Posts Tagged ‘sour beer’

Blending sour beers at The Trappist with Belgain Brewmaster, Sam Quartier

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Brewmaster Sam Quartier addressing crowd

Yesterday in Oakland, The Trappist saw a visit from Belgain Brewmaster Sam Quartier from Brouwerij Bockor. Sam gave a seminar on blending Flemish sour beers and The Trappist once again provided the venue for a great event.warm up beer: Allagash Curieux The event started at 6pm on St. Patrick’s Day and for a day where ordinaries come out of the closet to swim in Irish beer (or otherwise), I thought it was nice to celebrate the beer portion in an environment with beer lovers who gathered to learn a few things about sours.
Since I was traveling solo, it was good to run into some friends and acquaintances. Present were Justin and Chad from the Brewing Network, Randy and Jessie from, Lee Shephard from the Bay Area Mashers, Beer Chef Bruce Paton, and of course Nicole Erny who was working the event that night. Some of us exchanged buying a coupleunblended lambic from Brouwerij Bockor rounds before the event and I tried Duvel Green for the first time (6.5% non-refermented version of regular Duvel…I like it) and enjoyed an Allagash Curieux, a long time favorite.  I pulled up a stool with a few folks and the seminar got underway with a brief introduction from the Artisanal Imports folks, the carriers for Bockor beers. Then Brewmaster Charles Quartier got started with a history of Belgian beers, his brewery, and other brewery/beer information. The beers we tasted were blends of two beers: a “young beer” (a non-soured wheat beer basically) and a sour version created by cooling the wort on the breweries rooftop….where it gets its wild yeasts. We tried the new beer first (folks who were Cantillon fans said this one was on the sweet side). Then we sampled a blend of that with 25%of the sour beer. Then a 50 50 blend. Then 75 25. With just the sour unblended in the end. During this time Sam was discussing the blends with us and folks asked questions as well. We also talked about the blends amongst ourselves at our table. Great stuff and my idea of fun. The last beer we tried was the sour with a dose malt extract blended in. I enjoyed that one as it had a bit more mouthfeel and maybe some residual sweetness back to a sour that was quite dry (as it should be). The presentation and tastings were worth every bit of the nine bucks I paid at the door.blending new and sour lambic
When the seminar ended and the crowd applauded, we were given the opportunity to try an 85% blend and socialize around.  Got the opportunity to finally meet Brian Hunt from Moonlight Brewing and thank him for all the fine beers he’s produced and I’ve enjoyed. I asked him about “old combine” and he said he has a batch in fermentation right now. Old Combine is a nice grainy lager that has a range of base malts in the mash. Great warmer weather sipper with that nice Moonlight twist to it. I decided to finish off with a Moonlight Bombay by Boat IPA, a little more conversation, and off a few of us went to BART to call it a fairly early night.
Another great event by The Trappist and I look forward to the next one. Like other great events, The Trappist only has to worry about accommodating the bigger and bigger crowds at this point.

Brian Hunt Nicole Erny and Sam Quartier

pic of the week: Russian River Supplication

Friday, February 26th, 2010

Russian River Supplication
Awesome beer and happy to see its return to the market.
Aroma has sour funk horseblanket and some fruit. Sour and tart taste all over the tongue with fink rising up and out of that. Lingering sour tartness. Slight fruit throughout taste and finish.
Highly recommended.

SF Beer Week: Triple Rock’s Sour Monday

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

Like Pliny the Younger, I fear that Triple Rock’s annual sour day is on its way to becoming “legendary”, meaning big huge crowds due to the hype. Rodger Davis mentioned yesterday that it is possible they may have to move the event next year. Triple Rock was packed until the end of the night with sour beer lover’s and if that hype does take hold then you could expect anywhere from double that crowd or greater for next year.
Don’t get me wrong, the event was worth it for being able to try not only Duck Duck Gooze (Lost Abbey) but then walking up to Tomme Arthur and telling him how much you enjoy it. Odonata had their other version of Rosa there. The first version having the Russian River Beatification yeast strain and this version having the Drie Fonteinen yeast strain. Triple Rock had the Drie Fonteinen beer there too so you could compare both. All of this was poured into a tasteful snifter that came with your purchase at the door. The glass with labeled with the Barrel Aged Beer Night but I can see it being too  expensive silk screening glasses for both nights. Not a problem for me….just don’t be confused by the photo below that contains a wonderful sour in the glass.
My personal favorite style is Flanders Red and there where a couple new ones for me (one being Ichtegems) plus three versions of Rodenbach (regular, regular from ’07, and grand cru). 
Some didn’t know but there were sours also being poured at Jupiter down the street and your tokens were good there as well. Jupe had only a small corner devoted to it and there a couple few people around. This is where the Rodenbach was and also a couple by Moonlight Brewing. The Moonlight “60 to life” and Bear Republic’s Belgian Brown with fruit (11% ABV) where definitely worth the two block trip south.
OK now to text between the pics below, follow me (and please click on the photos for a higher res version….PHP does horrible things when shrinking pics):

John Tucci - Brewmaster for GB-SF

Above is John Tucci, trained at Paulaner in Munich and the Brewmaster for Gordon Biersch – SF. What most people don’t know is that John has a barrel of Hefeweizen in his cellar that have brett and bugs pitched into it. He brought a keg. Can you say Hefe with horse blanket? Works for me!

Triple Rock's Sour/Barrel glassware with a sour

Same glass for both Triple Rock festivals. Don’t be fooled, this glass has a beautiful sour beer in it.

Peter Hoey and Rick Sellers from Odonata

The Odonata boys: Peter Hoey and Rick Sellers. They brought their second version of Rosa (the first version was poured at the BN Winterfest). I do have to mention that my favorite Odonata beer so far (and they have all been great, BTW) was their Water Witch Belgian Quad aged in Malbec wine barrels. Oh baby!

Ichtegem's Flanders Red

This beer above was right up my alley. A very nice Flanders Red that I may not have had an opportunity to try otherwise.

Lost Abbey's Duck Duck Gooze

…and the much hyped Duck Duck Gooze. Worth the wait and was very happy I got to try it. A wonderful sour that is not too overly dry (read thin). This was probably the first beer to run out.