I love all this great beer that I can blog about. I’m really enjoying the Oktoberfest style, as well. With each comparison, I’m learning more about each beer’s subtle differences as well as learning about my own particular tastes.
This time I pit Paulaner against Otter Creek from Vermont. (This is just a random choosing from what I had available locally) Paulaner is considered by many to be the classic Oktoberfest beer. Straight from Munich, you should expect the best; though keep in mind, it must be shipped across seas to get to me. Otter Creek, also Wolaver’s Certified Organic beers, has many fine beers, though none stand out as exceptional in my head except for Wolaver’s Brown, which my wife was a fan of for a while.
On the pouring, the Otter Creek lost any resemblance of what was for a second, a head. The Paulaner looked a tad better, but I think I’m going to blame both of these on not having hand washed my glasses. The Paulaner was sweet smelling and the Otter Creek was sort of sterile smelling. (I hate to make a decision before tasting, but it is tough when this happens.)
The Paulaner was medium to high sweetness with little to no hop aroma or bitterness; all ideal for the German style. The Otter Creek was actually ok tasting, though there was little malt sweetness to jump out at you along with little hops.
So, the hands down winner is the Paulaner. It didn’t seem to suffer at all from from the journey to the U.S., either. However, this little contest is becoming a bit tricky… Am I judging the beers against their style? Or, am I judging them for what I liked best to quaff? Because, the Germans make it to their style, and the Americans are making it to theirs… there is no wrong or right; they are both official styles*.
So, with that logic, I have to go with what I like to quaff. Definitely.
* Brewer’s Association