Oktoberfest is known worldwide as a great beer event held in Munich each year, but it is also celebrated here in the States. Oktoberfest beers that mimic the rich amber lagers originally brewed in Germany are available at all your favorite outlets. You will see Paulaner, Hacker-Pschorr and Spaten next to all the local and national breweries. Locally, Slack Tide produces Slacktoberfest, COHO brews Cohoktoberfest, Mudhen is pouring its Marz Hen Fest Bier, Cape May has a great malty version and Somers Point has made a tasty ale version of the traditional beer. Garden State Beer Company in Galloway plans to hold an Oktoberfest celebration from noon to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 5. The event will feature the release of their fall beers. From Saturday-Monday, Oct. 5-7, Tennessee Avenue Beer Hall will celebrate with full taps of German and pumpkin beers as well as a menu of German culinary delights!
As you have probably noticed, pumpkin beers began appearing once again in August continuing through Thanksgiving. There are a lot of exceptional ones out there this year, depending on your spice tolerance. Ludlam Island has Mashing Pumpkins, Cape May produces a Pumpkin Shandy, COHO will be releasing an excellent Pumpkin Porter and Mudhen will tap its Nummy Pumpkin on Saturday, Oct. 26.
Cape May Brewing Company will usher in autumn from 2-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, with the Pick of the Batch, a beer garden in honor of all-things autumn, at their tasting room. There you’ll see some old favorites like Cape May IPA and nearly a dozen one-offs, small-batch brews, casks and specialty brews. You’ll find Apple Pie ala Mode, Pumpkin Shandy, Devil Goes to Moscow on a Mule, as well as new favorites. Guests will receive a commemorative stein as well as a passport to check off each beer sampled. There will be a hay maze, a steinholding competition, live music and more. Tickets are $10 each; kids and designated drivers are free.
COHO in Cape May Court House has its fall seasonals out in the market and on tap in the tasting room. Look for Coeur d’Appel, an apple cinnamon saison with a cinnamon-sugar rimmed glass. They will hold a fundraiser for the local K-9 unit at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 20. It will be a COrn HOle competition with local teams competing for prizes and bragging rights. Have a team that wants to sign up? Stop at the brewery or call 609-374-0512 for details. The entry fee is $25 per person and all proceeds go to the K-9 unit. Come out to show your support and enjoy the day with friends. Check Facebook for updates.
The brewers at Tuckahoe Brewing have been working feverishly to keep product on the taps. They produce some fine beers and among them a fan favorite is Holly Beach Pumpkin. Available this time of year, this 6.6% brew is nicely spiced and now available in cans. Early in October look for What The Shuck Oyster and In The Deepest Oceans. The former is a 6% ABV oyster stout and the latter a barrel-aged mole stout with chocolate and peppers. Later in the month, you can find Anvil Dance Marzen and in November, a can release of You Sank My Battleship NEIPA will be released. Watch the Facebook page for dates.
I found myself at The Brass Tap in Vineland recently and I was impressed. With 40 good beers on tap, a respectable selection of whiskies and an eclectic food menu, this well-appointed dining room and bar provides a comfortable environment to bring friends and family, andManager Luis Quelhas is very knowledgeable on the beers.
Down the road in Millville, Glasstown continues their expansion, stepping up to a 10bbl brewhouse and doubling capacity to 80bbl with more in the near future. New tanks will be arriving throughout the fall and winter with a target of 100-120bbl by spring. With the increased production, distribution will be expanded into Burlington, Mercer, Ocean and Monmouth counties. Look for their fall seasonals, Clash of the Pumpkins and the Glasstown October out now.
A visit to Mudhen Brewing in Wildwood is easy, with a large parking lot and lots of space, you can come and enjoy the fine libations that accompany their amazing barbecue. Stop by and lend some support for their charity event, Love of Linda, a breast cancer fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 19.
On Sunday, Oct. 13, Hidden Sands in Egg Harbor Township will host a food and beer fundraiser for the Bargaintown Vol. Fire Co. from 5-9 p.m. For a donation of $25 you get food and your first pint of beer.
For those interested in learning to homebrew, Stockton will host a seminar from 6:30-9:30p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17, at 3711 Atlantic Ave. in Atlantic City. The seminar will be taught by Eric Schmehl, owner of Fermented Food & Beverage Supply Shop.
Good Time Tricycle Productions will hold a spooky event at Lake Lenape in Mays Landing from 6-10 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19. Witch-Craft will transform the area into an enchanted village to enjoy foods from local restaurants and drinks of all kinds with local breweries and distilleries serving their best concoctions. Lots of other activities will make this the most special event of the year: pumpkin carving, esoteric cocktail making, cider donut nodding, fortune telling, horror makeup seminars and more. The basic price is $55, but camping options are also available. Go to WitchcraftNJ.com for more info.
Also on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 19 and 20, Charlie’s Bar in Somers Point will celebrate its 75th Anniversary with DJs and food and drink specials.
I have attended many beer dinners in my time, but at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, Tuckahoe Brewing has procured a space at Bonefish Grill in Egg Harbor Township to highlight their beers paired with some of the best seafood in the area. There will be six Tuckahoe beers accompanied by assorted small plate foods. The cost is $40 with special prices for additional pours. Rob Callaghan will be there to represent the brewery and explain the beers and pairings and answer any questions you may have. Call for reservations at 609-646-2828.