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What Is Gose Beer? An Intro to an Uncommon Brew

by | Apr 16, 2024 | Beer

what is gose beer

Gose beer may not be as mainstream as your typical lager or ale, but its unique history and flavor profile make it a fascinating brew to explore. Originating from the small town of Goslar in Germany around 1,000 C.E., Gose beer has evolved over centuries, becoming a cherished part of beer culture, particularly in Leipzig. Despite facing challenges, such as political tensions and changing tastes, Gose beer has experienced a resurgence in popularity, spreading beyond its German roots to breweries worldwide. So, what is Gose beer, and why is it worth trying? Let’s dive in and discover more.

What is Gose Beer?

Gose beer, pronounced “goh-zuh,” is brewed in the quaint town of Goslar, located on the Gose River in Lower Saxony, Germany. The beer’s name pays homage to its place of origin, where it was first brewed around a millennium ago. Gose beer’s infusion of sea salt, coriander, and a touch of sourness makes it distinctive, which sets it apart from other beer styles.

Over time, Gose brewing migrated to Leipzig, where it became deeply entrenched in the local beer culture. Interestingly, Gose beer falls outside Germany’s Reinheitsgebot law, which typically governs beer production and restricts ingredients to water, barley, yeast, and hops. This exemption allows Gose brewers to experiment with additional flavorings, enhancing the beer’s complexity.

Despite a decline, it has experienced a revival in recent decades, with breweries worldwide embracing its unique characteristics. Today, you can find Gose beer gracing taproom menus and beverage coolers, offering beer enthusiasts a chance to explore its distinct flavor profile.

What Does Gose Beer Taste Like?

Gose beer presents a delightful blend of flavors that tantalize the palate. Primarily a wheat beer, Gose incorporates malted wheat grains alongside barley, lending it a smooth and slightly fruity essence. The addition of sea salt provides a subtle brininess, while coriander contributes a hint of citrusy freshness. Moreover, the infusion of lactic acid, a byproduct of fermentation, imparts a mild sourness that balances the beer’s overall taste.

More: How to Taste Beer: The Beginner’s Guide to Beer Tasting

How Gose Beer Is Made

  1. Top Fermentation

It undergoes top fermentation, where yeast strains responsible for fermentation reside at the surface of the brewing vat. This method contrasts with bottom fermentation, commonly found in lagers, where yeast settles at the bottom of the vessel.

  1. Lacto-fermentation

Initially, it relied on spontaneous fermentation, harnessing wild yeast strains in the environment. However, modern brewing techniques often involve introducing lactobacillus bacteria to achieve the desired sour notes. Brewers may add lactic acid to the finished product to achieve a consistent flavor profile.

  1. Wheat

Its hallmark is its high wheat content, typically comprising 60% of the grain bill alongside pilsner malt. This blend contributes to the beer’s characteristic fruitiness and smooth texture. Additionally, it tends to have minimal hop additions, resulting in a low bitterness.

  1. Mash

During the mashing process, malted grains undergo heating in water, releasing sugars and other compounds crucial for flavor development. This step lays the foundation for the subsequent fermentation process, providing nutrients for the yeast to thrive.

  1. Flavoring

The final stages of Gose brewing involve adding flavoring elements, namely sea salt and coriander. These ingredients are carefully incorporated to impart the beer’s signature briny and citrusy notes, complementing its wheat base and sour undertones.

Explore a Wide Selection of Tastes at Our Craft Beer Bar

Now that we’ve explored what Gose beer is, come join us at our craft beer bar, where we celebrate the diversity and craftsmanship of brewing. Whether you’re a seasoned craft beer aficionado or new to the scene, we invite you to discover the richness of Gose beer and other unique brews. Contact us at (407) 794-2729 to start on your beer-tasting journey today.