Little Forker: SuRoSa 7.6% Rosemary Saison

May 19, 2016

It’s become a bit of a tradition that Fork Brewing hosts the winners of the Greater Wellington Brewday Homebrew competition, and brew a #LittleForker batch of the winning brew with Kelly to go on the Fork taps.

Last year saw Miriam Sorensen’s delicious Black Rabbit Porter pouring behind the bar, and this year we have a more unusual brew as the winner.

SuRoSa (short for Summer Rosemary Saison) is the brain child of Matthew Gilbert and Rene Ebbesen, two super keen homebrewers who are well on their way to #brewninja enlightenment. Self-taught with a keen eye (and thirst) for the science, they are born experimenters and this reflected well in the quality of their winning beer.

“It was that good, that even self-proclaimed Grandmaster of the Hop, Neil Miller, admitted that it was the finest beer there. Still blows my mind to this day,” says Kelly.

A blend of Ale and Pilsener malts, a portion of wheat and a sprinkling of rye acted as the base for this brew. The original used the French Saison yeast strain, but after careful deliberation and a number of tastings, the lads were convinced that Kelly’s house Saison strain would do the trick. And it performed exactly as predicted!

Pacific Jade and Motueka hops lead a wonderful citrus and fruit onslaught and integrate well with the herbal rosemary character that has come through kettle and fermenter additions (both as leaves and as leaf infusions). Add to that, a secret combination of pink and black peppercorns, and this integrated spice component gives us a nod as to why the beer’s refreshing complexity made it a winner.

Weighing in at 7.6% and around 35 IBU, we suggest you proceed with caution around this drinkable and moreish creation.

A testament to what one can achieve in their own home!


SuRoSa 7.6% Rosemary Saison Tasting Notes

Taste: Juicy malt dominates front-palate with light caramel sweetness and a smooth texture. Hints of earthy rosemary, sweet almond and a light, peppery spice follow through to the aftertaste. Finishes sweet, crisp and refreshing with alcoholic sweetness well balanced by a light, but persistent hop bitterness.

Aroma: Pungent blend of vibrant citrus oils, mainly lime and lemon with an integrated rosemary herbal character. Underlying ripe fruit esters and spicy, alcoholic richness.

Look: Light, hazy golden hue with persistent white head

Hops: Pacific Jade and Motueka

Malt: Ale & Pilsener malts, with a portion of wheat and a sprinkling of rye.

Yeast: House Saison Strain

ABV: 7.6%

Bitterness/IBU: 35

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