The Referend specializes in the production of spontaneously fermented beers, as practiced by ancient cultures and ushered into modernity by the lambic brewers of Belgium's Pajottenland.
The cellar and blendery are located in Hopewell Township, NJ, home to The Sourlands.
The wort for the Berliner Messe is loosely based upon a Berliner Weisse recipe and blending process. Where it differs: the Berliner Messe wort cools for 4-5 hours in the coolship until it drops from boiling to 120F, at which point it is transported back to the blendery and held warm in a separate vessel for 2-4 days, with a gradual temperature drop to 90-105F. This period is characterized by a natural acidification by spontaneously inoculated airborne lactobacillus, which thrives at these elevated temperatures. Following the acidification, it gets racked into oak barrels for spontaneous fermentation as the wort temperature drops into the active range for the wild yeasts present and formerly dormant. The beer spends between 4 and 12 months in oak barrels fermenting and conditioning.
-The Referend Bier Blendery