Having recently doubled its wood beer capacity with the addition of 32 new oak foeders, New Belgium Brewing is going sour with its latest Lips of Faith beers. La Folie and Transatlantique Kriek make a return in 2014 as part of a 2014 Sour Vintage Single Batch Series. La Folie is a wood-aged, sour brown that spends one to three years in large oak barrels, also known as foeders. When the beer finally hits the glass, it is sharp and sour, full of green apple, cherry and plum-skin notes. It pours a deep mahogany.
“La Folie is a seriously sour beer, but we like to say that it’s sour in a good way,” says New Belgium wood cellar manager, Lauren Salazar. “This Flanders-style reddish brown ale delivers plenty of green apple, cherry, sometimes even blackberry and chocolate notes. It’s the beer that launched our sour beer program in ’97.”
La Folie is 7 percent ABV and available now, while supplies last, in 22-ounce bombers and on draft.
Transatlantique Kriek is a slightly sour cherry kriek beer. The 2014 edition began life in the oaken vessels of Frank Boon’s brewery, deep in Belgium’s Lembeek Valley. After two years of wood aging, Boon’s spontaneously fermented kriek shipped across the Atlantic and found its way to New Belgium’s Brewmaster, Peter Bouckaert. To go with Boon’s lambic ale, Bouckaert created a full golden brew to blend in, and round out, this light-bodied kriek. The intense cherry nose leads to a pleasing sweet and sour flash across the palate. Crisp and effervescent, Transatlantique Kriek is 8 percent ABV and available now, while supplies last, in 22-ounce bombers and on draft.
To celebrate these sour beers, New Belgium recently held a sour beer symposium that explored the art and science of blending beers, from grain to glass, followed by the brewery’s second-annual Lost in the Woods party. Here’s a look into the festivities.