One of the more memorable sour beers that I have ever had was Duchessic from Birra del Borgo. The first time I had it, my sour and wild beer knowledge was still in its infancy, but the experience was so soft and inviting, yet still incredibly complex and almost confusing.
What makes this beer unique is that it is actually an 80% blend of spelt Saison with 20% Cantillon Lambic, then refermented in the bottle to create a beer with the liveliness of Saison, but underlying tones, monthfeel and aromatic funk of a Lambic or Gueuze.
Being a Saison producer, I have wanted to blend our flagship beer, Saison du Fermier, our spelt Saison, with authentic Lambic for years! I thought that this American Saison / Belgian Lambic blend might even be the first of its kind, but have since learned that at least one of our friends did do this blend a while back for a small, special release beer ;). Either way, I have been trying to find Lambic for years for this concept and recently, Mikkel, of Mikkeller, helped me fulfill this conceptualized beer so I could create and blend a beer that we aptly named SpontanFermier.
SpontanFermier is a blend of our Chardonnay barrel fermented and barrel aged Missouri Spelt Saison with Belgian Lambic from Mikkeller that is used in their “Spontan” series beers. Saison du Fermier was our first Saison and Blend #4 was just released several weeks ago. It has been used in many blends of ours, aged from 5 to 24 months in oak, and has seen multiple fruit additions. It is a beautiful, yet very flexible beer for Side Project. The Lambic that we purchased for this blend is traditional Lambic, inoculated via coolship in the Senne River Valley of Belgium and then fermented in old French and Hungarian Oak. All of the Lambic stock for SpontanFermier was aged for 2 years in oak before being racked and shipped to us for blending.
After tasting the Lambic and the 7 month oak aged Saison du Fermier, I settled on a straight blend of 50% Lambic and 50% Saison du Fermier to let both components shine in their own way, at the exact same ratio. I wanted to see which would age more assertively, which would exude more aromatics, and which would present the more impactful experience on the palate during a sip.
The result is obviously a whole new experience for a Side Project beer. Elevated levels of funky, spicy phenols on the nose blend well into the experience of Brettanomyces and aged hops. The bright, citrus like, Side Project house character is the backbone of the acidity and the finish is long and complex, yet light and airy.
The official release date for this beer will be August 13th at The Brewery when we open at noon. Bottles will be $20 each and the allocations will be dependent on the number of people that show up in order to guarantee that everyone who shows up by noon on Sunday will get beer.
Along with SpontanFermier, we will also have bottles of La Ruche, Saison Nouveau, Table Nouveau and cans of Little Larry still available to go so you can enjoy them at home or with friends!
We appreciate your love of our beers from our tiny brewery and think that you are going to really enjoy this fun new blend.
Side Project Brewing
7458 Manchester Road
St. Louis Missouri 63143