Best Sour Beers In Cleveland

November 19, 2015 8:00 AM

Just about any real Clevelander will tell you three things about their city: The construction work never stops, the Browns will win the championship next year and this is a place where a lot of good beer is made. As such, there are a few Cleveland breweries that feature sour beers, the unusually flavorful and extremely unpredictable type of beer that’s become the subject of national attention in recent years. Here are the best places to sample some delightful tart sour beer in the Greater Cleveland area.
Fat Head’s Brewery & Saloon’s Sour Punch IPA
24581 Lorain Road
North Olmsted, OH 44070
(440) 801-1001

A favorite of Clevelanders since it opened in 2009, Fat Head’s Brewery & Saloon features more than 30 different brews, including award-winning beers like the Battle Axe Baltic Porter and the Head Hunter IPA. The bar also makes a sour beer, a 7.40 percent ABV American Wild Ale called Sour Punch IPA. This beer is fermented with Brettanomyces yeast and has a tart orange flavor with a hint of mango and pineapple. It also pairs great with some buffalo calamari or deep-fried pierogies.

Related: Best Brewery Tours in Cleveland

The Butcher & The Brewer’s Faltchenoben
2043 E 4th St.
Cleveland, OH 44115
(216) 331-0805

The Butcher & The Brewer has become a go to spot in downtown Cleveland because it melds old world ambiance with modern brewing techniques. Among the Butcher’s many fine fall 2015 offerings is Faltchenoben, a 3.2 percent ABV Berliner Weisse. Fermented with Lactobacillus, Faltchenoben has a refreshing taste that has hints of yogurt, peach and honey. A few pints of this tart German beverage would go great with some duck summer sausage and Besmear aged gouda.

Related: Best Beer Gardens in Cleveland

Platform Beer Co.’s Ritterguts Gose
4125 Lorain Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44113
(216) 202-1386

The Cleveland Scene’s pick for Cleveland’s Best Brewery in 2015, the Platform Beer Co., has eight house brews and 13 different beers on tap. Platform’s sour beer is Ritterguts Gose, a 4.2 percent ABV brew that is fermented with coriander and salt, so it’s not overwhelmingly tart. Accordingly, the Ritterguts has a savory flavor with a vaguely herbal undertone. Platform offers a rotating set of dining options provided by local eateries, so on a Friday, a Ritterguts would go well with one of Cleveland Pickle’s Downtowner sandwiches.

Buckeye Beer Engine’s Earlybird Cleveland Common
15315 Madison Ave.
Lakewood, OH 44107
(216) 226-2337

A bar for true aficionados, the Buckeye Beer Engine carries 26 different brews and a slew of tasty bar foods to go with it. The Engine actually carries two different sour beers, Destihl Counter Clock Weisse, a 3 percent ABV Berliner Weisse and Earlybird Cleveland Common, a 5.2 percent ABV ale. Those seeking a light and refreshing taste should try the Destihl with some boneless wings, and those craving a sharper tartness should pair a glass of Earlybird with some beer battered cod.

McNulty’s Bier Markt’s Victory Sour Monkey
1948 W 25th St.
Cleveland, OH 44113
(216) 274-1010

Handily located across the street from the West Side Market, McNulty’s Bier Markt has over 100 beers available, including four different sour beers. Drinkers seeking a tart, but fruity taste should try the Slaapmutske Flemish Old Style Sour Ale, which has 5 percent ABV. The Cuvee De Jacobins, 5.5 percent ABV, is a great beer for people who want a rich and creamy flavor. And anyone seeking an aggressively sour beer should give the Victory Sour Monkey a try, but it is 9.5 percent ABV, so drink responsibly. All of these beers would pair magnificently with McNulty’s pistachio cavatelli or seared duck breast.

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Mario McKellop is a freelance writer who has covered the pop culture beat since 2010.