Master of Marzen 2020 – Semifinal 2: Twisted Spike Brewing vs. Double Nickel Brewing

Round 5, Bout 2 (Semifinal 2) of Master of Marzen 2020 sees Twisted Spike Brewing (OK) take on Double Nickel Brewing (NJ).

A spot in the final and a chance for the title are on the line here. Both beers are excellent and I can’t wait to see how it shakes out.

Packaging Design

Both beers have adopted the traditional Oktoberfest design, but have their own take on it.

Spiketoberfest features a large wooden keg in front of the blue and white check Bavarian flag. It’s very true to tradition.

Zeitgeist, on the other hand, has taken creative license with the same Bavarian flag. The blue and white are distorted in a more modern, and in my opinion very interesting, design.

While I like both of these cans, I’m giving the edge to Zeitgeist for their unique take on the tradition. Running total: Twisted Spike 0-1 Double Nickel.

Aroma

Spiketoberfest offers a robust aroma with a toasted malt foundation and warm and earthy notes. It does a lot of the fundamentals well and smells about as close to a textbook Marzen as you might expect.

Zeitgeist is a lighter smelling beer overall. It definitely has a maltiness to it, but it’s not as rich as its competition. It smells light, sweet and slightly floral.

No surprises here, this point goes to Spiketoberfest. Running total: Twisted Spike 1-1 Double Nickel.

Flavor

Spiketoberfest is smooth and mild, with a nice malty foundation and a slight sweet earthiness. It does a lot right, and is a really great example of the style. Its aftertaste is smooth, mild and slightly sweet.

Zeitgeist is also quite malty and a very flavorful brew. It has a mildly floral quality, which I wouldn’t typically associate with the style but it executes well.

This one goes Twisted Spikes way. They’ve crafted an excellent brew that executed the fundamentals flawlessly. Running total: Twisted Spike 2-1 Double Nickel.

Body

As you can see below, both brews retained some head in the form of a foam ring. It’s also pretty clear that Zeitgeist laced substantially more than Spiketoberfest. Double Nickel takes a slight advantage into the consideration of mouthfeel.

Twisted Spike’s Spiketoberfest on the left and Double Nickel’s Zeitgeist on the right.

Spiketoberfest is smooth and easy drinking, with a low level of carbonation. The flavors move well in the body, and the carbonation leaves a very mild “burn” on the backend. . A very solid experience.

Zeitgeist is lighter-bodied and fairly low carbonation. That said, it offers a non-traditional but complex flavor that is truly remarkable. I’m a big fan of them cramming all this flavor in a very easy-to-drink brew. Excellent work.

I’m giving a slight edge to Double Nickel here. Running total: Twisted Spike 2-2 Double Nickel.

People’s Choice

As in last year’s tournament, my Instagram followers have the opportunity to shape the decisions of each bout. In the 24 hours directly preceding each bout, a poll is placed on my Instagram story. Whoever has the most votes when the poll closes, takes this fifth criteria. So how did it shape up?

It was a competitive poll, but Spiketoberfest pulls ahead to take this point. Running total: Twisted Spike 3-2 Double Nickel.

Results

The stage is set for a showdown between Eight Bridges (CA) and Twisted Spike (OK) for a shot at the title! Double Nickel will take on 4 By 4 to decide 3rd place.

Be sure to check back regularly and to follow me on Instagram for your latest updates and opportunity to vote on each bout throughout the tournament. Until next time, cheers y’all!

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