Sierra Nevada and Germany’s Brauhaus Miltenberger Collaborate on Oktoberfest 2017


Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) announced today that is has partnered with Brauhaus Miltenberger (Miltenberg, Germany) to craft the 2017 release of Oktoberfest Festbier.

Back in 2015, Sierra Nevada launched a new Oktoberfest program that now has their brewers partnering with a different German brewery each year “to create an authentic fest beer fit for celebrating the world’s largest beer festival right here at home.”  For the 2017 Oktoberfest, the folks at Sierra Nevada invited Brauhaus Miltenberger, one of Germany’s most highly regarded craft brewers, to their Mills River facility in North Carolina to be a part of this special collaboration.

“Cornelius Faust and his team from Brauhaus Miltenberger embody the spirit and tradition of Oktoberfest,” says Brian Grossman, second-generation brewer for Sierra Nevada.  “It was a great to host them at our brewery in Mills River, NC, for the creation of this year’s fest beer.  They brought literally centuries of family brewing experience to the mix and helped us create the ultimate festival beer.”

This year’s version of Oktoberfest is a “deep golden lager” that stays true to Brauhaus Miltenberger’s “approach to the classic style.”  This yields a drinking experience that boasts “an authentic, rich, and layered malt flavor balanced by traditional German-grown hops.”

“We tried to re-create a classic Oktoberfest beer in the true German tradition,” says Cornelius Faust, fourth-generation brewmaster for Brauhaus Miltenberger. “We used traditional techniques to create layers of rich malt notes that remain light and crisp to the taste. That’s the secret of an authentic fest beer—complex malt flavor in a lager that remains easy to drink while you are celebrating the Oktoberfest season.”

2017 Oktoberfest is rolling out now and will be available throughout Oktoberfest season.  You can expect to find this special collaboration brew available in 12 oz. cans, 12 oz. bottles and on draft at craft beer-focused bars, restaurants and retailers located in Alabama, Florida, California, North Carolina and throughout the rest of Sierra Nevada’s expansive distribution footprint.  Prost!

Vital Information for 2017 Oktoberfest Festbier from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. & Brauhaus Miltenberger

Release – Seasonal, Oktoberfest Season 2017 (August to mid-October)
Style – Oktoberfest
ABV – 6.1%
IBUs – 30
Malts – Two-row Pale, Steffi, Pilsner & Munich
Bittering Hops – German Magnum 
Finishing Hops – German Select, Tettnanger & Spalter
Yeast – Lager Yeast
Suggested Food Pairings – “Mild Cheddar, Butterkase, German Weisswurst sausage, Roast Pork, Apple Strudel with fresh whipped cream”
Availability – 12 oz. cans, 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder –

**All images provided by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.**



Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Reformulates Hoptimum to be Its “Hoppiest Beer Yet”

hoptimum-bottle-pint2017Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) recently released Hoptimum Triple IPA – 2017 Edition with a new recipe and hop schedule.

With America’s community of craft beer consumers consistently showing that it largely values new and different over traditional and established, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. continues to make changes to its portfolio of iconic brews.  The latest example of this adaptation is the reimagination of Hoptimum Triple IPA for its 2017 release.  Thanks to tweaks that involve mixing things up in the hop department to achieve a bit more balance, the 2017 incarnation of this High Altitude Release showcases a “tropical and citrus hop aroma that delivers a refined yet aggressive character.”  Although the IBUs might be down a few ticks, the brewery steadfastly claims that Hoptimum Triple IPA – 2017 Edition is their “hoppiest beer yet.”

Hoptimum Triple IPA – 2017 Edition is available now while supplies last.  This limited release offering can be found in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, North Carolina and throughout the rest of Sierra Nevada’s national distribution network.  These changes are bound to be the norm for the foreseeable future, so this might just be your only chance to experience this version of Hoptimum.  With that in mind, be sure to grab a sixer or pour of this limited release if you happen to run across it over the next month or so.  Prost!

Vital Information for Hoptimum Triple IPA – 2017 Edition from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Release – Limited/High Altitude Series, launching May 2017
Style – American Imperial India Pale Ale
ABV – 9.6%
IBUs – 65
Hops – Citra, Simcoe & Chinook
Malts – Two-row Pale & Wheat
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Suggested Food Pairings – Aged Monterey Jack cheese, cream-based sauces, citrus-based sauces, French vanilla ice cream
Beer Finder –


Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Takes Beer Camp Across the World in 2017

BCAW_2017Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) has officially announced that it will release Beer Camp Across the World, an international collaboration 12-pack, in June.

Each year, Sierra Nevada hosts Beer Camp as the “industry’s largest collaboration effort” to celebrate and showcase “the art, spirit and attitude of craft beer.”  In order to create a truly special collaboration 12-pack in 2017, the brewers at Sierra Nevada have “partnered with 12 craft breweries–6 overseas and 6 stateside–to brew . . . Beer Camp Across the World.”  Their efforts have produced the following 12 one-off, “dream beers” that have been created with some of the world’s finest brewing talent:

Each Beer Camp Across the World 12-pack will contain one of each of the beers listed above (a mix of cans and bottles).  Beer Camp Across the World will see a one-time-only national release beginning in June, and these limited edition 12-packs will be available at select craft beer retailers located in Alabama, Florida, California, North Carolina and throughout the rest of Sierra Nevada’s national distribution area.  Beer Camp Across the World is a rare opportunity for you to try some incredibly unique beers from a dozen highly-respected, world-class breweries in one package.  This thing basically defines the terms “can’t-miss” and “must-have”. These 12-packs will disappear with a quickness, so don’t miss out.  Prost!

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Issues Voluntary Recall in 36 States

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Mills River, North Carolina) has issued a voluntary recall in 36 states for select 12 oz. bottles that may contain a glass packaging flaw.

Due to the serious nature of this situation, we will provide the details of this recall verbatim from Sierra Nevada’s press release:

  • This recall comes after quality inspections at the company’s Mills River, North Carolina, brewery detected a very limited number of bottles with a flaw that may cause a small piece of glass to break off and possibly fall into the bottle, creating a risk for injury.
  • The recall applies to product purchased in the following Midwest, Southern and East
    Coast states: Alabama, Florida, Arkansas, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin and West Virginia.
  • The beer affected by this recall includes those brands listed below with a packaging date that falls within the range with a code of “M” (Mills River) and not “C” (Chico), which is all information that can be found printed on the packaging or shoulder of the bottle:
    Pale Ale 12-ounce bottles in 6-, 12- and 24-pack (cases) packaged 12/5/16-1/8/17
    Beer Camp Golden IPA 12-ounce bottles in 6- and 12-pack (cases) packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Sidecar Orange Pale Ale 12-ounce bottles in 6- and 12-pack (cases) packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Torpedo Extra IPA 12-ounce bottles in 6- and 12-pack (cases) packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Tropical Torpedo 12-ounce bottles in 6-packs packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Nooner Pilsner 12-ounce bottles in 6-packs packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Hop Hunter 12-ounce bottles in 6- and 12-pack (cases) packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
    Otra Vez 12-ounce bottles in 6-packs packaged 12/5/16-1/13/17
  • Sierra Nevada has stopped distributing all affected beer. The company is actively working with distributor and retail partners to remove this beer from retail shelves and hold any further shipments. Consumers who have purchased beer within the scope of this recall will be eligible for full compensation of the purchase price and are advised not to drink it and to dispose of the beer. A website has been set up for updates on the recall and to report purchase at

“While we believe this concern impacts roughly 1 in every 10,000 (0.01%) of our bottles packaged during this time,” says Mike Bennett, Chief Supply Chain Officer, “Sierra Nevada has set the standard for quality in the craft brewing industry since 1980 and we have decided to take this precaution to ensure the safety of our consumers. To date, we have not received any consumer reports of injuries resulting from the potentially affected bottles and we are working with our supplier to determine the root cause of the issue.”

That covers all the information currently available on this recall.  If any further information surfaces, we will be sure to update this post with those details.  For now, just be sure to check those codes and dates on any Sierra Nevada bottles currently in your fridge.  Prost!

Tasting Notes: 2016 Oktoberfest Festival Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Mahrs Bräu

snofestsixerWe at Mashing In continue to honor Fest Season this week by taking a look at the 2016 Oktoberfest Festival Lager collaboration from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) and Mahrs Bräu (Bamberg, Germany).

Last year, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. began a new approach to the annual release of their Oktoberfest.  Instead of revisiting the same beer recipe each year, the brewery now works in collaboration with the finest brewers in Germany to create one-time only releases that pay proper respect and homage to the Festbier style.  This 2016 release of Oktoberfest was brewed with the help of Mahrs Bräu.  Located in Bamberg, Germany, this “family owned and operated business, run with conviction and passion,” has been brewing beer with “Character” since 1895.  Combing countless years of brewing knowledge, representatives from both Sierra Nevada and Mahrs Bräu decided to brew up an “authentic version of the festival beer . . . deep golden in color with a rich malt complexity, but with a noticeable spicy hop character from the use of the nearly forgotten Record hop varietal.”  That description alone is enough to whet my appetite, so let’s grab a glass and get to some Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for 2016 Oktoberfest Festival Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. & Mahrs Bräu

Appearance: As this 2016 Oktoberfest Festival Lager fills the glass, it is obvious that it differs from the subject of last week’s Tasting Notes – Oktoberfest from Cigar City Brewing (click here to read up on that one) – by being an offering that is a lighter, more blonde representation of the Festbier style’s history.  This one presents itself as a rich gold in color.  When held to direct light, it then glows with hues of brighter golds and straw yellows.  The body has an immaculate clarity and displays a carbonation presence pulsing rhythmically in a few locations along the glass.  A little over a finger of intensely white foam built off of the pour.  It clings with determination to its initial site, leaving sizable chunks of lace at the mouth of the glass.  Because of this, the head falters to a thin top cap after just a few sips. As you can see from the photo above, it is truly a sight to behold.

Aroma: Surprisingly, lager yeast greets the nose first with that clean earthiness that we all seem to associate as that archetypal, “that’s beer!” characteristic fragrance.  A light malt presence works its way forward with crackery notes and a dollop of honey.  The hops then saunter in casually to finish things off with delicate earthy, spicy and fruity tones.  The overall aroma is by no means dainty.  It is blatantly foreshadowing this beer’s full intentions.

Taste: The malts turn up first with gently sweet notes of grain, cracker, and simple breads. The malt and grain presence may be light, but it is by no means shy.  They are here to shine and are held up by a pronounced lager yeast note that gives the drinker a full on Pils-like experience.  This is all accompanied by a soft hop character putting out grassy and spicy notes along with just a whisper of fruity tones in the background.

Mouthfeel: This lager is light in body, but it wants to push itself closer to medium.  It has a generous carbonation level that tickles the tongue and throat.  On the palate, it is crisp with just a touch of playful sharpness.  The sweetness of the malts seems to vanish just as quickly as it hits the taste buds.  At 6%, the ABV does make itself known a bit with some warmth turning up on the throat and in the belly.  The aftertaste is just some lingering light grains.

Final Thoughts: Stay with me here while I paint a picture for you.  You are driving down a country road with the windows down to soak in everything that this beautiful day has to offer.  Your travels take you by a farm that is in the process of harvesting grain.  As you pass, you notice a presence that is filling the air.  This is more than just the hearty, clean aroma of freshly cut grain.  No, this is an indescribable phenomenon that permeates and saturates all-encompassingly: a smell in your nose, a taste in your mouth, a flood of memories in your mind, etc.  Nostalgia.  This is something you have felt before, but it is almost as if you are experiencing it once again for the first time.  Losing yourself in this realization and whatever images this experience has conjured up in your mind, you cannot help but grin, slow down just a bit and fully take it all in before the moment passes.

This beer is that experience in a glass.  What I mean is that it is obvious that Sierra Nevada and Mahrs Bräu wanted to create the cleanest, most quintessential of lagers when they approached this 2016 Oktoberfest.  From the first sip, they want your experience with this lager to somehow be both virginal and familiar.  That first sip, although new, is processed as a memory.  This is a beer that makes you feel like you may have had it before while still coming across with a level of craftsmanship that you have yet to encounter during your craft beer journey.  If you are looking for a simpler description, we can push verbosity aside and say that this is a beer meant to quench the thirst of the beer connoisseur and the everyman.  A beer that is so refreshing and clean in flavor that it will never have the chance to go warm in 2 liter steins at Oktoberfest celebrations everywhere.  In summation, it is a beer that can be as complex or as simple as you want it to be.  Prost!

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. to Launch Two New Core Beers in 2017

snsidecarSierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) recently announced that the first quarter of 2017 will see the launch of two new brews: Sidecar Orange Pale Ale and Tropical Torpedo IPA.

Coming in as a new look at a respected classic, Sidecar Orange Pale Ale adds a quenching citrus infusion to the familiar characteristics of the brewery’s flagship Pale Ale. “Made with orange peel and bold, citrus-heavy hops,” this beer comes together as a quaffable offering weighing in at 5.3% ABV and 35 IBUs.  Just as the name implies, Sidecar Orange Pale Ale is meant to be enjoyed as an accompaniment to the standard that is Sierra Nevada’s Pale Ale.

“Innovation is part of our DNA,” says Ken Grossman, founder of Sierra Nevada. “36 years ago we changed the way Americans look at hoppy beer with Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. In 2017 we’ll be doing it again, with fresh takes on beer styles that we helped pioneer: pale ale and IPA.”

sntroptorpedoThere is no denying that the India Pale Ale is by far the most popular beer style in the U.S. right now, and Sierra Nevada hopes that Tropical Torpedo IPA – when it is released at the start of 2017 – will act as that perfect introduction to “new drinkers entering the craft beer market via the IPA.”  With the use of the Hop Torpedo – Sierra Nevada’s proprietary dry-hopping device -, brewers coax huge tropical fruit notes of mango, papaya and passionfruit out of the hops employed in the recipe for Tropical Torpedo IPA.    The finished IPA comes in at an easy drinking 6.7% ABV and 55 IBUs, and absolutely no fruit was added during the brewing process.

Sidecar Orange Pale Ale will be available January 1, 2017, in 6-packs and 12-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft.  Tropical Torpedo IPA launches January 1, 2017, in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles only, with draft to follow late in the first quarter of 2017.  Look for both of these year-round offerings to be available at craft beer-friendly establishments in Alabama, Florida and throughout Sierra Nevada’s full distribution area.  Be sure to experience the innovation and evolution of Sierra Nevada when these new brews drop after the New Year.  Prost!