Editorial Dept.'s picture

Brewer Q&A: Sour Saison With New Belgium R&D Brewer Ross Koenigs

91 Rating - Exceptional
Ross Koenigs, R&D Brewer for New Belgium Brewing
Ross Koenigs, R&D Brewer for New Belgium Brewing

BC: Who came up with this beer’s recipe?
Ross Koenigs developed the recipe for Sour Saison.

BC: What’s your favorite aspect of this beer (flavor, aroma, etc.)?
The subtlty. The sum of all its parts. The saison drags it in one direction, the wood-aged sour drags it in another direction. There’s nuance and complexity, plus I pick-up on something new every time I drink it.

BC: Is this your “desert island beer?”
It’s definitely inspired by one of my desert island beers, which is Saison Dupont.

BC: Can you describe this beer in 10 words or less?
Dry, complex, fruity, spicy and sour.

BC: Do you know a story – or have a personal story – that revolves around this beer?
I’ve been homebrewing this type of beer since about 2009 when my brother and I visited the Vapeur brewery in the Wallonia region of Belgium. They make a beer called Saison Pipaix, which is a lacto sour addition and I completely fell in love. When I returned home, I began attempting to brew a beer similar using a variety of mixed cultures. To this day, it’s still the only style that my brother and I homebrew each summer, including a batch for my wedding.

BC: What's a good food pairing for this beer?
I recently made Coquilles St.-Jacques, which is an amazing, creamy scallop dish, and it paired perfectly with Sour Saison. It’s pretty simple to prepare and the dry, sharp acidity of Sour Saison cut the creaminess, but matched the delicate texture of the scallops. But if I had to simplify it even more, Sour Saison is truly the best beer to begin any meal with. It’s like an aperitif beer or a fun replacement for prosecco.

Read Review