I always thought I didn´t like beer because it gave me such a bad hangover. When I found out I was gluten-intolerant it all made sense. In Barcelona, a friend insisted that I try a gluten-free ¨Clarita¨. A clarita is like a shandy…beer + Fanta lemon. Gluten-free Estrella beer is easy to find in the big supermarkets. I tried making one and became addicted to the lemony fizzy goodness, particularly post-Bikram yoga.
When I moved to Tokyo I realized that finding gluten-free beer would be a real challenge, and I missed it. Then I discovered that Nodogoshi Nama beer is gluten and wheat free, not because it was looking out for celiacs, but instead to avoid paying higher taxes. I never thought I´d be happy for taxes, especially ones on alcohol. Anyway, good news is that this beer can be found in almost every convenience store and it is usually about 130 yen, which is a good deal for Japan. A lot of people drink it without even realizing that it is gluten-free. I still like to make claritas, but can´t find lemon Fanta so 7-up or Schwapps´¨Bitter Lemon¨make nice substitutes.