Get Your Octoberfest Beer at Wally’s

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Get your Octoberfest Beer at Wally’s!

When one hears the word “Octoberfest” (or Oktoberfest), a few immediate thoughts and images come to mind: singing, brass bands, lederhosen, and beer. And. More. Beer. Every year, this traditional celebration (which started in 1810 to honor the marriage of the king and queen of Bavaria) brings up to six million people to Munich during September and October to drink, eat and sing. In fact, it is considered the World’s largest fair. Beer plays a major role in this celebration – and it is only when the mayor of Munich says “It is tapped!” (a keg of beer, that is), that the celebration officially commences.

Traditional Octoberfest beers are brewed for this occasion – and thankfully for all of us, many are bottled for worldwide enjoyment. The traditional style of beer for Octoberfest is a Marzen – which originated in Bavaria. Brewed in the spring (March) before the summer months (which would spoil beer), the beer was cellared during the hot months, and brought out for the fall. An adaptation of the Vienna style lager, Marzen emphasizes a malty and toasty biscuity sweetness, with rich amber to deep copper color, and a dry finish.

But don’t log on to Travelocity just yet – we don’t have to travel to Bavaria to have our own fall celebration – all we need is a nice selection of Octoberfest beer, and some great deli food – sausages and smoked/cured meats and fish, rich cheeses, pickles, red cabbage or potato salad, whole-grain mustards and rye or dark breads. And if you’re too rushed for time to prepare all of that, come on over to Wally’s Cheese Box as we’ve got an incredible selection of cheeses, smoked salmon, cured meats, gourmet mustards, and Bread Lounge breads. And, don’t forget to add a few friends and music to the mix – and if you substitute Zeppelin or Aerosmith for the traditional polka, you probably won’t have too many protests. But, if you insist on listening to German music, some Scorpions or UFO will suffice. And thankfully, lederhosen are not required either.

Here are a few traditional as well as modern choices to get your O-Fest on in proper style.
Paulaner Oktoberfest Weisse
First off, we recommend the Paulaner Oktoberfest Weisse and Marzen, two rich German brews, thankfully made year-round. Here’s what BeerAdvocate had to say about the Weisse:
“Very smooth mouthfeel with a fluffy moderate body and a semi-creamy palate. Lots of malt character right from the get-go, fresh toasted grain with a long maltiness that brings a bit of sweetness. Hops are casual and walk onto the palate with a well-balanced bitterness, along with herbal and floral flavors. Slight alcohol warmth in the semi-sweet finish. Just the sheer balance and cleanliness of this lager is amazing. If we had to come up with a benchmark brand for every style, this would be our pick for O-fest beers.” BeerAdvocate. Paulaner Okt marzen
The Marzen is also a classic brew, with its deep amber color and taste of malt, bread and caramel, with a mild bitterness.

Wally’s Beer specialist, Stephanie Jensen, has a few guidelines for enjoying beers this Fall: “Traditional brews such as Paulaner are always a solid choice, and are essential in so far as respecting the Octoberfest tradition, but don’t think for a second that you can’t experiment with other modern and creative choices. Pumpkin beers are very popular in the Fall, with their clove and nutmeg spiciness, and display the creativity and boldness of our domestic breweries”. Some of Stephanie’s choices include:
Uinta Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin – aged in oak barrels for 6 months and exhibiting a 10.31 abv (the same as Halloween), this bourbon, pumpkin and vanilla spiced elixr shows why Salt Lake City’s Uinta Brewing has been one of the country’s most original brewers since their 1993 inception.
Bootleggers Pumpkin Ale
Bootlegger’s Pumpkin Ale – Brewed in Fullerton, California, and using cinnamon, nutmeg, molasses, brown sugar and real pumpkin, to create a perfect Fall brew. Who says you can’t drink pumpkin pie?
Epic Fermentation
Epic Fermentation without Representation – this Imperial Pumpkin Porter from Epic, another groundbreaking Utah brewery, is a heavyweight champion which utilizes real pumpkin, five spice and whole Madagascar vanilla beans in every batch. Intense flavors of dark chocolate, marshmallow and French Roast coffee will ruffle the feathers in your Bavarian hat.

And if you need more than mere bottles, Wally’s is happy to supply kegs for your celebration. Just call Stephanie, our Beer specialist, to order (310) 475-0606.

Crafty Cans: Our beer expert picks five perfect for summer

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There’s something about popping the cap off a cold one while relaxing in the sun.  But often, the summer locale of choice is a “no glass” zone.  With this in mind, our beloved beer buyer, Stephanie Jensen, picked out five awesome cans of craft beer perfect for picnics, the beach, the pool, the trail, the park and even the Hollywood Bowl Summer Season (for our fellow Los Angeles locals).

Craft Beer in cansDon’t be fooled – this isn’t Uncle Bob’s brand of canned beer. More and more small-batch, artisan brewers are canning these days (beer, not jam).  But Uncle Bob was onto something – beer in a can is better protected than its brother in the bottle.

“Imagine an aluminum can as a suit of armor,” explains Stephanie, “Like a little keg it blocks out light, prevents oxidation, and is durable for when you (oops) drop the six-pack while loading up the car”.  Cans allow for lower oxygen levels – the best way to combat oxidation AKA stale beer.

If you love our planet, then you’ll love cans, too.  Lighter to transport, they require less fuel for distribution and are fully recyclable.  You’ll also have one less thing to pack – you can leave the bottle opener at home.  So grab a can, or a whole six-pack and head to your favorite sunny spot.  We’ll see you there – right where craft beer meets summer fun.

   Golden Road Point the Way IPAGolden Road ‘Point the Way’ IPA

Follow that pint!  Forget the yellow brick road, we’re taking the Golden Road this summer. The Los Angeles local brewing company aims to make the most crafty yet drinkable beers they can (pun intended).  And this one in particular is clean and dry, a great partner for all your warm weather adventures.

The Point the Way IPA is what the brewers call their ultimate “sessionable” beer.  With a light malt body, sip to find citrus zest, tropical and pine notes with of course a focus on hops.


Oskar Blue Dale’s Pale Ale

Oskar Blue Dale's Pale Ale

Direct from Colorado, these Rocky Mountain residents know a thing or two about brewing great craft beer – they can by hand and were the first in the country to do so.  Oskar Blue’s line of craft beers began with this very Pale Ale, concocted in the basement of the restaurant in Lyons.

Needless to say, this one’s a hearty trailblazer in the world of America Pale Ale with balanced flavors of malt and hops.   The New York Times named Dale’s Pale Ale “The Top U.S. Pale Ale”, but they had us at “hand-canned”.


Uinta Brewing Sum’r Ale

Uinta Sum'r Ale

It’s right there on the label – this beer is the ultimate summer drink released in May or June every year by the Salt Lake City brewery. Named for the Ute tribe that once inhabited their locale and the Uinata (yoo-in-tah) mountains, this brewing company started small, found success, and now produces several lines of beer.

Citrusy and fresh, the brewers at Uinta crafted this one with rare Sorachi hops from Japan.  The perfect seasonal sipper for all the seasonal grilled favorites, and even a match for spicy curries or sushi!


Maui Lemongrass Saison

maui-brewing-lemongrass-saisonTraditionally brewed by Belgian farmers through the winter for enjoyment in the summer, saison literally means “season”.  For this special take on a classic, Maui Brewing Co. joined forces with Lost Abbey to craft a spicy, 100% Maui lemongrass-infused saison.

The team of brewers used white wheat, oats, pilsner malt, lemongrass, citra and nelson sauvin hops from New Zealand.  For a little taste of the islands we love this one, and it’s a limited release so get your cans while you can!


Ballast Point Pale Ale

This San Diego brewer knows his beer history and the best ingredients for each brew.  Jack White began exploring the world of beer as a home brewer, then opened a market to be sure he could source the best barley, hops and supplies for his home venture.

Now with the established and distinguished Ballast Point Brewing Company in San Diego, White has a line of beer and spirits.  He created this particular Pale Ale-meets-Pilsner in the style of the Kolsch beers of Cologne, Germany. A lighter brew but one that provides the complexity of the best craft beers around.  Fermented at ale temperatures, the fruit is subtle and the German hops and malts shine in balance.


→Shop More than 20 Craft Beer in Cans