2017 was a fantastic year. We had a surge of new faces in the Taproom and although it was a struggle at times, we kept up, improved our beer and service, and we saw those fresh faces as well as familiar ones return.
We certainly have some ambitious goals for 2018. If you are reading this email you will be one of the first to hear about them as they become reality. I would like to share with you today our 2018 resolution. OK, resolutions may be cliché but this one will make a lot of folks happy. By the end of the year we hope to offer half the beers on our menu as gluten reduced.
Thanks to an enzyme, brewers are able to offer gluten reduced beers that fall below FDA standards for a gluten free product (<20 ppm). The enzyme is added prior to fermentation and works to break down protein chains that cause chill haze. One of these protein chains being gluten. Although it falls in line with federal standards for “gluten free” our beer is labeled as “Crafted to Remove Gluten” since the beer originally contained gluten protein chains that have been broken down into protein fragments. For those who have a sensitivity to gluten or have chosen to avoid gluten for dietary concerns these beers are generally safe. If you have a severe reaction to gluten, it is still recommended to avoid these beers. As I am sure my lawyer is reading this, I will add: Consume at your own risk! There is still a risk of cross contamination since barley and wheat are widely use at our facility. To be clear: all of our products are originally brewed with gluten.
We are far from the first brewery to do this but you may be asking “Why doesn’t every brewery do this?”. Adding the enzyme is easy and relatively inexpensive. However just because you properly dose the beer with the enzyme doesn’t mean the protein chomping sorcery will take place. Careful documentation and lab testing must take place which adds time and cost to each batch produced. Because the equipment for testing gluten is terribly expensive for our 3bbl brewery, we send a sample of the finished beer off to a lab to be tested. The test results for each of our beers are then posted on our website upon receipt. In edition, although the enzyme is designed not to have an effect on beer flavor, expect a gradual roll out as we validate the effects on our products.
On tap now is our first American Stout that is Crafted to Remove Gluten. You can spot it with a GR symbol on the menu. The test results can be viewed here. Its a Nice roasty dark beer and for some reason we haven’t brewed a generic stout yet. I guess we were focusing on our Loonar Uprising 🙂