DuClaw Brewing Company - Lil’ Sour Me America
- ABV: 5.5%
- Bottle Size: 12-oz
- Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs): 10
- Serving Temperature: 42-50º F
- Suggested Glassware: Tulip or Pint Glass
- Malts: Pilsner, Red Wheat, Unmalted Wheat
- Hops: Saaz
DuClaw’s line of Sour Me beers began with their Sour Me This kettle sour, which has spawned multiple variations including Sour Me Dark & Stormy, Sour Me Mimosa, and the wonderfully named Sour Me Unicorn Farts. Sour Me America (in 16-oz cans) a.k.a. Lil’ Sour Me America (in 12-oz cans) was designed in homage to the classic red, white, and blue (cherry, lime, and raspberry) ice pops many of us will remember from our younger days. Brewed with cherry purée and juice, raspberry puree, and lime juice, it presents a sort of rose gold color in the glass with a vibrant head of spritzy foam. The fruit contributions are immediately apparent in the aroma as big cherry and raspberry notes jump right out with almost a strawberry impression, backed by hints of lime and a tangy undertone of wheat. Like many sour ales, the first sip can be bracing until your palate adapts and the beer takes on a savory-sweet-acidic balance. Huge berry fruit notes come forth upfront, bolstered by that lime contribution. Look for the characteristic tanginess of wheat to come through in the core of this brew along with a touch of crackery pils malt. Saaz hops provide a dose of only light bitterness, but little is needed as the tart notes are the stars here and easily overcome the residual malt and fruit sweetness. Sweet, sour, and intensely fruity, we’re inclined to enjoy this a la carte on a hot afternoon, but pairings are possible. A berry flavored ice cream makes for a complementary dessert pairing. For savory options, a salad with sliced strawberries and fresh goat cheese or gorgonzola can work, or try salty fare like lemon-basted shellfish or a charcuterie plate. Cheers!
DuClaw Brewing Company was founded as a brewpub in 1996 by Dave Benfield, an accomplished home brewer. He got his start as a brewer in college, where having the ability to create alcoholic beverages can often pay considerable social dividends. But his interest in brewing continued beyond his college years and developed into a bit of an obsession. He took a position within his family’s business after graduating, but his passion for home brewing continued, eventually leading to his decision to start a brewpub.
When DuClaw opened its doors to the public in Bel Air, MD in 1996, the concept of a restaurant which serves its own microbrews crafted on a small in-house brewing system was, while not unique, still a very fresh and exciting business model. Within a year the local paper highlighted DuClaw as “Bel Air’s hippest establishment.” Over the succeeding years, Dave expanded the business, leading DuClaw to grow from a simple brewpub operation into a full package brewery. After outgrowing their original brewing location as well as a second location, DuClaw moved into a new brewing facility in Rosedale on Baltimore’s outskirts in 2013. Featuring over 60,000 sq. ft. of space, plus a custom-made and imported high-tech German brewing system, the brewery is well-positioned to grow into the future. For more info, call them up at 443-559-9900 or visit www.duclaw.com.
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