5 must-try beers from Alberta breweries at Oktoberfest

While my days are usually spent saturated in wine, there is something magical and almost exotic about Oktoberfest. Who doesn’t want to spend a day (experiencing culture of course) in a crowded beerhall while being served by dirndl-garbed, stein-slinging servers while the whomp-whomp of a tuba and accordion duo provide the tempo for your beer-loving experience? (Although, that part might just be a fantasy).

While visiting a Bavarian beer hall might be out of reach for you this year, or perhaps you’ve already used up your vacation days, I’d happily suggest you take part in Alberta’s very own Oktoberfest festivities on September 22 and 23 in Calgary, and September 29 and 30 in Edmonton, not only taking in the heady-if not hoppy aromas of international and domestic brews. Speaking of domestic, if you haven’t been following the burgeoning Alberta craft brew scene, this is a fantastic way to take in quite a few of them in one place. Who knows, your next favourite IPA, hefeweizen, or lager might be Alberta-made! Prost!

Medicine Hat Brewing Company Boomtown Lager

Hell yes! Smooth sailing with this lager. In fact, I’ve been pleasantly surprised with all the brews from Medicine Hat, and I might have to make a visit to the Hat soon to find out how the heck they are doing it.

The Grizzly Paw Rundlestone Session Ale

Enjoyed this a few times around the old homestead this summer. Clean and fresh with an aromatic and hoppy kick around the middle. A fine refresher when the day is warm but the evenings on the cool side.

Tool Shed Red Rage

A new favourite of mine, the Red Rage is a fine red ale to sit back and sip on. Pretty robust, with a slightly salty, nutty finish. I found this a nice choice for a thick, juicy burger – with fries of course.

Village Brewery Village Blonde

A go-to brew at chez Firth, the village blonde checks off all my beer-buying boxes. Fresh and clean with a nice, mild bitterness. Sometimes, you just need to “check out” for a bit with a fine lookin’ blonde.

Wild Rose Wraspberry

Sure, Wild Rose makes a lot of great beer, but one of their best-known beers is their raspberry infused gem. Great beer with the right amount of fruit, I find it doesn’t demand to be taken seriously, but you’ll still give it your undivided attention.


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