Beer Styles – Gose vs. Gueuze

Gose and GueuzeIf you’ve ever been out roaming among the beer hipsters of the beer-iverse, you’ve probably heard plenty of chatter about sour beers. While it seems like a conversation in an encrypted WWII language made to fool the Nazi’s, not everything us beer hipsters say is nonsense. Sour beers are a stronghold of the beer hipster, so if you want to stand any chance of finding out about or discussing the newest sours to hit the local beer shoppes, you need to know your styles. This will only focus on a small part of the sour beer world, but step one is pronunciation.

Gose:
G-oh-suh (as in Van Gogh with a “suh” at the end)

Gueuze:
G-er-zah (if you’re Belgian);
Goo-zuh (if you’re nasty);
G-oo-z (as in “goo” with a marketing firm’s urban “z” at the end)

So the terms sound similar and no one can entirely agree on the pronunciation, but dammit they do have real meaning! Those meanings may not be entirely different as a Gose and Gueuze are basically sour cousins, but there are a few distinctions. Those distinctions are sussed out in the brew process, so lets explore both to see where the paths in this wood diverge.

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Beer Fact of the Day! – Grand Cru

564_263If there is one take away from this entry, it should be this: Grand Cru is NOT a style of beer. Repeat, NOT a beer style. Like many beer terms, Grand Cru was taken from another industry, in this case the world of wine, and reappropriated for beer.

In wine terms, Grand Cru was a title bestowed to a vineyard that produced high quality wines and directly translates to “Great Growth.” In beer terms, a Grand Cru beer, such as AleSmith’s Grand Cru, is a “specialty” beer from the brewer. That’s it. They can be as readily available and mass produced as any other beer from that brewer, but are usually limited in some way. Grand Cru’s tend to be Belgian Dark Ales or Flemish Sours, but any style can be designated as a Grand Cru.