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Friday, October 05, 2007

Nights are cold, days are getting cooler. I learned back when I was in the Marines that Northern Michigan, aroung Grayling and Gaylord, has roughly the same geography, landscape and weather as Germany and some of the Baltic states (we learned this as we geared-up for deployment to Bosnia). Why do I bring this up in a beer review?

Quite simply, because the Fall weather here is the the Fall weather the Germany has, which was the weather back on October 12, 1810...the first Oktoberfest!

From Wikipedia:

The festival is held on an area named the Theresienwiese (Field [or meadow] of Therese), often called "d’ Wiesn" for short. Beer plays a central role in the fair, with every festival beginning with a keg of beer tapped by the Mayor of Munich who declares "O'zapft is!" (Bavarian: "It’s tapped!"). A special Oktoberfest beer is brewed for the occasion, which is slightly darker and stronger, in both taste and alcohol. It is served in a one-liter-tankard called Maß. The first mass is served to the Bavarian Prime Minister. Only local Munich breweries are allowed to serve this beer in a Bierzelt, a beer tent which is large enough for thousands.

In the year 1910, Oktoberfest celebrated its 100th birthday. 120,000 litres of beer were poured. In 1913, the Bräurosl was founded, which was the largest Oktoberfest beer tent of all time, with room for about 12,000 guests (today, the biggest tent is the Hofbräu-Festhalle, which holds 10,000).
  • 12,000 people are employed at the Oktoberfest. Of these, 1600 are waitresses[Barmaids].
  • There is seating available for 100,000 people.
  • The six Oktoberfest breweries, (Spaten, Augustiner, Paulaner, Hacker-Pschorr, Hofbräu, Löwenbräu) sold 6.1 million mugs of beer in 2006 (2005: 6.0 - 2004: 5.5 million).
    Roasted oxen: 102
  • Sausages: 219,442 pairs
  • Roast chickens: 459,279

Now that, my friends, is a big fucking party.

And what do they drink there? Oktoberfest!

And thus, we have today's selection: Sam Adams Oktoberfest.

Next week, I plan to review Hacker-Pschorr's Oktoberfest, but this week wanted to go with a pretty commonly-found beer for anyone wishing to try thsi style that hasn't. And you kinda can't go wrong with Sammy A....pretty consistently good brewery.

This lovely malty concoction poured a lovely deep amber color, hedging somewhere close to coppery. Crystal-clear, with a lovely cascade (upwards) of thousands of little bubbles. Nice creamy off-white head, a little thin, but with amazing retention and lacing like drapes as I quaffed it down.

The beer has a sweet nose, including some absolutely lovely caramelized malts and a nice bready quality. There are some hops, though very faint. They seemed to add a hint of peppery spice and citrus.'s a beer for a cool autumn day. Creamy, smooth, rich sweetness as that incredible caramel flavor takes center stage and dominates the performance. There is just a hint of bitterness as the hops completely fail to balance the crushing amounts of malt in this beer (but that's what an Oktoberfest is!).

Man this beer goes down nice. The craemy mouthfeel, medium-body and sweetness of the beer just beg for me to keep going, one after another. There is also a sense of sugar to this beer. I can't imagine Sam Adams added actual sugar, but that sensation is there. It finishes a bit on the bitter side, but still so lushly sweet throughout. Drinking this beer, I totally "get" why the Germans love this holiday.


Colin 12:53 PM  

That's a picture of Heaven, Not Oktoberfest!!

Actually I think I'm going to to pick up a sixer of SA Oktoberfest Tonight!

Smitty 1:31 PM  

I'd SO get hammered and sloppily spill my beer, unknowingly, down that blond chick's cleavage.

B Mac 1:56 PM  

Ah, to drunkenly go where Smitty's spilt beer has gone before...

Cara 3:51 PM  

‘Creamy, smooth, rich sweetness…and incredible caramel flavor…’ is precisely right. In fact, I enjoyed a few last night. Delicious!

B Mac 9:51 AM  

Had a Sam Adams Oktoberfest last week. Nice beer; flavorful, full of caramely sweetness and toasty goodness. Very drinkable. So drinkable, in fact, that I had another.

George 3:30 PM  

Normally they're not my favorite, but something about this entry puts me in the mood for a nice blonde....

Ale. I'm married you know.

Bob "Chief Beer Advocate" 12:59 PM  

"Man this **** goes down nice. The craemy mouthfeel, medium-body and sweetness of the **** just beg for me to keep going, one after another..."

Man, I blocked out beer and kept thinking of that blond in the photo. Funny thing, much of the review still reads well when thinking of the blond. (See above.)

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