Sour hits sweet spot

03 August, 2018

Clearly, Brewdog has seen plenty here to bite into and it has shipped in former Wicked Weed brewer Richard Kilcullen to head up its sour project, which has been given the name Overworks. Kilcullen’s approach to the concept is meticulous, based on precise science and good practice rather than, as he puts it, “letting the sticks fall where they may”, which some people might assume to be the case with such an offbeat style of brewing.

He’s also pragmatic and measured about how sour a beer needs to be. “I’m not a shock doctor,” he says. “I’m here to create balanced, sessionable beer that’s complex and enjoyable but I’m not going to make something sour for sour’s sake.” He offers a glass of a beer he calls Pyraster. This is a pear sour, partly fermented with wild yeast harvested from local blackberries. It has the definitive wild yeast dryness and a pleasantly tart, fruity flavour but it’s not mouth-puckeringly sour or acidic.

There will always be beers out there that really curl the tongue and recede the gums, but sour beer, as Kilcullen rightly points out, can also be delicate, the acidity and tartness providing just a refreshing alternative to the mainstream.

Surprisingly to many drinkers, it is often far more accessible than its name suggests and perhaps explains why James Watt seems rather sanguine about the large financial commitment Brewdog is making. This is one investment that may leave a sour taste in the mouth for all the right reasons.





Digital Edition

Drinks International digital edition is available ahead of the printed magazine. Don’t miss out, make sure you subscribe today to access the digital edition and all archived editions of Drinks International as part of your subscription.

Comment

Tess Posthumus

Staffing crisis could open opportunities

The pandemic has thrown many challenges at bar owners over the past couple of years and the ones that survived the various lockdowns and restrictions deserve a pat on the back. However, while revenues are returning and bars are beginning to recruit once more, we’ve come up against a whole new set of problems, one of which is a global starring crisis.

Instagram

Facebook