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Like India Pale Ale? Here are the lowest calorie choices...

PatanjaliTwist
PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
edited April 2017 in Food and Nutrition
If you're like me & an IPA drinker, you'll love the below list of low cal options, especially since most IPAs hover around 250-calories.

Depending upon where one lives, not all can be found in local stores, but many can be ordered online, if so inclined. I've only tried the Ballast Point IPAs & they have excellent flavor... hearty, with a sweet-tangy aftertaste... & I used to live in Pottstown, PA & the Sly Fox beers & ales are aces (although I haven't had this stout). The last on the list, Baba Black Lager is supposed to have a flavor akin to Guinness. Can't wait to sample that one.

If you give any a try, please share your personal reviews. I'm on a mission next week to find a few from the list. Cheers, then...

Bikini Beer, Evil Twin Brewing, Brooklyn, NY (88 cal)
Brooklyn ½ Ale, Brooklyn Brewery, NY (102 cal)
O’Reilly’s Stout, Sly Fox Brewing, Pottstown, PA (108 cal)
Even Keel Session IPA, Ballast Pt, San Diego, CA (114 cal)
Oarsman Ale, Bell’s Brewery, Kalamazoo, MI (120 cal)
Baba Black Lager, Uinta Brewery, SLC, UT (120 cal)
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Replies

  • bigmuneymfp
    bigmuneymfp Posts: 2,235 Member
    Great post
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    Great post

    Cheers, mate. Can't wait for ale shopping... I'm currently imbibing in a 250-cal Cigar Brewing Co. Jai Alai IPA from Tampa, FL. Wonderfully brilliant flavor (& cheerfully designed container), but double & tripple the calories of some on the list. If you try any, I'd love your feedback.

    Have a wonderful weekend!
  • pacingoamy
    pacingoamy Posts: 78 Member
    This is a constant issue for me. We have 25 craft breweries within our city limits and I adore craft brew. I have to often search the data bases by 'type' of beer ... porter, kolsch, amber, etc. and I know that this is not the way to go...but it's all I have since breweries don't release this info especially for small batches.
  • heiliskrimsli
    heiliskrimsli Posts: 735 Member
    Jruzer wrote: »
    If you're like me & an IPA drinker, you'll love the below list of low cal options, especially since most IPAs hover around 250-calories.

    Depending upon where one lives, not all can be found in local stores, but many can be ordered online, if so inclined. I've only tried the Ballast Point IPAs & they have excellent flavor... hearty, with a sweet-tangy aftertaste... & I used to live in Pottstown, PA & the Sly Fox beers & ales are aces (although I haven't had this stout). The last on the list, Baba Black Lager is supposed to have a flavor akin to Guinness. Can't wait to sample that one.

    If you give any a try, please share your personal reviews. I'm on a mission next week to find a few from the list. Cheers, then...

    Thanks for the post. I'm sure people looking for lower-alcohol beer ideas will find it useful.

    Most of these aren't IPAs, though. Baba Black Lager isn't even an ale. The BJCP guidelines for IPA suggest an abv range from 5.5%-7.5%, with broader ranges for "specialty" IPAs. That's going to put calories around 160-230 for a 12 ounce pour.

    Looking more closely at your list:
    Bikini Beer, Evil Twin Brewing - Evil Twin is known for doing all kinds of interesting things. This one is 2.7% abv!

    Brooklyn ½ Ale, Brooklyn Brewery, NY (102 cal) - This is a Saison, not an IPA, and at 3.4% is definitely a "session" Saison

    O’Reilly’s Stout, Sly Fox Brewing, Pottstown, PA (108 cal) - This is a stout, at 3.6% abv

    Even Keel Session IPA, Ballast Pt, San Diego, CA (114 cal) - This is a "session IPA", at 3.8% abv

    Oarsman Ale, Bell’s Brewery, Kalamazoo, MI (120 cal) - This is a sour Berliner Weisse, at 4% abv, which is within the style guidelines for that style

    Baba Black Lager, Uinta Brewery, SLC, UT (120 cal) - Lager, 4% abv.


    My personal opinions: I don't think I've had a "session IPA" that I particularly enjoyed. My favorite was probably Lagunitas' Daytime Fractional IPA, based on my untappd check-ins. I just think that IPAs need some heft to balance the IBUs and aromas, and lighter bodies just don't do it. I'm looking for lower alcohol options I tend to go to lighter varieties of stout, or gose, or pilsners, for example. I just got my hands on some of the Strawberry Rhubarb from New Glarus. It's pretty darned good, especially at 4% abv.

    Don't mean to editorialize - this is just one of my favorite subjects!

    I came in and expected to call out everything that you just did. I like my IPA with more weight to it than sessions have, and so I tend not to go for those, but most of this list isn't IPA or even similar to an IPA at all, considering that stouts aren't exactly a hop-filled variety, and lagers are not ales.

    If I asked for an IPA and a bartender suggested a stout instead I'd probably question whether they should be tending bar. That's not to say that stouts and lower ABV ales are bad, it's just not really a substitute when what you're looking for is the profile of an IPA. It's like if someone asks for a steak and the waiter suggests the chicken as a lower calorie alternative. Sure they're both meat, but that's where the similarity ends.
  • rsclause
    rsclause Posts: 3,124 Member
    Did somebody say beer?

    I love IPA's and can't get enough of them. The problem is they are not the lightest calorie wise. I usually save the IPA for the weekends or tap rooms. For my daily go to light beer I get Sierra Nevada pale ale at 175 calories. This is as light as I go, if I want water I drink water.
  • Kimblesnbits13
    Kimblesnbits13 Posts: 369 Member
    Aww i LOVE my hoppy ipas....unfortunately, i go towards the double ipa or even triple. There's no way to get around those calories unless I don't get the hops. :(
  • shampbj
    shampbj Posts: 33 Member
    pacingoamy wrote: »
    This is a constant issue for me. We have 25 craft breweries within our city limits and I adore craft brew. I have to often search the data bases by 'type' of beer ... porter, kolsch, amber, etc. and I know that this is not the way to go...but it's all I have since breweries don't release this info especially for small batches.

    Most craft breweries will list the ABV % (alcohol by volume) for the particular brew. There are entries in the MFP database for Craft Beer 5%, etc., so try searching with those terms. Again, it's not perfect, but it's a lifesaver as the ABV can vary so widely by style and brewery. A local brewery to me has a session IPA called Six Alberts that's 4.2%, but their standard IPA, Monkeynaut, is 7.25%. Their imperial version, Gorillanaut, is 9%. So that's roughly 180, 310, and 360 calories per pint, respectively, which can make a huge difference, especially if you want more than one!
  • Cortelli
    Cortelli Posts: 1,362 Member
    The above chart -- I think of it as the rule of 30 or 40. If a 12 oz can / bottle, 30*ABV gives a good estimate; if a 16 oz (US) pint, 40*ABV gives a good estimate.
  • sarahbri923
    sarahbri923 Posts: 45 Member
    I'm from Kalamazoo, MI and really like the Bell's Oarsman Ale. Knowing it's low calorie is a bonus!
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    pacingoamy wrote: »
    This is a constant issue for me. We have 25 craft breweries within our city limits and I adore craft brew. I have to often search the data bases by 'type' of beer ... porter, kolsch, amber, etc. and I know that this is not the way to go...but it's all I have since breweries don't release this info especially for small batches.

    Had no idea Asheville has so many breweries. In 2000, I lived across the street from the Asheville Brewing Co on Merrimon Ave. Neat place with the in-house cinema & very good pizza.

    Hope you find some nice tasting alternatives. Please post back if you find any. I'd love to carry a list of low calorie options to my full cal IPAs, even if it's not an IPA.

    I'll take any good tasting ale, beer, IPA, stout, whatever... better than having none. And, if I ever found a good tasting non-alcoholic beer, I'd love it. Seems like decaf coffee though... not enough umph to it.
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    edited April 2017
    Jruzer wrote: »
    Thanks for the post. I'm sure people looking for lower-alcohol beer ideas will find it useful. Most of these aren't IPAs, though.

    I didn't mean to suggest they were IPAs, only low cal alternatives for those of us who'd like to give them a try. My apologies if my post was misleading, but since each name is listed in full I assume most can figure out what's being presented.
    wrote:
    My personal opinions: I don't think I've had a "session IPA" that I particularly enjoyed. My favorite was probably Lagunitas' Daytime Fractional IPA, based on my untappd check-ins. I just think that IPAs need some heft to balance the IBUs and aromas, and lighter bodies just don't do it. I'm looking for lower alcohol options I tend to go to lighter varieties of stout, or gose, or pilsners, for example. I just got my hands on some of the Strawberry Rhubarb from New Glarus. It's pretty darned good, especially at 4% abv.

    Yeah, always hard to recommend as our tastes differ. I thought I'd just post the info as someone will appreciate the info & who knows, maybe there's a good one there for someone. You like Lagunitas & I think they're awful tasting. And, I don't usually enjoy the fruit flavored choices (not sure I'd enjoy strawberry rhubarb anything), although I love the aroma of most IPAs. My faves change all the time, but are always the ones hovering in the $15 range, which annoys me when I see people pay the same for a case of Bud Lite. Regardless, I'd drink it if it tasted good & wouldn't care if it's ale or stout or IPA. IPAs just have the flavor I'm enjoying at the moment. Prior to that, I was on a Guinness jag.
    wrote:
    Don't mean to editorialize - this is just one of my favorite subjects!

    Okay, then. Post away.
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    rsclause wrote: »
    Did somebody say beer?

    I love IPA's and can't get enough of them. The problem is they are not the lightest calorie wise. I usually save the IPA for the weekends or tap rooms. For my daily go to light beer I get Sierra Nevada pale ale at 175 calories. This is as light as I go, if I want water I drink water.

    I love them, too.

    But, there's one thing I can't figure out. Some beers/ales give me a monstrous headache (& I'm a 1 pint lass, 2 max on the weekend, so it's not over-imbibing that's the issue) & Sierra Nevada, Fat Tire, Stone & Dale's are companies I have to avoid... I'm always a bit trepidatious with new choices. And, sadly, I love hefeweizens, but just refer to them as a headache in a bottle. :(

    Not sure if others have this issue?
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    I'm from Kalamazoo, MI and really like the Bell's Oarsman Ale. Knowing it's low calorie is a bonus!

    I'll give it a try. Thank you.
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    shampbj wrote: »
    pacingoamy wrote: »
    This is a constant issue for me. We have 25 craft breweries within our city limits and I adore craft brew. I have to often search the data bases by 'type' of beer ... porter, kolsch, amber, etc. and I know that this is not the way to go...but it's all I have since breweries don't release this info especially for small batches.

    Most craft breweries will list the ABV % (alcohol by volume) for the particular brew. There are entries in the MFP database for Craft Beer 5%, etc., so try searching with those terms. Again, it's not perfect, but it's a lifesaver as the ABV can vary so widely by style and brewery. A local brewery to me has a session IPA called Six Alberts that's 4.2%, but their standard IPA, Monkeynaut, is 7.25%. Their imperial version, Gorillanaut, is 9%. So that's roughly 180, 310, and 360 calories per pint, respectively, which can make a huge difference, especially if you want more than one!

    I didn't know any of this, so thank you for the info.
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    There is a handy chart... I use this for getting a pretty good idea of the calorie count in a beer. I don't know what I'd do if I were faced with a bomber of a 15% beer. It might be worth the calories just to see if I could possibly finish it.

    Very handy, thank you very much.
  • sgt1372
    sgt1372 Posts: 3,953 Member
    I prefer IPAs when available and always go for the highest alcohol (cal count) content when it's known.

    So, no low alcohol beer for me. If you have to worry about it why bother?

    When I needed to worry about it b4, I drank O'Doul's and I never want to do THAT again Plain water is better and cheaper.
  • PatanjaliTwist
    PatanjaliTwist Posts: 485 Member
    edited May 2017
    sgt1372 wrote: »
    I prefer IPAs when available and always go for the highest alcohol (cal count) content when it's known.

    Why? Does higher alcohol content generally mean more intense flavor... or whatever proper wording won't upset the nitpickers?

    As to "why bother"... it's temporary, at least for me. In weight reduction phase, I'd still like to have something.