Thursday, October 14, 2010

Oktoberfest! -Fremont Oktoberfest

As always Mark some solid reviews! I hear Bells
is coming out with a new sour.I'll trade you
some Russian River for a couple bottles.
This post is about Seattle's own humble offering
to the great gods of September. Fremont Oktoberfest!
I have to say I was skeptical about the event as it
tends to be about quantity over quality. While I do
admit to saying once or twice "I am dumber for
having overheard your conversation" it was overall
a great experience with some excellent offerings.
There were some excellent appearances. Including:
Woody the Deschutes road show with fancy
boom boom pow type lounge, and the 1 liter beer
garden where quantity is your friend and the beer
is less than 5%. Boo Yah Jersey Shore!
Now down to business. There were some, new to
me offerings.
Lagunitas brought the heavy hitter of the night:
Brown Sugga
Weighing in at 9.8% ABV this made an amateur out
of many "heavy drinkers." There were lots of
slobbering folks in line with me telling how great
this beer was.
It has a Light brown effervescent pour with a
Carmel sugary smell. Heavy alcohol and Carmel at
the same time. Then harsh hop bite to keep it in
check. This is like a caged brown sugar lion and
the hops are the lion tamer. This paces around your
mouth taking broad swipes of Carmel Malt and sugar
sweetness. The lion tamer steps in and whips it
back with a sharp hop bite. This is a rough untamed
beer and at 9.8% will leave claw marks that won't
fade. Only a couple tastes needed.
Pros: A lot of fun like watching a Sigfreid and
Roy Show
Cons: We all know what happened to Roy
Verdict: 3.5 stars An adventure in your mouth but
a bit much for a full pint.
Deschutes Jubelale 2010 
This is a annual favorite of many. It is
Deschutes Christmas Ale. They were serving it out
of "Woody" their traveling beer barrel and having a
great time.
It has a slight banana nose. Carbonated with a
toasty brown color between a brown and amber. It
first hits with carbonation on the tongue. Sweet up
front, hops on the side, and slight bitter, tannin
at the end. A well laid out winter beer that
presents itself in nice tight layers. Sweet but
controlled by well balanced fresh hops. 
Pros: Excellently crafted beer and ready to warm
you this winter.
Cons: I'm not ready to think about Winter!
Verdict: 4 stars but in a month or so.
Mad River Brewing made an appearance at Oktoberfest
this year. They are just coming off a couple gold
medals at the Great American Beerfest so I had to
try them out.
Their medals are well deserved and you should check
out their offerings. I went in to my favorite local
beer shop and tried to find some and the owner said: 
"We used to have them but didn't do enough volume."
No respect...hopefully that will turn around for
them now.
Mad River: Serious Madness

After hearing about their success at gabf I needed
to give them a try. Black and smoky with light
carbonation and no head. Almost a porter this
automatically scores points with me. Nice balance
of malt hops and smoke. This reminds me of my
favorite smoked porter (Vermont pub and brewery
smoked porter) which is affectionally dubbed
"bacon beer." Well balanced chocolate and crystal
malt with just enough hops and smoke to cut the
coffee. Nicely done! I could drink this alone or
with a big juicy steak. This makes me think of that
scene in bram stokers Dracula where Anthony Hopkins
chugs a mug of porter with his bloody rare steak.
This is what I imagine that beer tasted like and it
makes me want to do the same. Anyone got any A1? 
Pros: This is an excellent beer from the small
brewery that gets no respect.
Cons: May cause you to order bloody steaks and want
to go to Forks with wooden stakes to put all those
Vampire tweens out of your misery.
Verdict: 4 stars. Can't wait to get me some more!!
Bring it Team Edward!
Well those are the highlights. As the sun started
to set the Jerseymont Shore crowd started to come out.
All in all a great time and one of the last great days of the summer.
Thanks Fremont for a great event!

1 comment:

MJS said...

Excellent review, Shaun. Brown Shugga is an old friend of mine; it's been in Chicago 2 years. I had a buddy order a pitcher of it. You read that right. He lost his Blackberry that night. You mentioned Mad River. I recently found a couple of their bottles in Indiana and tried and enjoyed their double IPA. The pale ale's solid too. I wish I had known they were so hard to find on the West Coast although they're not here in Chicago either. I will look into that Bell's sour if I ever see it!