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Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada OktoberfestSierra Nevada Oktoberfest

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

154 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 154
Hads: 698
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 9.07%
Wants: 30
Gots: 83 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Boilermaker88 on 10-13-2003

Germany’s Oktoberfest celebrated a royal marriage and the health of the fall harvest—which in Bavaria, means brewers, barley and hops! Today, Oktoberfest is considered one of the world’s greatest parties, and in honor of that rollicking bash we bring you our version of the classic festival beer. Oktoberfest is medium-bodied and rich with bready and toffee-like malt flavor but maintains a crisp finish marked by floral and spicy hops.

Before 2014, known as Octoberfest and ABV 5.80%

2014 - Only available in Fall Variety Pack
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 154 | Hads: 698
Photo of Davidstan
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I like this beer, a lot. Color is lighter than it tastes and the aroma is that of biscuity cracker and some hops in the background. Carbonation is nice but not sprite like, a good middle road. The taste is incredible for a beer type I don't normally like due to sweetness. Seems that SN kept the sweet down and bitter a tad up for this style and I like it! (356 characters)

Photo of ClarkOfTheCovenant
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another very tasty offering from Sierra Nevada. A warm and inviting gold, slightly caramel color compliments a sweet and light aroma. Just the right amount of bitter.
My only complaint would be the beefed up ABV, which I feel takes away from some of the subtle and not-so-subtle flavors working together in this brew.That being said, I will be drinking this again. (364 characters)

Photo of ExMachina1
4.48/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is a really tasty beer! The nose is subtly malty with a slight fruitiness and the body is medium with round mouthfeel and clean, medium dry finish. Delicious.

The problem is that this beer is too big. Oktoberfest should be more drinkable and the traditional range is 4.5-5.5% ABV. This offering from Sierra Nevada (2015 edition) tops over 6% and it’s simply not quaffable at that level. It also seems to be missing a certain something that I can't place (does it have Vienna malt?--they don't list it)

So if you want a great beer, this is it! However, if you want a great Oktoberfest the high ABV will make drinking a liter of this beer quite interesting ;) (672 characters)

Photo of Lukass
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This one is damn near perfect in the world of marzen/Oktoberfest beers. Just an awesome beer, with a sweet bready malt and rich hop flavor that's not overpowering. The hops take a back seat, which doesn't always happen with Sierra Nevada. A great collaboration beer for the fall. I'm seeking out more of these before they're all gone. (334 characters)

Photo of SFNC
3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I am not a huge fan of Octoberfest/Marzans, but this one is very good.
L. Pours nice crystal clear orange with an off white head. Minimal lacing. Looks great.
S A little weak here, some bread and a little sweet.
T Rich malt, not too sweet, with a light hop presence that tips the scale for me.
F Thick, but not sticky, nothing sticks out with the feel.
O A very solid offering. I'll but more for the upcoming months. (424 characters)

Photo of leantom
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Whoa, great beer. Smell left something to be desired but the taste more than made up for it. Here goes:

A: Beautiful, clear orange with plenty of effervescence. Pours a large head and leaves decent lacing as well.

S: Not really digging the smell. Isn't bad, but it smells too much like a regular SN Pale Ale. Lots of bready yeast, but no malt or hops. Alright

T: Well, thankfully it tastes nothing like the boring, stale smell. Lots of caramel malt, brown sugar, cinnamon, some clove, and a generous helping of bready Sierra Nevada yeast. I like it a lot, as the maltiness lingers. Perhaps the yeast if offputting, but it doesn't mar the flavor one bit.

F: Great. Thick and bubbly.

O: Great beer. Hopefully they make it again next year. (757 characters)

Photo of thebigredone
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of may favorite domestic Oktoberfests, right up there with and even a bit better than Sam Adams. Nice bready malts, the hops bring a solid bitterness into the mix, and finishes dry. Quit enjoyable and pretty easy to put down a couple in a sitting. (252 characters)

Photo of EvoRich
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look: Pale golden orange color. Some fluffy head which fades to a thin layer of foam and some lacing.

Smell: Very malty. Maybe some slight orange peel.

Taste: Still, very malty. Hints of cinnamon, with a very light sweetness.

Feel: Medium bodied. (252 characters)

Photo of K-Dog
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not a huge fan of octoberfest beers. There is way to many and they come out to soon. With that being said this was a very solid offering. This along with Sam adams octoberfest are 2 of my favorites for this style. (213 characters)

Photo of DerAtomsmasher
4.02/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I'm really taken with this Märzen; as close as anything I've had that I'd call a definitive American take on the style.

Pours a pretty pale orange/golden shade.

Nothing terribly special in the nose - spicy Noble hop aromas.

The flavor though - a dry bread crust, giving way to a peppery hop accent and then away to a toasted bread. This is special.

Not heavy, not cloyingly sweet like a lot of US Märzen beers. (416 characters)

Photo of FriedSlug
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Smells malty sweet and slightly like fresh baked bread with its yeasty aroma. It tastes sweet and finishes sweeter. The tastes are yeasty caramel and an almost honey like sweetness. Really a nice clean tasting beer with a great sweetness. Has a nice bitterness that comes in seconds before the final sweetness and bot linger together in harmony. This is a really solid beer that is a joy to drink. (397 characters)

Photo of OrtheusMaximusRex
3.52/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not my favorite beer from these guys, but I think very true to the style. A deep golden color that slightly orange tinge. Malty, smooth, easy drinking, no head retention even on a hard pour.

For Octoberfest fans that have been to Germany, it'll be interesting to dry for comparison purposes. (292 characters)

Photo of TLWalsh
4.46/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Well this one is sure to go down as one of the best in a long time. It pours a lovely honey color. Has all the wonderful biscuit sweetness in the nose with full body and medium carbonation in your mouth. Has a somewhat sweet fruity overall taste with a pleasant crisp finish. Great stuff. (288 characters)

Photo of tekstr1der
3.51/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thin, light yellow color - looks unimpressive. Aroma has a dankness from a hop style of which I'm not a huge fan. Same comes through in the flavor, which while uninteresting, is fairly smooth. Pretty disappointing overall. (222 characters)

Photo of StartedwithSAM
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co – Oktoberfest

Poured into a Nonic Pint Glass

Appearance: Pours clear, gold in color with a thin head and no lacing. (Edit: With a revised, semi-harder pour, its a nice two-finger white foamy head)

Smell: The nose is slightly sweet and pleasantly bready

Mouthfeel: Full bodied feel, slight carbonation but smooth

Taste: Toasted bread, slightly sweet (cane sugar)

Overall: Nice beer from Sierra Nevada, I appreciate the toned down hop profile and their collaboration with different German brewers each year for this release. It’s a little sweeter than what I have experienced with some other Märzens but it’s great to have options like this. Cheers to fall! (702 characters)

Photo of barczar
3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Fairly sweet, toasted malt with light herbal and floral notes.

Flavor is lightly sweet, with underlying toasted malt and a nutty finish. One of the closer to style I've had in a while. (185 characters)

Photo of logicalparadox
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A surprisingly good example of a style I love. I wait eagerly each year for the OF brews to hit the shelves. It's August, so it's quite early yet but a few are starting to appear, and this one among them. I figured I'd give it a go. Not a huge fan of the brewery, but was impressed by this one. A fine companion for any pair of lederhosen. (339 characters)

Photo of akolb
3.26/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

L: Pours a clear dark gold. Utter lack of head retention, maybe due to glassware.
A: Munich malts and bread with a hint of hoppy brightness.
T: Malty and bready with a surprisingly bitter finish.
M: Dry, crisp, and refreshing. Moderate carbonation,
O: A tasty fall lager. Not outstanding but something I'd buy again. (316 characters)

Photo of Moose90
3.31/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Updating Review From Tasting Notes

A — Pours a coppery hue into the glass, little bit of darkness to it, but not much. Puffy off-white colored head forms and leaves behind some spotty lacing.

S — Smells of rich toasted malts and sugars, a bit sweet but there is a great balance of bitter hop here as well.

T — Tastes of sweet malts and a bit of bitter earthy herbal balance, really not bad.

M — Medium bodied, long and lingering finish.

O — Pretty good overall, nothing over the top though which is fine. (520 characters)

Photo of hopphead31415
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I grabbed one of these in a sampler pack in order to give it a try. I was not expecting anything bad or great, but here’s what I noticed from this 6.0% ABV Oktoberfest brew.

Look-It pours a clear golden yellow with a thick head and fine white lacing on the glass.

Smell-It has a nice smell to it that is caramel malts and spicy grain.

Taste-It has a subtle bready malt taste with a toffee afterglow and a grainy spice that the nose picked up on.

Mouthfeel-It is a malt-forward brew with mild carbonation and fine-tuned alcohol content.

Overall-It is a great Oktoberfest brew which is refreshing and drinkable. It isn’t anything mind-blowing, but I’m sure you’ll enjoy it. (687 characters)

Photo of brewskifan55
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass.

A: Opaque burnished gold with a white one-finger head that hangs out for the fest. Thick lacing.

S: Malty goodness with caramel backing, toffee and a spicy graininess. Smells like Germany.

T: Wow, now this is my kind of Oktoberfest. Everything's popping here. Malts, caramel, toffee and spices. What makes it even better is the mouthfeel.

M: Thick and chewy. Tons of carbonation. This is what makes the SN collaboration work. So many O-fests I try are dull and lacking in chewy carbonation. This one pops.

O: One of the better Oktoberfests out. And the price is nice. I'll be drinking more of this little gem. Well done, SN. (675 characters)

Photo of Catracho5
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass

A: Pours a clear copper golden color with a bright, white fluffy head, minimal head retention, not a lot of carbonation, doesn't look as full bodied as I expected.

A: Bready malts, caramel, toffee sweetness, slight grainy spice at the end, smells really good.

T: Bread, biscuit, malts, caramel, nice touch of bitterness, finish smooth, easy drinking, very good.

M: Medium mouthfeel with a nice touch of carbonation.

O: Very good, has a good amount of complexity on the nose and taste, slight toasted bread flavor, touch of sweetness, balanced carbonation, easy drinking, going to pick up a six-pack for sure. (655 characters)

Photo of jwc215
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Packaged on 07/20/15:

Pours deep golden with a fluffy lasting white head. Spotted lacing sticks.

The smell is of grain/bread with a touch of toffee. Herbal/floral hop notes mix in.

The taste is of sweet malt/grain (hint of toffee, hint of honey). Malt balanced by a touch of noble hops. A touch of alcohol warmth comes through in the finish.

Smooth. Easy enough to drink despite noticeable alcohol.

Overall, a nice O-fest, though there are other "classics" I would grab first. (481 characters)

Photo of NCMatt
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a collaboration with Brauhaus Riegele. I expected great things, as Brauhaus Riegele is an amazing brewery in Germany that's been around many hundreds of years. I expected something similar to Spaten Oktoberfestbier. This was slightly lighter in color, more of a light amber. Smell was bready malts with maybe a pinch of caramel. Taste follows suit but with a slight sweetness that you don't really have in it's brewed-in-Germany counterpart. The body and mouthfeel is also a bit lighter on this than I would like.

Overall it's not bad, but just a little lighter in both color and flavor than the Spaten. It's still great though. Much easier to session these with the lighter body. Also a wonderful beer for enjoying the upcoming beautiful fall weather with friends! (775 characters)

Photo of BryanReed
4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Crystal clear golden pour. Pouring aggressively lends a super tight slighlty off white foam cap that's sticking around to the last few sips. Nice crisp bready malty aroma. Smells clean. Crackery malts, a touch of caramel like sweetness, and a tiny bit of banana ester. Herbal type hop flavor. Really freaking crisp. Solid body, but so damn refreshing. Carbonation is nice and finishes almost dry.

Where do I start a petition to Sierra Nevada to make this a year-round brew!? (476 characters)

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Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 154 ratings.