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Completely Clear Non-Alcoholic “Beer” Now Available in Japan

Japanese beverage maker Suntory is clearly riding a wave of popularity with its line of beverages featuring flavors one would not normally imagine could be possible in a transparent format. Beginning with mineral water flavored with fruits but also yogurt, they went on to develop completely clear tea, even coming out with a clear milk tea beverage.

Now, they have put a clearly new twist on their non-alcoholic beer brand All-Free, with what is probably the world's first completely transparent "beer," All-Free All-Time. According to their website, Suntory created their new beer-taste carbonated beverage in the hopes of changing prevailing notions of when beer can be enjoyed, even non-alcoholic beer. By making it clear and putting it into a plastic bottle, they want to drive home the idea that All-Free All-Time can be enjoyed at the office, even during business meetings, or for lunch and even as a refreshing alternative to sweet sodas after sports.

In this respect, All-Free All-Time joins the abovementioned clear milk tea and other new passengers on the clear beverage bandwagon such as Asahi's Clear Latte and clear Coke all claiming to be "safe for the office," as a result of the unwritten rule, seemingly upheld by many Japanese companies, that anything other than water, coffee or green tea is unprofessional and unsuitable for a work environment.

Since it just went on sale in convenience stores yesterday, we thought we would pick up a bottle and try it in our office here at grape Japan.

Source: © grape Japan

As if to drive home the point, the message on the red sticker says: "Transparent All-Free at the office ?!"

Source: © grape Japan

On closer inspection, we can see the words "non-alcoholic" "ALC 0.00%" and "zero calories, zero sugar." The three suggested settings are indicated with helpful pictograms: lunch, during meetings, and after sports. And in case the clear color and plastic bottle fools you into forgetting its true nature, the words "BEER TASTE" are written in upper case letters.

Source: © grape Japan

We poured it out into a glass to be sure. Not a tinge of beer color in sight. The beverage is truly clear as claimed. And yet, as soon as you unscrew the cap, you can smell the distinct hoppy aroma of beer. So, how does it taste? In our opinion, it tastes like non-acloholic beer with a squeeze of lemon. Not too bad, actually, and refreshing.

If you'd like to try it for yourself, All-Free All-Time is available exclusively in convenience stores in Japan and costs about 140 JPY. You can find out more information about it (in Japanese) on their website here.

By - Ben K.