Raspberry sour beer tasting

Senses Working Overtime

I’m thrilled to be working with Beer & Brewer magazine writing a regular column called Senses Working Overtime where I focus on beer tasting tips and seasonal styles.

You can find my first piece ‘Have sour beers hit the sweet spot?’ in the summer 2021/2022 edition. I looked at how to approach tasting sour beers and why they are so popular. It allowed me to chat with local brewers to get their views on production of sour beers, consumer reactions to them, popular styles and where they see trends going as more brewers experiment with sours.

As part of my research, I got in touch with three brewers based around Adelaide in South Australia. Here’s a snapshot of what I learned.

Little Bang Brewing absolutely love their fruity sours. When I spoke with brewer Fil Kemp they were coming up to 10 sours in their range including a barrel-aged cherry beer that was launched at a sour beer dinner in October 2021. Face Inverter Sour was developed initially as a bit of a ‘one-off joke beer’ and contains loads of lemon juice and puckering sourness. It’s been so popular that they regularly scour suppliers for enough lemon juice as it now forms part of their core range.

Big Shed Brewing Concern have released at least 17 sour beers since 2019 and have a fruited sour on tap all year round. Flavours have included peach, mango, raspberry, strawberry, cranberry, passionfruit, grape, pickles, hops and fruity combinations. Brewery operations manager Pete Bradley (aka Pistol Pete) has learned that if the pH of a beer is in the realm of white wine it makes for a good balanced palate keeping consumers coming back for more.

Everyone in the Aussie beer industry knows what a good pub The Wheatsheaf Hotel is. They have brewed under The Wheaty Brewing Corps brand since 2014. One of their main stayers in the range is Black Lime Gose – one of the first sours I tried. The Gose and Dangerzone, a raspberry Berlinner Weisse, have formed part of their core range to please punters. Pub owner, Jade Flavell, claims that sours are here to stay and believes the key is flavour balance. Sours have found favour with many wine and cider drinkers and beer fans with a maturing palate. 

Beer and Brewer magazine autumn article Briony

Articles to date:

  • Spring 2022 The nose knows – diving into our sense of smell
  • Summer 2022/2023 Good taste, bad taste – how beer tasting is a multi-sensory experience

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I look forward to exploring more topics in depth and sharing my passion for beer and encouraging better appreciation of beer on a wider scale.

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