There is a non-alcoholic “beer” in Austria called Null Komma Josef (“Zero Point Joe”). Some members and some of the edgier missionaries there (I served in Austria) used to partake of ol’ Joe. I didn’t, but when I returned to Austria a year after the mish (complete with goatee and ragged jeans) I did enjoy a Josef with some old (LDS) friends.
A friend of mine here in the US has told me about St. Pauli non-alcoholic “beer”. Apparently it’s good (i.e. the lack of alcohol doesn’t mean that it tastes like urine). On the plus side, it sounds like a nice “mild drink” which our own “Josef” would have enjoyed on the stoop of the Nauvoo Mansion House. But the nature of the Word of Wisdom in the Church today is no longer fully Joseph’s own brew: these “beers” are not strictly devoid of alcohol, with about 0.3% of the bad stuff remaining (hence “Null Komma”). Does this make them unkosher, or is 0.3% equal to the residue left behind from a mouthwash? Is it the “appearance of evil” that makes this a no-no? Or is there simply no point in drinking “beer” without the alcohol? Are we entering decaf coffee/Coke/green tea territory, or does “Joe” go a step beyond? (And if it does, why do some Austrian missionaries and members seem to think otherwise?) Prost!