Sunday, 21 February 2016

Daura Damm Award-Winning Gluten Free Beer - boy am I loving it!

For beer lovers, a diagnosis of Coeliac or the discovery of gluten intolerance strikes upset and frustration. Suddenly, that much enjoyed amber nectar is strictly off limits. Traditional beers are brewed using barley and barley is a dirty word! Yep..... Along with wheat and rye, barley contains the dreaded gluten which triggers the body into self-attack, with cramps, bloating, stomach pain and more..... Way worse than a hangover and absolutely to be avoided at all costs.

I haven't had a beer in years........ Not that I was ever one to down several pints and stagger home...... but when the option to drink something that you have previously gained enjoyment from is forcibly removed, the pain of deprivation feels that much worse. Although I had switched to cider as my plan B, it is not the same and consequently, when hubby is sitting on the sofa beside me downing bottles of ale with a progressively enlarging smile on his face as the evening wears on, I feel (frankly) peed-off and irritated....... 

Not any more. Daura Damm - 'The world's most award winning gluten-free beer', has come to my rescue!

Made in Spain, Daura is one of a new generation of beers, aimed at the gluten free market. Daura however is different in the pack...... Although a number of artful brewers have developed GF beers using alternative grains and grasses (such as sorghum, rice, millet and buckwheat), Daura is the result of lots of research and very clever processes which start with their normal barley-malt based beer (using the original 1876 recipe), then carefully removing the gluten to make it safe for us gluten avoiders to drink. This means that it actually tastes like beer. Specifically...... lager. Which is good with me...... I am not and have never been much keen on bitter or stout.

For those of you who are a little panicky at the use of that dirty word...... barley........ Daura claims its gluten free status on account of having a gluten level of less than 3 ppm (way lower than the Codex, accepted coeliac level of 20 ppm), with all batches being tested at production point. Apparently Daura is now available in over 33 countries, where the producer works in close partnership with local Coeliac organisations. This beer has been accredited by Coeliac UK, appears in their latest Food & Drink Directory (I've checked) and displays the reassuring crossed-grain symbol.

I will be honest...... when I see a product that clearly lists gluten-based ingredients, I worry immensely. I always ask the question 'so how come they can say it is gluten free?'. I usually reach for the laptop and check manufacturing processes, and see what other people are saying. The manufacturing seems to be sound here and I am fully reassured by the Coeliac UK stamp which I trust wholeheartedly. The slight niggle is that while most reviews positively state that there has been no health backlash after drinking Daura, a couple of comments that I have found from Stateside consumers, indicate a possible adverse reaction. 

Having said this, the comments date back a number of years and appear to indicate a gluten ppm of about 6 at that time. I have tried to establish whether Daura has reduced the gluten content further since this time, but have been unable to confirm.....

It may be that the people who had suggested reaction were exceptionally sensitive...... and as a number of well-respected gluten free bloggers I follow have reviewed the beer have given it positive health clearance, I am happy..... I had no reaction, but you will know your own caution-levels.

As far as flavour goes...... yep! This is beer! Actual beer! Absolutely worth grabbing a few bottles and giving them a try. It looks and tastes exactly like my memories of lager. Beautifully pale golden in colour with a slight fizz....... extremely drinkable, hoppy but not over sweet, with a hint of bitterness coming through at the rear. Its light freshness makes it perfect for a sunny summer afternoon in the garden, a barbecue on the beach, a picnic in the countryside, or simply a night in front of a good film.....

I love the packaging too...... bright, bold and inviting, I couldn't contain my excitement when it arrived...... Is it obvious how much fun I had photographing the bottles?

So thank you thank you to those lovely people at Estrella Damm who not only make these beautiful bottles of amber loveliness but also sent me a whole bunch of them to enjoy....... I am loving every sip, gulp and slurp of them! Please send some more........

I am joining this post to the following linkies...... just in case I am not the only GF one who has been missing out on a decent beer. Go on..... give them a try..... I think they are darn good!

Brilliant Blog Posts with Honest Mum.

Gluten Free Fridays with Vegetarian Mamma.

Free From Fridays with the Free From Farmhouse

With thanks to Estrella Damm for sending me their Daura gluten free beer. I was sent the beer to try, and was not required to write a positive review. All views expressed here are my own.

 Gluten Free Alchemist © 2013-16 unless otherwise indicated


  1. My youngest son has been a lager drinker for many, many years, and I would trust his judgement. His all time favourite lager is Estrella Damm. If this is anywhere near as good, it will be very good! Thanks for the review.

    1. Thanks momist. Daura Damm is Estrella with the gluten removed, so I guess they must be pretty similar. It would be interesting to see whether your son would notice the difference!
      Either way..... I'm certainly enjoying it!

  2. It is a lovely lager isn't it? I am more of a bitter drinker than a lager drinker but even I enjoyed a bottle of this...although my body didn't like me much for it the next day...I'm very sensitive to alcohol :(. Mr M is enjoying it though and he doesn't have to be GF!

    1. I'm really impressed with it Vicki..... I think Mr GF is quite bemused that I am suddenly sitting there with a beer in hand..... Perhaps I've threatened his macho image...
      Good to hear that non-GF drinkers enjoy it too.... a good sign of quality!

  3. Oh wow I want to try this immediately, fab post. Thanks for linking up to #Brilliantblogposts

  4. I have had gluten free beer once and it was just as delicious as ordinary beer. It is great that there are options for people with celiac disease too. I know Estrella although I have never tried this on yet.

    1. Thanks Alida. This particular beer has been quite a surprise! x


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