Best Gluten Free Beers

Buck Wild Brewing Pale Ale

gluten free beer brands 2023

Gluten Free Pale Ale Brewed In California

Brewed By Buck Wild Brewing

It’s been a solid 5 years since I reviewed a Buck Wild Brewing beer! Back then, there was just one Pale Ale…but now they have a lineup of year round beers including a West Coast IPA, a Kolsch, and an Amber Ale. 

This is the updated review for the Buck Wild Pale Ale. If you scroll past the most recent review, you’ll reach the original review which was published back in 2016. This beer is now brewed on buckwheat, rice, and millet in Oakland, California. It has a 5.5% ABV and a 45 IBU. 

Buck Wild has been around for awhile, but they now have their own brewery and tasting room, which just so happen to finally open right in the middle of these crazy Covid times. If you find yourself in central California, go show them some support!

The Taste Test

2021 Buck Wild Pale Ale

The Buck Wild Pale Ale pours with a crystal clear light golden color and a nice head that bubbles away at a moderate pace. The most notable visual quality of this pale ale is how high the clarity is. Backlight beams through it like the sun, as you can see in the pour video above.

Its aroma carries notes of forest and fruit, and the flavor is crisp and dry. The carbonation is moderate, and the bitterness is medium-light. The body is extremely light. When the beer is cold, the malt character is minimal, but that begins to emerge more as the beer warms.

When you first sip this Buck Wild Pale Ale, you’re met with a light and crisp mouthfeel, then the tiniest twinge of malty sweetness before the hop character takes over and completes the fairly dry tasting journey. There’s an earthiness to the hop character, and a range of other subtle qualities, but none seem to take the full spotlight. 

The last time I tried this beer, it was the only one they brewed. I remember it having a bit more of a punch in years past. But now Buck Wild Brewing makes a whole lineup of year round beers, including a West Coast IPA, so I assume they toned down their Pale a bit now that they have a stand alone IPA for us west coasters. ;)

This may be the lightest bodied pale ale I’ve had in some time, so if you are a fan of the true pale style—as opposed to the IPA-like pale ale style the west coast is known for—you will greatly appreciate this beer.

The 5.5% ABV on this pale ale makes it a fine option for a midday beer or a happy hour brew. Keep your eyes peeled for more Buck Wild reviews over the coming weeks. On deck is the Buck Wild Kolsch, Amber, and West Coast IPA. Since I have you here…which style would you like to see released first? Answer below! As you know, I love to hear YOUR feedback about the beers as well. 

If you’re interested in reading my old-school Buck Wild review from 5+ years ago, keep scrolling!

2016 Buck Wild Pale Ale

Buck Wild Beer | Alpenglow Beer Company

buck wild pale ale alpenglow beer company gluten free beer review

I got my hands on a 4-pack of this new pale ale and I’ve been excited to try it. It’s the Buck Wild Pale Ale by Alpenglow Beer Company.

I’ve been quite busy lately and when I opened the first one tonight, I was actually not planning on writing a review on it. It’s been a long day. I just wanted a drink with my (very late) dinner. I figured I’d review the second bottle I opened.

But honestly it was so damn good–I got inspired. So here I am after a 12 hour work day, writing this review. :)

This beer is 100% gluten free and comes from San Jose, California. In fact, it claims to be the first 100% gluten free beer from California. This kind of blows my mind…can that be right?! Anyway, I’m happy it exists!

The first thing I noticed about the beer was its fantastic head. Gluten free beers usually carry a pretty light head in my experience. This may be the best one I’ve seen of all the beers I’ve reviewed on this site.

buck wild pale ale alpenglow beer company gluten free beer review

The color is beautiful. Clear and crisp. The Buck Wild’s scent didn’t grab me though. But read on…

I took my first swig and…WOW. I’m going to be completely honest here–but then I’ll explain what it means. My first thought as the bear hit my palette was “Deschutes”. And that’s a really good thing. Flashback to my [glutenous] beer-drinking days…Deschutes Brewery was one of my favorite breweries. I would buy their Inversion IPA by the case.

This beer reminded me of my Deschutes-drinking days immediately. I’m guessing it has something to do with their chosen hop profile…(Magnum, Cascade & US Chinook, by the way)…because this beer brought me back. I love it.

It’s delicious. My favorite part is the initial taste as it hits the palette. It has a pleasant follow-through and a great carbonation level.

buck wild pale ale alpenglow beer company gluten free beer review

Here’s the other thing a really love about this beer. They use both millet and buckwheat in the brewing process. (Incidentally, these are the two grains we chose to use in our very own Home Brew this year…which turned out incredible by the way.)

I absolutely LOVE the addition of buckwheat in the flavor profile. It is so earthy and balancing. The body of the beer is excellent as well. It matches the flavors and the hops perfectly.

Overall, my personal preferences aside (as much as possible), I would say that the Buck Wild Pale Ale is a very drinkable beer. It would be great for summer days, and I would happily indulge in more than one. It’s 5.5% ABV is mild enough to be a casual drinker.

My only problem now is “Where do I buy more of this beer?”. 

Due to it’s relative newness on the market, I’m not sure how widely it is distributed yet. But if you manage to get your hands on it…BUY IT and give it a try. I would love to know what you think of it!


P.S. Like what I do for the gluten free beer community? Consider buying me a beer for my efforts! ;)

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3 years ago

I like it and can’t find it. 94530

Gianina Fico
Gianina Fico
4 years ago

Hi is there a way I can order this to try it?

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