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Before Green’s beers existed, there was no gluten free beer in Europe. Green’s began because our founder, Derek Green, had been told that he was to avoid all gluten entirely. While many people would’ve given up and attempted to develop a taste for whisky or a gin and tonic, that wasn’t an option for Mr Green; there’s something about beer that you just don’t get from any other beverage.
Beer is special. Beer is beloved. Every time a brewery asked “Why bother?” or simply said it was too complicated, that just wasn’t good enough. Not only did the beer have to be zero gluten, it also had to be good beer. After the breakthrough when our Head Brewer found out how to brew using Ancient Grains, producing the best beer possible has been the overriding goal.
We start with the water; the water we use in brewing (known as liquor to the professionals) is firstly finely filtered. The liquor is then flushed with carbon dioxide, which leaves it oxygen free. This gives our beers a pure base to hydrate the dry-milled cereals and deaerated water means that no oxidisation can occur.
We use a mix of buckwheat, sorghum, millet and brown rice as the grain base for our beers. Not only are these grains naturally gluten free, but they have their own flavour profiles that means they can be used as a recipe for everything from our Dry-Hopped Lager through to the rich Dubbel. The husks of the brown rice also help with sparging and form a natural bed for filtering the beer base.
Using Ancient Grains not only gives a different mouthfeel and range of flavours to barley or wheat, but they also have greatly differing nutritional values. Sorghum, millet and brown rice have high trace elements of zinc, selenium, manganese and magnesium. They’re also more protein rich and have higher amounts of Vitamin B3 and B6 – which means they’re good for your skin and your blood. It’s certainly a much tastier alternative than taking a multivitamin every day! Buckwheat is also richer in tannins and antioxidants and they have a lower GI index, meaning they’re better for people watching their weight.
The great nutritional benefits would all be for nought if the beer wasn’t great tasting; to support the flavour profiles of the Ancient Grains we’ve specially chosen five hops each with their own particular alpha and beta acids that flavour the beer just right. We test each batch of hops to make sure that there’s no loss of aroma and each batch of beer tastes as good as the last and allows us to consistently make great beer.
We also use no heat treatment or pasteurisation, as further boiling once the beer is brewed destroys compounds, and results in less flavour, less aroma and therefore less enjoyment. You can call us purists if you like, but flavour isn’t one dimensional!
While we know that beer is the drink of good times, good friends and good taste, next time you raise a Green’s to your lips just remember that behind every bit of that depth of flavour, there’s a very serious commitment on our part to making sure that it’s nothing less than great beer.