Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Märzen - Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

70 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 70
Hads: 130
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 17.41%
Wants: 6
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pennsylvania Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-23-2002

A full bodied fest beer, amber colored, very smooth.
"One of my Top 24 Favorite American Beers!" Beer Critic Michael Jackson
An amber-red lager fest beer, aromatically malty, brewed in the spring. Uses 2-Row malted barley and a combination of roasted malts. One of beer critic Michael Jckson's "Top 24 Favorite American Beers."
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 70 | Hads: 130
Photo of Twal
2.35/5  rDev -38%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

("One of my Top 24 Favorite American Beers!" Beer Critic Michael Jackson )

Unfortunately Micheal Jackson died prior to better examples of american versions existing.

Did they really need to say that he liked it twice? It really doesn't soften the blow...

The beer was unbalanced plain and simple,malt sweetness was overpowering,over the top biscuity/ toasted sesame,toffee ,slightly fruity w/ slight bitter aftertaste.
Considering the manner in which I acquired the beer I know it's fresh.
Poor example of the style.

 519 characters

Photo of santoslhalper
2.61/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearence: Pours a clear copper with a fomay, fizzy white head,

Smell: The smell is of gross malts. I don't know what it is, but I don't like it. Cereal maybe? Manure?

Taste and Mouthfeel: It doesn't really taste like much of anything. Basically a watered down verstion of their Oktoberfest. While it is rather thirst quenching, it has no good qualities to it, or even anything that stands out. The mouthfeel is creamy but a little thin.

Drinkability and Overall: This is an average beer from Penn. They're really on and off, and sadly this is off. Has a really generic qualitiy to it that's really killing me. Just wait for the Oktoberfest.

 651 characters

Photo of pianoguy
2.85/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Sorry that I have to give this one a low score. But I got to call em as I see em. Please see the last paragraph of this review as to why this beer may have been at a disadvantage.It may be better then this review,

From the beer of the month club...

Poured a light brown, copper body with a 1 /2 inch off white head that didn't last long.

I'm not getting much aroma. Just a faint apple smell, some type of malt?

Taste kind of follows the smell, there's not a lot going on here . A slightly bitter finish.(the bitter finish is good though)

Feel was slightly prickly

Overall this was disappointing. I have long been a fan of Oktoberfest beers but other then the look this didn't have a lot going for it.

This was from a 3 month Christmas gift of "the beer of month club" Why on earth was the February beer a Marzen ,brewed in march for Oktoberfest the year before ??!! If I ever get a chance to sample this beer when it is supposed to be sampled I might amend this review...

Had the beer of the month club as a gift for three months and this was from February

 1,082 characters

Photo of MONKandTUCK
2.91/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - On draught this beer lacked the viscosity, color and head-retention I expected. It's a warm orange, but not bright as I would expect. Looks flat.

A - Not as much biscuit, caramel and malt as I would expected from a Marzen.

T - Some sweet and malty notes, but nothing exceptionally pronounced. Nothing that piques my interest.

M - Thin-ish.

O - Kinda like a leaner, less adventurous version of Yuengling. Ironic, I was expecting a more character-rich and authentic version of the Amber Lager. This was a perfect opportunity to pounce. Everyone in PA or who comes to PA has an idea of what the mass-produced Yuengling is, and Penn Brewery is poised to sail their ship by one-upping it. The dropped the mass, though.

Really, this beer is not bad. But being inoffensive isn't the way you build your name. This is such an approachable style; it's not like an IPA or Stout, where most folks might threaten to vomit before finishing the beer.

This beer could be so much more. Let's see it happen. I'll go out of my way for it, then.

 1,036 characters

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.03/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Penn Brewing- Marzen

Appearance- Golden reddish brown with a small white head. 1 big lacing ring along the top.
Smell- Very faint vanilla, caramel, and cinnimon,
Taste- Vanilla caramel malt with touches of spice. Cinnimon comes through with a touch of nutmeg.
Mouthfeel- Dry and slighty bitter up front. Slight touch of alcohol in the end.

Overall- I found this to be bland. Not a bad tasting beer here, but after drinking 1 I was ready to move up and on.

 465 characters

Photo of Dukeofearl
3.15/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle purchased at Hollingshead Deli in Orange, CA. for $1.59 in August 2006. Consumed in September.

Pours a slightly cloudy dark orange/amber with a pretty off-white head and very small bubbles. There are no obvious streamers of carbonation, but they may be hidden in the cloudiness.

Aroma is of sweet oranges, honey and candy- almost maple syrup.

Flavor starts sweet like the aroma (and like my favorite mazens), but it ends with a yeasty and stale grassy hops mixed with lemons- somewhat off-putting. I wonder if this is too old.

It starts nice, but I don't care for where it goes.

 604 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.2/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clean copper/ amber color with a white head. In the aroma, malty lager notes and a bit earthy. In the taste, earthy, small fruit notes and lager undertones. A small hop bite and medium to light bodied mouthfeel, with and small dry earthiness in the aftertaste. Nice earth and fruit presence. Not too shabby.

 315 characters

Photo of ski271
3.21/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this beer at Penn Brewery with a good German-style lunch. It is a dark amber beer with a dense off-white medium-sized mostly diminishing head with very little lacing. The aroma is dominated by roasted malts with a touch of yeast and very light fruity undertones from the hops... average at best. The taste is quite malty, a little hops kick but overall a maltfest. Very sweet and the finish has an even stronger caramel sweetness that lingers for quite some time. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy. Overall, it’s is a decent beer that is enjoyable and drinkable. I know the style isn’t supposed to be a favorite among hopheads, but it could have used a little more hops to balance it out.

 692 characters

Photo of dungledauf
3.24/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clear, amber color. Little or no carbonation. Very little lacing with some retention. Not lively. Dull.

Smell: Faint sweet malt smell. Could not detect any hop or yeast smell.

Taste: Malt flavor dominates but is quickly balanced. Lingering aftertaste. Stale.

Mouthfeel: Thin, lightbodied.

Drinkability: This lighter than a Marzen should be because I expected this to more flavorful and full-bodied than a Vienna lager. The quality of malt used could be the cause or the beer is not aged long enough. Penn Brewery has made better in the past.

 557 characters

Photo of mooseisloose
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A recent BOTMC selection ariived directly to my door. Let's give it a whirl.

On popping the cap I get a skunky earthy hop smell classic of this style. On the pour this brew is a light brown with a two finger micro bubble head that recedes moderately quickly. The taste is a sweet and nutty, a bit metallic and quite refreshing. The mouthfeel has good carbonation for the style. The taste is mostly consistent throughout with a little bit more bitters coming through in the end. Mostly nutty all the way through. This is a refreshing brew, spot on for the style, but not my cup of tea.

 585 characters

Photo of stakem
3.37/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle care of Eric, thanks for gifting me with a couple different offerings from this brewery. The brew appears a hazed color of burnt copper. Some lighter orange to yellow hints are noted around the edges and an off-white cap sits atop. As the cap slowly fades, it leaves a webby pattern of lace on the glass.

The aroma is sweet with a scent of caramel to toffee grain. A bit bready at times with a trace amount of herbal to earthy hops. Overall the brew smells sweet with residual sugar and toasted sugars. Fairly typical of the style.

The taste is just what you would expect based off of the aroma. Caramel and toffee sweetness from the grain that gets a bit bready and buttery towards the finish. The alcohol is noted with a minor fruity ester. Hops are present with a bit of contrasting herbal to floral bitterness. The buttery diacetyl lasts long into the aftertaste with a hint of herbal hop bitterness.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. Overall it is a fairly decent take on the style that is well balanced and the hops are restrained enough to be evident and contrasting to the sweetness but not too much. My only gripe is the buttery finish that lasts long into the aftertaste and seemingly leaves a clingy film in the mouth instead of that crisp snap of a finish I look for in the style.

 1,340 characters

Photo of ToddT
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Clear medium brown topped with a thin off white head. Head fades quickly to a ring and then disappears, leaving no lace on the glass.

S- Biscuit malt and sweet notes, caramel and toffee dominate the nose.

T- Sweet caramel, and toffee right away the is overtaken with the biscuit malts and a slight note of hops in the finish.

M- Medium in body and low in carbonation, the sweetness builds up some on the palate though.

D- Easy drinker, the 5.6% ABV makes this a session candidate as well.

A little sweet for me but a solid beer and a good representation of the style.

 576 characters

Photo of cooncat
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark green 12 oz. longneck bottle, with a 'best by' date of Aug. 21, 2006 (and my tasting was done July 1, 2006), so it was 'in date'.

The pour produced a light copper colored beer, with a minimal tan, short lived head. The nose was definitely malt, with a hint of citrus behind it. On the palate, a warming, medium bodied beer, with a sweet maltiness typical of the style. Very drinkable, and not overpowering in any aspect. A respectable offering which should not disappoint.


 491 characters

Photo of IronCitySteve
3.43/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On tap at Penn Brewery

A: Pours a deep dark brownish orange color. Provides an extremely small off white foam head the quickly dissipates. There is no lacing.

S: A small amount of toast, caramel, brown sugar with a slight hop undertone. Nothing overwhelming.

T: Starts off slightly sweet with the caramel hitting the palate first and lasting throughout the tasting. The middle adds some toasted notes and finishes with a slightly citrus hop undertone. Decent balance.

M: Leaves a slightly creamy feel on the palate. Seems a tad on the thin side.

D: Easy to drink Oktoberfest beer. Not overly complex, but gets the job done.

 629 characters

Photo of tbraun1
3.47/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Light, copper colored, with minimal carbonation. Slight lacing on the glass as enjoyed.

S - Biscuity, sweet malts.

T - Nice, biscuity flavor. Minimal alcohol taste. Sweet malts, low hop.

M - Light mouthfeel, with just enough carbonation. Enjoyable and easy to drink.

O - I enjoyed this fest beer. Easy to drink, right on the middle road. Little bit of sweet malt, just enough carbonation, pleasant aftertaste. Would be easy to down a few of these without the palate being overwhelmed.

 496 characters

Photo of ZAP
3.47/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Green bottle and a touch of that funky skunked aroma but it is very slight....that gives way to caramel covered apples....pretty good nose but not real strong.....dark reddish gold in color but cloudier than I like for this style...body is medium...slickish...a nice caramel maltiness to this, and a nice tight German hop finish...reminds me of Schell's Octoberfesf from my neck of the woods....I don't really care for that hop bite in this style ,but it does lend a nice balance to go along with the caramel sweetness...A much anticipated tasting for me and maybe I expected too much...this is definitely good but not in the superbeer category (although many including Michale Jackson disagree with me)...

 706 characters

Photo of BurghBrewPSU
3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark amber color. Smell is a little faint. The taste is delightful. Very sweet, took me a while to pinpoint it, but caramel is definately what makes this beer. As i was drinking this beer, I kept telling my buddy, I could definatley drink a few of these. A very smooth beer.

 287 characters

Photo of greenmonstah
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into Ommegang flute

A - Pours a deep amber with a finger of off white head. Poor retention.

S - Very clean, with toasty and bready notes and a bit of sweetness.

T - Very clean and crisp to drink. Follows the nose, with toasty and bready overtones and a bit of sweetness. Pouring in the sediment makes it worse, with a not very appealing yeast flavor coming into the picture.

M - Light to medium body, with a slightly dry finish.

O - Overall fairly average and very easy to drink take on the style.

 515 characters

Photo of blitheringidiot
3.52/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Lime green bottle that actually bends over a bit crooked, adorned with a triple label. The front body label has an abstract parade woman and a shamrock with “pure barely malt lager beer” on the side. The back body label states, “Fest beer is a full bodied, pure barley malt amber fest beer. It’s smooth, mellow, and full of authentic German beer flavor. It will fortify you against winter’s cold or party you through Mardis Gras and St. Patty’s Day.”

This flowed out into me Stone pint as a dark hazy unfiltered orangey brown pour with a razor thin white halo cap, with tons of tiny sea horses microscopic chunks floating in the glass.

Huge syrupy malt punch hits me square in the face, almost like a Barley Wine.

First swigs: Coca- cola meets flat root beer maltiness. Warmed up style that begs to be “not-refrigerator” cold. Deep caramel and cake malts, and the most Buisquik flour taste your tongue can cook up. Somewhat dry and dusty, with a spicy caramel citrous hint. Lasting cloying hard candy aftertaste.

Buttery mixed dessert spices and medium carbonation make up a medium bodied brew.

Last swigs: Marzen, eh? Malts for sure. All malts. Hops? We don’t need no stinkin’ hops. Virtually Butterscotch and Sugar Daddy flavors all the way. Thanks to fellow BA Shapudding for the bottle to check out.

Beer is good. Happy beering.

 1,364 characters

Photo of DrMullet
3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber. Caramel and toffee are the overall flavors. Medium malty with a slight hop bitterness. No significant hop character. Overall, not bad.

 154 characters

Photo of rsdaugherty
3.57/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear copper/brown color, fairly large bubbles, not quite a 1 finger head faded to a rim around the pint quickly 3.5
S - Sweetness, yeast, fruit, roasted malts, minimal grassy/hop notes 4
T - Malts dominate with a slightly sweet/fruity and mildly spicy flavor, minimal hop presence 3.5
M - A medium body and perhaps slightly over-carbonated to me 3
O - A good beer, glad I tried it but not to my liking enough that I'll be buying it again 3

 444 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

brandyish initially, molasses, then dark malts with some dark malts. Some of these sweeter ingrediants comprise the aroma. Dark color. Above average carbonation. Comes together like a malty ovaltine tasting. Smooth beverage and drink. Bit of bitterness on aftertaste.

 267 characters

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.61/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a nice deep reddish amber color with a two finger head of billowy white foam. The head has a lighter level of retention, fading rather quickly to leave some light levels of foamy island lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is sweet and malty with tons of caramel and doughy smells. Along with the caramel are other sweet smells with lots of toffee and some brown sugar. Other aromas of a light earthy and grassy nature are there as well, but these are quite light, with the overall smell being rather sweet.

Taste – The taste begins with a caramel flavor mixed with a rather decent sum of a lightly toasted bready taste. Toffee flavors are present upfront as well, but these seem to fade as the taste advances. Like the toffee, the roast seems to fade a bit as well, being replaced by flavors that are a bit more biscuit like in nature. While these transitions occur some light hop flavors of an earthy and grassy flavor also come to the tongue. The caramel surges a bit at the end, with the other flavors mellowing a little bit, to leave a moderately sweet and malty Marzen flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average, to maybe just above average, side in terms of its thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. The lower carbonation is quite nice for the sweet and bready/biscuit flavors of the brew, while the average to slightly thicker body also upholds the malty and sweet nicely, but all the while do not take away from the drinkability of the brew. Overall, the mouthfeel is rather nice.

Overall – While not super extraordinary, this is a rather tasty Marzen. Very easy drinking, affordable and tasty. This brew actually seems like a better football weather brew to me as it is sweet, malty but not too big on abv. A nice one to try.

 1,907 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Man I have no idea why they lately stocked two Oktoberfest's at my local mix six place but they were worth a try.

A - pours darker than most Oktoberfest with a hazy brown orage and no head. Mild lace ring.

S - Mild hops, caramel and toasted malt. Not too bad.

T - Very minimal overall flavor. Mild toasty malt with very little toffee/caramel sweetness and a hop profile that is barley existent. At least overall it was drinkable.

M - Light to medium but needs more body and flavor.

D - Got to this one late and flavor suffered but drinkability is still pretty solid. Sadly I wouldn't see myself getting it again.

 617 characters

Photo of Cylinsier
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Pours a clear amber color, medium whitish head with decent retention.

Smells of sweet barely malts and maybe a hint of apple like flavor.

Tastes similarly sweet with a minimal hop flavor as well. There's a toasted element there as well.

Feels moderate with smooth carbonation.

Pretty drinkable, easy to session. Wouldn't turn down another one if I had the chance.

 373 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Märzen from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.