Berliner Weisse style sour ale brewed with lemongrass and ginger
Its name honoring our Somerville homebrewing roots, Somer Weisse began as our answer to a hot July without air conditioning. A few twists on the classic Berliner Weisse style led us to this quencher of thirst. Refreshing and tart, it sprinkles the tongue with the zesty flavors of lemongrass, ginger, and, most importantly, summertime.
Bottled on 4/12/12; Alc. 5.2% by Vol.
We brewed it on 2/15, bottled it on 4/12, and didn’t release it until 5/12, so it aged for about 3 months total before release. We love the spritzer-like texture and lemony flavors. Ginger is well-pronounced without being overbearing. We’d like just a little more sourness in place of some sweetness – batch 2 appears right on track for that.
Bottled on 5/20/12; Alc. 5.5% by Vol.
Very similar to Batch #1 with a little less “bubblegum” flavor and more tartness. Ginger is slightly less pronounced. Very little we’d like to change.
Bottled on 6/18/12; Alc. 4.9% by Vol.
We don’t notice drastic changes in the flavor, but the beer (compared to Batch #1) definitely tastes more developed and complete. A little less acidity than the previous two along with a slightly lower ABV seem to make this beer even more drinkable and refreshing. Because each new batch uses the yeast cake from the batch before it, this beer should evolve nicely from batch to batch.
Bottled on 7/21/12; Alc. 5.2% by Vol.
It looks like we’re acheiving slow but unmistakable development from the lacto strain that originally pitched in Batch #1. This one’s got all the nice characeristics we’ve gotten from the previous batches, but with a touch more (desirable) funk. Tartness balances very nicely with the sweetness here (might also be how refreshing it tastes in this hot July weather).
Bottled on 8/23/12; Alc. 5.6% by Vol.
What can we say – it’s a really consistent beer. Profile is a touch cleaner than Batch #4, but all the tang, citrus, and tartness are there in plenty. Keep the Somer comin!
Bottled on 10/2/12; Alc. 5.8% by Vol.
If you didn’t notice, we’re still brewing this beer even though the summer has long gone away. Batches will slow down during the winter, but certainly not stop – we like this beer just too much. The ABV on this fella keeps creeping up, making this the dryest Somer Weise to date Maybe the biggest difference here, though, is the increased sourness. Now, this is a “sour,” so that’s expected, but this is no doubt the most puckering Somer Weisse to date. We aren’t complaining a bit – tastes fantastic, and will age incredibly well.
Bottled on 10/30/12; Alc. 6.2% by Vol.
ABV’s been sneaking up higher and higher over the last several batches (4.9%, 5.2%, 5.6%, 5.8%, and now 6.2%). What’s going on? Well, starting gravity (amount of initial sugar in the wort) has stayed pretty consistent since Batch #1. So, nothing different on the brewing-side. Where fermentation is concerned, the final gravity’s been dropping bit by bit over these batches. This is the lowest yet, dryest yet, and we’re very satisfied. Sourness is about where Batch #6 was.
Bottled on 1/8/13; Alc. 5.9% by Vol.
The average Somer Weisse batch ages about two months in the fermenter. This one aged a little over three months, and we got ourselves one of the more sour Somer Weisse batches to date. It’s still very dry and lemony like Batch #7, so flavor profile is consistent. There’s just an enhanced tartness from that additional month of aging. Bring on the funk!