The power of suggestion can play tricks on one's mind. When I cracked a can of Ida Pruul's Wild Mango Sour and watched the thick, freshly squeezed juice-like liquid pour into the glass and settle with a white foam, I couldn't help but think: "Bucks Fizz" (or Mimosa, depending on your origins). Initially, it seems to present that way too thanks to the mixture of pulpy fruit, souring tingle, and vibrant carbonation. But despite that juicy appearance it’s the wild sour that’s the boss here, full of viscous, bracing, sweetly acidic depth. Sure the fruit from the time spent resting on Kensington Pride mangos is there – juicy and fresh in character – but it’s adornment to the spontaneous treat within. (And, having consulted Mrs Pint for a second opinion, it really is quite like a Bucks Fizz / Mimosa).
Ida Pruul brew and blend at Westside Ale Works, where Mr Ida Pruul, Ben Sewell, works alongside brewery founder Casey Wagner. Continuing on a sour tip from the host brewery is Pineapple Bob, Bourbon Pants – a kettle sour featuring crushed pineapple and soaked in American bourbon. For all the action that's taken place, it's a calmer experience than the Wild Mango Sour: very pale with a light haze like an early morning wisp of cloud swirling through it. It's very gentle in terms of sourness, fruit and bourbon sweetness too, with no obvious carbonation to speak of but a relatively smooth body and a softly cleansing tang.
From where we segue into the third beer of a sour, funky ilk to be popped into cans in South Melbourne recently. Lambic Ale pours with a fizzy head that’s soon departed to leave the sort of woozy, hazy viscous look that acts as your first indication this has been around a while (it's a blend of 20 to 24-month-old liquids). Oaky, quenching, sweetly sour and citric, with elements of a heavily oaked chard on the one hand and hints of berries on the other, albeit bit part players to the headline show the oakified mixed culture performs on your palate (Did I mention the oak character?).
Published July 2, 2022 2022-07-02 00:00:00