With the festive holidays rapidly approaching, and of course New Year following not long after, we thought that reviewing a wheat & gluten free beer would go down rather nicely. We chose Heron Beer because it was available on the supermarket shelf, and therefore not too difficult to source if you are UK based.
When we poured the beer into a glass a frothy head developed. The smell of the beer was very accurate compared to traditionally brewed beer, and we thought that it had the look and smell of bitter.
We served the beer at room temperature for the taste test. The taste again mirrored bitter, and was quite enjoyable, especially for the members of our testing panel that used to be able to drink traditional bitter.
At 6% alcohol by volume it's not a weak, wishwashy beer, and it should be noted that one bottle is equivalent to 1.98 units, meaning that anyone intending to drink and drive should certainly curtail their consumption of this beer to avoid going over the legal limit. (We personally would advise that no-one drank any amount of alcohol before driving.)
For people that used to enjoy a glass of beer this is an acceptable wheat & gluten free alternative, and means that beer drinkers shouldn't have to miss out on their alcoholic tipple of choice.
Overall we thought that the beer was surprisingly good, but what did detract from the product was the steep price for a small bottle. While we know that manufacturers of dietary niche products do have to charge a premium on special products sometimes we think that the premium is too high for the product quantity, and this is one such case.
Our testing panel is made up of people with wheat allergies and also people who can eat wheat as part of their normal diet (and a teetotaler).
Typical values per 330ml bottle:
Alcohol - 6% vol
Alcohol units - 1.98
Wheat & gluten free