fall – 2/2 – PorchDrinking.com
Although I typically write about Northeastern craft beers, I could not resist ordering a Nebraska Brunette Nut Brown Ale this past week while at happy hour. If not solely for the name, then surely for the implication of it’s flavor. Being that I have been a brunette since birth, I firmly believe that we do it better — whatever “it” may be — which in this case, is choosing the most delectable craft beers from a remarkably curated menu.
If there is one thing I absolutely need so that I cheerfully adjust to the seasonal transition of Fall, it would have to be pumpkin. Nothing says comfort like an over-sized sweater, multicolored horizon, warm fireplace, and a tall pint.
With the end of September comes the wrapping up of the Oktoberfest season, or what I would coin as Märzen Madness. Fairs across the U.S. have had their seasonal stein-raising festivals full of oom-pa-pa music, some of the more widely known tipples with German names and an array of food that may cause indigestion for most. In Munich, those millions lucky enough in attendance have a few more days before the nonstop imbibing ends and a cleanup of epic proportions begins.
To emulate this spectacular party still taking place abroad, to profess my love for the seemingly simple but still complex Märzen and to give one last hurrah to the summer, which is why this party takes place, I have provided you with the quintessential collection of some of the better Oktoberfests around.
As one might expect from the name, New Belgium Brewing has a long-standing reputation built on producing solid Belgian-style beers including their Abbey ale, Trippel, and even Fat Tire, a ubiquitous brew which undoubtedly marked the beginning of many a casual beer drinker’s insobrietous journey to certified beer geek. As such, I was excited to find Wild² Dubbel, a new entry in their Lips of Faith series in a local bottle shop. What makes this dubbel wild? Well, it’s brewed with Schisandra berries, also known as the “five taste fruit” and finished with Brettanomyces. The five flavors promised by the berry are sour, sweet, salty, bitter, and spicy. Brett is something I generally enjoy, but not being familiar with Schisandra, I wasn’t sure what to expect as I opened the bottle.
It’s that time of year again, when the leaves begin to turn from their summery, verdant green to all shades of red, orange, and yellow. And they reach their peak crunchiness for the most satisfying of leaf stepping. It is finally time to don sweaters and cozy scarves. The winds begin to bring in a chill, and with those crisper temperatures come the familiar smells and tastes of fall: pumpkin and spice. Many look forward to enjoying that first slice of pumpkin pie, or perhaps that Pumpkin Spice latte in the morning (with the honorable mention of gorging on Halloween candy). But for us PorchDrinkers, we look forward to the release of the spicy, oh so delicious pumpkin beers. So here are a few of the best pumpkin beers I’ve sampled this season to cozy up with during the autumnal days ahead.
It seems like everyone has gotten in on the pumpkin game these days. Once fall hits, pumpkin fever infects us all and we just want more of it! Luckily, I think I have found the cure to the sickness. Well, I shouldn’t say cure, because once it’s gone, it leaves you craving for this orange and blue aluminum can to come charging back for more.
As October gets into full swing and the morning temperatures continue to drop, an Ultimate Fall 6er designed specifically for this beautiful season only seems appropriate. Get your mittens and your pumpkins and your s’mores and lets do this.
ABV: 8.5% | IBU: 25
This small-batch, double pumpkin ale eluded me last year, so imagine my surprise when I found a bomber of it at the Kroger in little ol’ Athens, Ohio over the weekend. I was ecstatic! And I have to say, it did not disappoint. Made with 28 pounds of real pumpkin per barrel, from the moment I opened the bottle all I could think was “this is fall.”
The official start of fall is rapidly approaching, so I asked our staff what they love most about what is quickly becoming my favorite season. Personally, I’m enjoying the cooler weather, my pumpkin spice candle, pumpkin beer and the return …
6.0% ABV, IBU (n/a)
As a relative neophyte to the craft beer world, red beers are one area where I feel I have extremely limited knowledge of flavor spectrums and ingredients. In fact, George Killian’s Irish Red probably makes up …
SRM: 110 (apparently blacker than the blackest black times infinity)
It’s like riding a chocolate wave of star-dust through floral hop galaxies. Taking on the Uinta Brewing Dubhe Imperial Black IPA is a journey through the stars that is dry yet refreshing, malty yet hoppy, light yet bold. Shit is crazy, brah. The beer pours a rich, malty black with a rocky tan head. Is this a fucking stout? Is this a porter? What the shit is going on in my glass? I was expecting a big, hop-heavy aroma with the five hop varietals in this brew but it comes off as a malty, sweet beast. There is a floral ester coming in before the first sip and most of that must be the hemp seeds? That first quaff is creamy and thick, with chocolate malts and a slight bitter punch coming mid-palate to fight off any cloying, bitch-ass malts trying to hang out on the tongue. Malt goodnesses AND hops galore. Wicked.
One of the greatest things about fall along with football, leaf piles and apple cider is the stable of fall seasonal beers available. Honestly the multitude of pumpkin and spiced beers on the market can be a bit overwhelming so we tasked our writers with coming up with a fall beer preview. Here’s the variety of fall samplings they came up with.
We caught up with David Markham, the winner of the Avery IPA Fest homebrew contest, and he was nice enough to share some tips for starting your own homebrew as well as some info about his winning homebrew recipe. David’s Belgian Pale Ale had prominent yeast flavors, but it finished clean. It was not so strongly hop forward nor was it very citrus-y which differs from most traditional American IPAs, but matched well with it’s subtle malty flavors in the background. It would work well as a fall seasonal.
This fall there were several things that I was really looking forward to, football, fantasy football, Kentucky football, then after last weekend’s performance Kentucky basketball, the new Avett Brothers album, the new Mumford and Sons Album, …
Fall is my favorite season. As a kid, fall was filled with great fun like hay rides, apple orchards, birthday parties and trick-or-treating. Today, I continue to love fall for other reasons—the temperature cooling, leaf colors changing and the emergence of flavors that just aren’t quite appropriate for the summer months.
Pumpkin Lager – Lakefront Brewery, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
It’s that time of year. The sun is setting earlier and earlier. Camp fires are blazing at night. And Lakefront Brewery’s Pumpkin Lager appeared on the shelves of the liquor stores. …