Oktoberfest Wiesn vs. Marzen

Discussion in 'BeerAdvocate Talk' started by ifnkovhg, Aug 19, 2019.

  1. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,329) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    For the first question - Sure. Regarding flavor, this doesn’t change anything. Some Festbiers are toasty, others aren’t. Ditto for Marzen. Flavors within some styles can be very broad and these beers aren’t even “styles” the way we like to use the word.
     
  2. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,647) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Exactly. Some are even hefeweizens.
     
  3. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,004) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    All I can think of in reading through this and similar threads is "The Great Cultural/Linguistic Divide Strikes Again."
     
    LuskusDelph and TongoRad like this.
  4. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    No - no - no - no --- absolutely not. Erdinger ought to be slapped with sanctions by the Munich breweries. ;-)
     
    chrismattlin, AlcahueteJ and TongoRad like this.
  5. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,303) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
    Society Trader

    "When I use a word it means just what I choose it to mean . . . neither more nor less".

    Humpty Dumpty from Alice in Wonderland.
     
    bmugan, chrismattlin, nc41 and 6 others like this.
  6. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (345) Feb 9, 2019 New York
    Society

    Aaagh, I hate you :angry:
    An hour ago I was happily ignorant of this beer (https://us.erdinger.de/beer/oktoberfestbier.html).
    Now I discover that the closest place to buy it is in the DC suburbs. :sob:
     
    nc41, AlcahueteJ, thebeers and 2 others like this.
  7. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,004) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Also known as the Humty Dumpty fallacy. :slight_smile:
     
    AlcahueteJ and Squire like this.
  8. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (345) Feb 9, 2019 New York
    Society

    And it's corollary
    from Andrew Jackson
     
    Squire, drtth and Crusader like this.
  9. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,647) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Hah! :sunglasses:

    Be patient. I see it in NJ every year, so I'm sure it's the same in NY.
     
    LuskusDelph and officerbill like this.
  10. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    You aren't missing much -- it's a pretty run-of-the-mill Erdinger Weizen. I first saw it in Munch, of all places, in the '90s. Saw a table card ad with their marketing spiel and had to laugh -- talk about trying to jump on a bandwagon.
     
    AlcahueteJ and TongoRad like this.
  11. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,084) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    Yeah and we all know what happened to that guy.
     
    Squire likes this.
  12. grantcty

    grantcty Initiate (123) Feb 17, 2008 Minnesota

    This was posted today on H-P's Facebook page, which is in German and intended for the German market. The importer, who runs the HP-US page, hasn't posted in almost a year.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,084) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    It's August so this doesn't look appetizing at all. :wink:
     
  14. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (73) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    I always got the impression H-P was a little more old-fashion than everybody else, perhaps even compared to Augustiner, whose entire schtick was looking old.
     
  15. lastmango

    lastmango Champion (813) Dec 11, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Society

    What a lovely pic!
     
  16. rgordon

    rgordon Savant (973) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    Categorizing and classifying beers is inevitable, but it does seem to sometimes be a bit obsessive. I think some people just like the process, whether it's necessary or not.
    I completely agree with @zid .

    I
     
  17. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,329) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Schneider used to be able to serve wheat beer at Oktoberfest. The name of their Festbier is Festweisse.
     
  18. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    That's a pretty "modern" thing at the fest, and usually at separate kiosks on the grounds -- not inside tents. But I've heard that's changing too, as some of the big 6 have been serving Weizen.

    To the Schneider -- they aren't calling it "Oktoberfest" like Erdinger is. I was served an Erdinger "Oktoberfest" by mistake at a Munich restaurant one time. Didn't ruffle my feathers because I like Weizen and had planned to have a couple beers anyway, so I drank it. Just a little misleading in their marketing.
     
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  19. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,004) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    It’s a basic thing about humans, categorization. Lots of folks are only happy with an orderly “world” view that simplifies the “blooming, buzzing confusion.”
     
    chrismattlin likes this.
  20. rgordon

    rgordon Savant (973) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    That is so, but nevertheless it is my opinion that some folks are a bit obsessive about said categorizing. That's all.
     
  21. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,004) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Well of course some are a bit obsessive with the need for categorization. Did not mean to imply otherwise. Apologies for creating confusion.
     
  22. Crusader

    Crusader Aspirant (288) Feb 4, 2011 Sweden

    Concerning the ongoing debate about the evolution of the beer served at Oktoberfest I thought it was interesting that according to Augustinerbräu's website, in 1953 they served their "Wiesn-Edelstoff" for the first time. It was a paler colored Festbier which gradually replaced the then common Märzenbier.

    This made me wonder if they were talking about their regular Edelstoff or a new beer. Edelstoff had clearly been served already in the 1930s in the Augustiner tent (served alongside Augustiner Märzen). But according to the website for the foundation that owns a majority of Augustiner Bräu Wagner KG, they note that Edelstoff was first sold in 1925 while the Wiesn-Edelstoff was first sold in 1953, as is claimed on the brewery's own website.

    Is anyone else familiar with the Augustiner Oktoberfestbier still having the nickname Wiesn-Edelstoff?

    Note the Edelstoff signage in the photo below.
    [​IMG]
    And what looks like tokens from the Augustiner tent from 2018.
    [​IMG]
     
    #102 Crusader, Aug 23, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019
  23. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,084) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    I seem to recall there being either a Hefeweizen or a Dunkelweizen and a Radler on the menu in 2011.
     
  24. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Which menu? Augustiner, Spaten, Paulaner, HB, Hacker-Pschorr, Löwenbräu?

    There are some separate, smaller venues that carry beer other than the Fest, but c'mon -- Radler? Maybe I won't be going back any time soon. :wink:

    Edit:
    Schottenhamel (Spaten) Tent: Mass Wiesnbier, Radler, alkoholfreiA3, 1 Liter € 11,75
    Löwenbräu Tent: Mass Oktoberfest Beer, Mass Beer non-alcoholic (Schankbier), Mass Beer and Lemonade a 1 l11, 80 €
    Ochsenbraterei (Spaten): Spaten Wiesn-Mass, Radler-Mass, Spaten Mass alkoholfrei, € 11,20

    Only menus I could find -- >shudder< Radler?

    BTW -- Who mentioned that no one uses Wiesnbier or Wiesn in their marketing?
     
    #104 steveh, Aug 23, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019
    chrismattlin and AlcahueteJ like this.
  25. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,329) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    It’s an old thing. Before Schneider’s Munich brewery was destroyed by bombing in 1944, they served the beer at their festival tent at Oktoberfest. The beer supposedly goes back to 1916. The German version of their site calls it a Festbier and the English version calls it “their former Oktoberfest beer”... which is accurate. I’ve also seen it called a Hefeweizen-Oktoberfestbier.
    It was me who said it was just a Paulaner beer :slight_smile:, which isn’t the case.
     
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  26. ElChuques

    ElChuques Initiate (92) Oct 8, 2014 Arkansas

    I want to see if I’m missing something.

    One brewery decided to name their pale Oktoberfest lager after the venue where it is served, and now that needs to be a style?

    I get that this thread has turned into a discussion on pale vs amber, Oktoberfest vs festbier, and general Oktoberfest discussion, but the idea behind the initial post seems ridiculous.

    Wiesn is a slang/colloquial name, not a style. Or am I crazy.
     
  27. Crusader

    Crusader Aspirant (288) Feb 4, 2011 Sweden

    From 1926

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  28. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (73) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    Perhaps it would be easier to categorize Märzen as a general segment and strength-level in the realm of German lagers, with coloration being subsections of the category?

    For example, we recognize Helles, Pilsner, Vienna, and Dunkel to the individual styles of beer, but in reality these are generally considered under the class of Vollbier based on strength.

    At the same time, there are stronger variations of these styles under the roof of Bock. Dunkel becomes traditional Bock or Doppelbock, which have a predominance of Munich malt. Meanwhile, Helles at this strength is Hellerbock/Maibock. As far as I know, there is no amber Bock that is analogous to Vienna Lager, and most Bocks aren’t hopped to the same degree and fashion as Pilsner.

    So in this case, Märzen fits in the middle: at Oktoberfest, the beer always was Märzen, but it’s nature has changed within these parameters. So therefore, Dunkles Märzen, “Vienna” Märzen, and now, Helles Märzen. Dunkles Märzen, however, is more of a bygone historical category, but some stronger craft Dunkel on either side of the Atlantic might actually fall into the range.

    I’m not certain of the Vienna categorization though - it seems that, looking at the Paulaner recipe mentioned earlier for their amber Märzen, they managed to produce the color with no Vienna malt at all, but instead a ratio of Munich lightened with Pilsner with some malt additives, as per the speculation.
     
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  29. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Wasn't Weizen nearly extinct until the 1950s? If Schneider was being served pre-war, I stand corrected, but my "modern" in air quotes was based on the Fests since my first visits in the 1990s -- there was no Weizen to be found at the Wiesn then (unless it was very obscure).
    So, just like Doppelbock, Schneider is shanghaing a "style" again. :wink:
    I honestly couldn't recall who said it, just thought it was odd because other friends and I were referring to it (the "style") as Wiesn Festbier almost 15 years ago.
     
  30. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,084) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    I was at the Paulaner tent, the one with the huge mug of beer on top.

    I also went to the Hofbrau tent, but I don’t recall what was on the menu.
     
  31. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Just some random research through my library, from the Classic Beer Style Series #7: German Wheat Beer by Eric Warner (I know, big hack :wink:):
    "Weissbier has not been able to break into the Volkfest circuit of outdoor festivals that begin in late spring and end in early fall. The most notable of these gatherings is the Oktoberfest, at which some eight million liters of beer are served in 16 days. Only an infinitesimal fraction of this amount is Weissbier; even religious Weissbier drinkers imbibe the lager beer to avoid friction. Asking for a Weissbier at many of these fests is a bit like asking a waitress to add hot water to the decaf coffee you just ordered; she may serve you, but she probably won't be too friendly for the rest of the night."

    1992, about the time I first started visiting the fest.

    I also remember Weizen being the "starter" beer for the fest, enjoyed with the Münchener Früstuck prior to diving into the fest and getting "serious." But yes, many years ago and reminiscent of older days.
     
    lastmango and AlcahueteJ like this.
  32. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (73) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    Why the stigma against Weiß, if Mr. Warner’s analysis is true? What does this say about Weiß in South German culture?
     
    #112 EmperorBatman, Aug 25, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  33. defunksta

    defunksta Zealot (577) Jan 18, 2019 Illinois
    Trader

    Agree they should be separate styles, but looking at the current mess of every American brewery and consumer making an "Oktoberfest"... Wishful thinking, good luck. I don't see this happening for some time.
    The good news is that I see these beers as more popular styles every year. Hopefully the education will catch up to the consumer and breweries. Eventually the popularity will start to self-separate them into separate styles, similar what happened to the IPA.
     
  34. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Just my interpretation, but I think it's a sub-culture of beer drinkers/beer drinking in Bavaria, certain styles are meant for certain occasions (think of different styles of liquor or wine for cocktail hour, dinner, post dinner). But as I opined, this was a while ago and a hold over from the old days; these feelings may not be as strong as they once were. I'm glad I got to visit the region when the old traditions hadn't quite faded.
     
    EmperorBatman likes this.
  35. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,084) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    I have no reference for this, but I want to say I’ve heard Weissbier is considered a drink for women (and possibly children).
     
  36. Jacobier10

    Jacobier10 Poo-Bah (2,106) Feb 23, 2004 New Jersey
    Society

    After reading through this entire thread, I am starting to think that we pay more attention to the nomenclature of these beers than the breweries who name the beers do themselves.
     
  37. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (73) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    Try saying that to the big muscular bearded communist drinking Franziskaner in my local when I was in Vienna!
     
  38. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,464) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    20 years ago, yes. Today, no, it has become very popular in Bavaria.
     
  39. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,270) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    I think Jackson mentioned that Weizen had become a drink for old women in the 1960s when he discovered Schneider, but it's re-evolved over 50 years -- and will probably do the same over the next 50.
     
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  40. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (73) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    Glad to hear Weiß is still doing well in Bayern!

    Prost!
     
    AlcahueteJ likes this.