A First-Of-Its-Kind Alcoholic Protein Drink Has Officially Arrived

Fitness foodies are probably all too familiar with the importance of a good post-workout snack. According to Registered Dietician Natalie Allen (via Livestrong), instructor of biomedical sciences at Missouri State University and team dietitian for the university's athletes, "The importance of eating well after you work out ties back to wanting to make sure that you repair and replenish your muscles after the workout." For many gym rats, part of that post-workout snack likely includes a sports drink. But what if that sports drink were a little boozy?

Per workout publication Muscle and Strength, Supplemental Brewing released a "protein beer" called "Brewtein" back in 2015. (Yes, really.) They also dropped a low-calorie option called "NutriBeer" with half the protein. (Sacrifice your diet or your gains?) Another brand, National Pro Beer, packs 15 grams of protein per can and is currently sold by several U.S. retailers. Alcoholic drinks with protein might have already existed, but now, fitness gurus are gearing up to release the first-ever "hard" protein drink. 

Via a press release on Oct. 12, 2022, sports drink brand Pulp Culture revealed a spiked protein beverage in collaboration with The EVERY Company. Introducing: BUILD, the first hard protein drink to ever hit the global market. Brendan Brazier, Pulp Culture co-founder and former Ironman triathlete, expressed his excitement over the drink's long-awaited arrival. "BUILD is something that I've wished existed for years: highly bioavailable, nature-equivalent, and quality animal protein — without the animal ... and it's finally here." So, what is it?

BUILD wants gym rats to work hard and play hard

Pulp Culture calls BUILD a "functional indulgence." The spiked post-workout drink is made with pineapple, coconut, vanilla, ashwagandha, cordyceps, and EVERY brand of protein. According to Healthline, ashwagandha is a principal Ayurvedic herb that translates to "smell of the horse" in Sanskrit, alluding both to its earthy aroma and its capabilities for increasing muscle mass. Cordyceps, states the outlet, is a parasitic fungus which might sound a little alarming but has been proven to boost exercise performance and deliver increased energy to the muscle tissue. Along with 5 grams of protein, BUILD is also packed with probiotics and adaptogens, has a 4.9% ABV at only 120 calories, and contains zero grams of sugar.

According to the press release, the biggest hurdle to BUILD's creation was finding a protein both soluble and non-textured enough to complement Pulp Culture's fermented mouthfeel without any masking agents. EVERY's protein turned out to be a perfect fit, said Pulp Culture Co-Founder Mark McTavish. Arturo Elizondo, co-founder and CEO of The EVERY Company, is similarly stoked about the collaboration, which "continues to push boundaries to create new offerings for a cult following of beverage enthusiasts," said Elizondo. "Move over superfoods: super bevs have arrived." For now, fitness foodies can get their hands on a bottle of BUILD via Pulp Culture's website (a four-pack runs for $16.99) or at the brand's taproom in L.A., but Pulp Culture reportedly plans to expand to other U.S. retailers soon.