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Differences between Lambics, Wilds and Sours?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by pschie1, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. Biffster

    Biffster Savant (365) Michigan Mar 29, 2004


    All true. Thanks. The unmalted wheat was mentioned upthread, but no one mentioned the aged hops. And yes, I was using flora and fauna in the "critters" sense, not in the "there are small animals in there" sense. I'd already created a wall of text and didn't think I should go full dissertation mode since the OP didn't seem like they were asking brewing questions, more compare and contrast.

    But as this thread developed there appears to be enough interest here that it's worth noting in further detail what other process and ingredient specifics makes a lambic a lambic as opposed the the Wild Ales (Oh I hope I got the capitalization right!) that are so popular in the craft beer scene.

    Good Add.
     
    MusicaleMike likes this.
  2. I like how it currently is with American Wild, but it would be nice to have a few widely recognized sub-categories. Calling an American Wild a Lambic would be like calling a sparkling pinot noir from Napa, Champagne.
     
  3. Anthony1

    Anthony1 Savant (345) Colorado May 3, 2009

  4. Yes, it was a nice article! I can tell your audience is more your average Joe than a crazy beer collector...so I like the way it was presented. I like how you mentioned Avery's sour program and Crooked Stave. For me personally, its all about learning. I am really trying to dive back into studying for both beer and wine. My goal is to become a Certified Cicerone and Sommelier. I haven't started the Cicerone program yet. I have procrastinated staring at the dates lol. I have my 1st level Guild Of Sommelier and am beginning to study again. Probably a solid year of a few hours a day of study and blind tasting.
     
  5. Exactly.
     
  6. Once at Cantillon some years agoe, Jean-Pierre van Roy recommended going into the cellar, as they had put the raspberries (IIRC, or was it the cherries for kriek) into the barrels the previous week, and the fermentation spewing out the bung was impressive. That afternoon, Jean van Roy and 2 other younger guys were halving apricots for Fou Foune, and they would take a SS bucket when full down to put the apricots into the barrel for that beer.

    You should read page 45 of Michael Jacksons Beer Compantion (1993) where he talks of "the lambic method is to put the cherries into casks of finished beer, and then allow a further fermentation". He did not say bottles. There are enough bug and critters in lambic that no further wild yeasts are needed from fruit. You should know that sometimes a fresh ale yeast and priming sugar are used when bottling.

    Having made some pseudo-Lambics at home, I can say that you want to make sure you take care racking to the bottling bucket after the fruit has been fermented out, or you end with 1/4 inch or more splooge at the bottom of the bottle. The fruit bits don't taste bad, but detract from the appearance.

    Maybe Mr. Frank Boon can say a few words about his process. He has the knowledge for sure.

    What are you travel and brewing experiences for these type of beers?
     
  7. I've seen some calvados-lambic and other wine or whisky-names in Belgium too. It apparently helps selling beers if a brewer can borrow the reputation of an well known beverage... We should maybe try to avoid it.
    Champagne is protected in Europe and in quite some countries; a brewer using the name "Champagne" may expect a letter from the CIVC to ask him to stop the using of the name. The same is possible for 'Oude Geuze' and 'Oude Kriek', both protected by the EU, but only on a limited scale in the US.
     
    TheodorHerzl likes this.
  8. Tut

    Tut Savant (400) New York Sep 23, 2004

    Well, I certainly stand corrected! I've been into craft beer for over twenty years, read a lot, and have been to Germany, but never heard of it. My sarcasm was out of place - cheers!
     
    DevilsCups likes this.
  9. Avangion

    Avangion Aficionado (110) New York Dec 14, 2012

    This is bullshit. Don't listen to this guy. "Sour" beer is ale brewed in the style made famous in the Lebanese city of Sour, otherwise known as Tyre. They use malts and such.
     
  10. brikelly

    brikelly Savant (405) New Hampshire Apr 11, 2010

    OK, you got me. And I admit it, wild ales are actually made from wildebeest snot. With Brett added.
     
    Avangion likes this.
  11. Absolut

    Absolut Savant (430) California Sep 19, 2011

    well, according to hanging with friends, Lambic is not a word.
     
  12. Avangion

    Avangion Aficionado (110) New York Dec 14, 2012

    Thank you.
     
  13. That's wicked awesome. Thank you for the information!
     
  14. DanK4

    DanK4 Aficionado (240) Maine Jan 17, 2012

    Don't forget Hanssens! Damn good stuff too.
     
  15. ive had the westbrook gose and its sour. if they blend three years of gose, would they call the blended beer gooose or geese
     
    luwak and LambicKing like this.
  16. So we don't capitalize the beginnings of sentences now?
     
  17. Stay on topic. I really hope this to be an informative thread...not one person telling the other person well technically...It appears you are right. My experience is not from taking exotic trips to Belgium, but from understanding what is causing the fermentation. The secondary fermentation occurs in the cask, from the yeast of the skin, before it is bottled and this is the best source period. Anyone who wants to seriously continue to dive into this subject, read this.
    http://allaboutbeer.com/learn-beer/styles/stylistically-speaking/2010/03/lambic/
    Note: I got this thread off the cicerone website and I know Win Bassett and trust anything he puts on All About Beer.
     
  18. Lambic is a young beer. When aged it becomes muttonic.
     
    corby112, Avangion, luwak and 4 others like this.
  19. Sure there are yeasts and bacteria on the fruit skins, but you could put pasteurized fruit juice into the barrels and the sugars would ferment from the established bugs and critters in the lambic and barrels. Making beer, meads, ciders I know that the residual brewers yeast (or Brett and bacteria if a wild) will ferment out any sugars added, even if the sugar solution has been boiled before added.

    I once again recommend Wild Brews by Sparrow. If you are really interested and want to spend time and money to find it, there is the book Lambic by Jean-Xavier Guinard, though out of print and pricey, has some of the best technical information on this style.
     
  20. Yes, according to my phone, it's actually spelled "Limbic ales."
     
  21. Had a bottle of Hanssens Framboise this weekend. For my money, excellent Gueuze.
     
  22. drtth

    drtth Champion (860) Pennsylvania Nov 25, 2007

    That explains why this becomes an emotional topic. :)
     
    luwak and PaulQuinn like this.
  23. Sweet, I just ordered the book off Amazon. Thank you!
     
  24. Thanks to everyone who responded with information, jokes, sarcasm, and arguments. I learned a lot!
     
  25. I LIKE THEM ALL the more sour its is the better
     
  26. Probably the sourest beer I have had is The Bruery Oude Tart. It is even more sour than Cascade Sang Noir or Noyaux! But the latter two are way better ;)
     
  27. WOW, this thread is like a geek paradise!!! Which means to not be misunderstood if that's a good thing or bad, I'm loving it!!!!!!!!! THANKS SOooooo much for all the great education, history meets love to my palate for sure.
     

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