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SurlyFest - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

725 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 725
Reviews: 333
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 219
Gots: 42 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: feloniousmonk on 09-03-2006)
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Ratings: 725 | Reviews: 333 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WesM63
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red from a 16oz can into a tulip.

A: Pours a murky dark copper amber color with a nice 2finger head. Decent retention and tons of lacing.

S: Caramel and rye a faint smell of pine hides in the ack.

T: Sweet caramel with some spicy rye and minimal pine.

M: Medium body and carbonation.

O: Not bad. Very mild and not overpowering.

Photo of dbrauneis
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a crystal clear dark amber in color with some very light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall creamy off-white that reduces to medium sized thick patch, a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer, and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light aromas of caramel malts and rye spiciness upfront with some moderate aromas of pine hops.

T: The flavors of this beer start out with some light caramel malt sweetness followed by moderate to strong flavors of pine hops with a light amount of rye spiciness in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with slightly heavier than moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly coats the inside of your mouth.

O: I really enjoyed this hoppier take on an Octoberfest with the addition of rye - it is just enough different than others in the style but in a positive fashion. Easy to drink and sessionable.

Photo of elcrawl
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of jaasen64
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16oz can courtesy of Biniek13, poured into a '12 Surlyfest stein also courtesy of Biniek13.

A- Pours a translucent slightly reddish copper with about a finger of head that recedes fairly fast to leave a completely flat top with almost no head. Some slight spotty lacing.

S- First thing that striked me about this beer was the presence of light citrus hops (some light pine, lemon, etc.) which was definitely more then I was expecting. These hops were balanced with rye, barley, and malts to provide for a typical Oktoberfest aroma with a little bit more hoppy presence. Slightly above normal aroma strength.

T- Nice balance of citrus hops, barley, rye, and malts with a typical oktoberfest taste that is slightly more hoppy then typical. Slightly hoppy barley malt finish with a very light bitterness and lingering aftertaste.

M- Smooth, very drinkable, lightly carbonated.

O- This was a very good Oktoberfest beer, definitely better then most that I've tried. The style isn't my favorite, but I definitely enjoyed this beer. This beer definitely makes for a nice autumn beer. I would drink it again and I definitely recommend it if you like the style.

Photo of mobius387
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

havent reviewed a beer in awhile, so...

appearance: dark almond gold, inch thick white head with bubbles. i love the look of this oktober. most others look softer and lighter, this one sets the tone for a darker fuller beer

aroma: not much going on, but what O-fest does have big nose?

palate: very hoppy for an O-fest, mild body, bit boozier than other fest beers, a like it

taste: got a nice malty base with some piney hoppy kick, but finishes clean for that classic oktober taste.

overall: not your average oktober, much darker/bigger and hoppier, and i give surly credit for that. its got less of that classic clean, spicy taste and more of a hoppy kick than i expected. most importantly, surly's finger print is all over this one. its got that same finish i get from a furious, cynic, bitter brewer that we've all grown to love. i'd still take a furious or abrasive over this one any day, but a very good oktober from a top notch brewery

Photo of ssimpson89
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of GreyGhost4
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of kawilliams81
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16 oz can into imperial pint.

A- pours a clear copper with a 2 finger light tan head. Big trails and blotches remain all over the glass.

S- wow! Big citrus aromas, caramel, and spices.

T- sweet caramel and spicy rye, nic amount of citrus and some pine bitterness.

M- medium body and carbonation. Really smooth and creamy.

O- first of all I didn't know this was a rye beer, thought it was just another Oktoberfest beer. Boy was I wrong. Very good rye beer with big citrus notes and nice amount of bitterness.

Photo of Steimie
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of InVinoVeritas
3/5  rDev -25.7%

Photo of nmann08
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of deebo
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I hosted a beer tasting focused on marzens last year and included this one amongst the others as a change of pace. Perhaps because it was different from the others or just that it's a well made brew but this one was high on most of the beer lovers list at the end of the tasting.

A-Poured from a can into a tall glass this brew is very heady. The tan foam laces the glass and remains until the last drop. Clear with an attractive copper amber color. A beautiful brew.

S-Rye and toasty barley malt with a nice tropical citrus hop aroma with a fair amount of spiciness.

T-Plenty of rye malty goodness alongside the Vienna malt but there is also a fair amount of hoppiness (same taste as the aroma) here too.

M-Moderate bodied, moderate to high in carbonation. A bit of a bitter spicy lingering finish but definitely not overwhelming and cleans up nicely inviting the next drink. Vapory alcohol bite is also detected.

O-I've really been enjoying this beer on cool fall days the past couple years. Like all Surly beers this beer will wake up your taste buds. I haven't been a huge fan of rye beers but this one is quite nice. I really like the combination of rye flavor and the generous flavor of Sterling hops. Biggest defect is the alcohol bite in the finish.

Photo of Revenant
2.75/5  rDev -31.9%

Photo of irrgalaxy
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Drank from the can (as I love to do with Surly beers), but bits at the top are a lovely golden color. Graphic design for this brew is a big departure from Surly's classic logo, but it does stand out on the shelf.

S: Dry aroma

T: Bitter flavors at the back, and very malty.

M: Very smooth, with a strong finish at the back of the tongue. Just what a 6% beer should be.

O: Not a traditional Oktoberfest style beer, but one that's perfect for fall days.

Photo of VaTechHopHead
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Typical amber brown for a marzen/oktoberfest style beer. Nice white head and very clear.

S - Soft sweet grains, a little roasted nuttiness and a faint whiff of noble hops.

T - After having several of these (not in one night) it started to grow on me. Initially I thought it was a little bland and thin but as I warmed up to it the nuttiness and roast level are spot on. The traditional flavors can be tasted and were appreciated.

M - Medium body with a nice carbonation level with a biscuit like chewiness. Light nutty aftertaste but fades quickly and is easy to drink.

O - I expected more since it was a Surly beer but once I realized what this beer was and is supposed to be I appreciated it much more. A great traditional done very well.

Photo of WillCarrera
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16-oz can, canned on 09/14/12, poured into a seidel.

A- Pours a clear amber color. A vigorous pour produces a thin off-white head that recedes to a collar, leaves little lacing.

S- Very noticeable rye aroma, as well as a floral, slightly herbal hop character, just a bit of pine and citrus. Smells very nice.

T- Sweet bready malt with a bit of rye spiciness, the malty sweetness is dominant until near the finish, lending a bit of fruitiness, until leafy, moderately bitter hops take over.

M- Medium-bodied, smooth, alcohol is totally invisible, extremely drinkable.

O- A very good beer, drinkability is through the roof, this is the kind of beer you can pound several of without much trouble.

Photo of abuss2
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of pvequalsnrt
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of cofeeguru
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of mnphish
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of IALT0
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of NilocRellim
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of tone77
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A shout out to cpolking for the hook up with this beer. Poured from a 16 oz. can. Has a bronze color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is hoppy, some pine. Taste is smooth, hops, rye, flavorful and so easy drinking. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall another winner from Surly, damn I wish they would distribute here.

Photo of jimelee108
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of JamesMN
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Translucent caramel brown with visible carbonation. Very thin off-white head.

Aroma: Similar to their Bitter Brewer (maybe the same yeast strain?). Hops in the form of citrus and orange peel. Also some peppery notes from the rye malt.

Taste: Robust. There are a lot of malt profiles in here: Caramel, rye, pilsen, you name it. About halfway through you start to get the hops which add a bit of bitterness that transitions into pepper from the rye. The finish is smooth and you are left with rye malt flavor reverberating on your palate.

Mouthfeel: Upper end of medium bodied and effervescent. Although it's a viscous beer, it still attains above average drinkability.

Final Thoughts: I knew going into this one that it wouldn't be the standard Octoberfest. Instead, Surly has taken the style in a whole new direction (by adding hops, lots of hops. Oh, and rye) and the result is a great beer. If you are able to get your hands on it, you won't be disappointed.

SurlyFest from Surly Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 725 ratings.