By Amanda Mead

A recent study published in the journal “Digestion” found that around 7 percent of the U.S. population has non-celiac gluten sensitivity and about 1 percent have celiac disease. That means up to 26 million Americans should eat a gluten-free diet.

As an avid craft beer drinker and business owner for years, I was unhappy to discover I was one of those 26 million. Since 2018, I’ve been on the hunt for quality gluten-free beers. I started with gluten-reduced beers like Omission and Stone’s Delicious IPA. While these beers are excellent, they are not gluten-free. If you have a high gluten sensitivity or suffer from celiac disease, avoid these kinds of beers.

For truly gluten-free options, here are some excellent ones available at local retailers.

Photo: Amanda Mead

LIGHT ALE

Best: Ghostfish Blonde Ale (4.5 percent alc/vol. and 18 IBU)

A classic blonde, this beer is packed with flavor. A subtle hoppiness with orange peel notes gives this a clean, crisp finish. A perfect post-run beer.

Runners-up: Glutenberg Blond Ale and New Grist Pilsner.

DARK ALE

Best: Groundbreaker Dark Ale (4.7 percent alc/vol. and 35 IBU)

The roasted chestnuts imbue this ale with a rich nuttiness. Comparable to a great porter, it has hints of chocolate and coffee on the mid-palate. A great companion to a hearty stew.

IPA

Best: Ghostfish Kick Step IPA (5.5 percent alc/vol and 60 IBU)

Kick Step is a solid Northwest IPA. While not as hoppy as its grapefruit counterpart, it has enough bitterness for most hop-heads, and the mango notes add depth. Bonus: proceeds from this beer benefit The Mountaineers.

Runners-up: Ghostfish Grapefruit IPA, Glutenberg IPA