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Märzen - Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

71 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 71
Hads: 131
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 17.41%
Wants: 7
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
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Reviews: 71 | Hads: 131
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.

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Photo of oberon
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this at the restaurant with some weinershnitzel and speitzel,pours a deep amber with a nice one finger head,aromas are malt hefty some cookie dough and caramel but didnt smell overly sweet.Spot on flavors for a the style in my opinion some light caramel and malted milf flavors with a dry anisy-like finish.A nice creamy mouth feel is a big hit here.Damn solid beer and food friendly but man I want the maibock wich they were out of.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Penn Marzen pours a deep copper body with dark amber highlights beneath a short head of creamy white foam. The nose offers floral and gently spicy hops over a gently sweet and toasty malt base. Not surprisingly, the flavor delivers the same, but with more depth. It's very clean, and a hint of sulphur suggests lager yeast. The Vienna malt does lend an edge of sublime fruitiness to it though. It's slightly honeyish, but mainly grainy and softly toasty; and well balanced by the spicy and floral hops. The median bitterness simply lies underneath the malt and hops, acting as ballast but never interupting. Very well balanced, and supremely drinkable.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.62/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I must make this clear, that of all the Penn Brewerey products I have tasted (Pilsener, Dark, Gold, Maibock, Weizen) the Marzen is my all time favorite. It pours with a copper amber tone to it, along with a thin white head that leaves a lace as the glass empties. From the aroma, I am getting fruit tones (grapefruit?) or something citrusy possibly the hops and a load of sweetness from crystal, caramel malted barley. The flavors spiral around my tongue sending sensations of sweetness wrapped with the perfect amount of bitterness to create some beer nirvana. The medium body and the great chewy texture all add to this beer, making it an amazingly drinkable beer. Very good, all around!!!

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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.

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Photo of ejimhof
5/5  rDev +31.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is back this week after a long hiatus.Perfect color and perfect smell. The taste is light and sweet slightly creamy this is what a Maerzen should taste like. Drinkability is off the charts this is what it's like to be at the real Octoberfest. I could drink this one all night long. So glad they decided to bring this one back.

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Photo of tempest
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed a bottle at Abe's Cold Beer. Damn, I wish I'd bought more, this is a great example of the style. It's crisp and flavorful while remaining very drinkable. The aroma and flavor have a very light fruit component that remind me of strawberries and bananas. The grains provide both a clean, dry popcorn (no diacetyl) and toast along with smooth caramel barley. Spicy, earthy hops provide a mild bitter kick at the end to balance things out. Man, this is a great lager. Go drink it.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Penn Marzen, brewed once again after a few year hiatus. Listed at 4.5% ABV on the Penn website.

Appearance: 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. A hard pour yields little head. Color and clarity are good, a deep amber hue and a faint wisp of head around the edges.

Smell: A pleasing sweet malty aroma, Munich malts and suggestions of caramelized brown sugar. Just a hint of some Tettnag and Saaz hop adding to the aroma.

Taste: Rich malty tones, caramel, toffee and slight roast. Fairly well balanced with the sweet malt winning in the finish. Pretty tasty with a nice focus on the malt flavor. Bready, easy drinking traditional lager.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is good, medium bodied feel. Not too heavy, not too thin.

Drinkability: A tasty, well made dark lager by the folks at the Penn Brewery. Glad I invested in a case since it is a true fest bier and should be treated as such.

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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.

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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)...

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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.

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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.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An above average Marzen beer from the local Penn brewing company. This beer was not freshness notched but the back label mentioned St. Patricks day and the Spring, so I am assuming that this is a fresh sample. It sure tasted fresh! It poured a wonderful dark amber, copper colour with a small head with decent retention. The aromas were heavy on the malt and light on the hop. The mouthfeel was heavy, but not too heavy and the drinkability was great!

Another impressive beer from Penn brewing!

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 ounce green glass bottle picked up as a single in a mixed pack of Penn beers from Hollingshead Delicatessen in Orange.

Lime green main label has a red bordered oval containing a partying Mardi Gras style woman together with Shamrock and the words ‘Märzen’ below. No strength or freshness. The labels are all wonky and it looks rather amateurish to be honest, right down to the black & white photocopied Government Warning back label. Sealed with a screw-off logo’d crown cap.

Appearance: Copper body with a ruddy-orange character. Beige head builds up nicely and stays around. Gorgeous conditioning. Light lacing.

Nose: Fruity nose, spices, baked pears, brown sugar and a little cinnamon with apple skins set in caramel. Hmmm, lots to break out from the aromas.

Taste: Yet more fruits and spices in the make-up, apples and pears seem to be big contributors. These fresh fruits set a good backdrop against the fresh malts and caramel. Finish has a quiet caramel sweet malt ending which is very clean.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a wavering malt profile that sets a foundation for the fruits. Fine conditioning completes the package.

Drinkability: Another easy drinking effort from the Penn Brewery, I love the fruits in this one, in the absence of any hop contribution the fruits neatly balance the malts from beginning to end.

Overall: Despite its very amateurish labels and that green glass bottle, doesn’t beer get “skunked” in PA? this Märzen is quite the treat.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Comes forth from the bottleneck rocking a lovely shade of auburn copper with good clarity and a sizzling head that rushes up and simmers down to a thin cap. Lacing is a stretch.

Toasty and semi-sweet with caramel malt grains, toffee notes, and earthy hop. A touch of praline to note with a malt base that exudes streusel crumble and a yeast note that depicts salty pear. Not too shabby.

Taste is a little drier than the nose, but follows suit. Quality two-row barley with generous toastiness and a hint of caramel. Some apple/pear esters and a good staunch bitterness, affected by German hop varietals. These offer earthy and nutty notes alomg with a wink of citrus. Finishes short, but the middle has burliness. Carbonation is good and sears the back of the throat with fizz. Body can just keep up with its medium viscosity. It drinks damn fast, and quit enjoyably so. A great Marzen. Fresh as hell, and a great homage to real German spring lagers.

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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.

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Photo of Redrover
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was in Pittsburgh for the Cubs - Pirates game and was able to sample this one freshly tapped at Atria's Restaurant which is connected to beautiful PNC park.

Served in a standard pint, the beer is a nice copper with a beige head.

The aroma is of fresh malts and more malt. Just a touch of floral hops.

The taste is slightly sweet with minor roasted malt notes, a hint of caramel and touch of backend bitterness. This is a well put together marzen and it hits all the right notes. Crisp and smooth it went very well with my pork medallions.

Well done!!

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Photo of Hojaminbag
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Penn Brewery.

A nice dark amber color with hardly any head.

A faint, sweet, malty smell.

Up front this beer has a big sweet malty taste. In the middle is more malts, but a mellower chocolate malty flavor. Finishes with just a little bit of hop.

Very light effervescent mouthfeel. Extremely Smooth.

This is a very drinkable festbier due to the balanced flavor, and mostly it's crisp, smooth texture.

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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.

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Photo of dexterk1
3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had it at the brewery on tap. Dark amber color and head is about medium thick.
Odor is pretty clean. A little bready and malt. Also pleasant yeast odor which was nice.
Taste is malt and somewhat rich. Some hops, but they are a minor player. Malt is upfront and brings a nice clean finish.
Mouth feel is pretty much middle of the spectrum. Good and clean on the tongue and not heavy.
Overall a very good beer of this style. Maybe my favorite from this brewery.

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Photo of bsp77
3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in March shipment of Beer of the Month Club.

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Tiffany Beer Mug (yeah, I know, but it was a 5th anniversary gift from my work and actually pretty cool). No date but it is a Spring seasonal.

Appearance: Clear, rich copper but it struggles to form a head.

Smell: Fairly dry caramel, cherry, biscuit and noble hops.

Taste: Semi-sweet at first with cherry and caramel before becoming more biscuity and spicy on the finish. Nicely balanced and it has a sweet core that is not at all cloying.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, smooth, fairly light body, semi-dry finish.

Overall: Another winner from Penn, as the 4 beers I have had from them (alas, two were in my pre-review days) have been well above average examples of their respective German styles.

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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.

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Photo of bonkers
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this as part of a BOTMC. Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a SA perfect pint glass. The beer pours a medium copper with a 2 inch white head. It has a bready, sweet aroma. The flavor is typical marzen, bready with a lingering slightly sweet aroma. It is full bodied and easy drinking. A good fest beer.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle labeled 09143B20457 at 45 degrees into shaker
Aroma light, malty
Head small (2 cm, aggressive pour), off white, frothy, diminishing to
Lacing none
Body medium amber, clear
Flavor begins with a light maltiness with some hop bitterness; no hop flavor, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate light to medium, watery, lively carbonation

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 3.5, Flavor 4, Palate 4, Overall 3.75

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Photo of AltBock
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. green bottle with a twist off cap. The labels were off, but hey, it's Penn Brewery! All their labels are like this until they get that new labeling machine up and running. The front label has a really nice looking woman in Mardi Gras clothing with a Mardi Gras bead and a clover next to her. The back label had no date or even a place for it to be notched like the other Penn beer bottle labels. The back label did have information about the beer and the usual govt. warning. Nice green labels!

Appearance: When poured into a mug, the beer was a really nice amber color with a 2 inch fizzy head of foam. It dissipated away somewhat fast leaving some white lace and very few rings around the mug.

Smell: I didn't get much in the aroma except for a light aroma of sweet caramel, sweet malts, little juicy fruits and little hops in the background.

Taste: It was very malty in the beginning and then it went to the sweet caramel, and then finished with a slight hoppy aftertaste. Overall this was a nice clean malty taste. It's not a taste to get excited about, but still it was very pleasant!

Mouthfeel: I surely don't agree what the label stated, this really isn't a full bodied beer. It's more like medium bodied with a smooth aftertaste of malt.

Drinkability: I found this to be a pleasant highly drinkable spring session beer. I'm also glad this beer wasn't skunked due to its green bottle!

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Märzen from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.