I used to like to buy a can of Birell
once in awhile, walking around a shopping mall (the GNC type of "health food stores" used to stock it) and I bought it by the case in the summer, to alternate with real beer. Birell
was a licensed product originally from a Swiss brewery, Hurlimann, which also originated Samichlaus
- once the strongest beer in the world- so they had both ends of the spectrum covered.
At the time Birell
was brewed under license in the US by F X Matt and C. Schmidt's & Sons (and, over the years, probably others). Unlike many NA's, Birell's
emphasis was hops (they used "Brewers' Gold", the same hop used in Ballantine XXX Ale
), so instead of tasting like malt syrup mixed with seltzer, Birell
tasted like cold, carbonated hop tea. Haven't seen it in years, but last time I checked it was still being brewed as a licensed product, by Coopers in Australia and by a European brewer.