9 Jul 2010

Appropriately Sour

The other day, at the end of my review of Espresso Oak Aged Yeti, I told you that my friend Todd had brought me another two beers, which, like the one from Great Divide, were waiting for their respective appropriate moments. And one of them had it.

After the debacle that was Argentina's elimination from the World Cup, the situation and the mood called for a sour beer, and there was Russian River Supplication.

I approached it with some wariness. I still haven't fully developed the taste for these beer family and Todd had told me that this one was really, really sour. On the other hand, and just like Yeti, Supplication looked quite interesting on paper. According to the brewer, it is a Sour Ale aged 12-15 months in oak barrels formerly used for Pinot Noir wines in company of sour cherries, brettanomyces, lactobacilus and pediococcus (if you want to know what these bugs are, look them up).
What a nice surprise Supplication was! Perhaps it was the bad taste I was left with after the game, or it might be that my palate has already got used to these beers, but I didn't find it so sour as other sour brews I've had. It is very well balanced. The nose, besides some tropical fruit, has a strong presence of sour oranges (they reminded me to those that grew in the street my grandmother lived). The sourness is very well integrated to a mix of fruit and darker berries along with, once again, those same sour oranges. A very, very pleasant beer, with a much higher drinkability than I'd expected, so much that I wouldn't have minded drinking another bottle had I had one, 7%ABV notwithstanding.

Later in the evening, with our roasted chicken dinner, we drank a bottle of Trapiche Collección Roble - Chardonnay 2008, a lovely wine that the Vietnamese in Dejvická had at a hilarious price. Curiously, I found in that wine those same sour orange notes of Supplication (something confirmed by my dad, who had a couple of sips of the beer and a couple of glasses of the wine). Interesting.
On a side note, but keeping with the sour beer topic, the day after I found in my cellar one bottle of that Strawberry Weizen I had brewed in honour of the birth of my daugther (yeah, it's been a year already, hard to believe). That was an even greater surprise! Not only the beer was still drinkable, but, after aging for one year it had considerably improved. The flavours were rounder and smoother, it wasn't so red and it was more alive than when fresh, it even had a head! Curious and very pleasant.

Na Zdraví!

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4 comments:

  1. I popped open a bottle of barleywine that I brewed in November, and dry hopped for 2 months before bottling, to see if it was going ok, it is for Thanksgiving. Man, that stuff is good! What it will be like in November is anyone's guess, but I am optimistic. I am planning to stash a few bottles for future years, just to see how it ages.

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  2. To be honest, before opening it, I thought it was going to be crap. Never been more glad about being wrong. It's a pity I wasn't able to brew it again this year, but I most certainly will next and I'll keep a couple of bottles for 2012

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  3. Sorry about Argentina, thought they would Win !. At Least you Had a Good Beer !. Will Bring estudiantes Programme in Oct. Sheffield United Have Ties with them.

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  4. I actually didn't expect them to win (nor would they have surprised me had they won), I was disappointed by the way they loss. Anyway, I have more important things to care about....

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