I’ve been noticing quite a few mentions of sour beers recently, and their rising (if still limited) popularity among beverage geeks. These are brews that fill your mouth not with a malty sweetness or hopped-up bitterness but rather a taste more akin to sour gummy worms.
I discovered one I really like one day when I bellied up to the bar at Leon’s Full Service with an unusual request. I specifically wanted a refreshing, low-alcohol beer because I had just been exercising and knew I’d suck it back quickly. The guy behind the bar reached deep into the cooler and pulled out a can of Westbrook Gose — a German-style sour wheat beer brewed with coriander and salt, and clocking in at a very chuggable 4% alcohol. It was perfect, like beer Gatorade.
I found this beer again at Sobban, the exciting new “Korean-Southern diner” from the folks at Heirloom Market BBQ. The beer went really well with the food, like the way an acidic chenin blanc or verdejo white wine might perk up to salty, spicy fare.
Best yet, Westbrook is kinda local, brewed just outside of Charleston. According to its website and other sources, Gose (pronounced “Goes-uh”) beers, which get their bite from a bacterial inoculation, were once nearly extinct, but are starting to come back. Think I need some more Gose and other sour beers in my life.
- by John Kessler for the Food & More blog