In honor of Oktoberfest, we’ve done the hard work and picked six of our favorite American brews to celebrate the noble tradition of Märzens, aka Oktoberfest.
New Glarus Staghorn Oktoberfest Beer: New Glarus, WI
A Bavarian Oktoberfest is frothy and coppery, with notes of caramel and spices. If you want a smooth, slightly sweet malty lager without a hoppy taste, this is a solid choice.
New Glarus Brewing recommends pairing this with a hearty roast beef or a Friday fish fry.
Sam Adams Octoberfest Boston, MA
In New England, just as the summer is winding down and the dread of winter is looming near…mid-September rolls around and Octoberfest starts hitting the taps and the stores. With an amber hue that reflects the season, this is a lighter take on a Märzen. Sam Adams Brewery recommends pairing this with apps like hummus and chips and says it’s the perfect contrast to their Samuel Adams Boston Lager Goat Cheese Dip.
Firestone Walker Oaktoberfest: Paso Robles, Calif.
Don’t let the name fool you—Oaktoberfest City isn’t fermented in oak barrels. It’s a nod to the city of Paso Robles, which is Spanish for “Pass of the Oaks”. The brew features traditional malts and German Hallertau hops. It has a malty sweetness and the hops balance it out nicely.
Left Hand Oktoberfest Märzens Lager: Longmont, Colo.
Dark and coppery, this Oktoberfest hits a sweet note with hints of caramel and a spicy toastiness; a good balance of hops round out the sweetness (some find it to be a little too sweet), but it has an overall full flavor.
A brew with this much flavor deserves a good solid meal—like steak and potatoes—so fire up the grill!
Half Acre Lager Town: Chicago, IL
Toasty, with hints of rye and a caramel sweetness to counterbalance a hoppy finish. This Märzen is an excellent example of what has made Half Acre Brewery a mainstay in the Chicago craft beer movement. Last year, it was voted the best Oktoberfest!
Let us know how you’re celebrating Oktoberfest and tell us which brews you’ve tried and prefer for the season.