Home brewing in Connecticut Discussions - CT Beer Trail

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Session #19 - Deutsches Bier

The Session is a monthly event for the beer blogging community which was started by Stan Hieronymus at Appellation Beer. On the first Friday of each month, all participating bloggers write about a predetermined topic. Each month a different blog is chosen to host The Session, choose the topic, and post a roundup of all the responses received. For more info on The Session, check out the Brookston Beer Bulletin’s nice archive page.

September’s Session, hosted by lootcorp 3.0, topic is Deutsches Bier - German beer...


Here's the "Ale Wife" dressed up for Halloween a few year ago... Prost!

Every year, a good friend of mine (Mike) would host an Oktoberfest party, every year that is until the build up to his first child about two years ago. This will be the third year in a row (if memory serves) with no party. How sad, but it's the sign of the times in my little circle of friends, we're all either having our first child or getting a divorce, thankfully no one has done both...

Mike's party was always a lot of fun, Mike would share stories of his time in Germany in his earlier Air Force days. There would be a little German music, food and beer of course, and plenty of good friends.

In an attempt to bring some fun back to Oktoberfest last year, I invited some of the guys out to East Side Restaurant for some German goodness. Over all, it was a pretty good time, check out some of the crappy video clips here. If you're ever in CT, and looking for something out of the ordinary, try this place out. Authentic German food, beer and atmosphere. A little diamond in the rough, as the neighborhood kind of stinks, but the place is fun. The night reminded me of a training deployment I went on much earlier in my military career.

We were down in Florida, supporting some Aviation training at Patrick Air Force Base. On a down day, we decided to go to Disney, Epcot Center in particular. You maybe asking yourself, what would a few red blooded American military guys do at Epcot on a down day? We spent the bulk of the day and evening in what we called "Germany World" but most would call "Biergarten Restaurant". (Side Note: Mike, the guy who hosted the Oktoberfest parties was sitting across the table from me... Go figure...)

It's sad really, I've traveled the world with the military, but have only gotten as far as the base bowling alley at the now closed Rhein-Main Air Base, Germany, while waiting for the final flight home from the Middle East. That being said, I vaguely recall a pretty good beer selection there. At any rate, Disney's Biergarten Restaurant was more German than my time in Germany...

Meanwhile, back at Epcot... I'll never forget that moment when we were more than a few steins of tasty German beer into our evening. I can still hear the loud chants of "Zicke-Zicka, Zicke-Zicka, Hoi, Hoi, Hoi! Zicke-Zicka, Zicke-Zicka, Hoi, Hoi, Hoi! Eins, Zwei, Drei G'Suffa" And as we clinked our huge glass mugs filled with beer together, the bottom of mine opened up and dumped what must have been close to a gallon of dark German beer all over everything we had on the table. We ruined a good camera that day, but on the lighter side, I won the yodeling contest, and my buddy won the German dance contest, dancing with the saucy German girl in the traditional Dirndl.

I guess I've really only blogged about watered down Americanized German culture, and not so much about the beer so far. Sorry...

As far as homebrewing goes, I've only brewed two German beers at this point. I brewed a successful batch of Witbier. A very tasty brew that did not last long in my fridge. A refreshing beer perfect for the warm weather, seasoned with coriander, bitter orange, and hops of course. I really enjoy this style of beer when done right. If you want an excellent Witbier give Allagash White a try... Good stuff! Don't forget to pour it properly, see the robots in this post for details.

The other "German" beer I brewed is still a work in progress. It was originally suppose to be an Oktoberfest inspired Ale, but I later found out the recipe was closer to an Altbier. I'll let you know how it goes once the conditioning phase is all said and done. You can read up on the saga of "Franken-beer" in some of the recent posts on this blog. By the way, I bottle this beast today... Wish me luck!

OK, so there's a mixed bag of some what inter-related anecdotes that in some way connect to German beer. At any rate, this is how German beer has "become intertwined in (my) life"...

Auf wiedersehen!

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