New Belgium Brewing’s latest special release, La Folie Grand Reserve: Geisha Sour Ale, blends the much sought-after Panama Geisha coffee with New Belgium’s award-winning La Folie. The result? An elegant, dark sour ale that celebrates the artistry and passion behind two of the world’s most beloved liquids.
Geisha’s journey begins in Panama at Hacienda La Esmeralda, where the Peterson family grows the coveted Geisha coffee. Whole roasted Geisha beans are added to the sour ale, preserving the coffee’s brilliant mandarin and soft jasmine floral notes which play nicely with the sour plum and cocoa flavors synonymous with La Folie.
“La Folie is the sour that launched our wood beer program nearly 20 years ago, and as we reimagine our specialty portfolio, we’re revisiting many of our most-loved and acclaimed beers, presenting them in new and unique ways,” said Andrew Emerton, New Belgium specialty brand manager. “This take on La Folie is adventurous — reminiscent of coffee’s silky, rich attributes but counterbalanced with the bright, complexity of a foeder-aged sour. This will be the most expensive beer we’ve ever made, and it’s so very worth it.”
A custom blend of Colorado-grown malted barley and wheat from Fort Collins-based Troubadour Maltings boosts the foam and marries all of the flavors, bringing the sweet, floral notes to the forefront. The beer was bottled on nitrogen for a soft, velvet-like mouthfeel and body, and is recommended to be served chilled and fresh (not cellared).
New Belgium partnered with Fellow B Corp, Sustainable Harvest out of Portland, Ore., who brokered the coffee deal. A portion of proceeds from the beer will contribute to a grant that will distribute climate resistant coffee varietals to small scale coffee farmers across the globe.
La Folie Grand Reserve: Geisha is 7.9 percent ABV and available in 750-mL bottles in select markets while supplies last.