Le Terroir Wood Aged Dry Hopped Sour Ale by New Belgium Brewing Co.
Brewery: New Belgium Brewing Co
Beer Style: Sour
Beer God’s Notes
I shared this beer with a co-worker and one of the co-owners of Community Beer Works. We both tasted the beer, and took our own separate notes and will cross-post once they are both written. His link can be found here. Check it out and see how we both felt about this beer.
My first thought was that this was about the color I expected it to be. Being oak aged, I expected the oak to add at least a little bit of color to this brew. I wasn’t wrong, the color was a dark hazy orange even in my bright white coffee mug (yay for beers tastings at work!)
My first taste really was a kick in the tastebuds. The sourness of this was pretty strong. It really fought with my tongue at first and I couldn’t taste much else. Once you finished your sip, the subtle wood and charred notes were there. I was actually surprised at the amount of flavor that the wood gave this sour.
Yes, Le Terroir is a pretty sour sour. Yes, that sentence does make sense. But it was also pretty well balanced. I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t know enough about sours to talk about them for hours, but I am surprised when I can drink it and feel like I am getting the full package. The insane sour is up front and the woodiness was all in the finish.
New Belgium’s Le Terroir 2016 was a beer best shared with friends. I’m excited to see what Dan has to say, and how much we agree or disagree about this beer.
Le Terroir: French, meaning ‘from the terrain, soil, land, ground, earth.’ You may have heard it as a wine term speaking of the environmental conditions of the vineyard, the pH of the soil, even the slope of the land. But beer has it too, especially a New Belgium sour beer, which oozes terroir from the pores of the wooden foeders we age it in. Le Terroir is a complex blend of sour Felix, and then dry-hopped with Amarillo and, for 2016, Crystal hops. The result is a fruity, citrusy, winelike drink with a huge hop nose
YEAST: Lager Yeast
MALTS: Pale, Wheat, C-80, Carapils, Oats
SPECIAL PROCESSING: Dry Hopped with Amarillo and a little Crystal in stainless tanks in wood cellar.
VISUAL: Golden orange hazy glow.
AROMA: Juicy ripe passionfruit and orange citrus, soft overripe peaches, slight earthy wood beer funk!
FLAVOR: Fruity and tart, with notes of lemongrass and mango. Amarillo’s tropical fruit notes and the barrel’s soft fruit sours seem to be the perfect marriage.
MOUTHFEEL: Tart, juicy, and dry, fast on the tongue.