This year, in our second try at sour beers, we decided to brew another gose, which we divided in three different split batches. Each one received one kind of fruit: pineapple, blackberries and pomegranate. Although the base beer was the same, after adding the fruits, the result was quite different from one to another, so I will write a different post for each one of the three different versions of this gose. First one will be Gosepi, a.k.a. gose with pineapple. We served this beer in last year ACCE (Spanish Homebrewers Association) Congress in Bilbao (it was another batch, but same recipe and process), so maybe some of you were able to taste it.
There is little presence of malt and none of hops in aroma. Lot of esters from pineapple and a hint of lactic acid aroma. In the scoresheets of the contest of last ACCE Congress in Bilbao, judges commented on the presence of solvent like aroma and flavor. After doing some research, I have some doubts. Ethyl acetate, the compound associated with solvent defects, is considered a fruity ester related to pineapple. Evidently, I’m not a trained beer judge, and they sure have more knowledge and experience than me, but in this case I wonder if they could be taking as solvents the esters coming from pineapple juice. I’m just curious, since this was a temperature controlled fermentation and the yeast strain we used should not produce this kind of solvent compounds… unless some contamination occurred.
In the description of the beer judges, solvent also appears in flavor, but I have the same doubt as with the aroma. There is a cereal base and then a prominent pineapple flavor, with a moderate lactic acidity. There is no trace of hops and, at least I’m not able to find them, notes from yeast fermentation.
Low to medium body, carbonation is rather high. It has some astringency and a dry finish which makes it quite refreshing and very drinkable.
Overall, we are quite happy with this beer. We think that we achieved what we were looking for, to give this gose a strong pineapple character. The esters from pineapple combine pretty well with the acidity of the base beer and, especially if you like pineapple, is a very enjoyable and drinkable beer. Considering the opinion from the beer judges, we could do something to make this beer more accessible. I wonder if maybe reducing the amount of pineapple juice we can maintain the pineapple fruity character while avoiding solvent like notes. Anyway, this beer did not score so bad despite the solvent character described (32, 29 and 29 from three different judges, for an average of 30).