In July, I was on a small “staycation” in Kansas City and had a list of things to do I had not done before. This included a trip to the KC Bier Company in Kansas City, Missouri.
The brewery and Bierhalle, complete with Biergarten, specializes in German-style beers. It is located at 310 W. 79th St., on the Missouri side, just east of Wornall Road in the Waldo district. It's a great day trip from Emporia and there's a very nice menu of German foods, including some excellent wursts and pretzels.
Thursday, however, KC Bier came to Emporia, with a six-tap takeover at Mulready's Pub, 717 Commercial St. Founder and CEO Steve Holle was on hand with his Kansas sales representative, Nathan Schriner. The six taps are Der Bauer, Der Hammer, Dunkel, Edelweiss, Festbier and Helles Lager. KC BIer's Biermeister is Karlton Graham
“I'm very happy with the German style of brewing,” Mulready's Owner Rick Becker said. “These guys really nail it. This is a brewery that's been in Kansas City for a few years, we've been waiting for them to come to Emporia. All of their beers are done in the German style and they do a very good job. They stick with that traditional (method), their beers are all delicious and we're proud to have them here in Emporia.”
Part of the reason for having this public event was to bring to the public's attention that the year-round, bottled beers are now available at area stores. These are Dunkel, Hefeweizen, Helles Lager and Pils, all in 6-packs, most at $8.99 (the seasonal Festbier is currently available for a dollar more). The pub was packed as Holle and Shriner roamed with pitchers of samples and Becker, with the help of Flint HiIls Beverages, handed out prizes.
This is part one of two on the KC Bier Company's offerings. Learn more at kcbier.com.
Der Bauer Farmhouse Ale
7.8% abv 37 IBUs
Der Biermeister says: Der Bauer is our German-style interpretation of a farmhouse ale. Brewed with 100% German malt and hops, Der Bauer is a dry, crisp and effervescent hazy golden ale with rustic fermentation notes and citrus hop aromas from dry-hopping with Mandarina Bavaria.
The Critics say: Gold Medal, 2018 U.S. Open Beer Championship
Grapes & Grains says: Der Bauer is unfiltered, a bright gold, with a persistent ring and heavy lacing. It feels like summer, with a nice edge of citrus to it, followed by a green apple character. Effervescent mouthfeel, not too bitter or too dry.
Festbier Vienna-style lager
5.5% abv 25 IBUs
Der Biermeister says: Festbier is a crisp, clean, malty Vienna-style lager brewed during a six-week period using 100% imported German malt and hops, and our Bavarian monastery brewery yeast. Festbier’s biscuit, caramel and honey malt flavors come from imported Vienna and Pilsner malts, while Perle and Hallertau Mittelfrüh hops provide moderate bitterness to balance the malt. Festbier is produced using traditional brewing techniques including decoction mashing (boiling a portion of the mash), two-vessel fermentation, natural carbonation and a long, cold lagering period.
The Critics say: Silver Medals 2016, 2017, Great American Beer Festival
Grapes & Grains says: It's a bright gold, with a bright white head, heavy ring and lacing. Frothy mouthfeel, yeasty, caramelly but not sweet or cloying. I could drink this all day.
“It's our Oktoberfest and we're pretty proud of it,” Nathan Schriner said. “We have it entered in the Great American Beer Festival and hope to get a pretty decent medal out of it this year.”
KC Bier is having an Oktoberfest soon. In 2017, the two-day festival saw 10,000 people — far too many for their Waldo location.
“So this year we are taking over Crown Center, and we are expecting upwards of 15 to 20 thousand people,” Schriner said.
The same people who do Irish Fest are helping plan the event which will be Oct. 5 and 6.
“We'll have all our main beers, and we're holding back a bunch of beer from each one of our seasonals — Maibock, DoppelBock, Der Bauer, Winterbock and our cider and a couple of other ones — so we'll have a lot to offer," Schriner said.