Oktoberfest is an annual festival held in Munich, Germany that starts on September 20th and runs until October 5th. The festival was originally created to celebrate the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on October 17, 1810, and the citizens of Munich were invited to attend festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate. The fields were named Theresienwiese (“Theresa’s meadow”) in honor of the Crown Princess, and have kept that name ever since, although the locals have since abbreviated the name simply to the”Wies’n”. Oktoberfest beer is an Amber Lager of around 6% ABV and the examples poured at the festival must come from local breweries. The beer is meant to be light to medium bodied with a hint of maltiness and easy to consume in large steins.
There is one beer on our shelves that surprises me at how well it sells, but I guess it shouldn’t. It’s delicious. It is Omer Vander Ghinste Oud Bruin ale. The old brown ale style from the Flanders region of Belgium is comprised of 65% top fermenting ale and 35% Foeder Beer. Foeder Beer is an ale that ferments in very large wooden vessels for 18 months to create a sour flavor. The sour beer is then blended with a fresh beer to keep the sour flavor a very mild component. This adds freshness and acidity to the beer all while retaining some of the more complex and mature flavors of the aged ale. The beer pours a garnet amber hue, with moderate carbonation.
Idle Hands Craft Ales / Enlightenment Ales is a small, local, artisanal company that exemplifies a “Tank to Truck” fresh beer mentality, which resonates with us here at Atlas Liquors. Recently, Chris Tkach, the owner and brewer of Idle Hands, has had his share of struggles keeping his dream and his business alive. The Everett Wynn Casino had purchased the land where he was brewing his line of top notch brews and handed him a notice to vacate the premises. In an age where it seems impossible to escape a Walmart popping up in every town, what we really lose is the livelihood and talents of the independent craftsmen who have lived locally and create a bit of culture right in our own back yards.
My name is John McKusick, and I am one of the Beer Directors over here at Atlas Liquors in Medford. The nice folks here at Atlas have asked me to write a few words about beer for you, our customers.
There are a great many opinionated people these days writing about beer. If there is anything that sets me apart from any of the typical beer bloggers on the internet, perhaps it is that I have devoted half my life to the pursuit of knowledge on the subject. I’d say we are currently at the crest of a great Renaissance in the world of beer, maybe even the greatest of all time. With the advancements in modern technology, access to the information of every style of beer ever made, and a penchant to recreate historical, seasonally appropriate brews, today’s brewers provide us with and endless array of tantalizing libations that not only satiate our thirst but pique the interest of even the most seasoned critic. What a day to be alive. If we could only sit down and share a Hill Farmstead Wine Barrel Aged Saison with Samuel Adams or Ben Franklin, what would they think? We could say hey, look what magic will happen because of the trail you blazed. Continue reading
The blogging piece for me is new. I’d love to know what YOU would like, if anything, to read from me. Favorite wine-related topics, experiences, happenings, food/wine pairings. Shoot me a note at Natalie@atlasliquors.com, or on our facebook page. I anticipate some hiccups from myself, especially since I’m sort of uncomfortable with the whole concept, so please – weigh in. If I’m completely off-track, boring, snarky or offensive let me know, and I’ll keep trying to provide you with content that resonates with you.
Welcome to our new Atlas Beer Blog!
John, our very own manager here in Medford, MA, will be writing our future beer blogs. Make sure to offer your support on the Medford Facebook page, by commenting, offering up suggestions for future blogs, or just to say hi and let us know you read it. We love interacting with our customers, and this is one more way we can share our knowledge with you!
Check back soon to see what John’s first blog will be.
I think we can all agree that the way we consume and shop has changed over the years. We live in a global economy where we can buy fresh raspberries in January, click on an icon and download the “it” movie right to our televisions, and have Amazon deliver whatever we desire the same day we order. But I’m not so sure that’s a good thing. It’s impersonal, isolating, and conducive to continuing to live life at break-neck speed. We’ve become less patient. Our attention spans have dwindled. We’re less likely to read whole articles and instead gravitate to snippets of information. And our communication has been challenged. Good communication involves active listening, eye contact, and interpersonal skills. Continue reading