There’s a skill in blending sours to achieve a rich complexity of flavours, and there’s a skill in achieving complexity without blending. Here, Aether has nailed the latter with a beer-wine hybrid that holds layers and layers.
Dryad began with a malt bill made up of half Golden Promise and half Australian wheat, then was spontaneously soured with 1,000 litres of freshly picked and pressed pét-nat riesling juice from Latta Vino in Victoria. While it didn’t spend any time in barrels, the dark golden brown of this wine-beer hybrid seems to convey the spirit of the oak. (Spirit of the oak? Dryad? Any mythology nerds out there who appreciated that one?)
Full aromas of overripe apricot and some citrus sharpness only hint at the cornucopia of flavours held within. After the initial orchard fruits and citrus, there’s fairy floss and juicy rhubarb, followed by a clean acidic blanket for the back of the palate. As the seconds tick over, that balanced sourness fades into a light aftertaste of brown sugar.
Did I mention it’s hiding 7 percent of alcoholic heft? Don’t underestimate this Dryad.
- Beer-Wine Hybrid