This time last year, Hop Nation released Lapin under their Site Fermentation Project banner: a blend of cherries and their foedre-aged sour blonde ale. It returns for winter 2020 but has taken a slightly different route to this point. The beer still features organic Lapin cherries from Mark’s Farm in Benalla, but this time they were added to the 3,000 litre oak vessel where the fruit-enhanced liquid was allowed to re-ferment for a few months longer.
It still shares qualities with a French table wine, not least thanks to its vibrant crimson hue; if anything, however, there's more going on than the previous vintage – and that's not just the 33 percent more booze. There's a fair bit of perceived sweetness accompanying the sour cherries, layered with hints of marzipan and the base beer's foedre funk. There are vinous qualities to the aroma too, although the acidity creates a much sharper, leaner experience on the palate, ensuring Lapin finishes well into sour beer territory.
- Cherry Sour Blonde Ale