Best Gluten Free Beers

NEFF Brewing Imperial Stout

gluten free beer brands 2023

NEFF Brewing Imperial Stout

100% Gluten Free Imperial Stout

70 IBU 12.5% ABV

Previously I posted the review for the NEFF Brewing Astronaut Cookies Oatmeal Stout, but today we take a look at their Imperial Stout. This gluten free stout is brewed on a base of millet, buckwheat, and rice. It leans on the bitter qualities of the noble hop to round off its ingredient list. 

The can I’m drinking marks this stout at a 12.5% ABV. I looked it up on their website too, and I found a discrepancy between the online description and the one on the can. The online description says 9% ABV…so I can only assume they are different batches of the same beer.

I honestly don’t know though…I could be drinking a 9% or a 12%…I guess we’ll find out about half way through. Ha! See what the pour looks like in the video below, then scroll on to find my full review of this gluten free Imperial Stout.

The Taste Test

Gluten Free Imperial Stout

This gluten free Imperial Stout pours with every bit of the jet black thickness that was promised in the beer’s description. It is VERY dark, and completely opaque. The head is quite nice, but has bigger bubbles so it disappears pretty quickly. When it’s gone, the surface of the beer is smooth, offering a perfect reflection as you peer down into it. 

The aroma is filled to the brim with chocolate and espresso. It smells like it will taste rich. And let me tell you, it delivers. This Imperial Stout is pretty damn decadent. Lots of dark chocolate and roasted coffee tones.

And I’ll be honest…I think the 12.5% ABV is correct. The alcohol is strong in this one. It certainly tastes like the highest ABV gluten free stout I’ve ever tried. The alcohol sits on the back of the throat after swallow, more than the hop bitterness, in fact. 

The carbonation is still sharp, so it packs a nice kick alongside that ABV. The body doesn’t feel as heavy as it looks. It manages to relay some brightness still, but the layers of flavors are complex, and they surface at different times throughout the tasting experience. 

It starts bright and sharp, then softens into bitter and earthy spice, then finishes with (some serious) heat. This is almost the type of beer best enjoyed with dessert snacks…to help take the edge off the bite. Or maybe some very-dark chocolate. ;) 

gluten free imperial stout

As the beer warms, the mouthfeel becomes cashew-creamy, and all the intensities start to balance each other nicely. I think I actually prefer this beer a bit warmer than the initial pour. The alcohol becomes better masked by the sweetness and the body when things aren’t quite as sharp.

Here’s my biggest piece of advice…invite a friend over to enjoy this beer with you…I’m only a handful of sips in and I can already feel that alcohol!

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

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