Whether you’re a beer aficionado or just a casual beer drinker, we’ve got nine beers in Kane County you have to try. So celebrate Oktoberfest, and crack open a cold beer. Cheers!
The Little Owl Restaurant and Flagstone PubWhere: 101 W. State St. in GenevaInfo: 630-232-7994, www.littleowlrestaurant.com
Established in 1920, The Little Owl Restaurant and Flagstone Pub is said to be Geneva’s oldest continuously operated restaurant and tavern. The Arbizzani family bought the establishment in 1947 and still runs it today. The Little Owl Restaurant offers a variety of appetizers, steak, seafood, salads and sandwiches. Flagstone Pub offers a wide variety of beers on tap. Chris Arbizzani says The Little Owl Restaurant and Flagstone Pub’s unique atmosphere and great, friendly staff set it apart from other restaurants and taverns.
“(Our secret to success has been) quality food, experienced staff and a great casual atmosphere,” he says.
Bell’s Octoberfest — Crafted as a flavorful session beer, Bell’s Octoberfest is a smooth lager with a light, dry toasted malt note. Unlike other Bell’s beers, Bell’s Octoberfest trades in the strong hop presence for a light caramel malt note, lending body without too much sweetness. Bell’s Brewery Inc. in Michigan brews this beer.
Atom Smasher Oktoberfest-Style Lager — Atom Smasher is a hefty, full-bodied lager reminiscent of Märzen beers from days gone by. It pours a delicious-looking hazy, burnt copper color and is aged in oak foudres, giving it a woody oak flavor. Atom Smasher is brewed by Two Brothers Brewing Company in Warrenville.
Rookie's All-American Pub & Grill in St. Charles and ElginWhere: 1545 W. Main St. in St. Charles; 2486 Bushwood Drive in ElginInfo: 630-513-0681 (St. Charles); 847-551-9006 (Elgin), www.rookiespub.com
A sports bar with locations in Elgin and St. Charles, Rookies has a full bar and offers a wide selection of domestic, imported and draft beer, as well as wine and top-shelf spirits. Rookies’ diverse menu features burgers, sandwiches, salads, pizzas, barbecue ribs, pastas, steaks and more. Rookies has something for the whole family, including “kids eat free night” every Thursday. With dozens of TVs, Rookies is a great place to watch your favorite NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB teams play, as well as college sports, tennis, golf and soccer matches. Rookies also has live entertainment every Saturday night.
Spaten Oktoberfest — Created in 1872, Spaten Oktoberfest is a medium-bodied beer with an amber color and has achieved its great taste by balancing a roasted malt flavor with the perfect amount of hops. Spaten Oktoberfest is brewed by Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu in Germany.
Hacker-Pschorr Hefe Weisse Natürtrub — Hacker-Pschorr smells of toasted grains, malt and fresh-baked bread and is amber in color. The yeasty flavors are balanced with the light tartness imparted by the wheat and gentle hop bitterness. Hacker-Pschorr Bräu GmbH in Germany brews this one.
Thirsty Fox PubWhere: 104 E. Main St. in St. CharlesInfo: 630-377-6634, www.thirstyfox.com
Owner Samantha Stone says a laidback atmosphere, good people, great food and daily food and drink specials are what keep customers coming back to Thirsty Fox Pub. Thirsty Fox Pub has been a neighborhood-gathering place since 1895. The pub also is known to be haunted, Stone says. She says two big draws of Thirsty Fox Pub are the entertainment that accompanies the diverse food and drink menu and an all-you-can-eat fish fry Friday nights. The pub has pool tables, dartboards, pinball machines, big-screen plasma TVs and live bands (every Saturday). But above everything else, people come to Thirsty Fox Pub for its “good, home-cooked food,” Stone says.
Samuel Adams Octoberfest — Samuel Adams Octoberfest has a rich, deep reddish amber hue. The beer has a sweet, malty flavor with a small amount of bitterness from the hops. Samuel Adams Octoberfest is brewed by Boston Beer Company Inc. in Massachusetts.
Beck’s/Beck’s NA — Beck’s has a thick white head and a clear, yellow-straw appearance. Its aroma is of roasted barley, clean water and bitter hops. Beck’s NA is the nonalcoholic (NA) version of this beer. The NA beer boasts a full, rich, thick head and balanced bitterness. Brauerei Beck & Co. in Germany brews these beers.
The Lodge on the FoxWhere: 35 N. Water St. in BataviaInfo: 630-761-0145, www.thelodgeonthefox.com
The Lodge on the Fox, across from the Fox River, is a locally owned restaurant that serves inspiring American cuisine and barbecue. From its barbecue pulled pork sandwich and portabella mushroom linguini, to its Friday fish fry and spiced pork chops, The Lodge on the Fox serves up a diverse food menu. The menu also includes fresh salads, appetizers and side dishes. There are a variety of cheesecakes to enjoy for dessert. The Lodge on the Fox’s drink menu offers red, white and sparkling wines and a variety of bottled beers and draft beers. The restaurant has weekly and daily specials, as well as food and drink specials during football games.
Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest — Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest is a light-bodied beer with a smooth taste. A true Märzen-style beer, Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest is amber in color with nice clarity. Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company in Wisconsin brews this beer.
The House PubWhere: 16 S. 1st Ave. in St. CharlesInfo: 630-945-3479, www.thehousepub.com
The House Pub is a neighborhood pub and lounge with several floors that provide unique entertainment for everyone — depending on their mood. The main floor is a beer drinker’s dream, with more than 85 locally brewed and international beers. New beers are introduced every week. The middle floor features a game room and sit-down tables for a more relaxed dining atmosphere. The lounge, which is upstairs, has couches and is perfect for enjoying a nice cocktail or one of the pub’s more than 25 martinis. The House Pub has daily drink specials, as well as live music on certain nights of the week.
Pumpkin Ale — This ale is brewed with baked and roasted pumpkins, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Its taste is described as “pumpkin pie in a bottle.” The mouthfeel is very thick and creamy. This beer features a rich amber color and a thick, slowly dissipating head. Pumpkin Ale is brewed by Buffalo Bill’s Brewery in California.
Hoptober Golden Ale — Medium bodied and quite smooth, Hoptober Golden Ale is a citrusy and earthy ale that’s amber in color. The ale has five hops and four malts that make it a veritable cornucopia of the earth. New Belgium Brewing in Colorado brews this beer.