Tag Archives: Dogfish Head

Dogfish Head Festina Pêche

I’ve had this beer a couple times now and this post is coming a bit late considering this is a summer beer. But I figure it can’t hurt to post this to help you all prepare for next summer. When the craft brewers come out with their summer beers, they all tend to be similar… wheat ales, hefeweizens, Belgian wits, and, god forbid you actually buy into this, light beer (which isn’t craft, but is big in the summer). Dogfish Head decided to take a different approach and come up with a very different beer. That’s how they ended up with Festina PĂȘche, a Berliner weissbier.

The beer is very pale yellowy color and very cloudy (it’s still a wheat beer, after all). The looks is like your average summer beer, though maybe a bit more yellow than you’re used to. The smell is average, perhaps a bit of a lemon/fruity tartness, but it still seems like your average summer beer.

The taste, however, is nothing like your average summer beer. Berliners tend to be a bit tart and will make you pucker a bit, but so can a nice glass of fresh lemonade (so long as you don’t add a ton of sugar to it). This beer is no different. It’s brewed with peaches (hence the name) and there is a slight peachy flavor to it. At first sip, it starts off tasting like your average summer beer… until it hits the back of your throat and starts to go down. That’s when the tart punch hits you. It’s not like those sour candies you used to dare your friends to try without puckering or tearing up… it’s more of a refreshing taste to it. There’s definitely some malty sweetness at the beginning of the sip, but that turns into a fruity tartness at the end of the sip. It’s a perfect balance. Being a good summer beer, it’s not heavy, but it’s also not highly carbonated (though you can notice the carbonation).

All in all, this is a great summer beer with a twist. This would make for a great beer on a hot summer afternoon after mowing the lawn or after a long day on the water. I’m not normally a fan of most summer beers (as I’m not a huge fan of wheat beers), but I do like this one. Do yourself a favor… it’s still hot out. Find a package store that sells this and buy a 6 pack (or if you’re store sells singles, try a single). It’s worth it.

More Autumn Beers

Let’s see… last night at the Geek Dinner, I drank the Redhook ESB, which wasn’t anything special. Not too bitter, lacked any sort of hops flavor to it and wasn’t even the same color as most ESB’s. It wasn’t bad, but not what I had hoped for. Upon my return, I drank one of my Oktoberfests, this time it was Otter Creek’s Oktoberfest. Again, I was a bit disappointed. It wasn’t very flavorful, and it was another (like the Harpoon Oktoberfest) that isn’t actually a Marzen, but an American Amber/Red Ale. I wasn’t a big fan of it. It was kind of thin and watery and just plain not that good. Again, it wasn’t awful, but it just wasn’t what I was hoping for (and I’ve had some good Otter Creek beers). It didn’t taste ale-like like the Harpoon one did, it actually tasted somewhat like a lager, but more like a regular old lager, just not full of flavor (though not like a macro lager).

So tonight’s beer is making up for last night. Victory’s Festbier is a great Oktoberfest/Marzen and is exactly what I was hoping for. It’s a bit lighter, but it has a very clean taste. It’s crystal clear amber in color has good carbonation and a nice amount of flavor. There’s a slight hops bite to it, but it’s almost all malt flavor. There’s a slight nut flavor to it and a slight caramel flavor as well. This is another highly recommended Oktoberfest (along with the Harpoon).

I also decided to have a second beer tonight… Dogfish Head Punkin’ Ale. This is a great beer, though the spices and flavors could be a bit more subtle. Anyways, the beer pours like a regular ale with a dark amber color and moderate carbonation. The smell of it is fantastic with scents of pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The flavor is very up front with the spices, again cinnamon and nutmeg and the pumpkin flavor. In my opinion the flavors could be a bit more subtle as it’s almost too much. However, I still recommend this beer and it makes a great fall brew (and yes, I know this isn’t an Oktoberfest, but the first of the Pumpkin Ales, though the only one left is the Smuttynose).