Blog written by Allyson Rolph
Earth Rider has started a tart series of beer with a rotating fruit expression, also known as the Earth Rider Crush series. RaspbeCrush is an off-shoot of our ApriCrush, the first release in this series. Earth Rider tart beers have a light, bright, and crisp acidity that is reminiscent of a shandy with a built-in fruit flavor and aroma.
The base beer is an American wheat beer with low-to-no yeast expression—the tartness comes from half of the batch being kettle soured and fruit puree is added during fermentation.
For those not familiar with kettle souring, we add lactobacillus to the first turn (or first half) of the brew, holding it warm (90-100F) for 24 hours to allow the bacteria to create lactic acid. Lactic acid is the main source of acidity enjoyed in most soured and tart beers. Once the tartness is achieved, we boil the wort (unfermented beer) to kill off the bacteria to prevent risk of contaminating any other beers. We call our Crush series tart, not sour, because it’s a more accurate description of the flavor and also, as a mixed fermentation brewery, we don’t want to confuse our tart brews with our truly sour (mixed fermentation) beers that will be released in the future.
Our kettle-soured beers go through our regular-ale fermentation process that takes about two weeks while mixed fermentation is a very complex process that usually takes place in wood barrels and is a mix of both intentionally added bacteria and multiple yeasts. These beers take many months to many years to mature— keep an eye out for those Earth Rider releases.
Being able to do a tart series of beer has been a fantastic experience. Being a passionate brewer of sour, tart and clean beers, I love that I can be a part of creating so much variety at Earth Rider.
RaspbeCrush has 756 pounds of raspberry puree in the 40BBL batch, or more than a pound and a half per gallon. Look for big raspberry aroma and flavor. I am very excited to share the beautiful red color, raspberry aroma, and bright tart acidity with you. Cheers!