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Friday, December 2nd 2011

Point Oktoberfest
(Stevens Point Brewery)

The CraftCans team decided it’s never too late for an Oktoberfest, and we were thrilled when Kirk and Tim from I.H.S. Distributing helped us track down what turned out to be a rather elusive brand in cans in our markets.  Thanks Kirk and Tim – you rock!

From the Point site:

"Point Oktoberfest is an authentic Marzen Style Lager beer, a style reminiscent of the beers originally brewed for the first Oktoberfest Celebrations in Germany during the early 1800's.  Craft brewed using Hallertauer Hops and sweet Vienna roasted malts result in a full flavored, finely balanced beer brewed in celebration of the upcoming season."

Here we go...

Pour – Bright, clear copper color with a thin off-white head.  Moderate lacing held firm to the side of the glass from start to finish.

Aroma – mildly sweet and yeasty aroma with an occasional whiff that reminded me of caramel and cider.  Overall very pleasant and fitting for the season.

Taste –  as expected,  this one is big on malt flavor, though it has a light body for the style.  Tea-like hop flavors jump out in the middle as the high carbonation starts to move things around.  Nice and clean finish that dries out nicely.  The lager yeast brings out some tart, almost cider-like flavors as it warms. 

Overall –  a highly drinkable Oktoberfest that is easygoing and unobtrusive, and for us the colder the beer the better the drinking.  We reached the bottom of our first – and second – glass in no time.  Most Marzens we’ve tried have been much sweeter and drank closer to a red or a big bodied amber.  Point’s offering is the kind of ‘Fest we could drink large quantities of and maybe impress a few Bavarian barmaids with our drinking prowess.

NOTES: Canned Oktoberfests are a modern phenomenon.  It’s reasonable that many of the old brands from days long gone by were Marzens or at least similar to that style, especially considering the German influence in early U.S. brewing history.  However, we looked over nearly 15,000 (really, 15 thousand) pictures of beer cans, starting with the first in 1935, and found none branded as an “Oktoberfest” until the late 70’s and even then we found only three.  Meanwhile, the CraftCans database already has seven listed, with an eighth slated for release in 2012.  Here’s hoping more craft brewers find a way to get these fall treats in cans!


The few Oktoberfests that were put on the market many years before the craft can revolution.  Note that all three designs lack the blue and white diamond pattern of the Bavarian flag that is common on many of today’s ‘Fests.

Other current Oktoberfest/Marzen craft cans 



Can Scale:
(See All Rated)
Point Oktoberfest
Style: Marzen/Oktoberfest
Brewery: Stevens Point Brewery
Stevens Point, Wisconsin  
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: 2-row, 6-row, Crystal, Vienna, 2-row Munich
Hops: Tettnanger, Hallertau, Perle
ABV: 5.7%
IBUs: 15
Date: December 2nd, 2011

Posted by Trent

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