Brew Dudes

Homebrewing blog and resource

Flanders Red Surprise

Sour beer brewing is the next frontier in beer home brewing it seems. Its really starting to take off. For John and I its no different. We both have a sour project started and we are talk about what will come next. This week however we revisit my Flanders Red project with a quick tasting and we are pleasantly surprised.

My initial attempt at brewing a sour was sort of doomed before it started. If you recall, I had accidentally froze my Roeselare blend. When I was ready to pitch I had no microbes to pitch. To save the wort I pitched some Saison slurry and I pitched the thawed out Roeselare blend.

Fast forward to 9 plus months later and I had an interesting surprise. The base beer was pretty good, John suggested I split some for carbonation and the rest I would try and resurrect as a sour with fresh extract and a new pitch.

When I racked the beer into two separate vessels (keg and carboy) I tasted a small sample and was surprised at a true touch of sour. I forced carbonated the kegged half and with carbonation it really started to shine.

The beer has a definite clean sour character. Lightly acidic, very little if any acetic acid notes. There is a wood aged quality from the oak cubes and a nice balancing tannin quality late on the palate. The specialty malts and the wood and the sour seems to all come together with a subtle dark cherry Rodenbach like flavor.

Overall, I can’t complain. This one somehow turned around enough to be a minor success. I still have the other half that I plan to reseed and repitch into. From there I use those dregs to start a new 5 gallon batch. Maybe a golden sour is next.
Anyway, I got lucky this time. Pleasantly so.

How are your sour brewing efforts? Are you afraid to sour in your “brew house”?
Let us know with a comment and join the conversation.



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  1. Wow – what a post!

  2. Roger

    I have two going right now. The first is a 1 gallon barleywine that I pitched the dregs from Jester King’s Ambree into about 8 months ago. It smells really good, and I’m looking forward to bottling it & pitching some dregs into another beer. The other is a 5 gallon cyser I made following Bear Flavored’s method of making the cider first, then racking it, pitching some Brett (Brett C) & feeding it honey to bring up the abv to about 14%. I added some oak cubes & have it aging. I checked on it the other day, and I am really looking forward to this one. I think next would be to make a saison & bottling it with some brett to see what happens. But I’ll start that one in a 1 gallon batch for testing. If it goes well, I’ll up it to a full 5 gallon. So far, it’s enjoyable & produces good beer that would retail for quite a bit (it seems most sours are expensive!) I’m not too worried about any contamination. I clean all sour items with a hot water rinse, followed by a soak in pbw. Nothing so far, but if it happens, I like sours. I’ll call it an experimental batch & move on. Good luck with the rest of the batch, and it’s nice to hear that this turned out good! Enjoy!

  3. Thanks Roger!

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