“We keep our Martzen on year-round.”
And with that, I knew I had heard the best beer words that have ever been spoken.
The Martzen is absolute favorite of mine, resplendent in it’s grainy goodness and saddled with the often frustrating tradition of only being brewed during Oktoberfest. There are some people that are purists about recipes, Rauf Khoffner of Khoffner Brewing being one of those, but thankfully that puritanical streak ends at traditional scheduling.
With that he’s able to continue to release beers from his hundred and fifty years of family tradition. Because of this, I can get beers like his Martzen (Martzen, 6% ABV) in April.
Is it worth braving the insanity of Sistrunk Marketplace on a Saturday afternoon to do? Yes. Yes it is. Served in an authentic German glass beer stein for me (and I point this out only because he took quite a bit of time showing me that it was, in fact, sent to him from Germany). Plus, I got the martzen right out the fermentation tank, just shy of being available for inclusion on one of his insane 40 beer flights. More on that later.
Coming from Rauf, I expected this beer to be nothing short of perfect and it was nothing short of perfect. The color is crisp and brown sugar brown, the aroma is light and bready with maybe a faint touch of lemon, and the flavor is just otherworldly. It’s beautifully bready with notes of caramel, brown sugar, biscuit, maybe a touch of apple and floral. It’s just amazingly delicious, a little bit lighter on the excessive caramel flavor that other brewers to go, and that makes this absolutely perfect. It keeps the body light, it keeps the beer refreshing, but you still get all this wonderful flavor.
I find that few people outside Fort Lauderdale really know Khoffner, and I find that to be an absolute crime seeing how solid his brewing has been. He seems to have settled nicely into his new home at Sistrunk, and I’m hoping I get an interview with him sometime soon so you can hear everything that happened in the years since he was last on the Florida Beer Podcast. In the meantime, I know where I’m going for beers that are, and I will know are, correct.
Even the glassware.
Drink Florida Craft,
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