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Phoenix-area breweries put their own spin on Oktoberfest beer

Uwe Boer, brewmaster at Sun Up Brewing in Phoenix, pours an Oktoberfest beer (Mike Sackley?KTAR News)

Tis the season for Oktoberfest beer and local brewing companies are giving Phoenix-area residents a taste of Germany.

One is Uncle Bear’s Brewery in Ahwatukee. The brewery is named after the owner’s dog, leading to a fall beer called “Barktoberfest.” Uncle Bear’s head brewer Andrew Bauman said they use Munich and Pilsner malts in their beer, which helps give it a toasty taste.

“We do 60 barrels of it a year, and once it’s gone, it’s gone,” Bauman said.

Bauman said the Barktoberfest is the only lager they brew because the process takes longer than brewing an ale. He said it is one of their most popular seasonal beers.

“It’s Oktoberfest time, so everyone kinda wants an Oktoberfest. It’s been really well received,” Bauman said.

Sun Up Brewing in Phoenix also has an Oktoberfest selection each year. It features malts imported from Germany.

“You will get a very nice, soft, malty, toffee-like character out of the beer, and that’s balanced with some hops as well,” said Uwe Boer, brewmaster at Sun Up Brewing.

Boer, who grew up in Germany, said he tries to give his Oktoberfest beer a traditional style. Both Sun Up Brewing and Uncle Bear’s are likely to run out of their Oktoberfest beer in the next couple of weeks. At that time, they will debut their holiday and winter beers.

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