Evolution of a Kriek | Add more Cherries | Think about blending

I thought I should put an update about my Kriek.   It's been quite the process of patients with my Flanders Red Ales that has been going on for almost 2 years now.   This Kriek is 2 parts young Flanders (1 year) and 4 parts old Flanders (19-months old).   It has been sitting on 4 lbs of local tart cherries and it seems to be really tasty right now.   The thing is, I blended my first Flanders Red with these two base beers and the resulting carbonated beer is lacking body.   Going through a blending session really makes you appreciate what the professional Lambic, Gueze, Flanders, American Wild Ale brewers and blenders do!   Because I know I'm going to have to blend this Kriek when I finally bottle it (probably with a Brown Porter)  I decided that I wanted to add a bunch more cherries because it's going to get diluted.

I just added 6 lbs of local Tart cherries, and 3 lbs of sweet Bing cherries.  That puts the total at 13 lbs of cherries in 5.5 gallons of Kriek.  This means that in the end if I don't blend it, I'll have about 1/2 lb of cherries in each 750ml bottle.  That ratio will go down depending on how I blend it.   This is going to be a funky, tart, cherry bomb!  I'm hoping that the Bing cherries will add to the aroma and I'm planning on bottling it in 3-4 months. 

Final Blend for Bottling (Oct 1st, 2013) -  

15% - Wild Rice Mild Ale
31% - Flanders Red (1 year old)
54% - Flanders Red (2 year old)

Tasting Notes -  Aroma pops with luscious cherries, funk, and slight roasted malts.  Tart aroma.  Appearance is brown with hints of red.   The head is thick initially but dissipates to a small thin creamy layer.  Flavor is tart and funky, and then hits you with Almond in the mid palate, then finish's with a pucker of lactic and ever so slight acetic burn.   The cherries in the aroma, vanilla, almond, and tartness really work well together.

Exciting tasting notes from professional brewers -  I shared this beer with a group of funky brewers on a Babblebelt swap.  Shaun Hill from Hill Farmstead Brewery was involved in the tasting portion of the event and I had sent him my bottle.  He also shared it with his assistant brewer Dan Saurez.   Here is a quick transcription of their comments.   I had to write it down because they really seemed to like it!

Shaun –You know how to go after our hearts around here – we drank about 50 litres of kriek on our staff trip to Belgium….and this one is superb.
Dan-very nice…gorgeous richness from the pits.
Dan-Very clean nose…letting the maltiness and fruity notes shine through.
Dan- marizipan
Dan- Cinnamon
Shaun-It’s essential to age the beer on whole fruit.
Shaun-Succulent. Very nice.
Shaun-  This at room temperature on hand cask…reminiscent of Drie Fonteinen…
Dan-Beautiful body…with an almost saltiness you get in some lambics sometimes (cantillon, drie, etc.)

I couldn't believe it!!!   They loved it!  They mentioned that it was a slight bit acetic but not at an undesirable level and on par with what they tasted in Belgium.  I thought slight acetic acid would be the reason people would hate it.  Anyways...it was cool to get great feedback from Shaun, especially since they just were nominated best brewery/brewer in the universe.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...