The search for gluten free beer can be a long and tiresome journey. While gluten-free products are becoming more and more popular, it can still be difficult to find beer. Just because it's hard to find doesn't mean you should settle for something else though. The key is knowing where to look.
Here are five ways to increase your odds on your next beer run that will leave you with a six-pack.
Local Grocery/Butcher Stores
Believe it or not but you may have better luck visiting your local butcher shop than you would at a major grocery chain. The likelihood that they provide a selection of specialty beers is good and may even stock some gluten-free beer too. If not, ask them if they can carry any. Usually it helps if you give them a brand or brewer name so they can check with their distributor and see if it's something they can sell. Most local shops do their best to accommodate their customers' requests and you're more likely to get quick results opposed to waiting for a response from a large chain.
More and more restaurants are becoming aware of people's dietary needs and preparing gluten-free dishes is one of them. Depending on the establishment, there could be a chance that they offer GF beer. If the restaurant is certified or 100% gluten-free, then there will be a higher chance that they will serve some type of beer.
Yes, even bars are starting to become open minded to the gluten-free concept. The best bars to look for are the ones who offer a huge selection of beers as they are more likely to have at least one or two beers available that you can throw back. They're probably not going to be on tap and you can't walk out with a six pack, but it really makes a difference when you can hang out with the guys and not be the only one drinking a martini.
Specialty Beer Stores
While they may be a little harder to find than a local grocer, chances are if they carry gluten-free beer that they offer a descent selection as well. What is great about this it gives you a chance to explore different types of brew and some inspiration that could steer towards the best gluten-free beer source you will ever find which is... you're home!
Make Your Own Gluten Free Beer
Honestly, this is probably the best route to take for several reasons and it makes a great hobby. The beer making process is relatively simple and once you learned it, its easy to explore other gluten-free alcohol alternatives such as hard ciders, meads and wines. Making your own beer also gives you the ability to tailor your batch as you like it. It may take some practice to perfect your recipe, but you'll satisfied with the results. It's some work and a little bit of an investment, but the convenience is totally worth it.
So as you venture out to see what you can find, don't be afraid to keep asking stores and restaurants if they are able to carry gluten-free beer. The more you ask, the more likely future beer runs will be a lot easier. If for whatever reason you still have difficulty finding GF beer, it's worth trying other alcoholic options. Hard ciders, meads, wines and mixed drinks are much easier to find depending on your area.
So now that you know where to find gluten free beer, get out there and go get some. Good luck!
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