OctoberfestNovember 1, 2009 Bloomfield, CT
Thomas Hooker Brewing Co.
Available: CT, MA, RI, NY, ME, FL, PA, GA
Originally brewed to celebrate the beginning of the German brewing season and the 1810 wedding of crown prince Ludwig of Bavaria and Princess Therese of Saxon-Hildburghausen. This amber beer was originally brewed in March (“Märzenbier”) and left to age in cool lagering caves during the heat of the summer.
Original gravity: 1057
This beer is a misnomer. It should be called “Hoptoberfest,” thanks to the rather heavy hand with the little green beauties—in a good way. That being said, Hooker’s Octoberfest is otherwise all märzen. Pouring an autumnal orange with a quickly receding ecru foam, the beer’s German roots are apparent at first sniff, with a strong showing of malty sweetness that belies the hops lingering within. A sturdy effervescence lifts the sweet toasted malt and gives the hops a chance to make an appearance. And that they do, balancing the beer and providing a big, crisp kiss of herbal spiciness that leaves you wanting another sip. A hophead’s Octoberfest!
- Lisa Morrison
The tawny copper color oozes autumn and is exactly what I expect in a festbier. The nose is absolutely appropriate and inviting, with a soft Vienna and Munich malt and toasted marshmallow bouquet, with hints of vanilla and brandy. The bitterness is somewhat robust for the style, with a noble hop background and a suggestion of rosemary. A top-notch festbier should straddle the line between refreshing and fully satisfying, and Hooker’s does it deftly with a medium-light mouthfeel, tight, crisp finish and firm caramel malt sweetness. Bring on the roasted rosemary chicken.
- K. Florian Klemp
Lisa Morrison, aka The Beer Goddess, writes about beer whenever she can and also gets to talk about it on a weekly radio show in her hometown of Portland, OR.
K. Florian Klemp
K. Florian Klemp is an award-winning homebrewer and general hobbyist who thinks there is no more sublime marriage than that of art and science.
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