Sour or wild beer is beer that has been exposed to "wild" yeast or bacteria
rather than exclusively fermented with "pure" yeast. The resulting beer is
generally sour or tart in nature, though the intensity varies greatly by style,
extent of exposure, producer and intent. The wild yeast/bacteria could be the dominant
part of the fermentation or merely ancillary. The flavors and aromas produced
are very complex; from intensely acidic, to rich fruity "cherry pie", pineapple,
"barnyard", or lactic.
Traditional examples are quite dry, as nearly all residual sugar in the beer is
consumed by the yeast and bacteria. Occasionally sour beers are blended with
older vintages of the same beer or with fruit, such as tart cherries or
raspberries, to add complexity. To make the beer more widely marketable, some
producers stunt fermentation by pasteurizing and sweetening to mask the natural
sourness, though this practice is shunned by most purists and labeled
YES and space is limited, we may accept registrations at the door if there is room. Remember your ID!
We hope it worked as expected and if you got an email confirmation you are all set! If you ran into problems please email (preferred) or call us before the day of the event to verify! We will get back to you within a day.
IMPORTANT: If you don't bring anything to share, you won't receive any drink tickets and thus cannot participate. You'll have to nag your friends for a sip or steal from strangers, neither of which is very nice. Your best bet is to run over to a nearby beer retailer to buy some! Or you could just drink beer at our host bar, but they are certain not to have the crazy selection we do and staring at us would be creepy.
Bring a bottle (or three) of commerically produced sour/wild ale or saison (preferrably cold). Don't know what that is? Read on and ask your favorite quality beer store for help & recommendations! A list of many (but certainly not all) acceptable beers is available here.
Duplicate beers are OK! Having multiple bottles allows more people to try each beer.
A list of what other people are planning on bringing will be updated online daily once registration opens. (More soon...)
We see a large quantity of certain beers, such as Duchesse De Bourgogne, which makes the event less interesting. We encourage you to spend time looking for unique examples. If too many people register the same beer, we will contact them and suggest alternates. If you have an older vintage of a common beer, then that is likely OK.
The focus of this tasting event is to promote traditional sour ales. However, we
will allow a limited amount of sweetened examples to be shared in an effort to
educate participants on the differences between traditional and nontraditional
products. Please be aware that most breweries that produce sweetened examples
also have some traditional ones available, search those out. E.G. Lindemans
Gueuze Cuvée René or De Troch Chapeau Oude Kriek. HINT: For lambics, the
designation of "Oude" in the name implies that the product is traditionally
produced (at least most of the time).
Sorry no, this event is for commercially produced beer. We are homebrewers ourselves but due to legal constraints it is not possible.
Most specialty liquor stores should have at least a couple, though some stores carry way more than others.
Suggested Twin Cities Beer Sellers
Suggested NYC Beer Sellers
We are selling copies of Tim Webb's book LambicLand (2nd ed), which is a wonderful complete look at the producers of lambic beer in Belgium and the places that serve it. You can support us best by buying directly online by contacting us.
The 2009 WHERE THE WILD BEERS ARE poster was created by Minneapolis artist Vincent Stall and will be
available for purchase at the event or by contacting us online. It was produced in a limited edition
run of 50 and are signed/numbered by Vincent, aka King Mini.
If you are a production brewery that produces wild/sour/saison beer and would like to donate beer or swag, we'd certainly welcome your contributions and add you as a sponsor!
If you are interested in being a pourer or volunteer for the event, please contact us.