Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Battle of the Oktoberfests Round One

Sam Adam's VS Great Lakes Brewing Comapany
I love this time of the year. I love it for brewing and drinking, the fests, and the weather. I swore I'd do my best to drink only my brews this year but since I haven't even started on my Oktoberfest I had to break down.
Sam Adams Oktoberfest started me on the path to better beer. I picked up a sixer the first time I saw it in the store and bought it every year after. This is a very good beer. Although it's no longer a favorite I still enjoy it on occassion. If you have a friend that's stuck on bud/miller/coors give him one of these and I'm willing to bet they'll convert. Oktoberfests are meant to be fuller bodied, copper in color, rich in flavor with a low hop profile. Sam Adam's does that on the lower end. It has a decent slightly sweet toasted bread aroma but my nose isn't picking up any hops. The taste is as always, good. I like this it's very drinkable. Malty but not overly sweet, kind of like a nice dark bread. There's a small amount of bitterness due to the hops but very indistinct. Too indistinct. It doesn't have the crisp grassy-like finish I like in an Oktoberfest. it's not heavy at all yet it suffers when compared to it's challenger.
Great Lakes Brewing Company Oktoberfest is my pick between the two of these. It's almost hopless putting anyone against the guys on the lake. The beer/lager in question has a great hop aroma. In a blind tasting I was able to pick it right away. It has a ton more on the aroma scale and it doesn't stop there. The taste is very malty but not sweet by any stretch of the imagination. Toasted bread, dark fruits (raisin, figs), and much crisper finish put this way ahead of Sam's in the taste department. No cloying aftertaste, very easy to drink, and having more than one or two won't fill your belly. I love this and can't wait to pit it against Gordon Biersch's Marzen which is another one of my favorites.

Great Lakes Brewing Comapany Oktoberfest Lager - $8.99
Sam Adam's (Boston Beer Company) Oktoberfest Lager - $7.99
Pick some up. Drink them down and tell me what you think.


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