near beer

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near beer

A beer-like malt beverage that contains less than 0.5% alcohol. I didn't want anyone to know I was pregnant, so I said I could only drink near beer because I was taking antibiotics. I have to drive home later, so I'm sticking to the near beer.
See also: beer, near
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

near-beer

n. beer with less than 1/2 percent alcohol content. (Originally from the Prohibition era.) You can drink a lot of near-beer without getting drunk.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Many gluten-free "near beers" are available, but unfortunately most of them do not taste very beer-like.
Thanks to modern technology, the taste of these beers has come a long way since the "near beers" of the Prohibition era.
Yuengling, who purchased the brewery when his father Frederick died in 1899, produced "near beers" during Prohibition.
The family sold "near beer" - a legal malt brew with just a hint of alcohol.
After repeal, demand for the "near beers" dropped precipitously.
This growth has been fed by an increasing consumer thirst for the long-derided "near beer."