Sierra Nevada 2020 Oktoberfest

Review Date 8/20/2020  By John Staradumsky

Well, 2020, there you go again. COVID-19 has taken a terrible toll on life and lives around the world but most notably in America. Things have been bad since March and here we are in August with yet another example of life out of balance, if you will: Sierra Nevada has canceled their annual Oktoberfest celebration. Well, not completely I should add, as they are holding it virtually. For me, though, a virtual Oktoberfest just isn’t an Oktoberfest.

If that isn’t bad enough for you, consider that this year’s Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest Beer for 2020 marks the first time in five years that the beer is not brewed in collaboration with a German brewery. I suppose we should be happy to have a Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest Beer at all.

Sierra Nevada says:

Our Festbier is a refreshing ode to beer’s biggest party. Toasty malts and German hops yield notes of fresh bread and floral, fruity character for a balanced, crisp lager that makes any moment festive.

Ingredients from the website:

Malts: Two-row Pale, Munich, Vienna

Hops: Spalter, Spalter Select

Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest 2020 has an alcohol content of 6% by volume with 28 IBUs. My bottles say PKGD 07/23/20 and I drank the first one on 8/17/2020. Pretty darned fresh. I bought them at Target for $9.49 the six-pack. This is not the first Oktoberfest beer from Sierra Nevada without collaboration; I fondly recall they sold one in a fall sampler circa 2014. That beer was a full on Marzen in style.

Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest 2020 pours to a soft goldem orange color with a thick fluffy head and a nose of bready malt and spicy hops. Taking a sip, the beer is quite fresh bready malty with just a hint of toasty nuttiness. The hops are floral and aromatic with perfumey notes and a hint of citrus, unusual for Spalt. The beer finishes nicely balanced with a gentle bitterness and makes this one quaffable indeed.  

A very tasty Festbier, Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest 2020 may not be a collaboration beer, but it does show how much the German influence has rubbed off over the last five years. Don’t miss it.

And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.

*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.