5 Best Fruited Sours of 2021
Looks like you've taken the red pill. Welcome to wonderland! Fruited sours are complex, funky beers that have mimicked decadent treats from cheesecake to berries and cream and beyond. There are no boundaries or limits in the Matrix of fruited sours.
On paper according to the Brewers Association fruited sours are characterized for their moderate to intense, yet balanced fruity esters. Brewers utilize natural microflora like Brettanomyces (often known as just Brett), lactobacillus (often referred to as "lacto"), or Pediococcus (sometimes known just simply as "pedio") to create the incredible funky and intense flavors that define this style.
Sour beers were actually a happy accident. Way back in the day, brewers stored beer in wooden barrels or open-air vessels called coelships. While fermenting in these lidless tanks the beer picked up natural microbes and wild yeast in the air that actually gave a distinct funkiness to the final flavor.
Sounds kind of simple right? I mean don't the natural microflora do all the work? It's a little more complicated than that and since souring beer is really a living, breathing process it can be tricky for brewers to nail. But, for you the drinker it means that pretty much every sour beer you drink is one hundred percent unique.
With fruited sours in particular, brewers add an additional layer of complexity by choosing from a cornucopia of fruit to add to the base beer during fermentation. And nowadays, no fruit or ingredient is off the table. Brewers explore the whole harvest from the staple blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries to lesser-known fruits like passionfruit, guava, boysenberry, marionberry, and black currants.
More and more these fruited sours have become whimsical, wacky interpretations of beer. Some take inspiration from popular desserts and treats like lollipops, ice cream, popsicles, pies, crumbles, or smoothies while others simply indulge in smashing as much fruit as possible into one can.
Regardless, drinking a fruited sour can whisk you away into a new magical world, a particular nostalgic childhood memory, or even just a beautiful, bountiful orchard.
Below check out the current highest rated Fruited Sours on Untappd in 2021.
1. Even More Hydra - ET NYC Edition - Evil Twin Brewing
2. HYDRA OF THE DEPTHS - HOMES Brewery
3. Slang Du Jour - Raspberry Cheesecake - Drekker Brewing Company
4. Quad Mmm….J.R.E.A.M (Papaya, Pineapple, Peach, Passionfruit) - Burley Oak Brewing Company
5. Marshmallow Smoothie Sour: Blueberry Raspberry Blackcurrant - Vault City Brewing
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If you think these fruited sours are crazy you should see some of the craziest beers Hop Culture Founder Kenny Gould tries each week. On each episode of The Craziest Beer I Had This Week, Kenny drops a new crazy beer he's cracked. Watch this week's episode and don't forget to subscribe to Hop Culture's YouTube channel so you never miss a beat on the wild beer Kenny drinks next!