Alongside several exciting brewery collaborations, attendees of Stewart's beer festival in Edinburgh will be able to enjoy a number of 'Gluten freedom' beers

Stewart Brewing have added an unusual line up of beers to their Edinburgh Beer Festival on Saturday April 16th. Alongside several exciting brewery collaborations, attendees will be able to enjoy a number of ‘Gluten Freedom’ beers, brewed with naturally gluten free ingredients.

Beer festivals aren’t a typical destination for the gluten intolerant community. But brewery shop manager Richard Webb noticed that Stewart’s small-batch Gluten Freedom beers were proving popular.

“It made us realise there must be lots of deprived beer lovers out there,” Richard commented, “and they might enjoy the opportunity to attend a beer festival with their friends.”

So Stewart’s resident gluten free brewer, Craig Scotland, decided to brew not one but four new beers exclusively for the festival, including a gooseberry saison, coffee IPA, raspberry and chilli saison and a New Zealand-hopped IPA. “It’s rare to find gluten free beers, let alone a selection of them,” explained Craig, who studied gluten free beers as part of his Heriot Watt Brewing and Distilling Masters degree.

Lemon sole

Craig Scotland. Picture: contributed

Describing beer as ‘gluten free’ can be a minefield for a brewery. Whilst some brewers use an enzyme to remove gluten from beer produced in the usual way, at Stewart’s Craig prefers to swap barley for sorghum and use only ingredients which naturally don’t contain gluten. However, coeliacs should note that whilst the beers are brewed on a separate kit, the main brewery is not a gluten free environment.

Legal stuff aside, as well as the Gluten Freedom beers gluten intolerant attendees can enjoy Roots craft soda, Edinburgh Gin or Brewlab cold brew coffee, straight or in martinis. They can then soak up the alcohol with gluten free options from Edinburgh Beer Festival’s food providers, including pizza from Big Blu, Irish pakora from Fresh rEVOLution and pulled pork lettuce wraps from Jones & Son Bespoke BBQ.

Stewart Brewing hope Edinburgh Beer Festival will be an inclusive event and those who wouldn’t normally attend a beer festival can come to see what their local brewery has to offer. Tickets can be bought from Eventbrite, online or in person from Stewart’s brewery shop and a discounted price is available for Midlothian residents. With two beers included in the price, all that’s left to decide is what to drink first!

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