Oktoberfest officially runs September 21 through October 6. The German-born, bier-fulled holiday originated 200 years ago in celebration of the marriage of Bavaria’s Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. The wedding is remembered for its multiple days of feasting, drinking and horse races. Forth Worthians carry on that tradition through events and special brewery releases around this time of year.
As we count down the days to Oktoberfest Fort Worth (September 26-28), these Oktoberfest-themed beer releases from Fort Worth’s breweries should be enjoyed while they last.
Rahr & Son’s Oktoberfest
When Fritz Rahr founded Fort Worth’s first craft beer brewery, he brought generations of German brewing family tradition to his business. Few beers exemplify that legacy like Rahr’s Oktoberfest. The marzen lager weighs in at a respectable 6.7 ABV, and fans rave about its full-bodied, roasty and spiced profile. The best thing about Rahr’s Oktoberfest is that you can pretty much enjoy the German bier anywhere.
Wild Acre Brewing Company’s Mondlift Oktoberfest
Like many Oktoberfest brews released each fall, Wild Acre’s fall within German traditions. The Märzen is cold-lagered for 40 days, and the results are smooth and malt-forward as you would expect from the style. I recently grabbed a sixer from a nearby Spec’s. The light-bodied beer has a distinctive copper hue. It’s light enough to drink a few over the course of an evening and rich enough to be slowly savored.
Funky Picnic Brewery & Cafe Berries, Beets & Battlestar Galactica
A Berliner Weisse is a traditional sour ale that historically hails from Northern Germany. The tart beer is traditionally low in alcohol content (3 percent ABV) and rich in berry flavors. Funky Picnic Brewery & Cafe has a fun variant of this 400-year-old bier style on tap. On a recent visit to the Near Southside brewpub, I snagged a pint of this ale and found it to be fruity, fizzy and not boozy in the least. The restaurant arguably makes some of the best sammies in town — definitely worth checking out.
Cowtown Brewing Company
Just east of downtown Fort Worth is a one-stop-shop for lovers of craft beer and barbecue. Cowtown Brewing Company brews some of the finest German beers in town, making it an ideal location for revelers who want to imbibe brews like Johnnie’s High Brau (Dortmunder Export Style Lager), Miami Weisse (Berliner Weisse w/mango), Rhinestone Cowboy (German Kölsch Style Blonde), Rock Island Red (German Style Red Lager) and La Cabra Dorada (Maibock).
HopFusion Ale Works
HopFusion Ale Works beer has been blowing up across the region and state. The Near Southside brewery recently announced that it has sold its one-millionth can of Feisty Blonde. The brewpub has a fun Hop-2-Go station where you can take home cans or drafts of German beers like
Orange Blossom Special Witbier (fresh fruit, orange zest and honey), Golden Catapult Kölsch and Tejano Lager, which goes great with a tajin/salt blend on the rim and lime.
Panther Island Brewing Company
Sweet Fang isn’t Oktoberfest themed, but it does pair well with fall flavors. The chocolate peanut butter stout reminds me of Reese’s peanut butter cups. It’s not as heavy or thick as it sounds, but it does have a nice, creamy mouthfeel that’ll please the inner kid in you.