This was a beautiful Sunday. A week before Oktoberfest Zinzinnati. The first NFL home game day, where the Bengals play their in-state rivals, the Browns, at the tax subsidized stadium named after the founder of both: Paul Brown.
The season has turned. Not quite complete autumn yet, but the ground has cooled. An observation obtained by direct experience. Meanwhile, the local television stations were aglow with all things Bengals, including the monumental inaugural of tailgate season, which means Bud Light from the Anheuser-Busch InBev juggernaut in St. Louis, Missouri. The Bud folks have been very busy lately. Extending their global transnational reach with market successful products such as Bud Light Platinum, a 6% abv concoction, that bottled in blue coloured glass, seems to hit all the right consumer buttons.
But the world’s largest brewing corporation does not stop there. Beck’s of Bremen, Germany fame, is now made in the United States. Farmed-out as it were, to more cost efficient facilities. The same can be said of The Goose Island Beer Company, where regular parts of their portfolio, such as Honker’s Ale, are no longer the concern in Chicago, leaving those “simpler” formulas to A-B InBev breweries elsewhere, providing more room for lucrative luxury productions of Bourbon County Stout.
Here in Cincinnati, Samuel Adams Octoberfest is the official beer of Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, although the folks at Moerlein Lager House would disagree. Their Fifth & Vine Oktoberfest is celebrated, along with Hudepohl Oktoberfest Bier, which touches the soul of this city’s German cultural roots (and virtually destroyed by the insanity of Prohibition). But Samuel Adams is big business here, producing one third of their beers at what was the Hudepohl-Schoenling brewery, where founder Jim Koch’s father worked.
Which reminds me, it seems that a week before our local Oktoberfest, the price of a 12 pack of Samuel Adams goes up a dollar at the grocery stores. A magic marzen moment as it were, including the Munich brewed Hofbrauhaus Oktoberfest, found in Newport, Kentucky. There is a plethora of Oktoberfest Festivals around here, beginning in August, all the way to October. A celebration of food to be sure, because very few recipe styles are so food friendly as this Vienna amber lager variation.