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Oktoberfest Lager - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Oktoberfest LagerOktoberfest Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

206 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 206
Reviews: 123
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 14.33%
Wants: 7
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 05-13-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 206 | Reviews: 123 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of phantomwyse
3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The start of the new wave of seasonals for me...

A: Unfiltered honey color, semi-transparent. Swift carbonation. Fast fading fluffy 2-finger head, average white tone, leaving a scattering of large bubbles.

S: Pilsner-like, lightly sweet malts, dull hops.

T: Soft bready malts, light toffee -- slight orange fruit flavor, grapefruit.

M: Well balanced, smooth, and just a touch creamy with a pallatable dry finish.

D: At first taste, a let down. This beer has slow onset appreciation. The more you drink it, the more the beer comes alive. Good all around. Just needs a little something extra to differentiate it from the pack.

phantomwyse, Aug 30, 2008
Photo of brentk56
3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy light amber color with a tight bubbled head that retains nicely and leaves a few dots and shards behind

Smell: Bitter grainy elements dominate the malt

Taste: Caramel Munich malt up front with a growing harsh grainy bitterness developing by mid-palate; after the swallow, the grainy bitterness dominates the malt and growns increasingly grassy through the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation

Drinkability: The grainy bitter flavors are just too powerful and detract from the more enjoyable malt backbone

brentk56, Aug 14, 2008
Photo of beerthulhu
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a medium copper/amber with a light white head.

S: soft with light toasted malt, noble flowering, and a very slight touch of malt sweetness.

T: The flavor was light with toasted caramel with some fruitiness. There was some floral hopping as well. Overall was much lighter then expecting and lacked the general malty sweetness typical per style.

M: light and clean and not overly sweet.

D: good beer to drink in mulitples but light on the malt sweetness. very clean german style palate.

beerthulhu, Mar 04, 2008
Photo of oberon
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass a clear spritzy light bronze with a large blooming white head that stuck well to the glass leaving some broken lace in its wake.Pretty clean lager aromas light notes of brown sugar and caramel to go along with a fading toastiness and iron,I think on the sweeter side of the style although not nearly cloying just the brown sugar and caramel flavors dominate with some doughy-like flavors underneath a decent punch of spicey hop shows thru as I drink more in the finish.It goes down very easily and Iam sure is food friendly,not bad.

oberon, Jan 15, 2008
Photo of Viggo
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber of this in Buffalo.

Pours a clear amber, thin white head forms, some sticky lace, clings to the glass, thin ring, looks like marzen! Smell is light malts, caramel, bread, toast, touch of orange/citrus, very clean, nice. Taste is similar, sweet caramel and bready malt, yeast, toast, citrus, touch of spice in the finish, nicely balanced. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation, easy to drink and very smooth. Not super complex but a solid and drinkable marzen.

Viggo, Nov 12, 2007
Photo of Gavage
4.1/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a clear copper color with a nice 2" head that lasts a while. No lacing develops.

Smell: caramel, earthiness, and malt sweetness.

Taste: nice bready malt profile. Caramel, hints of unripe fruit, mild bitterness, and a hint of alcohol. Slightly dry. This is more German like than other American versions.

Mouthfeel: crisp and dry throughout. Medium bodied. Long aftertaste as the malt klings to your tongue.

Drinkability: extremely easy to consume this one. A great version of the oktoberfest style.

Gavage, Nov 10, 2007
Photo of Domingo
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks for BankerJoe for this one as I'm sure I'll never see this out in Colorado.
Pours a golden color...which is a little odd. I guess the real Oktoberfest beers in Munich are getting lighter and lighter, so perhaps this is following that trend? There's a decent 1/4" head at first, but by the time you're halfway done with the beer, the head's gone.
Smell is of sweet gingerbread, caramel, and nutmeg. Not much hops in the smell, but that's not necessarily unusual.
The flavor starts of dry, but then sweetens up. Hops add some spice, and the finish stays sweet. It's not as sweet as some of the bigger examples from the US, but also not as dry as most of the German varieties. It's right in the middle. Reminds me a little of a fresh Spaten.
It's a little thin because the head doesn't hold up, BUT in the long run I think that'll make it more drinkable. I only had a single bomber, but had no problem finishing it myself, and I could've certainly had at least half of another one.
Not the best Oktoberfest, but a solid one nonetheless.

Domingo, Oct 30, 2007
Photo of mentor
3.1/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

1.5 finger lightly yellowed head over a crystal clear gold-straw liquid. Smells oranges, phenols, light caramel. Sweet with some hop mustiness. Iron and a touch of dried fruit. Some wheat.

Tastes sweet and grain phenolic. Touch of buttery. Wet sweet with astringent zing. Thick mouthfeel and a bit sweeter than I expect for the style. Drinkable, but hangs on the tongue a bit more than I’d like. A bit to thick on the tongue. Appropriate carbonation for the style, but not enough to clean the malt off the palette.

mentor, Oct 26, 2007
Photo of far333
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Devil's Alley, Philadelphia.

Light honey colored with no head to speak of, but this is unfortunately due the barkeep's attempt to fill the liquid completely to the brim with as little head as possible. It was actually filled so high that I had to be careful not to spill while lifting it to my lips.

Low aroma of bready malt. Flavor is initially biscuity malt, but hints of toffee and cinnamon work their way in and out. Moderately carbed, full mouthfeel with a tingly finish. Good representation of the style, very drinkable.

far333, Oct 08, 2007
Photo of Stimack
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap while at the Phoenixville brewpub. This brew had a nice color to it, clear amber brown and a nice sized light tan head that had pretty good retention and left most if it’s lacing at the top of the glass. The aroma was nice; sweet caramel malt stood out for me while also having a somewhat butter like scent. The taste was very refreshing, nice malt backbone of caramel flavors that gave it a slight nutty taste while still seeming to have a butter like presence. It finishes with a slight hop bitterness that seemed to tie it together quite well. Slight dry feel to it as it finishes. Overall I felt that this was a good offering, one I would get again!

Stimack, Oct 04, 2007
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sly Fox- Oktoberfest

22ozer brewed and bottled Royersford, PA.

Appearance- Beautiful golden brown with a huge frothy head. Moderate lacing down the glass.
Smell- Sweet buttery vanilla caramel malt.
Taste- Malt dominated. Like the smell, sweet vanilla caramel with a buttery hint. Sorta like a Werthers candy. Although some slight corn adjunct like flavor pokes its head through making it very sweet.
Mouthfeel- Sweet and buttery throughout with a bit of a cloying feeling.

Overall- Not too shabby. By the end of the bomber this started to become to sweet and cloying for me. Definitely worthy of a pint or 2.

NJpadreFan, Sep 17, 2007
Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle

Pours a clear light-copper color with a small white head that thins. Mild lacing on the glass.

Aroma is caramel malty, albeit a bit on the light side.

Caramel malty upfront leading into a medium bitterness and light herbal hop flavor. Finishes rather dry with a light lingering hop taste.

Medium-light body, mild carbonation.

Overall, a respectable O'fest. Not quite a top tier offering, but much more interesting and drinkable than the all-too-common bland interpretation of the style. One of my favorite styles, when done properly...

MaltyGoodness, Sep 08, 2007
Photo of cbl2
2.75/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

8/26/2007 $3.99 22 oz. 5.80% No best by date.


Pours a clear amber/brown with a thin film of white head that quickly settles.


Very crisp, with mild malty notes. Clean and fresh.


Loads of corn adjunct dominate the palate, and make for a off-sweet flavor that is less than desirable. Finish is somewhat bitter, and subtly chalky.

cbl2, Aug 27, 2007
Photo of jwc215
3.08/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a gush of foam. After letting the foam settle, a bright gold body appears. Lighter in color than the traditional O-fests (though not unique anymore).

The smell is of sweet caramel, grass/hay - malty but with an unusual citric hop presence for style.

The taste is of sweet caramel, grass/hay and citrus emerging. Not a "bad" taste, but pretty much misses the mark on style. It claims to be in the "Bavarian tradition", but American hops too noticeable. Now, I'm not one to complain about that, and styles are open to interpretation...but, if you want a certain style, other influences, even good ones in other cases, can bring down the particular enjoyment of it. A touch of sour apple goes into the aftertaste. Finishes very dry.

Over-carbonated, but with an "ok" body.

Well, this one turned out to be too bitter for the style. Not a bad taste, but nothing great. They just about missed the mark here, and the over-carbonation doesn't help it. I'll probably give it another shot in the fall and adjust if need be, though I see from reviews that were given in the fall that the problems aren't because of age.

jwc215, Jun 05, 2007
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours an almost clear, perfectly amber hued color as it sits in my glass. The head starts out at almost a four-finger thickness and is composed of fairly large bubbles that make up its light tan color. The aroma seems to be a mix of light fruit, herbaceous hops and malt notes. The aroma is somewhat muted, even in an Oktoberfest type of beer, and it has a certain thin graininess to it.

Wow this is really carbonate, it foams up quite a bit as it first hits my tongue. It is also quite bitter up front as well, and that bitterness continues on through the flavor profile to a lingering note in the finish. Quite dry as well, this dryness accentuates a grassy, slightly herbal hop character as well as a dry biscuit like malt character in the finish. There are some nice light caramelized malt sweet notes here as well, but they are light and fleeting at times.

I am not sure what it is, but of the Sly Fox brews that I have had, they all seem a bit off. This one is only subtly so, but I get the feeling they did not mean for such an effervescent brew, as it mucks with the overall balance. I certainly can't say there is anything wrong with this beer, in fact it is even tasty enough to be enjoyed. I just get the feeling that this would be a much better beer if the quality control was minded a bit more.

Gueuzedude, Jan 19, 2007
Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.13/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass lightly hazy pale golden amber with an off-white head which was tall, huge even, and moussy and fell slowly to coat the glass.

The aroma was fruity through the head and more nutty as the head began to fall back. Some spicy hops were notable as the head fell and some toasty malt characteristics.

The flavor was malty and somewhat bitter. The malt was lightly nutty and just a bit fruity. The bittering and flavor were slightly citrusy and piney and definitely a bit on the spicy side.

The finish was dry with lasting citrus and piney hop flavor into the aftertaste. The body was medium and the carbonation was extremely high. This one may be heading toward or already into some sort of infection. The citrus and the fruit coupled with a very high carbonation lead one to think it is on it's last legs. If taken as a pale ale the citrus and resin seem to work pretty well. If this was supposed to be a Märzen as the label suggests, it really misses the mark.

22 ounce bottle. Thanks BeerBeing!

GCBrewingCo, Jan 02, 2007
Photo of mcallister
3.93/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A somewhat hazed coppered orange liquid with an enormous frothy white head that leaves a thick lace behind and has good retention.

A different smelling O-fest. Has hints of clove, and is very Hefe-esque in aroma. Wheaty yeasty aromas as well. Nice and pleasant.

Again very different style of O-fest. Nice fruity flavors of apricot, and hints of clove in the taste as well. Good creamy mouthfeel and easy too quaff. This has to be made with a wheat base or they mislabled my brew. One of the two.

mcallister, Nov 28, 2006
Photo of dherling
4.15/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy golden brown with a tremendously huge head. I had an accident opening this thing, beer everywhere, or would have been had my mouth not been in the way. Took me a long time to pour this out, as each pour was about 85% head. The nose was nice, almost Belgium like, spicy, marzen malt, tiny bit of fruit. The taste started mild, went full bodied, and finished dry and clean. Tasted more like an Oktoberfest than the nose portends, not as spicy, but more hoppy. My favorite offering so far from Sly Fox.

dherling, Nov 12, 2006
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.43/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Orange amber body, excellent clarity, still - no visible carbonation. Loose white three finger head. Attractive clumps and streaks of lace.

Enticing deep bready aroma, some hay/grass notes in the background.

Taste has a sweet caramel beginning, a sweetness with the depth of dark chocolate, the depth I seek in better octoberfests. Taste continues with toasty bread. Unobtrusive balancing noble hops lead to a fairly clean finish.

Smooth medium mouthfeel. Creamy. walks the tightrope - not too slick or syrupy, but with enough body to have a bit to chew on.

Drinkability good enough to ask: why bomber bottles instead of six packs?

Always glad t find a local octoberfest whose flavor can stack up with the imported competion.

RonfromJersey, Nov 09, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ridiculously carbonated carrot juice orange. The beer itself was only one finger in height immediately after the pour due to an explosion of pale ecru foam. Even now, two minutes later, there's still more head than liquid in the glass. The few watery splotches of lace that managed to stick will now be obliterated as I attempt to add more beer so that I can get it within sniffing distance.

Oktoberfest Lager doesn't smell much like an Oktoberfest to me due to a (probable) absence of Munich malt. It don't appreciate the toasted earthiness of that particular variety, which is more than fine by me. Orange fruity hops make the biggest splash, so that even though the beer isn't style accurate in one sense, it still has a semi-enjoyable nose.

Upon tasting... again, style purists will probably have a conniption fit since this Sly Fox seasonal is anything but a classic representative of the style, but I think it' still pretty good beer in a balanced APA sort of way. The Vienna malt backbone is sturdy enough to offset the fruity, lightly spicy German hops and to keep the sweet-bitter balance in... er... balance.

As I get deeper into the bomber, I'm beginning to appreciate the hop flavor and hop bitterness a little more. So much for malt-dominant Oktoberfests. Ignore the 'brewed in the traditional Bavarian style' on the label. This is simple, clean, enjoyable beer that boasts drinkability as its primary attribute.

Given the relative lack of malt (again, for the style), it's no surprise that the body/mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium. It's also much less carbonated than expected. Those bubbles that were so hellbent early on are still lively, but very little of their energy is transmitted to the mouth.

It's unlikely that I'll run across another Oktoberfest this autumn that drinks quite like Sly Fox Oktoberfest Lager. Even though I probably wouldn't look forward to its release like I would some of this brewery's other offerings, I'm enjoying it quite a bit since I don't always care for the more traditional versions. Thanks to BitterBrian for the bomber.

BuckeyeNation, Oct 12, 2006
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Forms a really nice shaped off white head which rises slowly above the rim of the glass, yet never drips down the sides of my pint. Dwindles relatively quick but leaves scattered strips of lacing as it does, the body is a pale copper orange tone, a bit lighter than the typical American brewed O-fest, and I also noticed tiny yeast particles suspended in there. Aroma is hard to describe it has a good bit of tart green apple, mild citrus and tropical passion fruits with bread malt layer becoming a bit sugary finishes with light grassy and leafy hops in the nose. Taste, comes off a touch acidic develops a creamy sweet fruity character with mild rassy hops and finishes tart like a dry cider, very interesting overall with a light bitterness. Mouthfeel has a light to medium body, carbonation a bit heavy with some prickly presence on the palate a bit of residual sugars noted as well and it definitely fnishes dry. Drinkability: Challenging to the senses and it fails to come off as the typical American brewed oktoberfest, the label boldly states: "Our version of this seasonal lager. No limits, no restrictions." Thank God something different from a somewhat monotonous style, I'll be having another I enjoyed it.

WVbeergeek, Oct 06, 2006
Photo of Melchizedek
2/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Poured out of a 22 oz. bomber into a nice mug, good color for the style, a clear goldish amber with bits of floaty yeast in the final pour. Enthusiastic bubbly head builds up quickly and dissipates just as fast.

Not much aroma to speak of - just some vaguely detergent-y character, malt sweetness, a whiff of alcohol, but overall just too clean. The carbonation in the mouth is just way too much. The beer fizzes up immediately upon sipping, making it hard to discern flavors or swallow without instant burping. It's not like you're missing much in the flavor, though - there's mostly a kind of woody malt taste with a bit of chemical bitterness. Rather thin once the carbonation has run its course, too.

The carbonation really ruins the enjoyability of this even as a quaff-worthy selection. It doesn't taste good enough to endure the onslaught of fizz, either - don't bother. There are plenty of better O'fests readily available.

Melchizedek, Oct 05, 2006
Photo of jcdiflorio
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured with a nice rocky head ,head dissapated fairly quickly.a light coppery,slightly reddish-orange hue.A fruitty.green apple a bit grassy aroma.
Tastes fruity,a soury tart taste,a hint of yeast.Not a traditional Octoberfest taste.
A carbinated cider like mouthfeel,very dry wine-like.The aftertaste is kind of sour like an green apple.
A light to medium mouthfeel,an interesting beer very hard to describe.

jcdiflorio, Oct 03, 2006
Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.68/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up recently as part of the changeover from the lighter beers of summer. I tend not to be crazy about the offerings this time of the year, since they can be very spicy and a bit of an adjustment from the styles I usually like. This beer was an exception to that though, as it went down quite easily and wasn't too complex, nor simple for me!

Nice nut brown color to this, with a rich head to match. A lot of hops for an Octoberfest, especially in the aftertaste. The front was crisp, clean, and there wasn't a lot of spice to be found either. Just a slight smoky and woody taste, but nothing aromatic or citrusy here. It wasn't out of this world in taste or appearance, but it had a nice warming effect on me, even though the weather hasn't gotten that cold yet!

The 5.8% ABV is pretty much what I expected for this, and it wasn't as strong as I thought it would be. From what I've seen on here, Sly Fox seems relatively new to the game. This sold well in the store I bought it from and based on my enjoyment of this beer, it's not too hard to see why!

JerzDevl2000, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of SixpointJMH
3.05/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one pours a nice looking crisp copper colour with a big foamy and sticky head atop the liquid. Nice stuff.

The aroma has a faint, dirty malt tone to it, with hints of sweetness here and there. Nothing that memorable and fairly average overall.

The flavour continues with the aroma but tweaks it a bit for an ever so slight improvement from the aroma. Sweetness is a bit more pronounced here and the earthy malt flavour is still here but is mixed with notes of grassiness as well. Still, this one is fairly average overall. Mouthfeel is somewhat crisp and light to medium bodied.

I've found most, if not all, of the Sly Fox bottled/canned products that I've sampled thusfar to be at least solidly tasty to very good. This one just didn't do it for me. It's bland and there's just not much there. Not a bad brew overall, just kind of blah overall...

SixpointJMH, Sep 18, 2006
Oktoberfest Lager from Sly Fox Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 206 ratings.