We just had our tarot cards read and beer is in our past, present and future. Go figure. But which beer? The cards didn’t say… but we’re thinking it’s likely our new Tarot Gone Gose. For guidance on this new brew, we went to our in-house expert and head brewer, Matt McCall.
For those who aren’t aware, what’s the Gose style all about?
A gose is a sour beer that was originally created in 16th Century Germany. Unlike 16th century sours that were spontaneously fermented with wild yeast, we kettle-soured ours. Goses traditionally have sea salt and coriander to give them a “briney” characteristic. For this particular gose we added lemon peel and fresh tarragon as well. This amplifies the “herbal” quality of the beer and makes it an excellent summer-sipper!
Yes! Working at a kitchen in my home town, one of my daily tasks was making the béarnaise sauce (hollandaise with tarragon, shallots and vinegar) for the night’s shift. It’s one of my favorite sauces due to the fact that lemon and tarragon so well together.
Have you brewed with it before? At what stage in the brewing process is the tarragon added?
I’ve cooked with it countless times, but this is the first time I’ve used it in a beer. We added both the fresh tarragon and dried lemon peel straight to the kettle at the end of the boil.
How prominent are the tarragon flavors?
Tarragon is a very overwhelming flavor if there’s too much of it so we went pretty light with it. It’s much more prevalent in the nose than it is in the flavor, but there’s just enough on the back end of the sip to complement the brine and lemon qualities.
There seems to be a trend with herbs and botanicals in the cocktail world. Is that where beer is heading?
I would argue that the cocktail world is following after the brewing world, honestly. Brewers have been using herb and spices in their beer long before mixed cocktails were born!
What other beers have you brewed with herbs? Any others in the works?
I haven’t brewed with any herbs at Coney, but I did a few homebrews with thyme, lavender and rosemary. As far as things planned at the brewery, I don’t have anything on the docket as of now, but that will most certainly change down the road.
What came first: the name or the beer idea?
The beer idea. Many times I’ll think of a name first and then formulate the recipe for the beer, but in this particular case the beer came first!
What type of food would you pair with this beer and why?
Any kind of seafood would be great with this beer. Given its brine and citrus qualities, it’s a natural fit for anything ocean-dwelling. I personally think that it works great with a lobster roll!
Have you ever had a tarot card reading, and if yes, how did it go?
I have not. I’m many things, but a spiritual person is not one of them – just can’t buy into the hocus pocus!