So the wait is over the Flanders Red (a.k.a. Maude) is on tap. This is one of the very few full sour mash beers we make here at the P-brew. What is a sour mash you ask? I am glad to fill you in. So we mash in a red ale like any other normal brew. then we fill the mash/mash tun with CO2 to make it an anaerobic (without oxygen) environment. Then add a handful of raw wheat on the top, seal up the Mash tun up as tight as we can and let it sit for 3 days! There are natural microscopic organisms that are on the surface of the raw wheat. These “bugs” will eat sugar and create and acid, or a sourness. Almost like yeast is an organism that eats sugar and creates alcohol. So after the Mash sits for 3 days you open it up to get these beautiful mango, kiwi and tropical fruit aromatics off the mash tun. Then you run it off, boil it to kill the souring “bugs”, then add your hops and a Belgian yeast strain when it hits the fermenter.
After all that you get this tart, refreshing, tropical fruit flavor/aromatic 4.5% abv Belgian beer that is so much fun to sit and enjoy.
Hope all this “bug” talk doesn’t make you all too squeamish.