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Monday, September 22, 2014

The Nature of Saison

Suffering under some serious deadline pressures early this week, so blogging is (not unusually) crappy just now.  Nevertheless, I stumbled across this quote, which I haven't shared and don't think will be going into The Beer Bible.  But it's way to good to moulder on my hard drive.  The speaker is Olivier DeDeycker, the brewer and one of the owners of Brasserie Dupont.  I believe the phrase "microbiological intervention" is one of the loveliest I've ever encountered.


Photo by Chuck Cook.
“With this barley malt they are brewing some beer, and that beer had second fermentation in wood barrels.  It was drunk in the summer by the people who worked in the fields.  So we speak of a beer with a low alcohol content, high bitterness, no residual sugar, so a refreshing beer.  It was what we call in Belgium bière de saison, saison beer, brewed in the winter and drunk in the summer.  They were brewing in the winter for microbiological reasons, to avoid [inaudible]--but with wood barrels, with the basic materials they had, of course I am sure they had some lactic.  It could improve the refreshing character of the product.  At this time they would have beer that was totally different from another one from the next year due to microbiological intervention.  We have to have something more standard, which is why we work with cultured yeast and we try to avoid any parasites.  In Dupont we work with a mix of different yeasts so we can have some difference--but that we [can] accept.”

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