Cuvée Nora & Cuvée Lisa
Inspired by nature, the new Oriel beers surprise with different tastes. We call them beers, some of you made the resemblance with natural wines. What do they have in common? Yeasts and bacteria from nature.
But let’s start with the story of these two beers, because we are not just talking about a new Oriel range, but about two completely different beers.
Life before the pandemic seemed to be so far away, but look, it’s almost over and we’re back to normal.
In 2019 we went to Arrogant Sour Festival, in Italy. I tasted so many sour beers, but surprisingly, I still wanted to try more, there is such a great diversity and although most were extremely sour, their tastes were sublime. There was already another level of craft beer that we wanted to reach. So we decided to try brewing a sour beer. At the beginning of 2020, we bought a 500 litres oak barrel from a Romanian manufacturer. We didn’t want anything sophisticated, just a wooden barrel, in which we could ferment a beer with bacteria and wild yeast. Although we would have liked to try open fermentations with yeasts from nature, the area where we have the brewery is under construction and we cannot do that, so we reached our yeast supplier and we found a blend of bacteria and yeast that replicates the spontaneous fermentation of Belgian beers.
All good and beautiful, the barrel was delivered, we watered it, it swelled, there are certain procedures to follow when filling a barrel the first time, we brewed the beer, added yeast, a blend of two lactic acid bacteria (lactobacillus and pediococcus), yeast saccharomyces and brettanomyces and we waited for it to ferment. The first part of the fermentation went normally, the resulting carbon dioxide was removed through the valve, but after a while, the fermentation began to become more and more aggressive. Most likely, the barrel staves began to expand, so leaks appeared. Sometimes when moments like this occur, the only thing you can do is think quickly about a solution. The most rational solution was to transfer the beer from the wooden barrel to a stainless steel tank, but all our tanks were full of other beers.