Sour beers can be a shock to the system for newer beer drinkers. So much so that it’s hard to forget your first. Couldn’t tell you my first IPA, first stout—even my first smoked beer (I’m pretty sure it was a Schlenkerla, tho). Sieve memory. But I do remember my first sour beer.
It was a 750mL bottle of Cantillon’s Lou Pepe Kriek. I’d snagged it from a nearby institution of alcohol known as Chevy Chase Wine & Spirits, in DC. It was where you’d go, especially a dozen years ago, for the weird stuff: cold-shipped Finnish Sahti (thumbs up), ice cider from Quebec (thumbs up), and pale lagers from places you’d never heard of (wiggly thumb). The damn thing cost like $25, which was ludicrous. It smelled like vinegar. My wife (now entirely fond of sour beers) was like, You’re on your own. It was awful and I drank the whole thing.
Revisiting that beer three years later (in 2008): One of the best things I’d ever tasted.
Dear Readers: What was your very first sour beer? (Ideally not said Lou Pepe.) Was it great? Was it harrowing? Have you revisited it since? Hit us up on Twitter: Rare Beer Club’s exactly that (@RareBeerClub), as am I (@kenweaver).