Gueuze

Glassware: Tulip
  • Belgium
  • Mixed Ferm
  • ABV = 5.0 – 8.0% (Normal to elevated)^
  • IBU = 0-10
  • SRM = 3-7
A pleasantly sour, but balanced, wild Belgian wheat beer with a complex character from spontaneous fermentation.

Appearance:

  • Colour^ = Straw to gold
  • Clarity = Excellent

Key Aromas & Flavours:

Aroma
  • Malt = None
  • Yeast + Bacteria = Low; fruity esters (grapefruit, apples, rhubarb, or honey) / Moderate; barnyard, leathery, earthy, goaty, hay and horse blanket aromas / Moderate; acidity
  • Hops = None
  • Other = (Optional: a very mild oak aroma is considered favourable)
Flavour
  • Malt = Low; bready-grainy (Optional: grainy sweetness)
  • Yeast + Bacteria = Low; fruity esters (often honey-like) / Moderate; barnyard character / Moderate; lactic sourness
  • Hops = None
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Low
  • Other = (Optional: a mild vanilla and/or oak character)
  • Balance = Even; acidity is in balance with the malt, wheat and barnyard character
Aftertaste/Finish

Crisp, dry and tart finish

Mouthfeel:

  • Body = Light
  • Carbonation = High
  • Astringency = Has a low to high tart, puckering quality without being sharply astringent
  • Alcohol warmth = Some versions have a light warming character

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Pilsner malt, plus 30-40% unmalted wheat
  • Yeast + Bacteria = Spontaneously fermented
  • Hops = Aged continental hop varietals (3+ years); for preservation, not bitterness
  • Process = Spontaneously fermented with naturally occurring yeast and bacteria in predominately oaken barrels. Gueuze is traditionally produced by mixing one, two, and three-year old lambic. “Young” lambic contains fermentable sugars while old lambic has the characteristic “wild” taste.

Historical Development:

Spontaneously fermented beer from the area in and around Brussels (the Senne Valley) stemming from a farmhouse brewing and blending tradition several centuries old.

Products marked “oude” or “ville” are considered most traditional.


Commercial Examples:

Boon Oude Gueuze, Drie Fonteinen Oud Gueuze, Oud Beersel Oude Gueuze


^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus.
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2015 Style Guidelines.


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