Vertere Zela is a 5% fruited kettle sour from Vertere, based in Oku-tama, in Tokyo, Japan. It’s part of their canned and draught lineup, though its availability at the time of writing is unknown. Vertere Zela is brewed using pomegranate juice and chamomile, and uses Aurora hops along with some Lactobacillus and Kveik Yeast.
Vertere Zela : At A Glance
- Alcohol: 5%
- Style: Fruited sour
- Hops: Aurora
- Adjuncts: Pomegranate juice / Chamomile
- IBU: 0
- Availability: Unknown
- On Sale: From September 2022
- Size: 500 ml
- Price: From 1,000 yen
Aroma & Taste
- Notable Aroma: Strong sour and pomegranate aroma with sweet notes to it.
- Notable Taste: Sour and fruity. Pomegranate flavour with dry body. Low sweetness.
Vertere Zela : Aroma & Taste
If you follow us on Instagram then you will have seen the beers I bought on a recent ride and I had been told good things about Vertere Zela from a friend (thanks Jackie!). I hadn’t come across it before and was trying to find it online, but alas, most, if not all places, had sold out it seemed. Without wanting to spend lots of money on shipping, I was surprised to find Vertere Zela in the best 7/11 in Japan at Hammerhead, Yokohama. Fate was on my side, so without much further ado, I picked up a can and cycled home as fast as I reasonably could. Just one problem – it was on a 29c day so I knew that I would have to wait a bit longer to drink this as it had warmed up by the time I had gotten home.
I’m glad I did though as Vertere Zela was a delight to smell and drink. The aroma was definitely unmistakably a kettle sour – that familiar twang of sour notes that lacked the wooden depth that comes with wood-aged sours. Nevertheless, that’s not a problem if you know what you’re getting but with Vertere Zela, it’s the pomegranate that punches the most. Its sweet notes verge on a light wine-like quality with an edge of tartness to it that is different to the sourness produced by the lactobacillus.
The body was pretty dry, and that was to be expected considering that Vertere Zela was brewed with Kveik yeast – well known for stripping out most, if not all, of the sugars in a beer. The sourness was present, though not too tongue-curling or lip-suckeringly bitter, as the tart pomegranate flavours helped to smooth Vertere Zela out a little bit. With the weather being so hot, Vertere Zela was perfect for it, and the low sweetness in the end just helped to finally smooth out all of the flavours, with just a light lingering pomegranate flavour staying behind.
Vertere Zela : The Bottom Line
Vertere Zela is a very nice fruited sour that I wish I had bought more of – great on a warm day.
Vertere Zela : Where to Buy
Vertere Zela can be bought online at the following places: