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B.C. craft beer trend: 3 tips for enjoying sour beers

Our beer columnist Rebecca Whyman recommends Duchesse de Bourgogne, Oud Gueuze Vieille and Faro Lambic

By On the Coast, CBC NewsPosted: Feb 05, 2015 4:32 PM PTLast Updated: Feb 05, 2015 4:32 PM PT
Our beer columnist Rebecca Whyman recommends sour beers like Duchesse de Bourgogne, Oud Gueuze Vieille and Faro Lambic.
Our beer columnist Rebecca Whyman recommends sour beers like Duchesse de Bourgogne, Oud Gueuze Vieille and Faro Lambic. (CBC)
2015: the year of sour beer 8:11

Sour beers like Belgian-style lambics are the new craft beer trend of 2015, according to On the Coast beer columnist Rebecca Whyman.
In fact, three local breweries are already offering sour beers on their menus: Four Winds, Steel & Oak, and Parallel 49.
You may find the flavour a little unusual, but our columnist is here to help with these tips for appreciating this specialty beer:

Learn why the beer is sour

Sour beers have been purposely infected with yeast strains that cause them to taste sour. When this happens by accident, the beer is considered spoiled. When it is done on purpose, it is considered delicious!
Although brewers can guide the sour-making process to some extent, they're never sure what they're going to end up with, because the yeasts are unpredictable.

Know the different types of sour beer

The most popular types of sour beer are lambics, Berliner Weisses, Flanders Reds and Oud Bruins.
Lambics are wild fermented beers, usually aged at least two years. Gueuzes are a blend of young and old lambics.
Sour beers can also be fermented with fruit. These are called krieks when made with cherries, framboise when made with raspberries, bleuet when made with blueberries.
The list goes on through other fruits like apricots, strawberries, peaches, blackcurrants, and grapes.
Faros are low-alcohol sweetened beers made from a blend of lambic and a much lighter freshly brewed beer to which brown sugar is added.

Start with some of our recommendations

Here are some of the sour beers our beer columnist Rebecca Whyman recommends:
Oud Gueuze Vieille
This beer is blended by a master blender from one, two and three year-old lambics. It's bitter and sour and smooth all at the same time, and pairs beautifully with buttery cheeses, like bries and havarti, and sharp cheeses, like cheddar.
Faro Lambic
This beer smells quite sour, but with the brown sugar added to it has a sweetness to go along with its sour apple and cherry flavour. This beer would pair really well with chocolate desserts.
Duchesse de Bourgogne
This Flanders Red is aged for 18 months in oak tuns. This is the most vinegary beer of the three suggestions. The sharpness of this beer actually makes it very thirst-quenching and the high acidity pairs well with most foods. Plus, its red hue makes it a great beer to serve as a very pretty aperitif.
To hear more about sour beers, click the audio labelled: 2015: the year of sour beer.


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