Mybeerbuzz .com Highlights Upland Sour Ales Hopsynth & Cursed Kettles

29 June 2017

imageIf you’re not familiar with Upland Sour Ales already, they hail from the Midwest town of Bloomington, IN.  Started in 1998 and with a sour program that started in 2006, Upland quickly grew to the point they released 20+ sour ales in 2015.  Naturally we’ve been following along on mybeerbuzz, so I was very happy to get the opportunity to sample some exciting Upland Sour Ales…so off we go.
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Up first is one of their more interesting sour hybrids; Hopsynth.  This beer melds the world of sour ales and the world of hoppy ales in a really interesting and pleasant way.  This beer starts with Upland’s blonde sour ale and the beer is then dry-hopped to change the character and balance of the beer (in a good way).  Hopsynth pours a  hazy yellow-gold color with a mix of grassy hop notes, apple, apricot and a slightly pine-y resinous end.  The tastes begin with some nice lactic tart flavors and apricot as well as a bit of citrus and funk…and they finish with some grassy hoppy flavors.  As the beer warmed, we really liked the balance of tart dry fruit, oak character and grapefruit-y resinous hops.  Hopsynth has an interesting depth and complexity I really enjoyed and I was really surprised at just how drinkable it was (6%-AbV, 6 IBU).
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Up next I couldn’t resist opening and sampling Cursed Kettles.  This beer is part of the Upland Wood Shop Collaboration Series and it was brewed with Prairie Artisan Ales.  This release is a barrel-aged sour ale that is fruited with figs and black cherries and it uses wine and Bourbon barrels for aging.  The beer is also kettle soured with Prairie’s house lactobacillus.  Cursed Kettles pours a rich ruby color; so right out of the bottle, this beer is really appealing.  The aromas lead with fig, raisin and molasses and end with a really nice pop of tart cherry.  Thankfully the flavors followed the really nice aromas leading with more delicious dark fruit and fig flavors and a really yummy background of tart cherry.  This beer definitely has a really nice sour presence, but the fig and cherry flavors really lead the way to a nice dry and satisfying finish.  The fruit flavors managed to imageget even better as the beer warmed, but quite honestly, I enjoyed the beer so much, it didn’t have much of a chance to warm.  Cursed Kettles is a really nice beer and one I can’t wait to try again (6.3%-AbV, 6 IBU).

Upland Hopsynth and Cursed Kettles are both available now in 500ml bottles so get out there and taste them.  In the end I really liked both beers, and especially enjoyed the Cursed Kettles…so be sure to try them for yourself and let us know what YOU think.

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