We all go through periods when we want something different.
When it comes to beer, that something different, for the past few years, has been gose (pronounced goes-uh).
It’s the beer some love, and some love to hate: a divisive sip that comes down to a matter of taste, and whether or not that taste deserves attention. The style is slightly sour and funky, tart but crisp — a historic German-style sour wheat regarded more or less lost until a few dozen U.S. microbrewers decided to revive it over the last decade.
Some of the style’s finest examples to date include Westbrook Gose, Almanac Beer Golden Gate Gose and Off Color Troublesome. Last summer, you didn’t have to search long to find someone sipping on a Sixpoint Jammer or Anderson Valley Blood Orange Gose.
It is not the next IPA, partly because the next IPA is presumably an IPA. But it is a refreshing style unto itself. Low in alcohol, big on flavor and optimal for all-day drinking as we leave winter behind and look ahead to summer.
And it’s a style that offers wide range of brewing options, allowing beermakers to push forward and give this bright, playful sipper all kinds of individual character. Below, three relatively new goses that hit the sweet spot.
Sierra Nevada Otra Vez
A light, citrusy beer rounded out by grapefruit and prickly pear cactus, which lends to a refreshing melon-like finish. The ideal entry point for gose naysayers.
Victory Brewing Kirsch Gose
A palate smack of tartness complemented by strong cherry notes and the slightest sweet finish.
Prairie Artisan Ales Flare
A crisp balance of sourness and earthy funk with orange and coriander.