If you haven’t had a shot at any of the sours that have been put out by Taft’s Ale House, you’ve been missing out on something pretty delicious.  The brewery started it all with their first, lovingly called ‘Louisa, The Stave Mother’, back in June of 2015.  Since this is where it starts, I suppose that it’s where I should start as well.

Taft LouisaAbout Louisa, The Stave Mother

Like I said, Louisa was first offered up on draft in June of 2015.  The beer comes in around 5.3% ABV and 5 IBUs.  But the real story is the complex, but extremely tart punch that she hits your in the face with.  This beer is pretty nuts.

It’s 100% Oak fermented, built off a house strain of wild bacteria and yeast. It’s fermented in the brewery’s Italian oak foeder, without the assistance of any of the traditional lager or ale yeasts that you’re more familiar with.

To finish the beer, she spends around 4 months in Chardonnay white oak casks from the Napa Valley.  What you’re left with is a dry, tart, beer that has a touch of citrus, lemon and grapes.  It’s pretty delicious stuff, but it’s also the base for some of my favorite beers that Taft’s is making right now.

Lousia has formed the delicious base for (so far): Louisa’s Dark Side, Louisa Kriek, Louisa’s Skronk Side, and now the latest, Louisa Bramble.

Louisa BrambleAbout Louisa Bramble

This beer clocks in at 5.8% ABV, and is infused and blended with fresh blackberries.  Otherwise…it’s literally the stave mother… allowed to do her funky thing.

The brewery is tapping this for a really limited time, kicking off on December 15th at 5pm.  They’ll stash some away for really special beer events and festivals – but if you’re hoping to try some, you might want to mark your calendar.

You might be wondering what the point of all this goofy foeder stuff, and wild yeast, crazy bacteria and what not.  Well, the brewery tells us that they have “tremendous pride” in the project.  It’s a process that although it might be more time consuming, yields a complexity and uniqueness that you just can’t find any other way.

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