orange juice, so Hoppers will be a welcome addition to my non-alcohol-drinking life.
For more information on Hopper visit Juice Brewery.
Suggested For You
SUBSCRIBE AND FOLLOW
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements.Learn more