Atwater Block Brewery Bloktoberfest - A Microbrew Review
I'm really starting to appreciate these Oktoberfest beers this fall. I've never been the biggest fan of this particular style, but the more I drink and review American Oktoberfest beers this year, the more I respect them and enjoy them as well.
This evening's craft beer Oktoberfest selection from my trusty basement beer refrigerator is downtown Detroit-based Atwater Block Brewery's Bloktoberfest Lager. I've not had all that many microbrews from Michigan microbreweries over the past year, but Atwater Block Brewery is a well known and respected brewery across the state of Michigan. Atwater Block has severak really nice craft beer offerings and I was anxious to give Bloktoberfest (a previous GABF Silver Medal Award winner) a shot to see if it would continue the trend.
Dumping the chilled 12 ounces of brew from the brown glass bottle into my pub glass, this beer poured with an extremely active and aggressive marshmallow two finger head that hung around for a good 5 minutes or so finally settling down to a frothy corona around the parameter of the top of the glass. Bloktoberfest boasts a tannish gold color with slight tinges of tawny red. It was clear with generous, visible carbonation. A good looking beer overall at this point. A strongly malt based scent eminated from the surface of this beer. It was sweetly scented reminiscent of cookie dough, bread and even a little cinnamon. Interesting enough for an Octoberfest beer. This is one of the strongest scented German style Oktoberfests that I've tried so far.
Taking down the first taste of this beer, I knew I was on to something pretty special. First off, there was a very nice presence of lacing down the side of my glass which I've always found to be a good indicator of the richness of a craft beer. It was a lot chewier and thicker than I imagined. Great feel on the tongue and malty to the max. Sweet and a little bit of gingerbread and spice which surprised me a little as well. A nice and mild hoppy bitter backbone balance it out very well and kept the flavor from going off to far in one direction or the other. A great, clean finish with a mildly sour aftertaste but nothing too distraction.
Atwater Block Brewing's Bloktoberfest Specialty Lager met and exceeded my expectations of an Oktoberfest style beer. No it wasn't the best Oktoberfest beer I've ever had, but it sure comes close in my book. Blocktoberfest is a very enjoyable and drinkable beer that I would certainly be able to imbibe in a few of in one sitting. It's very smooth, and easy to drink and has a special festive appeal to it that matches the fall season perfectly I would say. At 6.3% alcohol by volume, you probably don't want to go overboard, but that's just good sense when enjoying any microbrew. I loved Bloktoberfest and will give it a well-earned 8.0 out of 10.0. This is one Oktoberfest I'll be looking forward to again next fall for sure!
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