Dear friend, Cher Ami, aids us in many of our beers’ creation and will be pivotal to the sour projects we take on in future. Reminiscent of the eponymous Carrier Pigeon, famous for saving the lives of hundreds of men in the First World War, Cher Ami is our messenger of alternative fermentations.

Cher Ami is the name given to our mixed culture blend of house microbes responsible for acidifying our beers. Cher Ami is a beer, of sorts, destined to never see the light of day. Basic in it’s make up, it is a vessel for our bugs and bacteria which express acidity and funky aromatics.

Always stored in oak, we will blend a few barrels of Cher Ami into other beers, for example Analog, to add a touch of tartness or to inoculate a batch we want to sour over a long period of aging in barrels/foeders. This allows us to temper the character and complexity of our beers with much more flexibility than starting with mixed fermentation from the get go.

Our mixed culture profile will adapt and shift as we do over time, a living symbiotic maelstrom of microbes waiting to add complexity and character to our beers. As Cher Ami evolves we will monitor it, adding in cultures we like while ditching the ones we don’t – another benefit to having this shifting hydra of alternative fermentation in multiple barrels is the ability to experiment with the addition of various microbes. The character of Cher Ami will be calibrated with sensory analysis as it evolves and establishes our sour production.

Utilising barrels of Cher Ami is comparable with taking spices from a shelf. We can throw in a dash of this, a pinch of that, add at the beginning for deeper heat or right at the end for spicy aromatics. Our distinctive house flavour across all our sour beers may be a subtle underpinning or vibrant and bold, but it’s all thanks to our Dear Friend...   

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