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American Sour Beer


4.63  ·  Rating details ·  365 ratings  ·  20 reviews
One of the most exciting and dynamic segments of today s craft brewing scene, American-brewed sour beers are designed intentionally to be tart and may be inoculated with souring bacteria, fermented with wild yeast or fruit, aged in barrels or blended with younger beer. Craft brewers and homebrewers have adapted traditional European techniques to create some of the world s ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published July 7th 2014 by Brewers Publications (first published April 7th 2014)
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Mike Gray
Nov 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
A great reference for those whom appreciate sour and wild beers. Some of the techniques are quite complex, but Tonsmeire does an excellent job explaining how to pull them off. I also enjoyed his overviews of how commercial brewers made their sours.
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Definitely a worthwhile read for any wild yeast enthusiast. Tonsmiere provides a wealth of knowledge for brewers regarding both style and execution. The organization of the book lends itself well to reading from cover to cover before utilizing portions of it as a reference.
Ken K
Mar 18, 2020 added it
Tonsmeire provides a collection of sources and experience to take out the guess work in getting started and advancing your sour beer program. I was lucky to meet him at the 2019 Homebrewcon and the guy is awesome, plain and simple.
Lincoln Quirk
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Holy crap. Incredible compendium of knowledge for both home and professional brewers. Loved that they profile my "home brewpub" CBC :)
Vladimir Chupakhin
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Really solid overview of the American sour beers from brewer point of view.
Sep 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Lot's of interesting info, but the book could use more structure to make it more usable as a reference.
Aug 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book

Great introduction to sour beer making and the processes with a ton of articles. Highly recommend for any home brewer.
Feb 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Commercial brewer, Homebrewer, or just want to better understand what you ordered at the bar, the Mad Fermentationist is dropping knowledge that you'll want to know.
Borrowed this from a friend, after reading it I'll probably buy my own copy to reference in the future.
Jun 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: beer-and-brewing
I have read Michale Tonsmeire's blog, The Mad Fermentationist, for many years and have referenced it for recipe ideas and information while brewing both clean and sour beers of my own. Parts of this book are like having the best bits of advice and practical information plucked from the blog and rewritten in a more clear and concise matter, while other parts provide a fascinating look at the processes that a number of the best sour beer producers in the United States (such as Allagash, Jolly Pump ...more
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was a great read and did help me get prepared for my first (and safe) sour beer, a Berliner Weisse. Thinking about doing sours is tricky because of the time commitment but the author also includes resources on sour/funky beers you can do with shorter turn around times.

It's a great read and the authors style of writing is very enjoyable.

This is also a book that I will see myself going back to frequently.
Jun 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Tonsmeire's blog was invaluable in teaching my homebrew group how to brew sours. This book is even better than his blog. I learned a lot of new things and learned the science behind some things I'd observed already. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in brewing (or even drinking) sour beers.
Mar 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: beer
Sour beers are an acquired taste and anyone that's already into sour beers should acquire this book. Michael takes you from tasting, brewing, aging and blending in an easy to read way with lots of usual information. From a clear homebrewer perspective, it takes you through the systems of mayor commercial brewers and how you can accomplish brewing at home that sour beer that you like so much.

Feb 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: beer
Very well written book with detailed processes for different methods of producing sour beers. Love the examples from numerous American breweries. Can't wait to try my hand at one (though much planning and some equipment to acquire before that is possible).
Kris Kirby
Sep 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book for the burgeoning brewer.

Well written and a lot of detailed information about wild and sour beer. The book covers everything you wanted to know about mixed fermentation...boom.
Aug 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very informative and approachable read!

Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Excited to get into brewing sour beers. May need the author to personally apologize to my wife (until 18 months goes by and she tastes the first product!)
Scott Townsend
Jun 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic. As a reader of The Mad Fermentationist, I had high expectations when I started this book. I was not disappointed. I will be referencing this book for many years to come.
Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: beer
Excellent book. All you need to know about sour beers. Really opened my eyes. I don't think another resource like this exists currently.
Patrick Cauldwell
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
If you are interested in brewing sour or mixed fermentation beers this is the definitive resource. Great information, and a host of interesting recipes to try as well.
Jun 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Fascinating information well presented.
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