From Mission BC’s Mission Springs Brewing comes their “Cherry Bomb Belgian Pale Ale”. This pale ale pours a deep copper colour with a tan head that dissipates quickly with minimal lacing. The aroma consists of caramel malts, cherries and some floral aspects at the finish. The flavour is of caramel malts with a mix of dark and sour cherries, tartness and some hops bitterness to finish it off. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 28. The brew has just enough cherries in it to add a very interesting flavour to the beer without being overpowering. Kevin has really hit the mark with this one.
Commercial Description: Inspired by the traditional farmhouse ales of Belgium, this unique and delicious pale ale uses imported malts and classic “Saison” influence and is fermented with just the right amount of dark and sour cherries. Exceptionally Sessionable! Not only is it fruity & spicy, but it’s thirst quenching and pairs well with hearty food — once a delight for the hard-working farmer! Cherry Bomb can be described easily by saying it is “fermented with just the right amount of dark and sour cherries!
From Southeast Portland Oregon’s The Commons Brewery comes their “Brotherly Love” 2014 Edition. This beer is part of the Beetje Series named after the Flemish word for “Little bit” it celebrates the Garage Brewery where The Commons Brewery began. These beers are all small batch experimental beers. The Brotherly Love is a Belgian Dark Strong Ale that is aged in second use Bourbon barrels with sour cherries and Cocoa Nibs from both Trinidad and Peru. The beer pours a deep brown almost opaque with a tan head. The aroma consists of cocoa, sour cherries, roasty malts, bourbon, oak and maybe some yeast. The flavour is of roasted malts, bourbon, cocoa, oak, sour cherries, yeast and dark fruits. The alcohol comes in at a cool 10% alcohol although that does not come through in the flavour one bit. This is an amazingly crafted ale and I would love to have a few more bottles of this kicking around (sadly I don’t).
Commercial Description: Brotherly Love is our Belgian Dark Strong Ale, Little Brother, aged in second-use Bourbon barrels with Northwest grown sour cherries and Ecuadorian cacao nibs roasted by Woodblock Chocolate in SE Portland.
From Victoria BC’s Driftwood Brewing comes the “Bird Of Prey” a re-release of Driftwood’s first every Sour Ale a Flanders Red Ale. The original release came out in November 2011 and started their Bird Of Prey series of Sour Ales. This version was released in February 2014. This Flanders Red Ale pours a deep amber/red with an off white head. The aroma consists of sweetness, sour cherries, fruits, oak and mild funkiness. The flavour is of grape must, sour cherries, oak, tannins, candies, mild funky sourness. The beer comes in at an alcohol content of 7.5%. I think this beer will be amazing in a year or two with aging. Currently the flavours a muted and a bit muddled much like many very young sours. I have 5 bottles of this beer put away so I will keep everyone up to date on how this beer ages. I recommend picking up a few bottles and aging them.
Commercial Description: The return of the original Bird of Prey from Driftwood Brewery’s Wild Ale series, this sour ale was inspired by a Coopers Hawk that took residence in the brewery for 24 hours in November 2011. Brewed in its honour, this very unique sour beer has been conditioned in a mix of American and French oak wine barrels for a year, creating a dry, sour & funky profile that will continue to evolve in the bottle for a very long time.
From Victoria BC’s Driftwood Brewing comes the “Belle Royale (Sour Cherry Wild Ale)” a limited release brew part of the Birds Of Pray Series. This beer has been aged in American oak Barrels for 18 months with wild yeast. The beer pours a light rose red colour with a red head. The aroma consists of sour cherries, brett and an overall tarness. The flavour is of tartness, sour cherries, funk, brett, wood notes and an overall sweetness. The alcohol content of the brew is 8%. This is an amazing sour beer and one of the best being brewed in British Columbia.
Commercial Description: Crafted with local Island malt and Morello sour cherries followed by over 18 months of maturing in select American oak barrels conditioned with wild yeasts has evolved Belle Royale into a very complex, yet classic, taste experience! We have done all the ageing for you, so enjoy it now!
Food Pairing according to O’hare’s Beer Club notes are as follows: Chocolate Cheesecake
From Bend Oregon’s Deschutes Brewery comes “The Dissident 2012 Reserve” a Flanders Oud Bruin style sour ale. This beer was released in August 2012 and has an open bottle date of 08/20/2013 (I opened my first bottle in January 2013). This beer is aged for a full 18 months in wine barrels before release and they recommend a full year of ageing in bottles. This just shows the time that can be required for a good beer to be ready for consumption. This Oud Bruin poured a reddish/brown with an off white head. The aroma consisted of sour cherries, vinegar and some oak. The flavour was of sour cherries, vinegar, tartness and some oak. The alcohol content comes in at 11.4% and the IBU is 18. This beer at 6 months tasted amazing! I can not wait for the 1 year point for bottle number 2.
Commercial Description: The Dissident is an Oud Bruin, a distinctive Flanders-style sour brown ale, with a heavenly aroma and flavor. Our first and only wild yeast beer, we use Brettanomyces to give The Dissident its characteristic sour taste. Our stiffest brewing challenge, it must be fermented in isolation from our other beers for a full 18 months, partly in pinot and cabernet barrels. The words coddled and “worth it” come to mind.
Food pairing as per Deschutes Brewery: Dark Chocolates, Brie, Spaghetti Carbonara, Macaroni & Cheese