Saturday, March 1, 2014


Leffe beer test results belgian Belgium bier blonde ale Abbey gluten free celiac low
Beer: Leffe
Style: Blonde Belgian Abbey Ale
Brewing location: Leuven, Belgium
Originating country: Belgium
Alcohol by Volume: 6.6% 
Ingredients: pale malt, hops, yeast and water
Format tested: 11.2 oz bottle purchased in Los Angeles, CA
Beeradvocate rating: 80/100
Ratebeer rating: 85/100
Test kit: E-Z Gluten

  • The rich brewing tradition of the Leffe beers dates back more than 700 years to the Abbey Notre Dame de Leffe, founded in 1152.
  • The Abbey was abolished after the French Revolution, but re-established in 1929.
  • In 1952 the Abbey's Abbot, Father Nys, resurrected the Abbey's brewing tradition. Now it's brewed by Anheuser-Busch InBev. Let's hope the quality doesn't suffer.

Test result photo
Leffe beer test results belgian Belgium bier blonde ale Abbey gluten free

Test result
Very high positive at 20 parts per million (ppm), meaning it is over 20 ppm. Though standards vary from country to country, according to the FDA, "in order to use the term 'gluten free' on its label a food must meet all the requirements of the definition, including that the food must contain less than 20 ppm gluten." It is said that products with a gluten content below 20 ppm are suitable for people with celiac disease.

My experience drinking Leffe
Ahhhhhh that unmistakeable taste of Belgium. All Belgian ales have it; apparently it's the yeast. Whatever it is I love them all. It's not often you feel spoiled drinking a beer but Leffe is one of them. I take care opening, pouring slowly into a chalice, natch, and watch orange gold fill my view. Always takes me back to the first time I had this in Bruges. Now compared to the Trappist ales, Leffe doesn't quite pack the same punch but still demands full attention and respect - you must sit down to enjoy and savor. At only 6.6% it's relatively weak by Belgian standards - your everyday beer in Brussels! I am not sure where I fall in the gluten tolerance spectrum; I am gluten intolerant but not celiac. I definitely know what it feels like to be “glutened” i.e. gluten exposure, but I have not deliberately pushed my gluten consumption limits with any food or beer. I consumed this 11.2 oz bottle and felt none of my typical gluten effects. Shame it's over 20 ppm though.

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