The Truth is Out There! Demystifying Gluten-Free and Gluten-Reduced Beers

While it may not be an age-old question, it is certainly one that we at New Planet Beer get a lot: What is the difference between gluten-free and gluten-reduced beer?

Grab a pint and let’s dive in! Also, be sure to check out our sweet new infographic at the bottom of this article. Whether you’re Celiac or unsure if you have a gluten intolerance, the infographic is designed to help you understand a bit more whether gluten-free or gluten-reduced is the right choice for you!

Gluten-free beer is brewed with ingredients that are naturally gluten-free, such as millet, sorghum, rice, corn, quinoa, gluten-free oats, and cane sugar. If you’re not sure if a beer is truly gluten-free or not, know that all gluten-free beer labels must adhere to specific FDA standards.

Gluten-reduced beer is brewed with traditional ingredients such as barley and rye, which is then given an enzyme that specializes in breaking down the gluten-containing proteins. Gluten-reduced beers are technically called “crafted to remove gluten” and, similar to gluten-free beer’s need to adhere to FDA standards, must adhere to the TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) standards. To obtain a “crafted to remove gluten” label the TTB requires that the beers pass a laboratory test at less than 10 ppm (parts per million) of gluten. When choosing a “crafted to remove gluten” beer, be sure to look for the TTB language on the package (the can or bottle) as there are many breweries that claim their beer is crafted to remove gluten despite it never being tested to TTB standards.

The key to brewing gluten-free beers is to start with 100% gluten-free ingredients and to develop a consistent process to eliminate cross contamination. As far as the actual brewing process is concerned, ensuring that your equipment is absolutely clean is an essential step for creating gluten-free beers. Cross contamination from gluten grains can completely ruin a gluten-free batch. That’s why at New Planet we only brew gluten-free beers after a scheduled CIP (clean in place) of the equipment and a deep clean of the surrounding areas. This way, we can ensure our equipment is 100% clean and free from possible gluten contaminants.

When brewing “crafted to remove gluten” beers, it is best to incorporate friendly grains like oats, non-gmo blue corn, and cane sugar into the grain build and start the brewing process with less gluten than a traditional barley craft beer. Also, we have tested and calibrated the enzymatic process over the last three years and have developed a proprietary process in dosing the enzymes to ensure the best possible outcome. (If you can’t tell, we nerd out about this, because we love making beers for everyone!)

No matter where you fall on the gluten-free or gluten-reduced spectrum, there is promising news: more and more breweries are seeing the opportunity that these beers present. As more people begin to ask about what’s in their beer, breweries are adapting and making tasty brews with this market in mind. For you, this means more choices will be available for you to drink gluten-free or gluten-reduced beers.

Below, explore our helpful new infographic to get a better understanding of whether gluten-free or gluten-reduced beer is best for you.

If you’ve already been diagnosed Celiac, the answer for you is simple: Drink gluten-free beer!

For those of you who haven’t been diagnosed Celiac, a few options exist for you. If you have already tried gluten-reduced beer and you still react to it, it is best that you stick to gluten-free beer altogether. Afterall, a beer is only good if you enjoy it during and after!

Lastly, if you’ve had both gluten-free and gluten-reduced beer, and the gluten-reduced beer doesn’t seem to give you any issues, we’ve got good news for you: drink both gluten-free and gluten-reduced brews!

Gluten-Free vs. Gluten-Reduced Beer (1)

At New Planet Beer, we’re proud to be brewing gluten-free and gluten-reduced beer. Not a group to settle, we continually improve our recipes to give you the highest quality beer that fits your dietary needs and your wallet.

So, next time you’re in your local liquor store and reach for a gluten-free or gluten-reduced beer, check the packaging so you see what we’re talking about…and keep supporting your local brewers by picking up a New Planet six pack for your next adventure.

Cheers!

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Spotlight: Tread Lightly Session Ale

There’s just something about a warm summer day that begs for an easy drinking beer to accompany your adventures. Put a beer like that in a light, hassle free, pack-in-pack-out can, and you’re well on your way to a great day.

This summer, we can’t get enough of Tread Lightly Ale. Clocking in at just under 5% ABV (4.9% to be precise), this beer is about as sessionable as they come. We love that we can have a few of these refreshing libations throughout the day without worrying that we’ll end up passed out under a table before dinnertime.

We’re obviously partial to Tread Lightly, but if you’ll allow us to indulge ourselves (pun intended), here’s why Tread Lightly is perfect for Anytime Drinking.

Tread Lightly Session Ale

It’s the Hops, Baby!

Crafted with Sterling hops, Tread Lightly lends a delicate, subtle citrus character to the overall profile of the beer. The beauty of the Sterling hop, too, is that it doubles as an aromatic. So if you’re not taking Tread Lightly with you as you backpack and camp the Rockies, do yourself a favor: pour this bad boy into a tulip glass. Once the beer has settled, dip your nose into the glass and take a deep inhale. If you pay close attention, you may get a whiff of some of the spicy notes that Sterling is also known for.

All. Day. Long

Session beers. Not familiar with this term for beer? Don’t worry, not everyone is, but at New Planet Beer, we’re pretty sure session beers are here to stay. While there is no tight rule as to what really defines a session beer, the typical brewer school of thought is anything under 5% ABV qualifies for a session beer. The key difference between this and, say a Big Brewer Lager, is a session beer’s ability to stay true to the style of the beer that is being made. In other words, a “normal” amber ale could clock in at 6.5% ABV. A session amber could be well below that ABV, but it is critical to ensure that the flavor, nose, and mouthfeel are all in line with what makes an “amber” an Amber. Still with us? Great!

A beer’s sessionability means it is great for lawn games at the park on a weekend day. It means you can put a few of these away and still remember to reapply that SPF 50!

A Beer for the Foodie

Tread Lightly’s drinkability and light, refreshing profile goes great with a variety of foods, too. Mild seafood dishes like shrimp scampi or pan seared scallops are an especially nice combination with Tread Lightly. Once again, it isn’t necessary, but pouring Tread Lightly into a glass will reward your tastebuds with another layer of goodness when paired with a food you’re particularly fond of.

Salads of mixed greens with strawberries, almond slices, goat cheese, and a light vinaigrette go great with Tread Lightly.

Tread Lightly is not only approachable in its flavor and nose profile and characteristics, but it is also crafted to remove gluten. This means that it is something to be enjoyed by everyone. We’ll drink to that!

Summertime is a great time to make memories and catch up with friends and family. No matter where your adventures take you, be sure to check out your local liquor store to pick up a six pack. If you don’t see it, it’s because we sold out of it at the distributor level…but don’t worry: We’ll have more if it for you in September. In the meantime, check out other liquor stores in your area for supply if you just can’t wait until September!

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Boulder Craft Beer Festival

The 4th Annual Boulder Craft Beer Festival brings together the best craft breweries from Boulder County and beyond for a tasting festival, offering attendees samples of the best beer on the Front Range. The festival includes live music and food for purchase.

Event Details

AUG 19, 2017 1:00 – 5:00PM
NORTH BOULDER PARK

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Incredible Edible Gluten Free Beer

Please join us for our 11th Annual Incredible, Edible Gluten Free Food Fair. This will be a great celebration with lots of gluten free vendors who will offer samples of amazing gluten free products. In addition there will be kids’ activities, a silent auction with several gluten-free gift baskets, plus deals on gluten-free products. See the current list of vendors below.

Denver Mart

451 E. 58th Ave., Denver, CO 80216
Sunday, August 20, 2017
10 a.m. – 3 p.m

New Planet Beer will be one of the Bronze Sponsors!

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Boulder Valley Beer Fest on September 9, 2017

The Rotary Club of Boulder Valley is excited to announce the fourth annual Boulder Valley Beer Fest to be held on Saturday September 9 from 2:00 – 6:30pm. This is a fundraising event hosted by Boulder Valley Rotary Club that supports its many active community projects from improving literacy locally to helping eradicate polio globally.

This event is held in conjunction with Superior’s Chili Fest.

Use promo code JULY to save $5 off General Admission or $10 off VIP tickets.

www.bouldervalleybeerfest.com/tickets

*promo valid through July 31, 2017

bouldervalleybeerfest

 

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Summer Getaways with New Planet Beer

Waiting for summer is always bittersweet. Here in Colorado, a late-May snowstorm was quickly followed by 90°+ heat and before we knew it, the kids were out of school! And here we are, just days away from the beginning of July, figuring out how to best spend those precious days and weekends of warm weather. At New Planet Beer, we love the outdoors, and in that spirit, we’ve compiled a list of outdoor themed activities for you and yours to tackle in the last few months of summer.

Camping

Everyone has a different definition of camping. To some hardcore enthusiasts, it isn’t “camping” unless you’re backpacking 10+ miles into the wilderness with nothing but dried beans and a water filter for survival. If that’s your MO: good for you! We’d just encourage you to pack in an extra 12 ounces of our mountain-ready Seclusion IPA to keep you company and reward you once you set up camp!

For others, it isn’t camping unless it is “glamping.” That’s right: the combination of glamour and camping. Why leave behind the comforts of showers and running water if you don’t have to? For those of you who prefer the RV, bring the whole family with you to our amazing National and State Parks. These gems are perfect for families to explore the best of what mother nature has to offer.

Lastly, you may be an inbetweener, and you don’t mind sleeping on the ground in your tent, but you don’t want to hike for miles and miles to get there. Many weekend warriors are more than happy to car camp: break out the tent, sleeping bag, and lantern, and just sit by a campfire telling stories with friends as you listen to the nearby water and look up at the cloudless, star filled night.

Fishing

Another summertime favorite, fishing is a great way to while away the summertime hours. Bait fishing or fly fishing? People swear by both, so we’re not going to choose sides here! Whatever your passion, grab your rod and reel or pole and tackle box and hit the rivers and lakes near your home.

If you’ve got kids, fishing is a great way to teach them about local ecosystems, aquatic animal life, and (if you dare!) the peace and quiet that comes with being silent trying not to “scare the fish.” (Author’s note: I’m a lot older now, and I still don’t know if noises actually do scare fish away or if I just talked too much as a kid and it was a trick my dad invented to get some silence out of me…)

Water Parks

Getting away for a night or two or even a long day to fish or camp isn’t always feasible for everyone, so on those hot days, find a local swimming pool or water park. With waterslides and  rides, kids of all ages can cool down and have a ball splashing through the parks. Before you go, call ahead and ask if they have group discounts or see if local grocery stores offer any coupons for the parks. You’d be surprised how many offer deals to families in the summer time. Most places also let you bring in food for snacks and lunches, but be sure to leave those glass bottles at home!

Craft Brew Festivals

It wouldn’t be summer (at least in our minds) without one or two craft beer festivals! Summertime offers an endless array of brew fests, both large and small. We’ve seen advertisements for Belgian Beer Fests, festivals for breweries 5 years old or younger, local neighborhood fests, the list goes on.

Why do we love them so much? It combines two of our favorite things: beer and being outside in the sunshine. There is something really fun and unique about walking around from tent to tent with a small tasting glass and shooting the breeze with brewers and festival attendees. Friendships are made, people have smiles on their faces, and the beers are flowing! So hitch a ride and find a beer fest that interests you this summer!

No matter what you decide to do with your summertime hours, we hope that you enjoy the most of it with the people you love and with a cold beer in hand. And if you do find yourself in the Great Outdoors this summer, don’t forget New Planet Beer’s insanely portable six-packs of Seclusion IPA and Tread Lightly Ale!

New Planet Beer summertime getaways

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Kyle’s Brew Fest on 7/20: New Planet Beer Upcoming Events

Kyle’s Brew Fest
Thursday 7/20 from 5-9PM
in Denver

July 2017 NPB upcoming events

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Summer Brew Fest on 7/28-29: New Planet Beer Upcoming Events

Summer Brew Fest
Friday-Saturday 7/28-29 from 6-10PM
at Mile High Station in Denver

July 2017 NPB upcoming events

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Stapleton Event Beer Festival on 7/15: July Upcoming Events

Stapleton Event Beer Festival
Saturday 7/15 from 4-8PM
at Stapleton Community Park

July 2017 NPB upcoming events

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Schoolin’ Lesson 2: Gluten Free vs Gluten Reduced Beers

In the immortal words of Matthew McConaughey, “Alright alright alright.”

School’s back in session! Last month, we started class with some “Lesson Plans” to educate you, our beloved beer drinkers, on matters relating to how we do things at New Planet Beer. Today, we continue the lesson plans!  

New Planet Beer Schoolin 2

Are there any styles of beer that are harder to make gluten-free or gluten-reduced?

Not so much. Just about every style you can think of is brewable whether it is crafted to be gluten-free or to remove gluten. In other words, there isn’t much standing in our way when it comes to making the best beer styles accessible to our hop-head, gluten-conscious consumer. If you truly want a wheat beer…you are out of luck.

Speaking of hops…What’s the difference between adding hops to traditional brews and gluten-free or gluten-reduced ones?

Great question, Grasshopper. Hop utilization (how well the hops have imparted their taste and aroma into the beer) is different in gluten-free grain (what we use) versus barley grain (traditional beer grain). What this means for New Planet Beer is that managing bitterness in gluten-free is a harder task than in conventional beer. Our beers that are brewed with gluten-free grain take on bitterness at a higher level than those of traditional grains, so we need to be really careful when adding hops to get it just right.

Do you feel that there is a stigma around gluten-free or gluten-reduced beers?

Definitely. But like many things in life, the best way to cure stigma is through education, and we’re happy to be educating the masses on just how awesome gluten-free and gluten-reduced beers (especially ours!) are. Luckily, though, we at New Planet see a positive shift in perception as gluten-free and gluten-reduced beers keep getting better and better.

We still believe that the best education is to sample the beers at craft beer festivals, local liquor stores, and restaurants. We know that when folks get a chance to taste the beers themselves, a lot of those preconceived notions melt away, and they’re walking away with a new six pack in tow!

What are you brewing right now?

Right now, we’re brewing our new Blonde Ale that just won Gold Medal at the Denver International Competition ( April 2017) made from Colorado Millet, 100% gluten-free grain. This is a recipe that we’ve been refining and perfecting for a while now. This marks our third batch, and we’re excited for everyone to try it!

Without sounding braggadocious (not something Matthew McConaughey is known to say!), we really believe that this is a game-changer. As we mentioned before, there is still a stigma around gluten-free and gluten-reduced beers, and if education is the best cure for that, then this is our PhD thesis…thought, time, care, and passion has gone into this beer, and we see it competing with traditional craft beers like no other gluten-free or gluten-reduced beer has ever done before.

Alright. Great. But how much is this game-changer gonna cost me?

Ha! Fair question. Let us put it this way: when we set out to craft New Planet’s Blonde Ale, we wanted to create a beer that reminded us of the beers we were loving before our Celiac diagnosis. In other words, we wanted a beer that had character, flavor, and personality in spades. A true craft beer. With our Blonde Ale, we’ve got it dialed in. We also wanted to make it affordable, so we’ve priced it competitively in our home market for just $8.99 per six pack. Good beer does not need to cost $16.99 a four pack if you know what I mean.

That concludes class for another day. Please recycle your New Planet Beer homework bottles. Track down our Blonde Ale or Seclusion IPA for your next take-home exam!  

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