Beers for the gluten-intolerant

Published Oct 4, 2013 at 05:00AM

Bend can be a tough place to live if you’re gluten-intolerant. Bend’s beverage of choice can be heavy on the stuff, which can cause a variety of unpleasant symptoms in those suffering from celiac disease or even gluten sensitivity.

But luckily, things are changing. More and more gluten-free beer options are becoming available at local grocery stores and specialty bottle shops. While you might still be hard-pressed to find gluten-free beers at most local breweries, at least one has plans of producing a gluten-free option in the near future. Below Grade Brewing is in the process of creating a gluten-free IPA, which may hit shelves as soon as January.

“We get a lot of requests for gluten-free beer,” said Dean Wise, head brewer and owner. “I think the challenge that most breweries have had is in making it not taste like a gluten-free beer.”

But until Below Grade’s IPA arrives, here are a few gluten-free beers you can find locally, as suggested by Diana Fischetti, owner of Broken Top Bottle Shop & Ale Cafe.

1. Deschutes Brewery, Gluten Free Ale: This gluten-free beer is always on tap at Deschutes’s brewpub and rotates daily.

2. Epic Brewing Co.’s Glutenator: Out of Utah’s Epic Brewing Co., this beer carries a 5.3 percent ABV and is brewed with millet, brown rice, sweet potatoes, molasses and plenty of American hops.

3. Omission Beer, Widmer Brothers Brewing Co.: Omission comes in three gluten-free options, including a lager, a pale ale, and an IPA. All three can be found at grocery stores and specialty bottle shops in Bend.

4. Harvester Brewing: This Portland brewery caters solely to the gluten-free crowd. You can find five of its beers locally, one of which is a seasonal Marionberry brew.

5. Redbridge, Anheuser-Busch: Redbridge is perhaps the most readily available gluten-free beer, easily found at most grocery stores.

— Megan Kehoe