Thursday, May 23, 2013

Oshkosh Beer Sampler 023 & 24: New Glarus Berliner Weiss & Schell’s Goosetown

A slanted and endless survey of what’s pouring in Oshkosh, tallied one two beers at a time.

What: New Glarus Berliner Weiss, a mildly sour wheat beer that’s about 3% ABV; and  Schell’s
Goosetown, a German-style Gose beer brewed with – among other things – salt and coriander, with an ABV of 5.20%.

Where: Berliner Weiss is being sold at Gardina’s in 4-packs for $11.99. Six-packs of Goosetown can be found in the back cooler at Festival for $6.79

Why: Because if you have a thing for archaic beer styles that have been lurking in the basements of history, then both of these beers are a must. Me, I live for this shit.

Berliner Weiss is a German breed of wheat ale that developed into a distinct style in the 1600s.
Typically light bodied and sour, the New Glarus brew is true to style (aside from the Riesling grape extract they’ve dosed it with). It pours bright and effervescent with a mild, lactic tang pushed up by its snapping carbonation. The beer dances around the mouth like Champagne with a gentle, acidic tartness that’s extremely refreshing. Berliner Weiss finishes clean and crisp with a lingering trace of fruit (I get pears). If I could afford to, I’d drink this by the gallon. A great beer.

Goosetown is no slouch, either. This is a Gose, another of those 16th century German-style wheat ales that’s gleefully weird. Goosetown tows the style line by being upfront with its use of salt and coriander. The saltiness first appears in the aroma where you find a hint of seawater brine. The coriander steps forward as you start drinking and seems enhanced by the salt. There’s a soft and smooth mouthfeel coming from the wheat that brings the flavors into balance. It ends with a hit of lemon zest; then goes dry as the salt finishes things off. I was never much of a Schell’s fan, but this is the third excellent beer I’ve had from them in the last month (Maifest and Chimney Sweep being the others). This is another that’s definitely worth checking out.

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