Name: Döllnitzer Ritterguts Gose
Brewery: Brauhaus Hartmannsdorf GmbH
Country of Origin: Germany
City & State: Hartmannsdorf, Germany
Alcohol Content (ABV): 4.20%
First Brewed: 1824
Intense golden orange in color, with a meringue-like foam. Phenolic coriander aroma with sour moments. The palate offers a velvet sourness reminiscent of the fruitiness of ripe lemons. Smooth, not pungent, it is balanced by a decent saltiness with hints of resiny hop aroma.
This beer makes me think of Ian Harwell. He likes this style, and has gone to great lengths to get beers of this style, including a recent release of Duck Duck Gooze from The Lost Abbey. Is it gose or gooze? Who cares? This is a GREAT style, and I am stoked to drink this. We were at Whole Foods over the weekend, and I decided we were going to review a beer. This beer. I wrote about it and got ready to review it, and we ended up getting side tracked and never reviewed. So on my way home from work today, I grabbed a bottle.
I really like this style. As I was pouring this, I got a ton of funky skunky salty notes… I can’t wait to drink it! Cheers, people.
In the Glass: It has a nice orange tint to it, and while there isn’t much head and no lace to speak of, this beer looks delicious. I have a certain expectation on the flavor, and I am pumped to drink it. I also really like the label. The more I look at the label, the more I like it. Check it out:
The beer as a low ABV, but the salt is what keeps me intrigued. I can’t wait to enjoy my half.
Nose: This beer smells like salty orange juice. It has a really nice citrus aroma up front, but then immediately turns to salt and dirt aromas. I like it! It’s weird… But you have to have an appreciation for a beer like this. The more I smell this the more salt I am picking up. Heck, I want to toss a dash of salt on top just for good measure. This beer is a “Leipzig tradition since 1738″… Which is weird, because this beer was first brewed in 1824. Still an old recipe no matter how you look at it.
I am sick of waiting… Let’s drink. Cheers!
Flavor: I must admit, that is not the best example of this style that I have had to date. It is nice and sour, and has a lovely salty finish to it. But that is NOT what I expected. I wanted more salty flavors that just aren’t there. Granted, the sour kicks in toward the finish… But if I was doing a blind taste test, I would never guess this was a gose. I am sure this is a prime example of the style, but not what I wanted it to be. That sucks, too… This beer wasn’t cheap!
Mouthfeel: There isn’t much going on. Have you ever drank (or is it drunk?) flat Pepsi? Not flat Coke, but flat Pepsi cola. That is what it reminds me of. It ha a weird certain thickness to it that I can’t get over. If this had the same salty flavor that I expect from this style, I might be more apt to enjoy it. But man… This is more sour than it is salty. Not a bad thing, but the Westbrook gose is WAY better. Ashley, that is for you! Cheers. (I say that WAY too much.)
Aftertaste: The finish is nice, and a subtle sourness sticks around… But I want to be sucking on salt and sour for more than a few seconds. For this price and the history behind this beer, I wanted more. Maybe I am just hard to please.
Ian, I like this style. I wonder if he has ever tried the Westbrook gose. If not, I need to land him a can. He would LOVE it. That beer is literally like licking a salt block. You might think that sounds gross… But it’s not. Glad we got to try this, but man… I had higher hopes than this. Cheers! (I had to.)
Döllnitzer Ritterguts Gose – The bottle says: “Enjoy the unique taste and distinctive freshness of our Original Ritterguts Gose, which is still brewed in the traditional way. It has been a specialty of the city of Leipzig since 1738.”
“Gose is a natural product, brewed with coriander and salt. As the traditional brewing process include lactic fermentation, as well as bottle conditioning, there is a possibly of yeast sedimentation in the bottle. We recommend gently shaking the bottle to mix the yeast before opening it.”
I think I’m out of clever intros for my beer. This one is a gose. That’s about all I got.
This one didn’t have much head on it. What it did have was gone really fast, like by the time we walked from the kitchen into the office. Gone, no more head. It looks a little like a wheat beer to me. It’s got that cloudiness to it like a wheat beer, anyway. And it’s kind of the same color. Maybe a little more yellow than orange. It’s basically a golden yellow, and cloudy/thick-looking. It also has a few bubbles floating to the top, so it must have some carbonation to it. It’s hard to describe how it smells. It kind of has a fire smell to it. Weird, huh? But yeah, that’s the best way I can think to describe it. I’m probably crazy, but the smell of it kind of reminds me of fire. In other words, I’m curious what it will taste like. Let’s see.
Well, it rings true to what I know of gose tasting like. It’s sour, and it’s carbonated. You know, it’s funny… probably most beer drinkers, unless they have tried different varieties of craft beer, expect beer to taste like Budweiser. This would be about as far from that as you can get. There are so many different tastes to different beers, it’s hard to believe anyone can’t find some kind of beer they’d like. But I have plenty of friends that supposedly don’t like beer at all. (I think they just haven’t tried the right one yet.) At any rate, this is definitely nothing like Budweiser. It’s sour, with a sort of lemony taste to it. And you kind of get used to the carbonation… I don’t really even taste it much after the first sip. This one is actually pretty good. Something I’d buy again if I was in the right mood for it.