John Foyston had a nice piece in the Oregonian yesterday about one of my favorite — and perhaps most underrated — beers to be poured at the Oregon Brewers Festival. It was certainly my favorite the year it appeared, 2006, and as this story attests, people are still talking about it. The beer is Ned Flanders, a sour beer based on the style Flemish Red Ale, of which Rodenbach Red and Duchesse De Bourgogne (another fave of mine) are perhaps the best known examples. I chose it as my buzz beer of the festival that year. Van Havig, then the brewer at Rock Bottom in Portland (and now a regional brewing manager) put quite a bit of effort into the beer, aging it in five different kinds of barrels and then blending it back together. Responding to a question from Foyston, Havig lays out the full story of this beer, and it’s a fascinating account filled with history and chutzpah.
Will the real Ned Flanders please stand up? Van Havig and his inspiration for Ned Flanders Sour Red Ale.