For those with celiac disease, gluten is the enemy. If not being able to eat most kinds of bread isn't horrific enough, those with a gluten-free diet are also restricted in their choice of alcohol! Carbs and beer are like the kryptonite to many celiacs, so you best feel for them, and never chirp on the whole gluten-free thing. Unless, of course, they're just following the food trend,'cuz that's not alright. Although gluten-free drank isn't as vast as the regular stuff, there is still a lot to choose from. To all of Montreal's gluten-free brothers and sisters, here are ways to get drunk without gluten
Canada's Signature Drink
Be patriotic, alcoholic, and gluten-free all in one drink. Hail to the Caeaser, Canada's national cocktail;. Unlike many sweeter mixers, clamato juice (or tomato for the Bloody Mary/American alternative) is gluten-free AND low in calories. Use a vodka made from potatoes or grapes and you're all set to sip. Make sure you don't use gin, as the jury is still out as to whether gin has gluten or not. Be safe and go for the vodka-Caesar, the clamato juice magically masks the taste of alcohol anyway.
Who knew the vikings had a gluten-free beverage of choice? Mead, the old-as-hell distilled honey-wine, has made a big comeback in the last few years, its lack of gluten a major selling point I'm sure. Ranging from dark and complex to sweet and smooth, mead is a very versatile drink depending on how its brewed. Just make sure you don't grab a bottle of mead distilled with malt, which contains gluten! You can find mead, otherwise known as 'hydromel' in most SAQ's, the perfect gluten-free drink to wind down after pillaging a village.
Good Ol' Cider
Cider is probably the quintessential Fall drink, and can be enjoyed by anyone, as its totally gluten-free. Since most bars carry some type of cider, this is a great go to for any celiac at a pub who doesn't want hard liquor but still wants to sip on something refreshing. For a Quebec cider-brewery, try out Dublin's pub cider, who's brewery is located in Rougemont, the apple capital of Quebec. Dublin's cider can be found at most deps and grocery stores, and on tap at Stogies, Winston Churchill Pub, and Comedy Works.
You're Fine with Wine
Good news for wine lovers with a no-gluten diet: all wine is inherently gluten free! From white to red and the rosé in between, you drink pretty much any bottle you get your hands on. Make sure you don't drink any biddy-licious wine coolers though, as they're usually made with gluten-filled malt. It takes away the classiness of wine anyway.
Gluten Free Beer
Yes, it does exist. New on the market, beer brewers have caught on to the gluten-free trend, beginning to make specially crafted beers without any pesky gluten. Quebec even has its own gluten-free brewry, the very poignantly named Brasseurs Sans Gluten. Open since July 2011, BSG and their line of 'Glutenberg' beers have rocked Quebec and the world at large, winning many gluten-free beer awards. As of now their beer lineup includes a blonde, an American pale ale, a red, and a Belgian double.
The Hard Stuff
Okay, the kid gloves are off. Screw cocktails, cider, and beer. Its time for shots betches. Vodka distilled from potatoes or grapes? Shots. Rum without any added flavours? Shots. Tequila and whisky? Shots on shots. In truth, all spirits should be gluten-free, as they're distilled from grains, with the gluten removed. Still, certain people have issues with gin, sweeter alcohols, or anything with malt. Stick to the ones mentioned above and you're good to go. Shot on.
Got a killer gluten-free drink we didn't mention? Have a favourite gluten free bar in Montreal? Let us know in the comments below