Continuing with this year’s ‘Oktoberfestathon’ here at The Brew Club, this week’s Oktoberfest brew is from New York’s own Brooklyn Brewery!
I’ll admit that I’ve passed this beer up in years past because of the utterly lame label. This is in spite of the fact that Brooklyn Brewery usually makes some very good beers. So, I guess I do judge books by their covers even though I should really know better from experience. (It is a lame label though!)
I wasn’t overly thrilled with Brooklyn’s other Fall seasonal, Post Road Pumpkin Ale, but that really shouldn’t have prevented me from trying the Oktoberfest either. But it did.
So, how is the 5.5% ABV Brooklyn Oktoberfest?
Well, its pretty good. Let me ‘splain!
The beer, like most Märzen lagers is a clear amber color. This one sported a decent off-white head that some of the other Oktoberfest brews lacked. The aroma is familiar, and typical for the style which is, to me, malty, bready and a bit nutty.
The taste, follows the aroma quite closely, and its not a surprise at all really. The beer starts with a sweet malt flavor, and then its rounded out with that bready or bicsut type of flavor and then there’s a nutty taste as well. It finishes with very little hop, and unlike the Victory Festbier, this Oktoberfest doesn’t have a dry end. To me, it remains slick through and through in the mouth. Not bad, just different!
Like many Märzen lagers, Brooklyn Oktoberfest is a nice smooth drinker. Not too heavy on the carbonation, and the lack of hops in the mix really keep the bite to a minimum. That’s not to say the beer isn’t balanced. It is, but this style of beer is just more malt heavy. If I didn’t know better, I’d guess that most märzens were ales!
So, what’s my take. Well, I’d say that the Brooklyn Oktoberfest would be an excellent beer to introduce to your non-beer-geek friends who are looking for something good to try that won’t blow them away.
Its complex enough to make you stop and think about what you are drinking, but on the other hand, its not extreme in any way. As I mentioned, its a bit more malty than the typical lager, but that’s the was Märzens roll.
For this year, I’d say its definitely less interesting than the Victory Festbier (my favorite so far) but it hits upon all the things that make for a good, solid, and unpretentious Oktoberfest brew. Easily as good as the Sam Adams Octoberfest, if not slightly better.