Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest and 2015 Brauhaus Riegele Collaboration

This 6.2% ABV beer is Sierra Nevada Brewing's take on the Oktoberfest style.  It came in their fall sampler pack. They have breweries in both Chico, California and now Mills River, North Carolina. 

The beer pours a deep, yet clear, amber in color. It has an inch of thick and creamy tan head. The aroma is nutty, grassy, a touch of celery, toasted grain, with some dark caramel. The taste follows the aromas, deep, toasted and caramelly malts, with a grassy bitterness to bring a dry finish, and that celery note again. It drinks creamy and smooth, but also with a refreshing carbonation. I’m glad I have another one of these, because I am not sure what to think of it yet. (So, tried it again, great maltiness and mouthfeel, just a bit too bitter for the style).

Tried again in 2015 and liking it even more (new look on the label as well, this year with 6.0% ABV, and brewed this year in collaboration with Brauhaus Riegele of Augusburg, Germany): The beer pours a dark golden to light amber in color. There is a relatively short head of off-white foam. The aroma is lagerish, with the muskiness of a German or Czech lager, malty, straw. The taste is roasted and toasted malt, a touch of sweet, tempered by grass and straw, a touch of tanginess on the end. The finish is mostly dry and moderately bitter. The beer drinks smooth and easy, with a tingle of carbonation. This beer is very well balanced, with a nice blend of flavors, and it is hard to do it full justice in words. It is definitely worth giving it a try. 

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