As the holiday season approaches, the quest for gluten-free alternatives gains momentum, and the brewing industry is not one to be left behind. A brew from downtown Jersey City’s Departed Soles Brewery was voted as the nation’s top gluten-free beer per USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards. Located at 150 Bay Street, this brewery was ranked top in the US for its Black IPA brew called A Dark Night. Read more to learn about the ranking and the brewery located in downtown Jersey City.
USA Today has compiled a list of the Best Gluten-Free Beers 2023 in the nation, highlighting the top 10 gluten-free beers. As outlined in the report, 10 beers that were gluten-free or gluten-reduced were selected by an expert panel and voted by readers as the best in the US. A Dark Night from Departed Soles Brewing Company in New Jersey is a Black IPA (India Pale Ale) made with 100% gluten-free ingredients. The black IPA is made with Cascadian dark ale (Black IPA), the flavor is dank + citrusy, it is sorghum-based, and it contains 5% alcohol.
This isn’t the first time the Jersey City brewery’s Black IPA was recognized. The black IPA was the brewery’s first gluten-free beer and has been recognized at the 2016 World Beer Cup and at the Best of Craft Beer Awards, according to its website.
About Jersey City’s Departed Soles Brewery
Departed Soles Brewing Company opened in Jersey City in 2015, becoming the first modern microbrewery in the city. Situated at 150 Bay Street, the brewery has a line-up of gluten and non-gluten options.
The idea for brewing gluten-free beers stemmed from the collaboration between owner Brian Kulbacki and his former business partner, Chris Ward, who had Celiac Disease. Their shared vision aimed to provide individuals who are sensitive to gluten with the opportunity to savor the diverse flavors and qualities of craft beer. However, when Chris tragically passed away in a car accident, Brian took it upon himself to make gluten-free beers a personal goal, a pursuit he has dedicated to both himself and his friend ever since.
The brewery has a tasting room that is open five days a week and welcomes guests to take a tour, sample beers, and spend time with friends. Customers can expect live music nights, board and arcade games, and even bring their dogs as Departed Soles is dog-friendly.
Traditionally, beer has relied on malted barley, one of its core components, alongside water, hops, and yeast. However, gluten-free beers are made from alternative ingredients like sorghum, rice, millet, lentils, and nuts. All of the Departed Soles Brewery options are brewed with 100% gluten-free ingredients and are rotated throughout the year and based on the season.
There are currently 15 gluten-free beer options on the menu with some year-round rotational flavors that include the Bumper Hops, a New England-style IPA flavored with citrus and fruits and brewed with millet, oats, quinoa, and malted rice; and the None Shall P.A.T.H, an American pale ale with a citrusy, malty backbone and mild hop bitterness, and brewed with millet, oats, quinoa, and Belgian Candi sugar. Some seasonal gluten-free options include its pumpkin beer, and its raspberry pie beer with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and clove.
There are over 100 traditional beers available throughout the year at Departed Soles. Some include the Philosorapper; an imperial Belgian ale that tastes semi-sweet with hints of banana and clove, the Deuces; a double IPA with hints of mango, pineapple, and pine, and the Payoff Beered; an American pale ale with hints of resin, pine, and citrus. A full list of its gluten-free and non-gluten offerings can be seen on its website.