Sour Beer Facts


The second Saturday of September is Sour Beer Day! In honor of this quirky beer, here are some of the facts about this tart, sweet beer. There are six varieties of sour ales: American Wild Ale, Berliner Weisse, Flanders Red Ale, Gose, Lambic & Oud Bruin

  • Sour beer originated in Belgium but has spread across Europe and the US.
  • Sour beers are made by intentionally allowing wild yeast strains or bacteria into the brew, unlike modern brewing that are produced in a sterile environment.
  • The most common agents used to deliberately sour beer are Lactobacillus, Brettanomyces, and Pediococcus
  • The tart flavor can also be accomplished by adding fruit during the aging process to push a secondary fermentation or microbes present on the fruit’s skin
  • Sour beers come in a variety of colors:  from pale ales to sours that almost look like porters or stouts
  • Since wild yeast is unpredictable, the sour beer brewing process is extremely fickle and takes months to ferment and years to mature
  • Because of the sour beer brewing process many breweries have a special sour brewing room or building for their sour beers permanently away from their modern brewed beers

We bet you’re craving a nice cold sour ale right about now!

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Reader Interactions


  1. Grant says

    Man they don’t teach this good stuff at my College but they sure do drink a lotta beer around here at SOU. Prolly cause we all drink the cheap stuff.

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