Sour Beer Guide
So, what are sour beers?
Well, in essence, sour beers are, well, sour.
Sour beers come in many different styles, and formats, but in essence, they have a sharp, acidic flavour profile that tends to hit you in the back of the cheeks as you drink them.
Also, the range of sour beer flavours can really vary from style to style. Some beers taste of soft lemon acidity, some are almost vinegar like in flavour, and then you get some that feel like they're going to rip the enamel off of your teeth.
But, why are they sour?
Sour beers get their flavour profile from bacteria.
Yeah, I know, that sounds weird, but trust me, it's perfectly normal. It's basically the same way that yogurts get their flavour.
Natural bacteria called lactobacillus is added during the brewing process. Then the bacteria will feed on the natural sugars in beer. During this time, the sugars are converted to lactic acid, and this is what causes the sour flavours in the beer.
What are the different styles of sour beers?
When it comes to sour bees, there are so many different styles.
Gose: these sour beers were made famous by the Germans, and are brewed with coriander and salt.
Berliner Weisse: even though the beer style says weisse, it does not taste like a classic wheat beer. If anything, this is so far from a german wheat beer. This style of sour beer tend to be light to medium acidity to it, and are usually fairly sessionable in terms of their abv (4.5%-5.5% abv).
Lambics: a lambic sour beer is a thing of beauty. This style of sour beer is "spontaneously fermented" and has been perfected by the Belgians. During the brewing process, the brewer will create wort (the sugary water extracted from malted barley). Then the brewer will leave this wort to cool down in a "coolship". A coolship is a large, shallow open container that literally cools the beer down by increasing the surface area of the hot beer. As the beer is left to cool down over night, the natural yeast and bacteria in the air inoculates the wort. Then the beer is shipped off to fouders to age for several years. The end result of this beers is something sour, dry and wonderfully complex. It's a must try.
Scottish Sour Craft Beers:
Scotland is home to some of the most amazing sour craft breweries. You can find so many exciting styles, and flavours right here on our home turf. Brewery such as Vault City, 71 Brewing, Tempest Brew Co, Up Front Brewing, and way more. You can find the complete list in our article that we recently wrote for the Daily Record here.
Sour beers and food:
Sour beers and food are a match made in heaven.
The acidity of this style makes it super versatile with a wide range of foods.
You'll find that sour beers work as great palate cleansers in-between courses.
Or, you can have a sour beer with a fatty dish as it will cut right through it.
And lastly, sour beers work great with sea food. Instead of adding fresh lemon to the dish, just wash it down with a big glass of something cold, and sour.
If you have any other questions about sour beer, then don't hesitate to get in touch.
You can see our range of sour beers using the link below