Video: Autumn beer flavors help expand your palate
Much like putting away the lighter wines from the summer and leaning towards the heavier, more full-bodied red and white varietals, palates for beer this time of year change, too. Luckily, beer companies are always keeping things fresh with seasonal brews.
“There’s definitely a beer for every season,” said Dean LoRusso of West Vail Liquor Mart. Although he humbly refers to himself as the beer buyer, LoRusso has received his certified cicerone designation, a program that educates and certifies beer professionals. LoRusso has a title that less than 4,000 people have earned.
“In the fall you transfer over from those easy drinkers on a hot day to something with a little more flavor and a bit more depth. Fall is sort of an in between time, before you go into full, dark beers of winter,” LoRusso said.
For Oktoberfest style beers, LoRusso suggests the Ayinger Oktoberfest Marzen, an authentic Bavarian festival lager or the collaboration between Sierra Nevada and Weihenstephan. Sierra Nevada, established in 1980 and one of the largest craft breweries in the U.S. today, teamed up with Weihenstephan, founded in 1040 as a monastery brewery of the Benedictine monks. Try their Oktoberfest collaboration this fall.
A little closer to home, 4 Noses Brewing Company out of Broomfield, CO offers up their Oktoberfest Marzen style lager in cans, which is great for a camping trip out to Moab or Fruita.
“Ciders are year round in my book, but you have some more harvests this time of year and may have an opportunity to try more creative types of ciders going on with additional fruits.”
Snow Capped Cider created their Colorado Peach cider utilizing the high-altitude peaches and apples harvested in western Colorado for a semi-sweet rich flavor and powerful aroma.
How about beer flavored with yams? Midnight Autumn Maple by The Brewery out of California does just that. This imperial dark ale is brewed with yams, maple syrup, vanilla and spices. On the label it says it’s “engineered for darker nights and cooler weather,” which is perfect for what we are seeing outside right now.
“I think the seasonal beers are a good avenue for helping people get out of their comfort zone,” LoRusso said. “These brews are meant to be consumed during this time of year. You may have your year round favorite, but seasonal beers are a great way to expand and try some thing new.”