Akron’s own Thirsty Dog Brewery has never been afraid to try something new and outside of the typical comfort zone. So it’s no surprise that co-founder John Najeway has really hit his stride in the ever-growing sour ales game with his aptly titled Berliner Weisse.
First opened in 1997, Thirsty Dog was once simply a brewpub in the Belden Village area of Canton. By 2002, the brand began distributing throughout the state, as well as pub expansions to both Montrose and Dayton. Four years later, Thirsty Dog relocated to its current home on Grant Street.
Dating back to 2000, the brewery has graciously been recognized for their brewing process by picking up accolades for the likes of Siberian Night, Hoppus Maximus and Old Leghumper at such prestigious award ceremonies as the World Beer Cup and the Great American Beer Festival. In recent years, Thirsty Dog has even been blessed as USA Brewery of the Year from the New York International Beer Competition, as well as Ohio Brewery of the Year the last two years.
Now back to the beer at hand. For those unfamiliar with the Berliner Weisse style, fear not; we have you covered. Berliner Weisse is a top-fermented, bottle-conditioned wheat beer made with both traditional warm-fermenting yeasts and lactobacillus culture, which produces lactic acid. The result is a clean and refreshing, yet tart and sour beer.
Thirsty Dog’s contribution to the style is no exception. The aroma is pleasantly welcoming, thanks to the presence of fruity goodness on the nose. Lemon and citrus funk attack your palate in such a joyous way that you have no choice but to embrace the pucker. As thirst quenching as it is tart, Berliner Weisse is a beer you will want to get your hands on this summer.
While Thirsty Dog’s Berliner Weisse is not yet being bottled, beer enthusiasts can get a chance to try this on draft throughout the state at favorite craft-friendly stomping grounds, as well as a handful of upcoming festivals this summer