Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Homebrew Tasting - Russian River Golden Sour

It took me a little while to get this tasting done, but I think this beer could use even more age. Here is a link to the brewing and periodic updates of the beer. It started from Belgian Golden Strong wort that was inoculated with dregs from Russian River's Consecration. Overall, I'm happy with how the beer turned out. Currently, the beer is nothing fantastic, but I'm excited where it could go. And I think it makes a great base beer to add fruit to. My attempt with adding a pound of fresh frozen Persimmons didn't have much of an effect on the final beer other than adding some acid (tastes like citric acid). If you want to add persimmons to a beer I would suggest adding more than 1 lb per gallon and make sure it is a beer that can take some acidity. I actually think it would be great in brighting up a light sour beer like Berliner Weiss.
Going forward using Russian River dregs, I will make sure that the wort is complex. I guess it makes sense if you look at how most Russian River beers are designed. They have a good mix of ingredients and don't rely solely on the yeast to add flavor. For example, Russian River's Supplication is a brown ale base with cherries and even more flavor complexity added from used Pinot Noir barrels that contribute oak and strong wine flavors.


  1. I think you're right on with your observation that base beer complexity is key to final product flavor profile when it comes to sour beers. The few I've made and tasted are good but lack something. Age? Fruit? I assume the wood aging that Consecration is subjected to makes a huge difference in the ending flavor/complexity as well. Using oak properly in a homebrew setting seems like one of the hardest things to master.

    1. Well, I think it really matters on the yeast and bacteria present. For example, Sanctification the 100% Brett beer Russian River produces is just a simple Golden Ale base wort and it is excellent. By the way the new batch just came out, I picked up a bottle at Best Damn Beer Shop, but haven't opened it yet.

      And my Brett Only beer with Avery 15 dregs (Drie Brett strains) is one of the more complex beers I have had. And the good news for you is that White Labs will be releasing it this summer. Let me know if you want some before the release, I'm currently building up a big starter.


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