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OCT 07- OCT 14, 2014

Dyster At and On Oktoberfest - and its Beer

By Frank Parlato

October 07, 2014

No wonder Mayor Paul A. Dyster supports the City of Niagara Falls using casino cash for USA Niagara to pay Global Spectrum to stage events on Old Falls St.

The biggest money maker for most events is beer.

Coincidentally, Dyster owns a home beer brewing supply store, Niagara Traditions on Sheridan Dr. in the Town of Tonawanda, and is certified through the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP), a leading (and perhaps only) organization in the U. S. that certifies members to judge beer.

Dyster not only has earned the rank of Certified Beer Judge, like some 4,590 other beer-loving souls, but achieved the higher rank of "National Beer Judge," one of only 694 people in this nation who paid enough fees and drank enough beer to get so certified.

Mayor Dyster knows and loves beer.

At most events on Old Falls, Global Spectrum sells the usual run of beer like Molsons or Labatts.

But, at some events, like last Saturday's 5th annual Oktoberfest, the event provides styles of beer more in line with Dyster's sophisticated beer taste buds.

Dyster wrote about it on his Facebook, to accompany a photo of himself breaking open a keg of Beck Oktoberfest. He writes, "Tapping the keg (Beck Oktoberfest but there's also a Weihenstephan Doppelweizen, a Saranac Pumpkin Seasonal and of course Flying Bison Bisonfest)…. great music, great beer and great German-style food. Prosit!"

"Prosit!" is German for "cheers."

Shortly after tapping the keg on Old Falls St., Dyster began to drain some draughts.

Drinking is one thing, but a national beer judge may not merely drink. He has to explain. This is his duty. People expect it. To inform the less knowledgeable as to why this bitter, smelly, chunky beer is better than the Budweiser they prefer.

Dyster's high rank requires him to make more subtle comments than just, "This is damn good beer and I'm getting toasted."

Here are some comments we believe we overheard the mayor say as he drained multiple draughts:

"I make it no secret that Oktoberfest is one of my favorite styles. It's a very nice, hoppy brew, almost too hoppy for the style but not at all unpleasantly so. It has a rich, roasted malt flavor.

"As for color, it's clear and bronze. The light brown head is thick and rocky, but it doesn't last long, leaving only a tiny level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass. Poor head retention.

"Its aroma is malty sweet with hints of apple and roasted nuts. From the nose I was afraid that this beer would be too sweet but it is certainly not. In fact, though the overall flavor profile is subdued hops is definitely the defining characteristic.

"There is some nice malty character to the flavor. But these quickly give way to the hops which leave a lingering bitterness on the tongue.

"Oktoberfest is usually delicately balanced but this one is almost too hoppy. Hoppier, I'd say, than other versions of Oktoberfest. But that doesn't mean it's an unpleasant beer. In fact, quite the contrary. Other interpretations of Oktoberfest that lean in the other direction quickly become cloying whereas Beck's remains delightfully hoppy and dangerously drinkable. "

And so he did.

After he got the hard part done -- explaining it—he drank it.

By the way, never let it be said the mayor cannot meld his public duties with his private business.

After advocating the council to approve the city using casino cash to fund events on Old Falls St. - despite the fact that there is a shocking downward trend for casino cash, Dyster appeared at the Oktoberfest on Old Falls St.

Meantime, on his Niagara Tradition website he advertises:

"It's time to make your fall beers:

• Niagara Tradition Oktoberfest - extract or partial mash

• Brewer's Best Pumpkin Spice Porter

• Brewer's Best All grain Brew-in-a-Bag Oktoberfest

• Niagara Tradition's Holiday Tradition.

Just what they served at Oktoberfest.





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Phone: (716) 284-5595

Publisher and Editor in Chief: Frank Parlato
Managing Editor: Dr. Chitra Selvaraj
Senior Editor: Tony Farina