Chorlton Woodruff Berliner
Chorlton: Woodruff Berliner (England: Berliner Weisse: 3.8% ABV)

Visual: Hazy lemon juice. Small bubble carbonation and a large white loose bubbled head. Audibly fizzy.

Nose: Wood chips and twigs. Tart sour apple. Furniture shop and a hint of polish. Fresh apples. Light nuttiness. Dandelions.

Body: Light sour character. Wheaty mouthfeel. Squeezed lime. Dandelion and burdock. Vanilla. Nuts.

Finish: Fresh lime. Floral and vanilla yogurt. Light raspberry yogurt hard chunks. Oat clusters. Dandelion and burdock. Lemon.

Conclusion: Ok, I just used “dandelion and burdock” in a tasting note. That is either a new high or a new low for me. Or possibly both at once. Ok, non Brits may have no idea what I am talking about there. It is kind of like root beer but a tad more “Famous Five”. Yes I read Enid Blyton when I was a kid – yes I know now there is a host of racist and classist shit in there , but as I kid I had no idea and enjoyed them in my ignorance. Anyway…

Beer.

This is not what I expected. It is sour, but less so than expected. Maybe it helps that I don’t have an unknown cavity this time. No seriously, first time I drank a Berliner Weisse I had a cavity I knew nothing about. It hurt. A lot.

Anyway. this beer. This is sour, but it has a kind of rustic thickness to it that mutes that – probably the woodruff, I have no idea what that is like so I am guessing – but it gives quite the turned fields imagery. Behind that is the, yes here it is, the dandelion and burdock twang. Even odder it has soft vanilla and raspberry yogurt notes. I seriously think my tastebuds give up on sour beers and start sending random signals to my brain.

Ok, I really need to work on stopping avoiding trying to work out how to describe this properly. Ok, predominantly tart and apple with lots of unusual notes backing it. Like a rustic saison meets a berliner weisse. With woodruff. Whatever the hell that is. yes, I’ve googled it, I still have no idea.

It isn’t really my thing, but I’m not exactly hating it either. It’s just that it tastes like tart apple mixed with a traditional British soft drink. And woodruff. Interesting but not really what I am looking for in a beer.

Background: I have no idea what woodruff tastes like, please take that into account when reading these notes. Picked up from Independent Spirit, this is a Manchester take on the German Berliner Weisse sour style. Drunk while listening to a bit more Godspeed You! Black Emperor, very calming drinking music.

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