Next up, Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest:
In one of my first beerbecue posts, I delved into the historical roots of Oktoberfest (more or less accurately). You can check out the early beerbecue hilarity here. This is relevant because Hacker-Pschorr is one of only 6 beer companies that provide beer for THE Oktoberfest in Munich, and it’s been that way for years…sort of.
Hacker-Pschorr didn’t actually merge until 1972. Even then, they continued to sell beer under separate labels for some time thereafter. But Hacker and Pschorr have been under various states of incestuous ownership from as far back as the late 1700s. And while Pschorr violates one of my life rules (Never trust anyone with a consonant to vowel ratio greater than 5:1), I thought it would be good to review a classic, proper Oktoberfest/Märzen.*
Of course, one of the hallmarks of an Oktoberfest beer is drinkability. That’s good, too, because at Oktoberfest they serve beer by the liter (that’s 33.8 US fluid ounces for you metricphobes). You don’t want your beer too heavy…I mean, you need room for such delectable Bavarian gastronomical treats as mackerel-on-a-stick and liver cheese. And the last thing you want to do while wearing knee-high socks and getting down to Oom-Pah music is to cry mercy because you can’t finish your beer.
So, blow the dust off your lederhosen, tell your Frau to fetch you another beer, and let’s get to it. It pours a crystal clear copper-brown, with a nice off-white head that leaves some lace. It smells like beer and faint caramel. It tastes like beer with some caramel, bread, and earthiness going on. No real hop character to speak of, other than just the right amount of bitterness to balance off the malt sweetness. It starts out drier than it finishes, but the finish strikes a nice balance between creamy and crisp. It’s a good Oktoberfest, and it makes me want to go jump in a pile of freshly raked leaves (my only true litmus test for an Oktoberfest beer).
The Haybag: What’s up with all these “drinkable” beers lately? Go fetch me an Evil Twin Molotov Cocktail, beer mench.
*I don’t think this is the Märzen that Hacker-Pschorr pours at Oktoberfest.