Whether you plan to raise a pint glass at home or head to Rowdy Hall for its annual celebration, the spirit of Oktoberfest is alive in the Hamptons. Check out these delicious local brews that pair well with a crisp autumn day and a giant pretzel.
When Oktoberfest comes around each year, it can only mean one thing: time to swap the rosé for fall’s hearty beers. The Hamptons’ craft breweries are embracing the arrival of autumn in a big way, serving up pumpkin, spice and everything nice in their seasonal releases.
“Fall is a beautiful time in Montauk,” says Montauk Brewing Co. founder Vaughan Cutillo. “The leaves change color, the air cools off, the traffic thins, and the beaches clear out.” He says the brewery’s always-fast-selling pumpkin ale, with notes of coriander and cloves, is merely another sign of the season: “Just the right amount of spices along with subtle hop aromas, this beer highlights the time of the year just perfectly.” In early October, the brewery will release its playfully named Tauktoberfest, a malt-forward traditional Marzen-style lager ideal for sipping during the cooler months out East.
Meanwhile, North Fork Brewing Co. is all about incorporating fall’s bounty into its beer. “We try to bring as much local produce to the pint as possible,” says hospitality and community manager Michelle Demetillo. “We have our Butternut the Hutt seasonal squash ale; it’s traditionally spiced with nutmeg and cinnamon, and is brewed with large amounts of local butternut squash from Krupski Farms.” North Fork is also debuting a Marzen called Burning Down the Fest, “which is our take on a traditional Oktoberfest, but featuring a more complex malt backbone,” she says. “It’s perfect for taking a warm autumn boat cruise through the Peconic Bay over to Sag Harbor.”
Pumpkin is still as popular as ever (isn’t it comforting to know that some things never change?). Greenport Harbor Brewing Co. will re-release its fan-favorite Leaf Pile, a copper-colored pumpkin ale with a nose full of fall spices—aka “pumpkin pie in a glass,” says Betsy Liegey, who’s in charge of branding. And at Westhampton Beach Brewing Co., expect the Hampton Pumpkin Ale to disappear quickly, as well as its traditional Oktoberfest beer, an amber that co-founder Brian Sckipp describes as “the color of fall leaves with a clean, caramel finish.” But there are new offerings too: “This fall we will be introducing for the first time our Schwarzbier, a dark lager with hints of chocolate and coffee flavors,” he says. Cozy up with a warm blanket around the fire pit, and savor every last delicious drop.
Photography by: Photo courtesy of Arina Habich/1Stock Photo