I tend to have a bit of hesitation when it comes to gluten-removed beers. Most that I’ve tried were lackluster at best. Many gluten-removed ales are made with sorghum, which doesn’t impart the same flavor as barley malt, a foundational flavor component, and sugar source. Omission Pale Ale is different. It utilizes barley malt, thereby keeping that classic barley malt flavor profile while removing gluten through a special process. If you didn’t know that it was a gluten-removed beer, there is nothing in the flavor that would lead you to believe there was anything different about it.
The color of this beer is alluring. I was taken back by the gorgeous copper orange color which was slightly cloudy. It retained a thick layer of foam, which is always a selling point for me, both for aesthetic reasons and aroma development.
The aroma consisted of strong notes of grapefruit and lemon. The aroma really surprised me. I had envisioned this beer lacking a strong malt component, not knowing the process that is used to remove the gluten from the barley. While there wasn’t much nuance in the barley aroma (sometimes it manifests in specific aromas like biscuit, bread, caramel etc.), it was distinct, as if you were hanging around in a brewery on a brew day. There were brief hints of cut grass and other vegetal components. Altogether, it was a very pleasant-smelling beer.
The surprises continued as I moved on to tasting it. Strong malt flavors were the foundation of this beer. Along with the strong barley, malt component was a molasses flavor that was very pleasant. Lemon remained as a strong component of the flavor. The bitterness was light and pleasant, making it a great choice for uninitiated beer drinkers. A slight papery flavor could be detected as well. It finished very shortly. The flavors did not linger for long at all, but it was predominantly the malt components that stuck around.
This is a great beer for everyday drinking, whether gluten intolerant or not. This beer is a testament to the brewer’s ability. It stands out from the pack of gluten-removed beer options as the best that I have had. It would pair well with any of your standard American food options, pizza, burgers, and wings. It is approachable and laid back with just enough complexity to keep it interesting.
November 28, 2017
Editor’s Note: This article originally contained the use of language, “gluten-free,” and has now been changed to “gluten-removed.”