Another day, another IPA review. Wait a minute, this isn’t an IPA review. Yep, you read that right. I drank something other than an IPA, and the Earth didn’t stop spinning on its axis.
To be fair, I do have a soft spot for Oktoberfest styles of beer. Yep, The Ale Runner does enjoy a lager every now and again. New in 2015 is a festbier from Sierra Nevada, who partnered with Brauhaus Riegele, one of the oldest breweries in Germany, to brew this classic fall seasonal. This beer replaced the previous fall seasonal, Flipside Red IPA, in Sierra Nevada’s portfolio this year (I’m not a huge red IPA fan, but I enjoyed Flipside). From the brewery:
We’re on a mission to explore the roots of Germany’s festival beers. Each year, we’ll partner with one of a handful of incredible German brewers to create a traditional take on the most famous beer style in history. This year we’re working hand in hand with Brauhaus Riegele of Augsburg. Together we created an authentic Oktoberfest beer, true to the roots of the festival, that’s deep golden in color and rich with complex malt flavor from the use of traditional German Steffi barley.
We partnered with one of Germany’s oldest breweries-Brauhaus Riegele-to create a true festival beer unlike any brewed in the USA. Using traditional techniques and ingredients, we’re bringing the style back to its authentic roots with deep golden color, delicate hop note and rich malt complexity.
True to their word, this beer pours a deep gold, with a short lived head. It’s a very clear beer (as a lager, it should be) and the aroma is mostly sweet, bready malt. It tastes like a classic Oktoberfest, which is malty and sweet, but with a clean and crisp finish. It’s quite quaffable, even at 6% ABV, and one could certainly drink several in a sitting, if so inclined. Oktoberfest is all about drinking several of these beers in a session, so I suppose Sierra Nevada did what they set out to do. If you’re a fan of the malty festbier style, Sierra Nevada did a good job with this one, so give it a try this fall.