(This article was originally written for and published by Fabulous Arizona)
Written by Ali Dugaw
It’s that time of year when baseball games are calling (finally!), and we’re slowly approaching the Phoenix heat. So naturally, there’s no better time to talk BEER–gluten-free beer, that is.
For those who don’t already know, gluten is a type of protein that’s found in wheat, barley and rye – key ingredients in the beer-brewing process. A growing number of people are finding these grains make them feel less than stellar. In turn, the gluten-free beer scene has grown tremendously over the last few years, and beer makers have found a way to keep the hops and yeast but change the grains, resulting in some tasty brewskies.
This Colorado beer was born from a cancer survivor whose new gluten-free lifestyle meant she felt left out of social gatherings. Years of taste testing and research led to using grains like millet and buckwheat to create beers that even regular beer drinkers would like. You can find a few varieties like the Favorite Blonde, Big Henry Hazy IPA and Buckwit Belgian at Sprouts Farmers Markets, Whole Foods and Flower Child locations.
Beer finder: holidailybrewing.com/buy-arizona.
Another Colorado beer to make its way to Arizona, New Planet was founded due to the owner’s Celiac disease diagnosis and love for the outdoor lifestyle, where beer often goes hand in hand. There are two styles: a refreshing and crisp blonde ale and a citrusy and hoppy pale ale. The company touts BPA-free lining and guarantees everything is 100-percent vegan. You can find New Planet at your Total Wine and More store.
Beer finder: www.newplanetbeer.com/where-to-find-us.
Similar to others on this list, the creators of this brand were dissatisfied with the gluten-free beer on the market at the time of a gluten-intolerant diagnosis. Glutenberg launched in the Quebec market with their blonde, then came the Pale Ale Américaine and three medals in the at the 2012 World Beer Cup. Now, they use an impressive list of ingredients like corn, quinoa, black rice and millet to create a variety of nine beers. You can find the blonde or IPA at Bevmo, Total Wine and More and AJ’s Fine Foods.
Beer finder: www.totalbeveragesolution.com/product-finder.
Representing the Midwest, New Grist was born in Milwaukee and was the first gluten-free beer granted label approval by the U.S. Government. Each batch gets tested for gluten content before bottling and shipping, and the brewery works to make its brewing practices sustainable and eco-friendly. You can find New Grist at Sprouts Farmers Market, Picazzo’s Healthy Italian Kitchen locations and various liquor stores.
Beer finder: akefrontbrewery.com/beer-finder.
Coming to us all the way from the United Kingdom, Green’s is a delicious gluten-free beer that comes from ancient grains. According to the brewers, sorgum, millet and brown rice not only form the taste but add trace elements of minerals like zinc, selenium and magnesium to the beer–which is produced with 100-percent gluten-free raw materials.
Beer finder: merchantduvin.com/find-beer-near-you.
Ali Dugaw has been on the hunt for the best gluten-free spots for the past decade. She currently lives in Phoenix and works as the senior booking producer for “Good Morning Arizona.” Follow her gluten-free adventures at @GlutenFreeTravelGirl and www.facebook.com/GlutenFreeTravelGirl.