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Sixer: Gluten-free beers

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Who needs barley? Not these beers, which use a rainbow of fermentables to boost flavor and get rid of the gluten.

Harvester Brewing Dark Ale

James Neumeister launched Harvester Brewing in 2011 after his wife was diagnosed with Celiac disease. In lieu of traditional grains, he brews with chestnuts he custom-roasts to fit each recipe: The heavily roasted, 5.6%-ABV Dark Ale sates with hints of chocolate, coffee and a rich chestnut finish.

Brunehaut Bio Amber

Belgium’s Brunehaut now exports its line of gluten-free, futuristic-sounding bio beers to American drinkers. This hefty certified-organic Amber contains deglutenized barley; the rich caramel and fresh bread notes get perked up by hoppy pine and citrus.

Green’s Quest Gluten Free Tripel Blonde Ale

Don’t let an aversion to gluten stop you from tipping back your favorite Trappist styles: This tripel swaps out barley for a host of non-traditional fermentables (millet, sorghum, buckwheat and rice), which lend soft, grainy support to the beer’s familiar white pepper and pear yeast flavors.

New Planet Tread Lightly Ale

Each year, Colorado’s New Planet donates a portion of this beer’s proceeds to the Wildlands Restoration Volunteers, hence the beer’s name. The flavor? Hints of orange peel and apple accent a lively grainy profile (courtesy of sorghum) for an engaging swallow.

Steadfast Sorghum Pale Ale

This freshman upstate New York brewery hit the scene with an unapologetically Cascade- and Columbus-hopped pale ale. All those hops cut through sweet sorghum, cane sugar, molasses and honey. Bonus: You can buy the beer at the brewer’s website!

Omission Gluten-Free Lager

Samples from each batch of Craft Brew Alliance’s Omission line—this exceptionally clean lager and a pale ale, both brewed by Widmer Brothers—are sent to an independent lab to ensure the beer’s deglutenized barley meets gluten-free standards.


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