I know that the true German Oktoberfest celebration occurs in September, but in my opinion right now is peak time for fall beers. I’ve cleared most of the summer beers out of my beer fridge and stocked up on some darker and maltier styles. One new-to-me beer that I grabbed was Brocktoberfest, a marzen from Idle Hands Brewery. Idle Hands has had an interesting evolution, first they focused on Belgian inspired styles, then they brewed a number of German lagers, and now they have a mix of the two along with a variety of modern American beers. They were also forced to move out of their original brewery in Everett, but it led to the construction of a beautiful new taproom in Malden. Idle Hands has been killing it recently, putting out a number of delicious beers over a very wide range of styles. I was happy to see some tallboy cans of Brocktoberfest on store shelves, it is available as Idle Hands fall seasonal.
Idle Hands Brocktoberfest pours bright copper with a small white head. The aroma is mild, just a bit of toasted malt. The flavor is malt forward, notes of bread crust roasted nuts and honey. There is plenty of malt flavor but the beer avoids the cloying sweetness that is present in too many American marzens. A bit of floral and grassy hop flavor adds balance. Brocktoberfest is on the light side for the style, refreshingly drinkable and not too boozy at 5.6% ABV. The finish is clean with minimal aftertaste. This is a really nice marzen, it delivers the big malt flavors you expect in the style while keeping the beer light and easy to drink. Grab a big mug and toast the season with this (Br)Oktoberfest! Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
Previous Idle Hands Reviews: