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Chicagoist's "Beer of the Week:" Founders Cerise

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Aug 12, 2009 7:40PM

Photo Credit: < a href="">Drunken Polack
One of the best things about visiting Uncommon Ground Devon's farmers market (every Friday from 4-8 p.m. ) is that you can walk around the vendors set up in the parking lot with a beer in your hand, if you're so inclined. They have a nice rotating selection of drafts and with August finally giving us a semblance of summer — humidity — that's been missing, a good fruit beer is in order. Maybe something that makes a good shandy when lemonade is added.

Founder's Cerise has been around for a while at their brewpub, but this year they decided to make it for wide release. Cerise also replaces their wonderful Rübæus (a BotW selection from two years ago). The main difference here is in the type of fruit used in brewing. Tart cherries have replaced raspberries. Founders Director of Brewing Operations Alec Mull and Brewmaster Jeremy Kosmicki decided that, since the brewery is located near the "Cherry Capital of the World," they should support Michigan's struggling economy by buying and brewing with local cherries. Kosmicki uses as much as 53 gallons of cherries at five different stages of the fermentation process per batch. This gives Cerise a deep purplish-red color. The tartness, however, isn't overbearing and actually welcomed.

One of Uncommon Ground's helpful bartenders suggested that Cerise makes a nice base for a shandy, so we picked up some bottles the following day at Binny's and made outr own lemonade to see for ourselves. Damned if he was spot-on. It was one of our more refreshing shandies in recent memory.