Friday, November 11, 2011

Summertime Gose Tasting

A few months back, I came across a post on Beer Advocate in which the OP was searching for various Goses for a tasting that he was going to be hosting.  Not only was he interested in commercial versions, but he also mentioned that he’d love to include some homebrewed varieties.  Since I’ve really only tried one other example of a Gose, I’ve never been sure how my Summertime Gose compared to the standard and this seemed like a perfect opportunity to find out.  So, in exchange for an honest critique, I sent off a bottle to UrbanCaver and the results came back a week or two later.  You can read the full post here ( or just browse his review below.

Review of SonicAlligator's homebrew:

Appearance:  Pours light pale yellow. Lighter then all of the other Goses except the Portsmouth which is similar. Lots of nice white head. Well carbonate. Pretty clear.
Smell:  Smells the best of all the goses sampled. Lots of coriander adds nice lemony characteristics on the nose. A distinct smokiness on the nose. Much more complex than the other Goses but far less smokey than CCB Gose.
Taste:  Tastes lemony and tart. Can definitely taste the lacto (maybe a bit too much) Other than the CCB Gose this is by far smokier than the rest. Coriander spice is strong in this one. Gives lots of lemon zest to the brew. Combined with the lacto tartness and its a bit much in terms of lemony fruitiness. Salt is detectable but doesn't detract from the brew.
Mouthfeel and Drinkability:  Well carbonated mouthfeel. Thick and a bit more "full" of flavour than I would like for this style. Part of the thing I enjoyed about the Portsmouth and Leipziger Goses is that they were light and very refreshing. While this one is a more flavourful complex beer it is not as refreshing as others.

My own notes:  Overall, I’d say I’m fairly happy with the way this one came out.  For my own personal preference, I think the balance of acidity and saltiness is spot on and if I were to brew it again, I might cut back slightly on the coriander.  At the moment it’s present but not overpowering, but I think I’d like it to be a little bit more subtle.  I also agree on the “fullness” as reported by UrbanCaver.  While the beer doesn’t sit heavy by any means, I’d prefer it to be a little lighter feeling so that it would be more refreshing (maybe cut back on the salt?).  Additionally, and this is kind of odd, even after going back and searching for the flavor, I never really was able to pull out the smokiness that they reported.  This probably came from the few cardamom seeds that I threw in, but the flavor comes across to me as a maybe a bit more minty than smoky.  

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