Madhouse Sours

I swear I drink other beers that are not sours. Believe it or not some people have a certain distain for sours. A friend of mine thinks it’s a disgrace to actual beer since “mankind has been refining yeast strains for a millennia and now we decide to use wild strains to undo everything we’ve worked to achieve!” But you know what? I don’t care. I love sours and now that the weather is warming up they are coming into season again.

Madhouse-FlightTo kick off spring Madhouse Brewing had a Mexican themed party and released two new sours: Paradise Found and Galaxy Haze. We got a flight of sours which had those two, but also the Black & Blue and the Satori Saison (the fifth beer was El Jefe [not a sour]). My favorite was the Paradise Found. Madhouse describes it as possessing flavors similar to a margarita and I could definitely taste the lime! Very tart and refreshing. My least favorite was the Black & Blue. The beer had this artificial candy smell to it! I spent a good time just sniffing it (probably looked like a psycho), because I could not figure out what it reminded me of. Once I tasted it I put two and two together. It tasted like a commercially made blueberry pie- the sickly sweet hyper blue filling.

There’s going to be more craft beer posts coming in the future. The market has really exploded in Iowa and our beer map with 53 breweries is already outdated. The Iowa Brewers Guild has a new map with 70 breweries listed so we really need to catch up!

Also, if you didn’t catch from my previous posts, I’m getting married in less than 2 months! But, for my bachelorette party we’re heading up to Minnesota, which was rated a top craft beer state, to see how they compare. It’s the 2017 Brew Tour- Minneapolis Edition. So get excited for that!

Peace Tree Brewing Co.

As you know my fiancé and I are huge craft beer fanatics so ever since the second Peace Tree location opened in East Village I was dying to get there. The Des Moines location opened on News Year’s day and the same day I made the foolish resolution to avoid alcohol. So I waited. I didn’t have a set time for my deprivation, but once I felt well enough (and was off antibiotics) from having pneumonia, you better believe this was the first place we went to!


Before Peace Tree opened the second location they were already popular in Des Moines despite their base being in Knoxville. Almost everyone here has heard of Blonde Fatale and it’s become a staple beer at music, art, and any other cultural festival. This Belgian style blonde is a sneaky 8.5% and is my favorite Peace Tree brew. I visited the original outpost in Knoxville about 2 years ago and so I was curious to see the new beers the Des Moines location carried and if I would have a new favorite.

When we arrived on a late Saturday afternoon there was already a good crowd. This was back when the weather was uncharacteristically nice and all the cyclist were out to play. In the parking lot was Miss Molly’s Jamaican Patty food truck, which we came to find out like most taprooms they don’t serve food. No worries, we came for the beer anyway and once inside we ordered the way we always do in a taproom: a flight each.

The taproom is industrial looking with tall ceilings and a wall of windows facing the capitol. The room is divided by stacked wooden barrels (as pictured above) and the perimeter is lined with comfy black chairs. We sat at a table against the barrels with the view of the capitol, and all the increasingly inebriated cyclists, which made for fun people watching.


Pictured in order is the Brett Simcoe, Orange Gose (pronounced go-sa), Templeton Saison Blanche, Rye Porter, and Blondish. For some reason I didn’t save the picture I took of Curtis’s flight, but he had the Dark Sour, Cherry Gose, Ohh! Pale Lager, Red Rambler, and the Jalapeño Pineapple Kombucha. The Orange Gose was a highlight. The beer was fragrant with citrus notes and though sour it was not punishingly so. Another delight was the Blondish, a subtler version of the Blonde Fatale (as you would expect), but just as flavorful. The one beer that I was disappointed about was the Cherry Gose. It was a too sour for my liking (and I used to drink vinegar straight), and had a medicinal flavor I couldn’t get past.

Overall it was a great experience and though Blonde Fatale has yet to be usurped, it was fun trying. Have you been to Peace Tree’s Des Moines branch? What was your impression? Any beer I missed you think I need to try? Let me know!