Souring on regular beer
At some point or another, everything old is new again. In the last decade, we’ve seen Brussels sprouts and tater tots soar back into the limelight, and while beers made with wild yeasts (particularly Brettanomyces) or by spontaneous fermentation were once as common as Budweiser in the Old World, they’ve been the darlings of beer nerds stateside for at least half a decade. Now, they’re seeing a resurgence around the zymurgylogical world. (This could be yet another point in what former Food & Wine editor Dana Cowin has called the “Impressionist painting” of the fermentation food trend, which also brought new and newfound popularity for everything from pickles and sauerkraut to kimchi and kombucha.) Earlier this decade, brewmeisters such as Ron Gansberg of Portland’s Cascade Brewing began tinkering with sour and wild beers — an umbrella that can cover a number of popular styles with recognizable monikers like farmhouse, saison, lambic, Berliner weisse, and gose, among others. Now they’re showing up in bottles, glasses, and growlers across Santa Fe. Some venues serve beers brewed elsewhere — Fire & Hops (222 N. Guadalupe St.) taps the Anniversary Saison from Albuquerque’s La Cumbre Brewing, and even Cowgirl BBQ (319 S. Guadalupe St.) makes room on their tap list for O’Dell Brewing’s blackberry gose. But local breweries are now creating their own, too. Second
Street Brewery (1814 2nd St. and 1607 Paseo de Peralta) occasionally offers a refreshing Belgian farmhouse-style ale called Joie de la Saison, and Santa Fe Brewing Company’s (35 Fire Place) Los Innovadores — a kriek and a single-barrel gueuze — are limited-quantity barrel-aged sour beers made with autochthonous yeast. Duel Brewing (1228-D Parkway Drive) serves a number of sours and saisons, and of the dozens of beers on offer at Rowley
Farmhouse Ales (1405 Maclovia St.), many are sours of some sort — either house-brewed or hailing from locales from Ft. Collins, Colorado, to Switzerland.