Sour beer drinkers sure can rack up a bar tab. I’m one of them. Despite how worthy of my dollars I know those tart, nuanced beers to be, every so often I experience the buyer’s remorse of sipping one too many sours.
Lucky for fellow pucker lovers and me, American craft brewers are brewing more and more kettle-soured beers, speeding up their production time and therefore lowering their cost. If you’re drinking sour beer on a budget, try some of these brews.
Tart n’ Juicy Sour IPA
Epic Brewing Company (Denver, Colorado)
Tart ‘n Juicy is a 4.5 percent ABV, kettle-soured India Pale Ale with bright notes of grapefruit, agave, tangerine, and passion fruit. The beer is loaded with Citra and Amarillo hops. Six-packs of 12-ounce cans of this beer became available at the beginning of April.
Passionfruit Sour Ale
Breakside Brewing (Portland, Oregon)
This wheat beer, Breakside’s summer seasonal, is inspired by the traditional German-style Berliner Weisse. It’s kettle-soured and conditioned in lagering tanks on passion fruit before it goes into 22-ounce bombers, which usually cost less than $10. Also available at that price point is Breakside’s dry-hopped sour ale, La Tormenta.
Night Shift Brewing (Everett, Massachusetts)
Mainer Weisse is a deep purple-colored, kettle-soured Berliner Weisse aged with Maine wild blueberries and cinnamon sticks. This seasonal offering from Night Shift Brewing weighs in at only 3.4 percent ABV.
Funkwerks Inc. (Fort Collins, Colorado)
Funkwerks’ spring seasonal is a sessionable Belgian-style sour ale that uses a 24-hour warm souring technique using Lactobacillus in the wort. Apricot Provincial is fermented with a Belgian wheat yeast strain famous for fruity flavors and a dry finish. This tart fruit beer is effervescent with a citrusy apricot aroma, and it’s only 4.2 percent ABV.
Blood Orange Gose
Anderson Valley Brewing Company (Boonville, California)
It’s true that Anderson Valley brought Gose back in the United States. They did so with the addition of blood oranges during fermentation of this tart and refreshing sour wheat ale brewed with salt and coriander.
Westbrook Brewing Company (Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina)
Another Gose with an approachable price point comes from Westbrook Brewing Company. Westbrook’s Gose is 4 percent ABV and true to style, a sour wheat ale brewed with coriander and salt. This beer is available seasonally in 22-ounce bombers.
Athena Paradiso with Tart Cherry, Raspberry, and Cranberry
Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (Athens, Georgia)
This beer from Creature Comforts Brewing Co. is a bright pink fruited version of the brewery’s popular Athena Paradiso Berliner Weisse. This 4.5 percent ABV brew is available in 4-pack cans.
Perennial Artisan Ales (St. Louis, Missouri)
Here’s another Gose—this one made with Valencia oranges, key lime, and Meyer lemon— that is just as inexpensive to buy as it is easy to pound on the patio.
Off Color Brewing (Chicago, Illinois)
Even more Gose. This one is a blend of two beers: “one is an uninteresting wheat beer, and the second is an overly acidic and funky beer fermented solely with Lactobacillus,” says Off Color’s website. Upon blending, coriander and salt are added. This 4.3 percent ABV brew is available in 12-ounce bottles.
August Schell Brewing Company (New Ulm, Minnesota)
Did someone order a Gose? This beer pours golden orange with a thick white foam head. It’s light and citrusy tartness is backed by a bready, wheat malt character and a touch or coriander spice. It’s available in 12-ounce bottles, and it pairs well with summertime.
Rhinegeist Brewing (Cincinnati, Ohio)
This German gose is sour and salty with a peachy punch from peaches added during fermentation. It’s a great thirst quencher for your next beach picnic. Find it on draft or in 12-ounce cans.