Just in time for the Memorial Day holiday weekend, my husband brought home some gluten free beer. Two different kinds to be exact. Bards and Redbridge. Both are made from Sorghum.
Just as some background, I like to mow the lawn. I have a gas powered, push mower with the big wheels on the back. We have two acres that are cleared and the rest is wooded. When I mow the grass, it’s my time to think, reflect, and get some much needed outdoor exercise. And when I am finished I always love having a nice cold beer.
Of course that was way before celiac disease. Now I haven’t had a beer in almost 25 years. My drink of choice since celiac has been ice cold lemon water. (I know, far cry from a beer, but it quenches a thirst. So when my husband arrived with two bottles of gluten free beer, I was really excited and just a little hesitant to try it. Would it be as good as I remembered ice cold beer tasting?
First I tried the Bards, it was really good. I mean really good. It tasted like real beer. (At least what I thought I remembered real beer tasting like.) So I said to my hubby, “Taste this and tell me what you think.” He said, “It’s good”.
Later I tried the Redbridge, it was good too. More like a pale ale, than a regular beer. I used to drink a darker beer, when I drank beer, so the Redbridge seemed a little weak to me.
My preference…..Bards. It just tasted more like a regular beer. Even though Redbridge by Anheuser-Busch was the first ever produced, I think the guys at Bard’s Tale Beer Company have nailed it.
By the way, there are more and more restaurants adding gluten free beer to their menus. Outback Steakhouse for one and P.F. Chang’s for another. If they don’t serve it yet at your favorite restaurant, keep asking. The more they realize there are a lot of us out here, the more they will be willing to provide for their gluten intolerant patrons.
If you have tried any of the other gluten free beers, please leave a comment below and let me know what you think of them. What was your favorite and why?
And I feel I have to say this, drink responsibly, please do not drink and drive. The life you save will very likely be an innocent sober person.
Glad you liked Bard’s! You should try gluten free beer batter fish, and a cold one. (My summer favorite!). Incidentally, Bard’s was the very first gluten free beer, and is made by Celiac’s as well.
Founder, Bards Tale Beer Company
I live in Pittsburgh, and my husband has a gluten allergy. I have difficulty finding Bards that is even remotely fresh. At a “Mom and Pop Beer Warehouse” the staff was ecstatic because they were able to locate a case of Bards with a January, 2010 stamp. Unfortunately, it was July, 2010 when they made their discovery. I did buy the case anyway, because it was my husband’s birthday. His only comment was, “this is really hoppy.” I didn’t tell him it was six months old.
My husband drinks beer only occasionaly (we still have 3/4 of the aforementioned case in our garage). The ideal situation for us would be to be able to buy Bards in six packs. The problem is that I can not locate a retailer that sells gluten free beer this way. In fact, stores, and some beverage distributors, don’t know what a gluten free beer is. If I had a nickel for every time that a clerk has said to me, “all beers are made with wheat,” I’d be a rich lady.
I would welcome your comments.
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Yea…RedBridge doesn’t taste bad, but I can kill a six pack and
not even remotely feel buzzed. That’s just not kool. Bard’s taste
better and a six pack will give me a decent buzz.
New Grist is an excellent GF beer as well. I like Green’s also, but it is difficult to find and pretty pricey at nearly $6/pint. I tried a St. Peter’s last weekend and it was decent, but way too strong of a citrus finish. Hambleton Ale is the only other GF beer commercially available in my area and I have yet to try it. I started homebrewing GF beer and it is the way to go. I can make two cases for less than the price of a case of Redbridge and I think it tastes far better.
Glad you are able to drink beer again!
I live in a small rural town so I’m not sure if any of those GF beers are available here. I do work in Pittsburgh though, so I will call around and see if any of the distributors there carry any of those GF Beers.
My son bought my husband a homebrewing kit, so I told hubby that he had to try his hand at some GF beer. I’ll let you know how it turns out. 😉
I find Bard’s tolerable, Red Bridge a waste, and any of the 3 GF varieties of Green’s far from worth the exorbitant price when and if I can even locate it. However, I have found out that Heineken is safe for me because it has less gluten in it than the gluten-free communion wafers do — below US FDA tolerances — and even though I react quickly and strongly to even the small amounts of gluten in “no gluten ingredients” food that isn’t fixed in a controlled gluten-free environment, Heineken doesn’t make me sick. Heineken’s response to the question is the typically dodgy legalese: http://www.heinekeninternational.com/FAQ_Question16.aspx So yea try at your own risk I guess, but if you don’t get sick from eating GF communion wafers that are sanctioned for Eucharist, then this would likely be a good experience for ya.
Woodchuck draft cider is a gluten free beer with a 5% abv brewed in middlebury VT.
I’ve never had any of the cider beers. Are they good?
I’m in the process of searching for more businesses around Pittsburgh selling gluten free beers for my website, theGlutenless. At the moment, we have Zoe’s Beer store, which sells Bards and Redbridge and the Pittsburgh Bottleshop Cafe in Bridgeville which sells Redbridge. Hope this helps!
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I don’t know who you are but certainly you are going to a famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!
Is Heineken Light beer gluten free?
No! Heineken Light beer is definitely not gluten-free. All main stream beers are made with barley and barley is not a gluten-free grain.
There are several gluten-free beers available now. Bard’s, Redbridge, Woodchuck Hard Cider, (though technically a hard cider, not a beer.) There are others now, some of which are made with barley malt. Look for a new blog post on the new gluten-free beer coming soon.