By Jake Endres, co-owner
For most of you reading this, gose is probably a familiar style. Classically a German style of tart wheat ale with salt, it's become mostly known as a fruited sour with little-to-no salinity being made by a lot of U.S. breweries. We released our first gose in quite some time (generally, we've stuck to brewing Berliner weisses) called Viva, and the followup, Waterfall, this weekend.
Recently, we decided to step away from using so much lactose in our kettle sours, so we wanted a new line of sours, and gose seemed like a natural choice. I wanted something that was super refreshing, easy to drink, and unique. Since contemporary Berliners and goses have little to no difference, we wanted our gose to first and foremost have salt. All of our other past goses have had noticeably salinity. (I feel like if you want to make a gose with no salt, just call it a Berliner, but I digress.) Last year, we released Materia, a gose with black currants, blueberries, and Tannat grapes. We all really liked this beer with its interesting combination of berries, wine grapes, and saline.
We decided to try the same thing again, but to aim for a beer that was less sour. Our lactobacillus strain usually caps out at 3.2. By carefully monitoring PH during the souring process, we pasteurized the beer when it hit a PH of 3.7. We add a healthy amount of salt at 150 grams per BBL to the whirlpool. In the fermenter, we try to stick to two different fruits plus one wine grape.
The interplay between the different ingredients is really cool--the salt compliments the fruit and makes it even more refreshing. Viva was a blend of watermelon, strawberries, and syrah juice. Waterfall is peaches, plums, and Riesling. Our next gose, Mirage, will be a blend of prickly pear, grapefruit, and grenache.
The reception for these beers has been pretty good so far. Personally, I'm not the biggest kettle sour drinker but I have really enjoyed these beers. They're just very drinkable, not overly fruited, and I think they're going to get even better as we fine tune this series.
If you're a fan of our sweeter, pastry style Berliners, don't worry. They're coming back in a retooled form soon too. Stay tuned!