Feyborn Berliner Weisse Mit Schuss

As sour beers become more popular in America, Berliner Weisse is experiencing a renaissance. Only a few years ago, this relatively obscure German style was relegated to the most esoteric import shelves. Today, demand for cheek-puckering beer has led to a heightened interest in the style, and Down the Road is happy to oblige.

Berliner Mit Schuss.

At its base, Berliner Weisse is a low ABV, golden wheat that is more sour than most wild ales and less sour than lambics. To contribute additional character, Berliner Weisse is often enjoyed "mit schuss," meaning "with sauce." In Germany, several herbal and fruit-based flavorings are used to add variety to the popular sour beer. The most popular of these flavors are raspberry (Himbeer) and Woodruff  or Waldmeister, which is a green, herbal decoction.

Inspired by the schuss tradition, we imbue each batch of Down the Road's Feyborn with a different flavor. Our first version of Feyborn Berliner Weisse, released summer 2016, featured a massive blast of blackberries, and the juicy, sun-ripened fruit perfectly captured the season in which it was brewed. Our December 2016 batch of Feyborn features wild, tart cherries, which should provide an interesting point of contrast to the heavy, dark seasonal beers that are popular in the winter. Then, in summer 2017, we brewed the Strawberry Rhubarb Feyborn as a departure from the more traditional schuss flavors, but we think it was a risk well worth taking. 

Schuss in a Can!

At Down the Road, we place a premium on tradition. Whenever possible, we try to promote styles from the old world. However, we also love innovation - subtle tweaks made possible by new technology, improved processes and novel ingredients. That's why we use lab-grade saison yeast in our Fee des Fleurs Saison instead of spontaneous fermentation. Similarly, it's why we whirlpool our hops instead of boiling them. When we decided to brew a Berliner Weisse mit schuss, we knew we would have to break with tradition a little bit. In Germany, the schuss is poured into the beer immediately before serving, allowing one tap to service a wide range of tastes. We briefly considered attaching some kind of cup of schuss to our Feyborn cans, and we even messed with the idea of having a packet inside the can that would automatically release its contents when you crack the top. However, both of those designs proved to be rather over-engineered. Instead, we opted to add the schuss directly to the beer before packaging but after fermentation to ensure the fruit remains fresh and flavorful, so embrace your inner wild child, and party with the Feyborn!

Becky Schrumm