In the most satisfactory way, this is a beer that meets excellently my expectations.
Schlafly Oktoberfest, 5.5% ABV
Schlafly describes its Oktoberfest as a "traditional Bavarian Marzen." Such a simple but delightfully accurate description.
This Oktoberfest is good because it does not try to be something it is not. And it excels because it is so very good at being what it is.
Some Oktoberfest beers are overambitious. Often typical pale lagers try to become Dunkels, and fall miserably somewhere in between.
The Schlafly version does not make that mistake. This is a proud and delicious lager. Nothing more, but certainly nothing less.
It pours a dark apricot, but not quite copper. The liquid is hazy and fades to a lighter orange tint at the bottom.
The thin head evaporates rapidly. Meager remnants cling to the glass; not much at all, actually.
This Oktoberfest's aroma is delicate but pleasing in what it offers. Very subtle scent of malts.
The strongest spices are up front, although they persist with some gentle rolling in the mouth. Mouthfeel is very light offering the slightest bit of stickiness.
Throughout the drinking experience, the overwhelming impression of Schlafly's Oktoberfest is that of it being refreshing. This is a smooth, very well crafted beer.
Upon finish, it offers a bit of a grainy aftertaste, which is also good.
Among many very good seasonal beers offered this time of year, Schlafly's Oktoberfest is one of the best.
The source of its success is not in anything overwhelming. It's not flashy. Instead, this Oktoberfest is the solid performer of its class.
Schlafly offers a take on the style that meets nearly perfectly the consumer's expectation.
And, for that, it should be rewarded:
Four out of a possible five stars.