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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

We gathered the most frequently asked questions here. In case you already are a fan of this beer style and you miss some information let us know!

It is sour! Is it OK?

Yes, it is OK. Spontaneously fermented beer is sour. Very long tradition in this beer style you can find in Belgium. Those beers are well known all over the world. It is a special beer produced with half dozen of microorganisms. As it aged the sourness and tartness is pushed more ahead.

"No one with keen interest in alcoholic drink would find them anything less than fascinating. In their „wildness“ and unpredictability, these are exciting brews. At their best, they are the meeting point between beer and wine." - Michael Jackson (journalist and well know beerhunter) -

Are we still talking about beer?

Yes, it is beer. The grain bill is variable but barley malt, wheat malt, unmalted wheat, hops and water can be found in every products. Plus fruit in fruit beer.

Why spontaneous fermentation?

Traditional monoculture of brewer’s yeast can’t possess such a flavor range and aromatics that you attain with countless amount of microorganisms. Acidity gives sour beers a flavor balance distinct from the usual sweet to bitter spectrum. Just enjoy the long lasting taste that changes with every other sip. Someone says that spontaneous beer is the king among beer.

Why it is so expensive in comparison with common beer?

Common beer is in your glass just a few weeks after the brew day. Our production is counted in years. We use top quality French oak barrels (and few barrels where fruit spirits aged) for aging. Wild microbes love it as well as your taste buds. Besides the extended aging it is the heighten risk what is the most expensive in our production. You never know what can happen inside the barrel and sometimes it is necessary to dump the whole batch. Spontaneous fermentation is work with living organism which can’t be tamed. Risk that some batch will go wrong is much higher than in case of “clean” beers (with bought brewer’s yeast). Lauren Salazar (New Belgium) describe the insidiousness of the production:

"Never turn your back on (the barrels). They like to change on you and right when you think you know what one will do, it does the exact opposite."

Spontaneous fermentation is very rare; don’t hesitate to try it if you meet this beer style.

Why we need years for the production? Why so long?

You can’t speed up the time. You can’t have wine in your glass one month after the wine harvest. Wine is also produced with same spontaneous fermentation as our beer. You need half year at least, better a year or two to gain the proper character. As was already mentioned the basis of spontaneous fermentation is huge amount of wild micro flora. Each yeast (and bacteria) is working in different time and for different time period. It is a chain of follow-up activities. Our task is to maintain perfect background to ensure ideal fermentation and aging. That’s a question of very good professional knowledge and practice. Don’t forget that your mistake can knock on your door in one year (or even later)... I like what said Frank Boon (Brouwerij Boon)

"It takes a few months to get a drinkable product and a few years to get a nice product and a lifetime to make the best product."