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Thursday, October 09, 2008

Autumn Is a Time for Beer

Actually, every season is a time for beer. I just wanted to make some suggestions for the fall season and all the fine beer hitting the shelves.

First of all, the pumpkin beers are out. I normally do not like fruit or vegetable-based beers, but this is an exception. I would also like to point out that I have only found one pumpkin ale up to snuff. Schlafly's Pumpkin Ale is by far the best I've had. Somehow they have created a beer that actually tastes of pumpkin and nutmeg and cinnamon and all that without skimping on the alcohol. The beer comes in at 8% ABV. That's no trick, friends. That's all treat.

I also have a Southern Tier Pumpking sitting in the fridge waiting to be consumed. I will have to get back to you on that as I make my way through some other noteworthy beers in my stash.

Besides the pumpkin ales, one should look to the many brands which make an Oktoberfest beer. An Oktoberfest beer is basically a marzen, a German style of lager that's dark and full-bodied. Every brewery and their sister has a marzen available come September. However, only a few stand above.

My pick for this year comes from the masters of the lager: Great Lakes Brewing. Their Oktoberfest is a chocolaty brown with just enough bitter to not infringe on the beer's crispness. No one makes better lagers than Great Lakes, no one.

Another cool addition to the Oktoberfest crowd this year is Coney Island Brewing's Freaktoberfest. The color is the strangest I have ever seen in a beer. The beer pours almost a bright, hot pink color. The head is straight on pink. I think they were going for blood red, but they made a super marzen in the process.

Finally, every season has a one-time only seasonal release. The fall brings us Bells Hell Hath No Fury Ale. It's described as an American dubbel, whatever that is. Just know that it's rich, dark, and intense. Snatch it up quickly as only a small batch has been brewed. Plus, it's kind of pricey.

Be on the lookout for my next beer report for the winter months. There will be plenty of stouts and porters to go around for sure. Also, I will be posting the sweet potato casserole for anyone who is interested.

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