Good Beer Hunting

Hill Farmstead Collaborates with Canadian Brewery on Gluten Free Beer

Hill Farmstead has collaborated with Canadian brewery Le Trou du Diable to create Argan, a gluten-free sour beer aged three years in wine barrels. Though years in the making, the beer’s availability is extremely limited—even by Hill Farmstead standards. Canadians, or last-minute American beer adventurers, can test their luck on-premise at Montreal’s Broue Pub on today (Jan. 27), or grab a 750-milliliter bottle (one per) at Le Trou’s bottle shop tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 28.

To match the increasingly common gluten free diets, the number of brewers producing gluten free beers has risen dramatically over the last few years. And that trend is only expected to continue. This past November, business consulting and market research firm Infinium Global Research predicted the global gluten free beer market is poised to mature at a compound annual growth rate of more than 40% over the five-year period ending 2021.

“Although the global beer market has experienced sluggish growth, gluten free beers have experienced significant growth over the past few years,” the firm said at the time.

This growth isn’t merely spearheaded by the proliferation of dedicated gluten free breweries, like Ghostfish Brewing, which was established in 2015. Reputable and sizable traditional craft players including Dogfish Head, New Belgium, Stone, and Wicked Weed have also offered up gluten free or gluten reduced products the last few years. Even with the considerable weight of early support from companies like Dogfish Head, however, the subcategory has been somewhat betrayed by a bad reputation, earned or not.

What’s interesting about this collaboration is that the two companies are positioning it like any other whale: you probably can’t get it. The whole idea of gluten-free or reduced beer is to create further inclusivity, bringing people into the craft beer fold who had previously been shut out due to dietary constraints. And that’s pretty awesome.

As for the beer itself, it registers a gluten count of 20 parts per million, the legal threshold, and boasts a “slightly blonde nose of sour candy with apricots,” with a flavor profile influenced by white wine with “refreshing acidity,” according to Le Trou.

—Dave Eisenberg

Le Trou du Diable and Hill Farmstead Collaborate to Create Argan, a Gluten Free Beer [Beerism]