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Beer Review: Thomas Creek Brewery LLC., Octoberfest Lager

Nov 25, 2011

Ding Points: 70.50

Pour: 90.00, Nose: 80.00, Palate: 60.00, Mouth: 70.00, Global: 70.00

Tasting Notes:

My oh my, Thomas Creek is a strange brewer. On the whole I have found their beers to be largely mediocre, but with their production of the Monday Night Brewing beers, and a beer like Up The Creek, they occasionally do very much better than average. (This is especially surprising when I consider my own usual taste parameters and compare them to a beer like ‘Up The Creek’). I wonder where their Octoberfest will fit into the spectrum.

Mid-orange pour with good clarity and a decent head. The head is strong and it leaves excellent lace and some nice, above average spottiness on the surface of the amber body. Looks good, high score for appearance.

Nose has a decent combination of malt and hops, but frankly seems a little earthy – not something I want in an Octoberfest.

Thomas Creek Brewery, Octoberfest Lager

Thomas Creek Brewery, Octoberfest Lager

The nose carries into the tastes in an almost identical manner. A mixture of ill-defined hoppy bitterness and a strong malt backbone. There’s a LOT going on here, but it’s just too busy and lacks some definition. The earthiness keeps on coming through and it muddies the (flavor) water quite a bit. It makes the beer seem spicy which is just about the last thing I’m looking for in this style.

The malt does push on through as I would expect and want it to, but the beer is not clean. It leaves edges of bitterness and more soil-like notes than I want in any beer, let alone a style I generally enjoy to be sharp and clean-cut. Nose and tastes carry quite a lot of lager yeast notes but they are not especially well-defined (unfortunately).

As it warms it grows on me a bit, and the malt seems to keep pushing on, but ultimately there are a whole bunch of readily available Octoberfests that I would choose ahead of this one. One and done here for this year, and probably not a beer I will revisit in the later part of next year either.

Other: 12 oz single from Hop City, Atlanta, GA, USA. 6.0% ABV.


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