Caesar: Who is it in the press that calls on me? I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music, Cry ‘Caesar'. Speak; Caesar is turn'd to hear.
Soothsayer: Beware the Ides of March.
-William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
How does one reconcile the irreconcilable? Mix the immiscible? Why dim a celebration with portents of impending doom? How does one balance the innovative with the traditional, to bridge the old and new?
Germany traditionally punctuates its year with special brews. As Octoberfest beer is produced to celebrate the end of summer, so in the month of March a special brew called a Märzen joyfully greets the Spring. Appropriately, Märzen is a cheery, golden-amber brew, malty and not too bitter with delicate floral and fruity characters. 217 Brew Works’ Master Brewer decided to create an interpretation of this truly delightful style to succor those in need of a transition from the bleak and boring to the bright and enriching. Not only in Spring, but year-round we could use a fun, optimistic quaff like this to help us arm against our seas of trouble.
Alas, there were obstacles. Strict Bavarian tradition dictates that Märzen must contain a level of spirits that makes drinking several problematic without a designated driver. In paring the potency to acceptable levels, a degree of the lovely fruity/floral essence might have been lost had not our bold brewers transformed it into an ale. Not quite a Märzen, something new was born; A Celebration Ale. As a need for a break from the mundane approaches, it is time to celebrate fresh ideas. For those rooted in the dark and dreary of the same old, same old...