Four Breweries Team Up To Host Ballard Oktoberfest

Is it really getting to be that time already?  Summer, especially in Seattle, always seems so darn short.  A couple of weeks ago I was already seeing pumpkin beers appearing on craft beer store shelves and now, here come the Oktoberfest announcements.  Don’t get me wrong.  I love Fall and the Seasonal craft styles that come along with it, but it’s a bittersweet reminder that the days are getting shorter, the nights are getting longer and Summer is starting to fade.

Of course, as I just mentioned, Fall’s arrival also means Oktoberfest biers and Oktoberfest celebrations.  The Märzen/Oktoberfest style is probably my favorite style of Lager.  Sure, a well made Pilsner is great on a hot Summer day, but I love the more toasty malt flavors of a good Märzen.  If you’re also a fan of a good Märzen and other German/European styles (Hefeweizen, Dunkelweizen, Kölsch, Vienna Lager, Roggenbier, etc.) then you’ll want to mark your calendar for September 16th and this year’s Ballard Oktoberfest.

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Sierra Nevada Partners With Brauhaus Miltenberger To Create The Ultimate Oktoberfest Beer

Images Courtesy Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

I wonder how many young craft beer drinkers today realize that they owe the wonderful proliferation of craft beer in the U.S., in small part, to President Jimmy Carter and his brother Billy.  On October 14th, 1978, spurred on by his brother Billy who was a homebrewer, Jimmy Carter signed a bill into law which allowed homebrewing of beer in the United States. Prior to this ruling, Sierra Nevada founders, Ken Grossman and Paul Camusi, had already been homebrewing in California’s Butte County.  When it became legal, however, they decided it was time to go pro and in 1979 Sierra Nevada Brewing Company as born in Chico.

Their first beer was the popular and iconic, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, followed soon after by Celebration IPA (now discontinued). Today, Sierra Nevada still brews many excellent and well known beers including: Torpedo Extra IPA, Otra Vez Gose, Hoptimum Triple IPA and, of course, their classic Bigfoot Barleywine plus, of course, their annual Beer Camp series of collaboration beers.  Now Sierra Nevada is ready to release their latest Seasonal creation.  This year, they have teamed up with Germany’s Brauhaus Miltenberger to create the ultimate Oktoberfest beer.

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Flocktoberfest 2016 Happens This Saturday at Black Raven Brewing

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Everyone loves a good party, and Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) certainly puts on quite a celebration each year for their annual ‘Flock Party’.  They provide great beers, food trucks, live bands, etc.  I’ve been to their Flock Party many times, and it’s always a great time.

It seems that this year, however, just one Flock Party isn’t enough for Black Raven.  So, this Saturday, September 10th get ready for Black Raven’s Flocktoberfest.  As with their annual Flock Party, there’ll be great beers, including the release of their Flocktoberfest Lager, great food, games and more.

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Oaktoberfest Returns From Firestone Walker

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It may still be Summer, but Fall beers are already starting to arrive.  In case you hadn’t noticed, Pumpkin beers are making their way back onto store shelves, and I’ve seen one or two Oktoberfest releases out there as well.

Last year, other than for a few select accounts, Firestone Walker Brewing Company didn’t release their Fall Seasonal, Oaktoberfest.  Now it’s back though, and this time it’s coming in 16 oz cans – only the second time Firestone has packaged this beer.  So dust off your lederhosen or pull your dirndl out of the closet, because Oktoberfest is right around the corner.   Continue reading

MLK Alt Is Returning From Foggy Noggin Brewing

Just yesterday, I told you about a place where you can go to try flights of German style beers.  Most of the styles contained in those flights are Lagers, but not the Alt.  Traditional German Altbier (or Dusseldorfer Alt) is one of just a few traditional German Ales rather than Lagers (along with Kolsch, Gose, Hefeweizen, Berliner Weisse, Weizenbock and a few others).

From the German Beer Institute:
One of only a handful of traditional German ales. Altbier is Copper-colored, cool-fermented, cold-conditioned, clean-tasting, with an aromatic hop presence, a firm creamy head, a medium body, and a dry finish. It is indigenous to the Rheinland, which is part of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia in the northwestern part of Germany, near the Dutch border. The best known Altbiers come from the Düsseldorf, the state capital.

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Try A Traditional German Beer Flight At Altstadt

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Most craft beer fans I know gravitate towards Ales more than Lagers, and I think the reason is obvious.  Pale Ales, IPAs, Stouts, Porters, Barleywines, Saisons and other Belgian Styles, etc. are all Ales, not Lagers.  There are a few Lagers out there in the craft World but, for the most part, most of us tend to lean towards the Ale side of things much more often.

Unfortunately, that sometimes means we don’t take the time to appreciate some of the classic Germany styles (which are mostly Lagers) that are readily available at several places around Seattle.  One of those places is Altstadt in Pioneer Square.  To help you explore and appreciate some of these styles, Altstadt is serving up three different German beer flights, featuring classic German beer styles.

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Get Your Tickets Now For The 2015 Winter Beer Festival

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Fall my be just getting started, but Winter is right around the corner.  That means Winter beers; rich, dark, bold Winter beers – many with an ABV that will help warm you up a bit.  The Washington Brewer’s Guild is pleased to present the 2015 Winter Beer Festival, happening December 4th and 5th at Magnuson Park.

Since the festival is not until December, the tap and food lineups have not yet been announced, but at least 50 breweries will be participating and food will be available from several local area food trucks.

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Craft Beer Monger’s Picks For Seattle Beer Week #7

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Seattle Beer Week #7 kicks off in just over 2 weeks.  As of this morning, April 20th, there are over 220 different events listed for this year’s festivities.  That’s incredible.  Just two weeks ago, when I gave you my tips for enjoying Seattle Beer Week #7 on a budget, there were 180 events listed.  As you can see, that number has grown significantly.

Now, with majority of this year’s events listed, I thought it would be a good time to review all the choices and present you with what I believe will be the best events to hit during each day of Seattle Beer Week.  Unlike my budget friendly article from two weeks ago, however, this list of events will disregard cost and focus entirely on fun.

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Seattle Beer Week #7 On A Budget

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Seattle Beer Week (SBW) can be a costly endeavor.  Depending on how many different events you plan on attending, in addition to any special dinners or other ticketed events, keeping up with the Jones’ can become a costly prospect this time of year for Seattle area craft beer fans.  This year’s SBW kind of snuck up on me a bit.  I can’t believe it starts in just one month.

Back in 2013 I ran the first version of this article: Seattle Beer Week On A Budget.  In that article, I told you about one event each day during SBW #5 that would be kind to your wallet and give you the biggest bang for your buck.  There are nearly 180 different events listed on the schedule for this year’s Seattle Beer Week already, and there’s still a month to go.  Deciding which event(s) to attend can be a challenging task.  There’s often more than one event I’d like to attend happening at the same time, and usually on opposite ends of town.

Last time, I listed just one event per day.  This time, however, I’ll list two different events for each day of SBW, but you’ll have to decide which one(s) to hit.  Hard choices sometimes have to be made.

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MLK Alt Returns From Foggy Noggin Brewing

 

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How many different craft beer styles can you name?  Can you rattle off a long list or is your style vocabulary limited to just IPA, Stout and perhaps a few others?  I hope you can name a few more than that, but if you can’t don’t worry.  You can always keep learning.

One style most casual beer drinkers aren’t familiar with is Altbier.  When most people think of German beers, they think of lagers; and that’s true.  Most German beer styles we know today are Lagers.  However,  long before they were known for Lagers, Germans brewed Ales – as far back as 3,000 years ago.  “Not many specific styles of beer can be traced thousands of years, however Altbier is one of them.  The name Altbier was put to use back in the 1800’s when much of central Europe decided to switch to onslaught of light-coloured lagers, while the local beer drinkers in the Rhineland stayed loyal to beers brewed the old school way (ales). ” (*)

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