Barktoberfest - Thirsty Dog Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

268 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 268
Reviews: 77
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.39%
Wants: 19
Gots: 51 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Thirsty Dog Brewing Company visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierguy5 on 09-26-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 268 | Reviews: 77
Photo of StoutHunter
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Thirsty Dog's Barktoberfest last week for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. A friend of mine let me try a sip of this when we were playing disc golf last month and I thought it was pretty good so I bought a bottle so I could sit down and review it, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A- This beer has a pretty good looking label, I like the Halloween theme. It poured a nice copper/orange color with one fingers worth of white head that quickly died down to a very thin ring that stayed till the end.

S- The aroma of this beer is pretty subtle. There is a nice malty aroma that is slightly toasted and has a medium amount of sweetness. I also pick up a little bit of nuttiness and no hops whatsoever.

T- There is more going on with the flavor then the aroma would lead you to believe. It starts off with some some nice lightly toasted malts that have a nice grainy flavor to them and have a light amount of sweetness. A little more toasted malts come out in the middle along with some of that nice nuttiness that I got in the aroma. The finish is really smooth with no hops or bitterness to be found and it had a nice subtle toasty nuttiness aftertaste.

M- Super smooth, on the light side of being medium bodied and a light amount of carbonation.

Overall I thought this was a damn good American version of a Marzen. This beer was all about the malts and had just the right amount of toast to it along with a nice nutty flavor. This beer was really drinkable, just how it should be, I would have no problem polishing off a six pack of this on a nice fall night, one of the most drinkable Marzens I have ever had, this beer doesn't last long in my glass. What I liked most about this beer was the flavor and the drinkability, it was all about the malts and they imparted a really good flavor that made me keep wanting to take another drink. What I liked least about this beer was the aroma and the carbonation, the aroma was a little weak and wasn't too interesting, and the carbonation would have better suited this beer if it was bumped up to medium. I am kinda bummed that I found out about this beer at the end of the Oktoberfest season, had I known about this beer earlier it would have been in my fridge for all of September and October, I will make sure not to forget about this beer next year. I highly recommend trying this beer when looking for a good Marzen, it's a great American version of what a Marzen is all about. This beer is up there with their Tripel as one of my favorite beer from Thirsty Dog, I have only tried three of their beers but so far I have been happy with every single one of them so there's no doubt that I will be trying more of their beers. Thirsty Dog did a great job at making a sessionable and tasty Marzen that I find to be better then Samuel Adams Oktoberfest, it takes a lot to knock that beer out of the top of my favorite Oktoberfests but this beer brought the heat and I enjoyed drinking every drop of it, this is my new favorite Marzen.

Photo of 57md
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours brownish orange with a half-finger of fizzy head. Smells malty with some subtle caramel. The initial taste is malty sweetness, but that is backed by a bitter hop finish. This beer has a good hearty flavor that should be enjoyed by a fire on crisp fall days.

Photo of jlindros
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to beerhan for this guy.

Pours a fizzy almost 1 finger head that fades at a med pace, over mostly clear copper orange colored beer, with a bit of lacing.

Nose has some toasty reddish malts, a bit of caramel, some reddish copper malts, some light lager crisp like aromas, sweet malts, and a bit of floral hops. More American style marzen.

Taste comes malty as well, reddish copper malts, semi sweet malts and a bit toasty, sweet syrupy caramel flavors. Then some fruity lager flavors, a bit too fruity though. The syrupy malt flavors really take over, typical American Oktoberfest though. Some light earthy hops, but not a lot. Finishes semi sweet and a bit more bitter, caramel and syrupy malt flavors lingering.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall not bad, typical American Oktoberfest with reddish caramel malts and syrupy flavors, a bit of a decent lager flavor and just a hint of hops that could use more of.

Photo of Morey
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with with no freshness date.

Poured a copper-orange color with one fingers worth of fluffy white head. Has now settled to a thin spotty lace. Nice clarity. Pretty impressive head retention too.

The aroma is pretty typical for the style. Good and malty with toasted grain and a hint of nuttiness.

Full flavored Oktoberfest here! Rounded and somewhat earthy malt flavor up front. There's some hop bitterness towards the middle too. Not much, but more-so than most within the style. Smooth finish with some nice lingering malt and hop character.

Medium bodied with a nice malty mouthfeel. Moderate carbonation.

A very good Oktoberfest overall. 2nd only to Great Lakes IMO.

Morey's Bottom Line: This was a bit of a surprise to me. I've had a good amount of Oktoberfest this Fall, and this is without a doubt one the best. Recommend.

Photo of Ryan011235
3.56/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an E&J Cask & Cream glass on 10/18/11

Medium golden grown color. One thumb head dwindles quickly, leaving only a wisp behind. No retention or lace.

Aroma is balanced between malty and hoppy. Notes of earthy hops and a touch of grass, grainy bread, lightly buttered biscuit and a faint hint of honey or pollen. Dusting of yeast. Pleasant.

Tastes like I expected based on the nose. A smooth maltiness is accented by dry, earthy hops. Solid bread flavors with a touch of caramel sweetness. Hints of toasted grains. Almost has a metallic hop twang on the finish; almost. A bit nutty as it warms up.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Bready and earthy residuals.

Pretty good, solid Oktoberfest here. Easy to drink and gets better as it warms.

Photo of dorianmarley
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a red-brown amber with a light head and lacing.

The smell is a mealy, sugary, wheaty malt. The smell is light.

The taste is chocolately, actually, with campfire smoke, brown sugar and malt, and plenty of harvest wheat that you would expect from an Oktoberfest.

The mouthfeel is very true to Oktoberfest with a good amount of carbonation and plenty of drinkability. This is slightly heavier than most Oktoberfests.

Overall, this is a novel take on Oktoberfest that is still true to style.

Photo of ONUMello
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A: Dark amber/copper color, with a thin head that quickly dissipates.
S: Whole grain bread just pulled from the oven. Just full of rich malt.
T: Just like the nose- whole grain; reminds me quite a bit of the Garden of Eatin' whole grain chips. One-dimensional, but it does it so well it's hard to complain.
M: Medium bodied, pleasant.
O: Not very complex, but it's so tasty I'm not complaining at all. Great fall beer to drink watching a football game.

Photo of divineaudio
3.27/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pint glass.

a - pours amber in color. hazy with some of the yeast still in suspension. no head, only a thin film and a few spots of lace.

s - toasted bread with an earthy hop profile and that distinctive saaz pungency.

t - a ton of carmel malt with notes of spice and a faint bitterness in the back. has a long, gooey, sweet finish. good, but could use a little more hops to balance it out.

m - heavier side of medium body, the right amount of carbonation and a slight mouth coating action.

o - pretty enjoyable, but kinda lacking for the style. if it weren't for the lager yeast, i'd say this is like drinking a carmel apple. not sure i would buy it again, but if you're looking for a malt bomb, don't pass this up.

Photo of schwaeh
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours amber with a nice clarity. One finger dense white head that fades into a small foam cap. Moderate carbonation.

S: Smells nice and sweet. It has a nice doughy biscuit aroma. Lots of Munich malt with a touch of brown sugar. Somewhat hoppy for the style although its mostly all malt.

T: Just like the nose, this is full of biscuits, bread, and cereal grains. Nicely sweetened with brown sugar qualities and some caramel. It has a slight balance of earthy hops with the alcohol actually adding a bit to the flavor.

M: I can't call it thin but it isn't full bodied either. This goes down great, very refreshing.

O: I love this stuff. Thirsty Dog is really under the radar and its a shame. This is my first lager from them, if the others are this good I'll be all over them. I think this is right behind Berkshire for my favorite Marzen.

Photo of BierFan
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Clear copper body and a head that goes from 2 inches to a thin film of foam in a minutes time. Lacing is fine for the lack of head. Smells a bit grassy with some bready caramel malt. Taste of biscuit, caramel, grassy hops, and an appropriate amount of bitterness in the finish.

Really great example of the style. I wish great craft lagers like this were a more common sight.

Photo of Kleez
4.72/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had this for the first time. Early on in the season. I am a big fan of thirsty dog but they were always over shadowed by Great Lakes. This beer however has exceptional taste and is smooth. Its definately an ACE in the Akron brewery's deck. Worth having and going back for seconds

Photo of avalon07
3.47/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a copper color and a clear texture. There was a half inch of foamy head that quickly dissipated. Very little lacing.

S: Malt was front and center in the smell, with hints of caramel as well.

T: Tasted of malt, caramel, and a little nuttiness in the finish. An OK flavor, but nothing I haven't seen before.

M: A good amount of carbonation, with a somewhat slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is one of those beers that's neither great nor offensively bad. It's solid, but not memorable.

Photo of TheHoppiest
3.15/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a copper-pumpkin color, with a one-finger white head that reduces to a thin skim of foam.

Plenty of malt to start, hints of alcohol, and hints of grapes greet the nose. The fruitiness puzzles me; I've not smelled that in a Märzen before, but there it is. Perhaps it has to do with the yeast used?

Taste is malty and sweet, with the fruity aroma translating into a mild fructose-style taste in the brew. Grapes and pears, with a bit of sharp carbonation, finish this out.

Medium bodied with a mildly dry finish and a slightly sticky mouthfeel.

Hmmm. I've had this on tap before and thought it better than this. Too sweet for my tastes; I'd prefer the more tried-and-true Brooklyn I just finished reviewing (and dissing for its ordinariness) as a more classic example of the style.

Photo of Hoptometrist
3.11/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served from the bottle into a glass stein

A- Poured a clear amber color with a two finger soapy head

S- Big grassy and earthy notes, medicinal aroma, and a biscuit like quality.

T- Big earthy, grassy notes, finishes with a medicinal taste reminiscent of some dopplebocks I have had, and a little bit of nuttiness in the middle of the tongue. For a 6% ABV the alcohol comes through pretty strong in the aftertaste.

M- Pretty smooth up front with good carbonation, but finishes a little boozy especially for the style, a little bit of a burn

O- As far as Oktoberfest beers there are much better options. A little boozy for the style and the flavor is a little too earthy and medicinal. I wish more biscuit or nutty qualities were present in this beer.

Photo of sdsurfer217
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Finger worth of white head that dissipates quickly. A pretty amber color, with not much carbonation coming off the bottom.

S: Floral notes, sweet biscuit aromas. Touch of citrus and caramel.

T: Biscuits shine through, very malty, with little hop finish. Little bit of toasted nuts.

M: This beer coats the mouth nicely, not too heavy or thin. Flavors linger, but not very much carbonation.

O: Good beer for this time of year. Style-wise, I was hoping more malts would shine through, it seems a little meek. I was looking forward to more caramel/toffee/toasted nuts flavor. Its pretty easy to drink and sessionable though.

Photo of mcallister
4.27/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks like your average octoberfest. This one is slightly deeper in amber color with a dense half inch slightly off white head that fades into a sticky rings down to a thin topper.

Wonderful bready, cereal grain aromas. Caramel, and toffee with only a hint of earthy hop aromatics. A bit sweet in the aromatics.

Just a fantastic octoberfest in the flavor department. Bursnting with juicy melted caramel, and toffee. Butterscotch flavors very malty and cereal ridden. Full of fresh baked sweet breads with just enough hop to balance and keep things from being cloying. Thick, creamy, with good carbonation. Just delicious.

Photo of DrDemento456
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Typical Oktoberfest you get a dark amber brown with a nice inch of creamy white colored head.

S - Smells very malt forward which I enjoy. Notes of bread and caramel are followed by toffee and small hints of Rum Raisin bread.

T - Damn this is tasty, much bigger than most I have sampled that seems to have Dopplebock tones to it an almost "rum soaked raisin bread" tone. Very hoppy and sweet malts make this one very balanced, caramel and toffee flavors abundant.

M - Medium bodied it does drink kind of heavy for a late summer eve.

Overall I welcome the style and they did a very good job representing it. If I could get it cheaper than 3 dollars a bottle (18 dollar sixer) I could enjoy it more. Damn Thirsty Dog is pricey here.

Photo of Amalak
4.6/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had out of a 12 ounce bottle.

A. Nice orangish/brown color, opaqueish, with a thick head a white lacing.

S. Bitter kind of pilsner scent.

T. Sensational. Burst of hop and followed by citrus. So flavorful. Leafy. Perfect oktoberfest.

On a separate note, the Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. has a VERY similar label to the Great Lakes Brewing Co. Not sure if they are affiliated, but I thought this was a GLBC beer when I got it.

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

"Barking dogs occasionally bite, but laughing men hardly ever shoot."

--Konrad Lorenz

Blazing bonfire orange with amber borders and a wealth of carbonation that is sustaining barely one finger of skinned almond colored foam. The lid is creamy, though, and hangs around for a bit. Lace isn't abundant early, but comes through in the end with fat rings connected by thick sheets.

The aroma is classic for the style and includes no bells or whistles. That makes sense since most brewers stick with tradition in their Oktoberfests. Well-toasted and nutty grains are pleasing to the nose.

Barktoberfest Lager is just as solid on the taste buds. There's still plenty of countering bitterness left, despite the fact that this is an autumn seasonal and there were only 15 IBUs to start. Can that be accurate?

Flavors include lightly sugar-crusted toasted grains, baked nuts and a tea leaf bitterness that keeps the finish quasi-crisp and tight. Hop flavor is not lost in the mix either. This is surprisingly well-brewed beer in a style that struggles to float my boat on most occasions.

The mouthfeel has everything that it needs in terms of size and bubbles. Warming firms it up and smooths it out, although the carbonation still has plenty of energy. Well done.

Thirsty Dog Barktoberfest is yet another impressive offering from an Ohio brewery that tends to get lost in the mix. Great Lakes in clearly the class of the state, but these guys deliver the goods as well.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
2.8/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a New Belgium snifter.

A - 1-finger off-white/ecru foamy head that becomes a thin film of lace across the surface rather quickly. Sunset orange and clear.

S - Lightly toasted malt with hints of caramel, lemon/lime citrus, and sour apple.

T - Malt, biscuit, honey and brown sugar, a little spiciness like a touch of cinnamon, bittering hops on the finish that linger and dominate the impression. I'd like to see more of the flavors and less of the bittering.

M - Smooth but fizzy. Reasonable carbonation. Decent body to start, but it gives up rather quickly. Consistently gets thinner from start to finish, ending with the hops cleaning off the palate.

D - Drier than expected for a Marzen style, and a bit hoppier on the finish, too. Wish it had more body. While there are better examples of this style, I could see enjoying a few pints of this if it were found on tap and not up against other craft Oktoberfests.

Photo of Jason
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Thick head on top of a crystal clear copper colored brew. Grassy, caramel and fresh herbs in the nose, very clean. Deep smoothness within a solid medium sized body. A whole lot of malt going on here; from bready to dried grass, hint of biscuit and a kiss of caramel ... all which meld well together. Nice uniform bite of hop bitterness is there to balance with some complimenting flavor in the semi-dry malty finish.

Spot on for style, very drinkable with a ton of malt flavor on the palate.

Photo of uustal
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Standard Oktoberfest pour. Copper/amber is appearance with pearl white head. Loses points for lack of head and retention. Aroma full of malts... caramel, grains, toffee and actually a decent amount of coffee, which I found very unusual. Nice smell though. Taste follows the nose. Good amount of caramel malts, bready flavor, toffee and yes, the coffee flavor carries over. A little bit of grassy hops finishes out the beer.

Photo of oberon
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pokal a deep bronze with a half finger white head,the color was quite deep for the style.Aromas of caramel,sweet dough,and light splash of herbal/spicy hop,pretty standard palate with caramel and toasted grain the main components,light herb in the finish.Not a bad O-fest lager but pretty mainstream compared to alot of better ones out there.

Photo of CHickman
3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear dark amber in color with a foamy 2 finger beige head that lasted a while; OK lacing that slides down the glass fast.

Smells of syrup, sweet malt, caramel, herbs and light brown sugar; slight whiff of spices in the nose, which could be from the hops.

Tastes of syrup, sweet malt, caramel, herbs, light brown sugar, light citrus hops, molasses, toasted grains and cinnamon or light spices like pepper, allspice and/or yeast, and brown sugar; sweet overall with hints of brown sugar and nutmeg.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, with a light, crisp body and an almost watery feel. Quite drinkable and easy to put down; a very good Octoberfest that is sweeter than most, but to me was a good aspect of this beer.

Photo of Franz4
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- clear golden color with a small head that faded quickly.

S- Toasted malts with a touch of brown sugar

T- follows the nose with toasted malts and a biscuity presence.

M- medium bodied with light carbonation

D- Very drinkable, probably one of the best American brewed Oktoberfests out there. If you're a fan of Oktoberfests this one should definitely be on your annual list.

Barktoberfest from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 268 ratings.