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Old 07-15-2010, 05:44 AM   #1
ballzac
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Default How to enjoy a sour?

Okay, so I have tried a couple of flemish ales and quite enjoy them, but when it comes to lambics, the only ones I can enjoy are the girly ones like Lindeman's framboise.

I continue to try the more respected examples in an effort to train my palette, but it doesn't seem to work. I know how much people are missing out on when they turn their noses up at really good beers. A good example for me would be Aventinus Eisbock, which a lot of my friends cannot drink, but they are missing the point of this wonderful beer.

So, in an effort to avoid making the same mistake myself, I want to learn about how to enjoy a good sour beer. Examples I have tried are Cantillon Gueuze, Oud Beersel (a couple of different ones), Lindeman's Cuvee Rene Kriek, and plenty of others.

The Cantillon and the Oud Beersel I could really see potential enjoyment in. They have a wonderfully complex 'funky' aroma, similar to a good aged cheese. However, when I put it to my lips, all I taste is 'sour'. I really could not tell the difference if I was drinking straight lemon-juice (but perhaps the lemon juice would be less sour).

These beers are so well respected by the craftbrewing community. I want to know what I am missing. I really enjoy the sweet and sour balance of the flemish ales and some of the sweeter lambics, but the latter I enjoy more like a soft-drink, as they don't seem to have much complexity. I quite like the tart finish though, it leaves me wanting more. Can't get that from the gueuzes etc. though. Please help me

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Old 07-15-2010, 06:12 AM   #2
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Maybe your taste buds just don't dig the sour. We're not all the same when it comes to tasting. Something to with the various taste receptors and their numbers and distribution on your tongue. Ol factory receptors follow the same rules.

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Old 07-15-2010, 06:13 AM   #3
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+1. Just because they are respected doesn't mean they will agree with your palate.

Personally, I'm not crazy about beers labeled gueuze and straight lambic, but the Russian River sours (well, Beatification is a little over the top) are just right to me. Rodenbach Grand Cru is another Goldilocks beer.

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Old 07-15-2010, 06:20 AM   #4
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It seems a shame if I miss out on the enjoyment that others find in these beverages, but if you guys are right then I might just have to accept it

The only place nearby that stocks Rodenbach is out of stock at the moment, but I want to try it. One that I found that I quite like is Liefmans Goudenband. Again, the palate is kind of sweet, but the finish is JUST tart enough to make me smack my lips and leave me wanting another sip.

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Old 07-15-2010, 06:41 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ballzac View Post
The only place nearby that stocks Rodenbach is out of stock at the moment
You gotta get the Grand Cru. It's like 2/3rds aged beer instead of the 1/4th of the regular. Makes all the difference!
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Old 07-15-2010, 09:32 AM   #6
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http://www.slowbeer.com.au/index.php...&productId=250
Sounds great. I might have to enquire about when it's gonna be in next.
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Old 07-15-2010, 12:36 PM   #7
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Sit down with a bottle of sour ale and the BJCP guidelines. Try to pick out the flavors described for the style. Take you time and make a game out of it. I hope this helps because there are a lot of complexities and it’s more than just tart. A good example of a complex sour beer is La Folie from New Belgium if you could get it. Another Idea would be to start with the Lindeman’s Framboise and blend it with strait Lambic. Keep adding more lambic until the sweetness fades and you are drinking just lambic.

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Old 07-15-2010, 01:38 PM   #8
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i've never had to train my taste buds to like something. if i don't dig it, i'll just take a pass on it. that being said, my tastes do change over time. maybe but a bottle or two and try em in six months. you never know what you'll like tomorrow.

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Old 07-15-2010, 02:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FromZwolle View Post
i've never had to train my taste buds to like something. if i don't dig it, i'll just take a pass on it. that being said, my tastes do change over time. maybe but a bottle or two and try em in six months. you never know what you'll like tomorrow.

Well said!

Horseblanket used to repulse me
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Old 07-15-2010, 02:21 PM   #10
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Sours are definitely an acquired taste. A lot of them go against what we classify in our minds as what beer is supposed to taste like. Most people don't like the first IIPA they taste either.

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