As Paste has already reported, Gose is so hot right now. Pronounced “Go-zuh,” the suddenly-trendy style originated in the town of Goslar, Germany, in the early 16th century, traditionally brewed with salted water and 50% malted wheat, spiced with coriander and hops, and fermented with traditional yeasts as well as lactic bacteria to deliver a serious sour punch. The style spread across Germany, reaching a fever pitch three centuries later—but practically disappeared after the destruction of most of the breweries during World War II…until it recently resurfaced in legions of hip craft breweries in the United States thirsty for a new way to play with beer.
This is a decidedly good thing.
Anderson Valley’s The Kimmie, the Yink and Holy Gose not only has a bad-ass name; it’s also one of the more accomplished in this style. The beer is trending hard in my home town of Washington, DC. Six packs sell out quickly, and bartenders at local watering holes like the craft cocktail haven Room 11 have confessed that the Holy Gose has become their go-to after-shift beverage of choice. And it’s easy to understand why.
It pours bright and golden out of the can, with a light head that clings to the rim of the glass. The first sip is downright bracing—bursts of tartness from the ample use of lacto in the wort (while it’s still in the kettle) that make the beer instantly puckering and refreshing. Fruit announces itself with hints of lemon, pineapple, guava, and peach. Then the sea salt comes in, added post-fermentation, a spice that’s enhanced by the coriander. Collectively it makes you go back for the journey of another sip.
Honestly, the ingredients read like it shouldn’t work—but it does. Yep, those 19th century Germans were onto something. And today the Holy Gose makes for a perfect post-work go-to that won’t blow you over (thanks to its low 4.2 percent ABV), and pairs nicely with both spicy and bitter foods.
Brewery: Anderson Valley
City: Boonville, Calif.