As the calendar turns, it’s time to dust off your mug or pint glass. It’s Oktoberfest, and many beach-area breweries are unveiling new and seasonal beers, some of which you can enjoy at local events this autumn.
For instance, if you’re in Lewes this weekend, stop by the Oktoberfest on Saturday, Sept. 30, from 2 p.m.-6 p.m. Held under a 3,600-square-foot tent in the city’s Canalfront Park, the event will include a specially crafted Dogfish Head brew and Bavarian food.
By now, you’ve heard all about Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s Punkin’ Ale, which flies off the shelf in fall. The full-bodied brown ale contains real pumpkin meat, brown sugar and spices. Don’t wait long to snag this prized find. Stock up now.
Mispillion River Brewing is bringing back its popular Miss Betty, a sweet potato pie-flavored beer that will be available only at the Milford brewery. The release date is tentatively mid-October since the production is reliant on sweet potatoes grown in brewer Brandon Gouge’s backyard.
During its Oktoberfest event Oct. 5–8, Crooked Hammock Brewery in Lewes will tap its Jav-O-Lantern dark ale, which is packed with pumpkin-yam flavor. (The pumpkin was smoked over cherry wood so expect a dusky flavor.) The brewery is also debuting Schnitzengiggle, a German-style marzen. Take a swig while watching a musical lineup that includes the Clifford Keith Trio and Lower Case Blues.
At Mr. P.’s near the Crooked Hammock, you’ll find a bevy of local seasonal beers, including Jacques au Lantern, a pumpkin ale by Evolution Craft Brewing Company. The small pizzeria has a whopping 19 beers on tap, so no doubt you’ll find other autumnal options. (Bring cash—the restaurant does not accept credit cards.)
Across the street, stop by the very new Big Oyster Brewery, which opened this week. Forget Oktoberfest—the brewery is doing OysterFest instead. You can also forget fancy plays on words. The brewery’s pumpkin beer is called just that. Keep an eye out for the big red barn on Kings Highway.
On Saturday, Sept. 30, from noon to 11:30 p.m., Revelation Craft Brewing Company in Rehoboth Beach will hold its first Oktoberfest at the brewery, located on the edge of town off Route 1. The brewery will pour Pumpkin Saison and S’morter Porter, as well as its own Oktoberfest Lager. There are incentives for those brave enough to wear a dirndl or lederhosen.
Down in Dewey, Dewey Beer Company is currently pouring an Oktoberfest beer and, not surprisingly, a pumpkin-flavored ale is on deck soon.