Sour Owl

in beersaturday •  2 months ago 

What did I tell you, the sour style is the 2020 beer trend. Right Brain Brewery has jumped on the bandwagon and created Sour Owl. Which is a take on their Hawk owl amber that was then fermented in handmade Northern Michigan White oak barrels. They then blended that concoction with a a barrel of chocolate stout with included fresh blueberries. That’s a mouthful I know. After they added beer’s favorite friend, lactobacillus. That’s what creates that sour funk! So let me tell you I was excited to try this one. However, I was disappointed by what I got...



I was really drawn to this beer by its label. I like the graphic and the description provided on the back. This beer poured dark red in color and it really looks like an appetizing beer. There was a mild off-white head that faded into a halo of tightly packed bubbles. There’s not really any carbonation bubbles to be seen on the first pour.



I was picking up a lot of dark bread and fruit, with a little funk at first. This faded into some oak and vanilla which seems slightly unbalanced. I was picking up some astringency that smelled almost acidic. It wasn’t a terrible aroma, but it could’ve been better.


It did pack a punch sweeter fruit and tart candy on the tongue. It was more fruit, bread and yeast upfront than I expected. The middle was heavier with notes of vanilla, oak, booze, and a tart to mild sour kick. The finish was pretty boozy and I think the balance balance between the whiskey barrel flavor and other more delicate flavors was off. It almost seemed like the finish was just a boozy acidic mess.


Overall, I can appreciate right brain for trying to get into the sour beers. However, this one just missed the mark for me. If you were more balanced and I had a little bit less acidity I probably would’ve liked more.

I will say this beer was fairly well received by other. So maybe I’ve just been spoiled or my taste buds are off that day.

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I imagined "vinegar" when I read sour beer...

It is not exactly like that. It’s like a sweet tart or war head candy. If I had to compare it to a fruit it’s kinda like eating a lemon with more earthy funkiness.

I still haven't tried any sour beers yet. I am going to have to get around to doing that. I think there is something about the name of them that just isn't appealing to me. When I hear the word sour I honestly feel like it is going to taste like vomit or bile. That is just the image I get in my head :)

If that’s the image that they bring up I would not want to drink them either.

I finally found a local sour. Still looking for a fruit based one like this but the one I had was great. This one seems to have almost too much going on... stout, berries, oak aged barrels... would be cool to have a straight sour aged in the oak barrels...

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