When we realize that summer is waning and the inevitable is on the way (falling leaves, frost and then snow…), we go through a change in many ways. Our activities move from aquatic fun to storage of water toys. Our fall chores are calling to us and our food habits may also change. But one of the most promising seasons of the year is fall. It is a time for reflection, a time for preparation and a time to experience (once again) great fall beers… especially Oktoberfest. This is when Germany becomes a world-wide heaven for beer enthusiasts, and a time for enjoying really great beers!
Moat Mountain Smoke House & Brewing Company are located in North Conway, NH. Their food is great with a spectacular menu and worth a visit. Although they still brew on premises where their eatery and original location are (smaller batch seasonals for the restaurant and growler fills), their newest brewery upgrade is a state-of-the-art “barn” and artfully done. This place is their main 20 barrel brewery created in 2013. They added the canning line in the following year. It is not open to the public though. You can find out more about their offerings with a name search on Facebook or at their website: www.moatmountain.com
The Moat Mountain Opa’s Oktoberfest is a gorgeous creation of deep golden goodness in a 16 oz can. The head is creamy rich and slightly off-white, almost almond color. Pouring this into a 22 oz glass allows the head to flourish and you’ll find yourself gathering smells of roasted malt, bread and nuts. Hops are well hidden and contribute to the malt shinning through. You will notice many flavors all at once; none talking louder than the other. This is a beer that exemplifies Germany’s Marzen lager style very well and is worth the time to discover while the season is here.
At 5.2% ABV, Opa is a pleasure balance. Not too malty, not too hoppy and not overbearing. In fact it is so well balanced and unassuming, you might just find yourself attracted to another round. BeerAdvocate.com gives this one a “very good” rating of 85 out of 100 scoring and a Bros review of 90. Most other contributors chime in with 3.5-4.5 out of 5 rating system.
Make sure and also try the other offerings from Moat Mt such as Iron Mike Pale Ale, Bone Shaker Brown, East Intervale IPA and Hell Yes! Helles Lager, all in 16 oz cans.
You can purchase them at Hannaford’s and Case-n-Keg, Meredith just to name a few locations… brewed in New Hampshire for the love of the beer!
Jim MacMillan is the owner of WonByOne Design of Meredith, NH, and is an avid imbiber of craft brews and a home brewer as well. Send him your recommendations and brew news to email@example.com