Beer, Beer, & Better Beer | HopCat

Beer, Beer, & Better Beer

Think Global, Drink Local
Jay Poljanac | September 19, 2020

Introducing Hoptoberfest!


Bust out your lederhosen, we’re gearing up for Hoptoberfest at HopCat, our own version of the annual Oktoberfest celebration! Along with a carefully chosen list of local craft Märzen’s for each HopCat location, we will also be featuring a number of fest-themed food items for the duration of the promotion that will run from September 19th to October 4th.


What is Oktoberfest, and why does it start in September?!

What began as a marriage between a king and a queen, and was originally a royal event, has become the biggest annual celebration in Bavarian culture and the most celebrated beer holiday in the world. King Ludwig wed Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on October 12th 1810 and inspired a royal horse-race, a show to inspire Bavarian agriculture, and later the big beer-halls that has come to be what modern-day Oktoberfest is today. While it was originally celebrated in October, the event was later moved to the end of September due to the days being longer and warmer. In light of German unification, the length of the festival will run 14-16 days dependent on when German Unity Day falls.


Oktoberfest, as you might imagine, is home to some pretty phenomenal world records. There are the most beer steins carried at once (29). And the world’s largest lederhosen (18x15-ft.) And the world’s largest pretzel (1,728 lbs.)


Why do we celebrate Hoptoberfest at HopCat?

Oktoberfest and its specific beer styles that accommodate the festival are widely celebrated throughout the fall. Fall seasonal beers are typically the most popular with craft beer drinkers and we typically start to see Oktoberfest/Märzen’s & festbier’s popping up in bars and beer stores at the beginning of September, ushering in the Oktoberfest celebration and the cool fall air. It is easily the most celebrated beer holiday in the world and as purveyors of craft beer we want to share some of our great local Oktoberfest beers with the world while also offering up some unique food menu items to celebrate!


While Oktoberfest is often confused as a blanket term for a few different styles of beer, there is a distinct difference between the different styles served at the annual festival and around the world. With the exception of a few great local festbier’s, most of the American craft Oktoberfest’s you will find will typically be in the style of Märzen.

·Oktoberfest/Märzen is the traditional beer that was served for many years at the festival. While it is an adaptation of the Vienna-style lager, they are slightly more malt-forward and sweet but still tend to finish dry even with a depth of malt character. These are often described as soft, complex, and elegant but never cloying. In my opinion, this is the quintessential fall style of beer!

·Festbier’s represent the modern German beer served at Oktoberfest in Munich. The festbier style is a smooth, clean, pale German lager with moderately strong malty flavor and a light hop character. The style balances strength and drinkability with a palate impression and finish that encourages drinking. This style showcases elegant German malt flavors without becoming too heavy of filling.


We’ve whipped up quite limited only features for this one!

Stop in during the Hoptoberfest celebration at HopCat from September 19th to October 4th to try one of these tasty Oktoberfest-themed limited-time offerings!


The Wurst Burger – Two smash patties with smoked gouda, brat sausage, onion, garlic aioli, stone ground mustard and arugula on a pretzel bun, served with Cosmik fries!

Brezen Nuggz - Pretzel nuggz, sautéed onions, and brat sausage smothered in warm cheese sauce. 

Killerwurst Mac & Kase - Our killer mac & cheese with brat sausage, bacon, arugula, stone ground mustard, and pickled red onion


Michigan Oktoberfest Recommendations:

Bells Octoberfest

Founders Oktoberfest

Griffin Claw Oktoberfest

Drafting Table Oktoberfest

Arbor Oktoberfest


Lincoln Oktoberfest Recommendations:

Cosmic Eye Festbier

Kinkaider Oktoberfest

Empyrean Aries Märzen Oktoberfest

Catalyst Oktoberfest

Stone Hollow Oktoberfest


Indianapolis Oktoberfest Recommendations:

Bier Brewing Oktoberfest

Sun King Oktoberfest

Upland Oktoberfest

Moontown Follow The Lederhosen


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HopCat fixed Tuesdays with $5 Smash Burgers
HopCat | February 4, 2020

Dbl Smash Burger

Tuesdays, amirite?! Ugh. The worst. We don't like them any more than you do, but here at HopCat, we're unveiling a bold new plan to transform Tuesday into the best day of the week — or at least, like, one of the top five best days. We can't do everything.

But here's a start: $5 burgers. That's right, from 6 p.m. until we close every Tuesday night at HopCat, you can get our Dbl Smash Burger for only $5. That's two custom-blend beef patties with signature Kitty Island sauce, American cheese, red onions, pickles and lettuce on a brioche bun, all for an unbeatable price. Goes well with fries and beer, but you already knew that.

So there, now that Tuesday is fixed, we'll save a seat for you here at HopCat!

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Legendary Bell's Hopslam kicks off 2020 for Michigan craft beer lovers
HopCat Beer Blog | January 6, 2020

Bell's HopslamNew Year’s resolutions for Michigan craft beer lovers: 1) Drink Bell’s Hopslam, 2) See #1.

The year’s first major Michigan beer release is already here, and it’s a doozy. Hop-heads already know what to expect, but for the uninitiated, the Hopslam from Bell’s Brewery is an accurately named double IPA, noted for a profile that contains six different hops, forming a complex balance of pungent, fruity and floral flavors.

Notably, the brew is dry-hopped with a hefty addition of Simcoe hops, a variety from the Pacific Northwest popular for its bitterness and complexity. To offset the powerful flavor combination, Bell’s adds ample malt and a touch of Michigan honey.

Despite what its name might imply, you’re not going to want to slam this one. (If you’re not careful, it might actually slam YOU.) The brew clocks in at a hefty 10% ABV, yet remains a uniquely drinkable example of the double IPA style. It’s one to be savored as slowly lengthening days signal the promise of a new year.

Hopslam is available as of Monday, Jan. 6th at all Michigan HopCat locations, and will be rolling out soon throughout our locations in other states. Join us as soon as you can, because this one rarely stays on draft for long

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