Brewtopia, Beer Dinners, Oktoberfest and More Ways to Build Up Your Winter Beer Gut

What with Central Market's Brewtopia beginning today, Addison's Oktoberfest starting tomorrow and several beer dinners planned for the rest of the month, there are enough brew events in the next couple weeks that your liver should be in fighting shape by the time October rolls around. Gotta build that tolerance up for the Halloween parties, right?

We've already mentioned Central Market's Brewtopia. But the greatest thing about it isn't the programming, interesting as some of the classes and panels sound. For us, it's all about the discounts: 25 percent off purchases of $25 or more. You could get 20 percent off if you spend $10 to $24.99 or 10 percent off purchases of $5 to $9.99, but you'd have to be a dumb-ass (or really broke) not to go for the maximum discount. This is the time to buy those pricey imports and limited releases you've been hesitant to splurge on. Stock up -- after we've already emptied the shelves, that is. Um, which reminds us ... Central Market is closed today. That's right, don't bother going until tomorrow. No, really.

At the Allen Wickers Public House, Franconia brewmaster Dennis Wehrmann will tap a cask of Franconia's Oktoberfest at 6:30 p.m.

Also tonight, at 7, the Libertine Bar is branching its beer dinners into the world of ciders with a Crispin Cider dinner. It's already at capacity, but the regular last-Wednesday beer dinner is still available. It will feature Deschutes with the beer lineup and food menu TBA.

Addison's Oktoberfest begins Thursday and runs through Sunday. It includes polka, barrel rolling, datsun dachsun wiener-dog races and more, plus a bier hall. Highlights include Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse, Bosteel's Pauwel Kwak and Wurzburger Julius Echter Dunkel, but you can look for your fave here.

At 7 p.m. Monday, September 19, Flying Saucer Addison will be the host of a New Belgium beer dinner with local "ranger" Jerry Bushon. Beers include Abbey, Super Cru, the 20th Anniversary Ale from the Lips of Faith series, Clutch Dark Sour Ale, Kick (a harvest season sour ale collabo with Elysian Brewing made with cranberries and pumpkin spices) and Hoptober. It's $35 for UFO Club members, $40 for nonmembers.

Also at 7 p.m. Monday, September 19, The Common Table is having a Dogfish Head dinner featuring some oldies and rarities: 2009 Red & White, 2010 Burton Baton, Punkin, Raison d'Etre and a special tapping after the dinner of the latest Sierra Nevada/Dogfish Life & Limb. It's $55 per person.

Tuesday, September 20, The Common Table will bring up some kegs from Austin Beerworks for Brewsday Tuesday beginning at 5 p.m. On draft will be Fire Eagle IPA, Pearlsnap Pils and Peacemaker Pale.

You can work off some of those calories at Rahr & Sons Brewing Company's annual Oktoberfest 5K beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday, September 24. Race entry is $35 and will include a party afterward including a tapping of an oak cask of Rahr Oktoberfest.

The next day, from noon to midnight Sunday, September 25, Flying Saucer on the Lake has its own Oktoberfest party. Featured beers: Avery Brewing Company; Ayinger Brewery; Boulevard Brewing Company; Brooklyn Brewery; Franconia Brewing; Harpoon Brewery; Live Oak Brewing Company; New Belgium Brewing; Real Ale Brewing; Rahr & Sons Brewing Company; Samuel Adams; Spaten Brewery; Saint Arnold Brewing Company; Summit Brewing Company; and Warsteiner. There will be several glass specials and you can buy five-beer tasting trays for $10.

And that same Saucer location will have an Ommegang beer dinner at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, September 29. The menu:

Witte mussels with beer-baked fries and Ommegang Witte Ale for the evening's first course; a second course of velvet corn soup with chili shrimp and Ommegang Belgian Pale Ale; next, guests will be treated to Ommegang Rare Vos Amber Ale served with sweet and spicy fried chicken tacos with jalapeno and mango slaw; the fourth course consists of the Saucer's special "kicked up" meatloaf served with Ommegang Abbey Ale; and the dinner will conclude with Dulce de Leche, coconut and chocolate chip Magic Bars with vanilla bean ice cream, served with Ommegang Three Philosophers Quadruple.

Cost is $50 for UFO Clubbers and $55 for nonmembers.

And speaking of Oktoberfest, Dallas Craft Beer Examiner Paul Hightower, Plano Craft Beer Examiner Brian Brown and I are working on a bracket-style "Oktoberbest" competition to determine the best Oktoberfest beer ... or at least the best one available in our area. A little märzen madness, if you will -- though candidates will include some that don't stick to the traditional märzen style. Stay tuned for that.

Late addition: The Bavarian Grill in Plano is opening its Oktoberfest celebration at 2 p.m. this Saturday, September 17, with a keg tapping, music and a buffet starting at 5 p.m. Finish an "Oktoberfest Bier Test" by drinking a stein (half or full liter) apiece of Spaten, Franziskaner, Löwenbräu, Paulaner, Hacker-Pschorr, Erdinger and Augustiner O-fests and you'll earn a T-shirt from a Munich brewery.  

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