Given that by now the effect of putting beer in green bottles is pretty well known, I can't imagine why any brewery still does it. In short, in case you're not aware of it: that "skunky" smell that many Americans have come to associate with imported beer is actually the effect of light altering the beer. If you want to avoid that smell, put your beer in brown bottles, not green or clear bottles. I bring this up because, when this cool weather hit yesterday, I absolutely had to replenish my Oktoberfest stocks, and so I grabbed some Spaten Oktoberfest at Spec's on the way home. I didn't notice the bottles were green, and sure enough, when I had one at lunch, the experience was marred a bit by that nasty smell. Which is a shame, because Spaten is good beer. Later that night I had the same beer on tap at Scholz Garten, and it was significantly better. Spaten, why are you messing up your beer this way? Get with the program. Master brewers should know better. (And as you can see from the photo, they don't always do this.)
Speaking of my evening at Scholz's, they just added Shiner Black to their taps, so I had to try it. Oddly, I found it disappointing. I'm not sure why, but it didn't taste right to me. Maybe I just had Oktoberest-ish beers on the brain and should have followed my instincts, but I think maybe I prefer this beer poured from the bottle (an anomaly for me). I'll have to try it again sometime and compare — perhaps I just got an off batch.
The Beer There: Olde Mecklenburg (Charlotte, NC)
9 hours ago