Ipswich-based Big Drop Brewing Co — dedicated to making sub-0.5% ABV beer — continues to break new ground with the launch of a sour beer.
Founder, Rob Fink, said: “Whilst the style is a popular one, with many existing brands on the market, brewing a sour beer to just 0.5% ABV has taken a lot of planning and expertise.
“Our Master Brewer, Johnny Clayton, continues to challenge the norm so that we can offer a range of popular beer styles for those who are choosing to cut back on their alcohol consumption, and the sour is an outstanding example of responding to current consumer trends. Just because someone may be cutting out or cutting back on alcohol doesn’t mean to say that they have to cut back on variety and taste.”
Sour is the fifth beer in the Big Drop range and is now available as a limited edition seasonal offering. It follows the successful launches of Spiced Ale and Lager, and the award-winning Stout and Pale Ale.
Big Drop sour is a very delicate, light summer beer, which is inspired by the Berliner Weisse style. Johnny wanted to create the ultimate refreshing summer beer without the aggression of some sours on the market.
Rob said: “It’s made in a totally different way to other sours that drinkers may be used to, and Johnny worked hard to get the balance right. It’s not a kettle sour or wild bacteria ferment, but his unique brewing style has created a gentle sour which is the perfect addition to our range.”
Light, refreshing and tart, it has a citrus aroma with a smooth, juicy tartness in the finish. It is crisp and dry, and ideal to accompany something tangy, like a good stinky cheese or seafood with a squeeze of lemon.
The label imagery follows the theme of previous branding, which takes its inspiration from Fink’s Suffolk background. It features Saxtead Mill, near Woodbridge, and is designed from original lino-cut artwork from local landscape artist Helen Maxfield.
Since launching in November 2016, Big Drop continues to work with retailers to provide a genuine alternative for those who want to limit their alcohol consumption, but don’t want to miss out on a great tasting beer, and has recently announced key listings in bars, on shelf and in high-end restaurants, including Barworks, Fortnum & Mason, Hakkasan and the Ivy Collection.
Agreements are currently being finalised with other major retailers in both the on- and off-trade, as well as several export opportunities. The beers have proved a hit overseas, with listings secured in Sweden, Japan, Finland, the Netherlands and, most recently, through the Liquor Control Board of Ontario, the largest single purchaser of beverage alcohol in North America.
Rob said: “Launch of Big Drop Sour comes at an exciting time for us. Following a series of awards for the beers and our business last year, we have recently been shortlisted in the New Business Awards and the prestigious BBC Food & Farming Awards 2018.
“The public reaction to our beers has been fantastic and it’s great that our hard work in producing a credible range of options for mindful drinkers is also acknowledged by our peers through recognition in these awards.”