9/8/23: Geo. Wiedemann Brewing Company's Oktoberfest Marzenbier

12:52 PM

It's hard to fathom the year's moved so quickly, yet, somehow, Oktoberfest season has come to the blog. The evenings are growing cooler and the mornings darker. It's the time to be outside, drink malty beer, and listen to oompah music.

A can of Wiedemann's Oktoberfest Marzenbier.

I'm breaking into Märzens and festbiers and grabbing my Oktoberfest hat out of storage. We're in the first of the year's four best months. I'm celebrating that with Wiedemann's Oktoberfest Marzenbier.

Located in St. Bernard (an independent village within Cincinnati), Wiedemann's can trace their lineage (or, at least, their name) to 1870. Back then, George Wiedemann began brewing Wiedemann's Fine Beer in Newport, KY. Over the years, the brewery's name changed hands before being purchased and settled in St. Bernard. Now they offer some classic Wiedemann's brews and some newer recipes.

Oktoberfest Marzenbier isn't listed on their website, so we're heading to Untappd for what relevant information we can find on the lager: At 5.6% ABV, it's toasty, malty, and perfect for drinking in cool biergärten weather.

Diving into my can's bouquet, I'm finding incredible malty notes of biscuit and caramel, with some wet straw layered beneath them. That's it for the nose. It's simple and without any frills, meaning it's exactly what I want from an Oktoberfest beer. However, maybe that's what's putting Purrl off on the lager; she refused to even give my can a single whiff. Her loss, I say.

Purrl refusing to sniff my can of Oktoberfest

Going from Oktoberfest's aroma alone, I wasn't expecting a smattering of hoppiness to be the first flavor on my tongue, yet here we are. They're bitter, but they quickly fade into that good Märzen malt that I picked up on the bouquet: caramel, biscuit, and straw, with some toffee and freshly-baked bread thrown in for good measure. These linger into the finish with some (expected given the beer's description) toastiness and (unexpected) smokiness.

This drinks like what any good Märzen (or lager, for that matter) should drink: smooth, crisp, and immensely crushable.

When our baby was born, I quickly realized that I wanted to slot a little Oktoberfest into my "me" time. Part of this stemmed from my (turns out) unfounded thought I wouldn't be able to attend an in-person Oktoberfest celebration last year. 

So, when Michelle would have the baby in the afternoon and I'd get home from my daily run, I'd microwave a brat and retire to our porch with it and a mug of some Oktoberfest beer. While eating and drinking, I'd pull up German polka classics to jam out to. I never drank Wiedemann's Oktoberfest during these sessions, but it would've fit in perfectly.

All this to say, Wiedemann's Oktoberfest is a damn good try at a Märzen. It's simplicity is just right, although that initially hoppiness was unexpected. I'm giving my can an 8.5/10. This is a fine way for me to start the season.

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