Element 79 – Leaner, meaner.. well maybe just gluten leaner
Our incredibly sessionable amalgamation of an American Blonde/British Golden Ale has undergone a significant change for those that have a gluten intolerance – and basically zero change for those that don’t. We decided to try a relatively new product to reduce gluten levels in our summer ale after an integral member of our team found that his gluten intolerance reached a level that forced him to stop drinking beer altogether – unacceptable in our eyes.
So, after hearing some positive reports about White Labs Clarity Ferm, we decided to give it a try. The short of it is that Clarity Ferm is an enzyme that, while added prior to fermentation, significantly reduces the gluten content in beers made with barley and wheat. The majority of beers tested fall below the current international standard of 20ppm gluten. For more information check out the White Labs spec sheet here :
Given that Element 79 is nothing more (or less) than 100% Pale Ale malted barley, we’d hoped this stuff would work its magic. Sure enough, after a completely normal fermentation and normal everything else for that matter, we were left wondering what if anything actually happened. The beer seemed like its old self, no changes… until we had our aforementioned guinea pig give it a shot – via two 16 oz pints. Zero. Issues. But please be aware of the following: 1) the beer was made from a grain that contains gluten; 2) there is currently no valid test to verify the gluten content of fermented products; and 3) the finished product may contain gluten. Needless to say, we’re thrilled he can enjoy his favorite beer again, and we couldn’t be happier to offer this beer to those with any sort of gluten intolerance, in the hope that they can once again enjoy barley based beer.