Last Saturday, after a two-year break, Oktoberfest opened again in Munich. Judging by the Deutsche Welle footage, people were hopping. We missed it! So did we. But in the near future we will not see anything like that, except for small local “oktoberfest” in different places (and that’s good!).
Very few people made special Oktoberfest beers this year either. The giants used to have special labels and regional brews. Vyatich and, as far as I remember, Tarkos made holiday releases all the time. Maybe someone else (Varnitsa was last year).
The problem with this kind of beer production is that it is very bureaucratic, both in terms of beer production (from the government) and in terms of trade. Sometimes you could find last year’s “Oktoberfest” beer at the beginning of summer! This is a seasonal product and if it is not sold during September-October, then it will gather dust on the shelf.
Brew a small batch is possible, but the network will not take it, because the new SKU is another dance with tambourines, and they do not need one-time delivery. So, you can sell it only in independent retail, which we have badly beaten. In addition, this beer must be registered in all sorts of EGAIS and FRAP as a new. In short – no one needs it.
As a solution – to stick a holiday label without changing the contents or changing slightly, so that the basic characteristics have not changed. This is how Vyatich did it. A batch of Elite or Strong was brewed, but with additional hops in the form of dry hops or just a little bit more bitter. Unfortunately, lately it was just a label, and on Vyatich Krepky, which is not a good choice for Oktoberfest.
This year they decided to revive the tradition and make a special batch after all and go back to Vyatich Elite as a base.
It’s good when the sales director of the Vyatich plant lives 15 minutes away from me! Vyatich Oktoberfest is bottled on 14.09.2022, and on my table already on the day of the beginning of the holiday – 17 September! I opened the bottle at exactly 7:00 pm, when the Burgomaster of Munich was hammering the tap into the barrel.
Vyatich Oktoberfest 2022 (Russia, Kirov) – 5.4/14 Beautiful, persistent foamy cap. Aroma of malt. Full flavor with a good balance between malt sweetness and dryness. There are hops in the aftertaste, but not much, just for balance. In essence, a classic mertzen.
I don’t know if there was any additional hops (didn’t notice much), but the beer is completely octoberfest style and was a pleasure to drink. Rated “B”.