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Sour Ales at Cascade Brewing

Cascade Brewing makes some of my favorite domestically produced sour ales, so visiting their tasting room was at the top of my to-do list in Portland. Some highlights:

• Glueh Kriek: A sour cherry ale served warm after being mulled with spices and wild flower honey. It was the ideal rainy day beer.

• Spring Gose: Gose is a really interesting style of beer from Leipzig, Germany, that’s flavored with salt and coriander. Cascade’s version has chamomile, lemon peel, and lavender flowers along with the traditional salt. Lavender can come off as too soapy at times, but Cascade used it subtly and the beer was refreshing and light.

• Beck Berry: This beer was a one-off, made from a blend of lacticly fermented tripels and strong blonde ales aged over a year with blackberries in oak barrels, plus some sour cherries thrown in. It was light in body, with a very genuine berry flavor, but still had the earthy funk of a sour beer.

• Sang Noir: This is one of the heaviest hitters in Cascade’s sour beer lineup; I’d say it’s the most “advanced” drinking. A double red ale aged more than a year in Pinot and whiskey barrels, it was dark, rich, and wintry.

Cascade Brewing Barrel House
939 SE Belmont Street, Portland

Roxanne Webber is a former editor at CHOW.