When Is It Considered a Sour?

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Virginia_Ranger

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Recently just finished a Stout I did with 3 lb raspberries to 4 gallons beer and its freakin delicious. While tasting it with the fiancee she asked me so is this a stout or a sour? Just the day before we had a Raspberry Berliner Weiss that was very good but really had a similar taste profile (minus the stoutyness). Obviously a Berliner Weiss is a sour style and this a stout with a ton of raspberry added.

What do you consider a sour? Is it by taste or process / style?
 
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Virginia_Ranger

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"Sour" isn't a style, it's a taste. It's not uncommon for stouts to taste a little acidic.
To clarify I also mean the act of intentionally souring i.e. kettle souring vs. sour taste from fruit tartness or other non Berliner Weiss style attributes.
 

RPh_Guy

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There are a few different ways to produce sour taste in beer:
  • Lactic acid bacteria -- most traditional
  • Fruit
  • High percentage of acidulated malt
  • Adding acid directly (e.g. lactic acid)
  • Yeast that produce acid or leave a tartness
If it's fruit-forward from added fruit, I'd classify that as a fruit beer (BJCP 29A). Sourness is part of the fruit flavor profile.

But it's your beer so you're free to call it whatever you want I guess :)
 
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