I love the idea of a cold beer on a Sunday afternoon however I’ve realised this isn’t an option available to my coeliac and gluten intolerant patients. Because no one deserves to miss out, I opted to trial a number of gluten free beer alternatives (all in the name of research of course ;)) and list them below.
When I started this research I quickly realised there was a lot of red tape around what could be labelled gluten free here in Australia.
For a beer to be listed as gluten-free in Australia it must:
- Contain NO gluten containing ingredients i.e. wheat, barley, rye.
- Be independently tested by a professional body to prove that the beer does not contain any gluten proteins.
To do this successfully, brewers will replace traditional beer ingredients with grains such as millet and sorghum. Replacing traditional ingredients will alter the taste of the beer ever so slightly however, as the demand for gluten free beer continues to grow, I believe the flavours will only begin to change in our favour.
GLUTEN FREE BEERS
- DAURA DAMM
The Daura Damn is my favourite gluten free beer on the market however, it’s not available in Australia YET. This beer has won countless awards internationally and I personally I think this is because it’s slightly bolder than other gluten free alternatives. If you’re overseas, enjoy one for me 🙂
- HAHN ULTRA CRISP
This low carb, preservative free beer is made using 100% rice instead of wheat or barley and as such is a GREAT alternative for coeliacs. The beer is brewed separately (to prevent gluten cross contamination), is put under strict testing to ensure there is no gluten detected AND they are even endorsed by Coeliac Australia. Flavour is light, crisp and perfect for a hot summer afternoon. My new favourite on the Australian market.
- O’BRIENS GLUTEN FREE BEER
John O’Brien was diagnosed with coeliac disease in 1998. John was frustrated that he couldn’t find any decent gluten-free beer on the market; so he set out to create his own. Both beers are brewed from gluten-free grains millet and sorghum and are certified gluten free. They have a range of varieties available from pale ale, lager, indian pale ale and more. I find these a little bland on taste, but they are available EVERYWHERE.
Whilst I’ve not tried this one yet, the feedback has been nothing short of impressive; some even say the best yet. They stock a range of IPA, red ale, pale ale, blonde and more. The downside? It’s only available online.
- WILDE GLUTEN-FREE CRAFT BEER
Wilde beer is not only certified gluten free, but also the only beer on the market certified as FODMAP friendly. They currently have a pale ale and raspberry ale on offer, with plans to develop a dark ale in the near future. Again, their beers are lighter on flavour than traditional varieties.
- SCHNITZER BRAU GLUTEN FREE PREMIUM BEER
This millet-made German beer is a tad on the heavy side for me. It’s texture is thick (a little syrup) this may suit some people.
LOW GLUTEN ALTERNATIVES
PLEASE NOTE: These beers have NOT been independently tested by a professional body and hence, I DO NOT claim that ANY of these beers are safe to consume if you have coeliac disease or a gluten intolerance.
- PERONI RED GLUTEN FREE
A new variety of “low gluten” beer to hit the Australian market (finally). The Peroni Gluten Free beer contains less than 10PPM of gluten. The flavour is light and refreshing – I really enjoy this one!.
- BURLEIGH BREWING COMPANY
After reading their “HOPPENINGS”, I discovered that the Burleigh Brewing Company sent three of their beers for gluten testing in August 2016 (Bighead, Duke Premium and 28). The lab reports indicate that the Level of Reporting (LOR) for gluten is 3 mg/kg and that none contained gluten at a concentration exceeding the LOR. However, given the beers contain malted barley and as such, cannot legally claim a gluten free label.
- CORONA LIGHT
Corona Extra contains barley malt, rice and/or corn, hops, yeast, ascorbic acid, and propylene glycol (see this post for more info) as a stabiliser. As per the Gluten In Beer Blog (not an independent testing body) the Corona tested for less than 10ppm of gluten.
- PICKLED BIG BREWERY GLUTEN FREE RANGE
The Pickled Pig Brewery have two “gluten free beers” (not certified): CCILLIACC ALE and JINJA BEER. Both are only available at the brewery in Tweed Heads (NSW). The brewery wins bonus points for running completely on solar power, and using recycled materials for their packaging.