Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada OktoberfestSierra Nevada Oktoberfest

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

566 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 566
Reviews: 127
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 9.23%
Wants: 20
Gots: 51 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 566 | Reviews: 127
Reviews by BrewMaster:
Photo of BrewMaster
2.88/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had this beer on tap at Lucky Baldwin's in Pasadena. It was served in a pint glass with very little head. Color is a very dark brown with some orange hues. The appearance is like a thinner version of a porter.

The aroma is very strong of alcohol. Very unappealing. Taste is flat and thin with light body and a carmel taste. Astringent taste makes the beer sour with a taste of smokiness or tree bark.

Overall this is a very unappealing and unimpressive beer. I recommend you avoid this brew.

More User Reviews:
Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest has a very thick, frothy, crackling, beige head, a clear, somewhat bubbly, copper appearance, and moderate-to-heavy lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of semi-sweet, medium-roasted malt, some syrup, and slight caramel. Taste is of those elements, with brown bread crust, and fairly mild hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium and a bit slick, and Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest finishes crisp and refreshing.


Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%

Packaged 7/7/14.

Pours a clear copper with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Thin swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, toast, and caramel aromas. Taste is much the same with malt, caramel, and earth flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of toast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with lots of earthy and malty qualities all around.

Serving type: bottle.

Photo of oberon
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

One and a half bottles into a stein produce a dark deep bronze color with a fluffy light beige head atop,a decent crown.Sweet caramel in the nose over top of some lightly spicy hops,a little sweet smelling.Buttery caramel flavors along with some sweet pizza dough notes before a smattering of herbal hops come into play.An above average O-fest beer but maybe just a little sweet.

Photo of SD-Alefan
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%

Pours a lovely, dark copper with a tan head. It looks like autumn in a glass. Leaves behind a nice amount of lacing.
The aroma is malt-dominated, as it should be. Bread and caramel lead the way with a hint of fruit.
This beer tastes wonderful. Dark, rich bread, a hint of sweet caramel and a play of dark fruit across the tongue.
The mouthfeel is medium and a touch creamy.
Overall, a wonderful beer and among My Favorite Marzens.

Photo of generallee
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a dimpled mug. The label has a brief description of the beer and it lists the abv at 6.2% abv.

Appearance: The body has a nice deep coppery amber color with good clarity and some visible carbonation. From the slow pour I got a tall three finger head. It’s just off white in color slow fading. It also leaves some lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: It’s aroma is fairly light but brings all the classic Oktoberfest/Marzen notes to the nose. Sweet malty caramel, medium roasted grain and earthy/leafy hops.

Taste / Palate: The flavor is packed with sweet caramel and whole grain bready maltiness up front. The middle adds a bready nutty character and then this is all backed up with a firm earthy/spicy/leafy hop presence. The hops add a good balance of hop bitterness as well. The palate feels firm and well rounded. It’s carbonation is right on and keeps things lively and very drinkable even at 6.2% abv.

Photo of bsp77
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Dimpled Mug.

Appearance: Clear, somewhat dark copper with thin head.

Smell: Biscuit, cherry and spicy notes.

Taste: Biscuit, toast and bread. Cherry and other dark fruits. Even some light roasted notes. Finish is spicy, floral and citrusy.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium body, dry and tingly finish.

Overall: Very complex and balanced Marzen. Extremely good. While I know there are a ton of Oktoberfests out there, I wish this was their standard seasonal, as I like it more than everything else they have released for the "fall": Anniversary IPA, Tumbler, Red IPA.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.42/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on draft at Fathead's.

Appearance: Dark ruby body with a caramel toned creamy tan head leaves specks of lacing behind. Aroma: Mild caramel and nut tones from the toasted malts slight hop profile a bit edgier than the usual O-fest. Taste: A sugary caramelly tone with a nutty edge and herbal hops, not horrible but left much to be desired. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied pretty smooth drinking easy going carbonation. Drinkability: Decent Oktoberfest style that I was excited to see considering not many Sierra Nevada seasonals make it out to the Burgh.

Photo of timontheroad
3.57/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber color, very clear, with nice carbonation bubbles continually floating upward. One finger thick beige head. Smell is sweet maltiness, with just a hint of caramel. Taste is bready malt, with some caramel sweetness, and slight peppery notes. Mouthfeel was medium-bodied, not all that great feeling on the palate, kind of meh. Overall not a bad beer, but there's a lot of better Oktoberfest Marzens out there.

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.49/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, almost opaque, deep, dark, mahogany color, with a quarter of a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Nice aromas of bready, toasted malt, imparting notes of freshly baked pretzels, caramel, black pepper, and a touch of floral, slightly piney, slightly citrusy, hops.

Taste: Awesome! Strong, delicious flavors of bready, toasted malt, up front, followed by some caramel-like sweetness, black pepper, coriander, heather, and a touch of floral, slightly piney, slightly citrusy, hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, crisp and very effervescent as there is a lot of carbonation to tickle the taste buds. With an ABV of 6.2%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is an excellent, excellent American-version of a German fest beer! One of the best American-versions that I’ve had in fact. It hits all of the style’s profiles, as there is lots of strong, delicious flavors of bready, toasted malt, up front, followed by some caramel-like sweetness, black pepper, coriander, heather, and a touch of floral, slightly piney, slightly citrusy, hops. Delicious and extremely, highly recommended!

Photo of watermelonman
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This arrived as a very dark brown and amber color, with minimal head. It left some nice lace.

The smell is has solid malt content with a nice touch of spices. The taste turns that around with a serious yet well blended addition of hops. Caramel makes an appearance as well. The mouthfeel is hefty and very pleasing, while the drinkability is certainly good.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Seidel.

The body is light brown with golden hues and good clarity. The head is fluffy, pale white and slow to recede, leaving some lace behind.

Sweet caramel and earthy hops are all I find on the nose. It's pretty low-key. 3.35

Fortunately, there's more going on on the palate. The caramel flavor is more pronounced and there's a taste of brown sugar and darker malts. The hops are earthy and have a slight spice. 4.1

I'm with the mouthfeel on this, sweet, creamy, and with a medium-carbonation. There's a bit of hop bitterness and spice before a lightly dry finish. 4

This is a very enjoyable Oktoberfest. I'll have to drink a few more to compare since this is my first of this genre for the year. 4

Photo of dacrza1
4.11/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

DATE TASTED: October 9, 2014... GLASSWARE: Ayinger willibecker...OCCASION: Thursday night feeling like Friday already... APPEARANCE: clear, reasonably dark, actively carbonated amber body; an ample one-finger off-white head is creamy and remains tangible throughout; lacing is appropriate. AROMA: toasted malts are sweet like toffee; some perfumed yeasts tinge the experience... PALATE: substantial and remarkably creamy for a fest; active on the tongue (and some on the teeth) but moreso at the throat...TASTE: impressively sweet toffee and caramel linger long after the sip ends; hops are blanketed by the mega-malts, as the genre predicates; late doughy hints...OVERALL: as part of its Autumn sampler, this beer could be the cornerstone, as it sets the tone with its malty confidence--who says these West Coast brewers only ales?...

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a reddish hue that sits somewhere between copper ruby and copper in color. Head is light khaki and sits at about a finger's width. Fair retention results in a broken layer of surface suds with a fair ring around the edge. Small, spotty lacing with fair stick.

Smell - Aroma hits on honey with light grain and hints of toffee. Faint traces of floral hop character.

Taste - Follows the nose. Predominant honey sweetness with hints of toffee. Grain comes through mid-taste and slides into the finish. Hops are tame, delivering a mild floral flavor that rides with the grain into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium in body with fair carbonation, delivering with silky smoothness before a crisp, semi-dry finish.

Overall - A commendable but not outstanding Oktoberfest. Comes in this year's SN Fall Variety Pack, along with the much missed Tumbler Brown. I'd have no qualms about picking this up again in the 12er, even if my end game is the Tumbler!

Photo of secondtooth
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a rich, clean amber with a huge head of tan bubbles. Nice and detailed layer of lace.

Nose is malty caramel and toffee, plain and simple. Pretty well spot-on for the Marzen style.

Taste is rich, heavy, and malty, with an almost sweet character. I get plenty of toffee, caramel, some fruit underneath, and even some nuttiness in there. Complex and faithful, this is a totally solid brew.

Photo of Roguer
3.89/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Completely transparent copper brew up close; still clear and bright at a distance. Huge beige head with incredible retention and tons of spidery, fluffy lacing.

Big, sweet notes of caramel, coffee, prunes, and banana. Nuts, and a dash of maple syrup and nutmeg. Slight earthy bitterness. Smells malty and clean.

Flavor follows, but is deceptively smooth, light, and syrupy. Sweet, as in overripe prunes - but less tart - spiced with nutmeg (probably not actually in the beer). Bitterness is very subdued and earthy in tone.

Sticky, cloying, lively, but medium-thin feel; the result is a beer you can pound if you so choose, but which has a long wet finish.

This is an extremely drinkable and tasty Oktoberfest. I feel it's just a hair too sweet, and a hair too syrupy.

Photo of tempest
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Clark's Ale House.

A new brew to me, not really sure how his made it to Syracuse, but good for us. Basically a classic oktoberfest beer with a bit more hops. Nice creamy body with malty, caramel flavor and a slightly earthy hops flavor and bitterness at the end. Not amazing, but I wouldn' t turn down a litre.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.32/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On tap in Sacramento at the Golden Bear. There was no head on the pour. The body is clear, dark amber.
The aroma is grainy, malt and bread. Simple but nice.
The taste is caramel sweetness balanced with moderate bitterness.
The texture is crisp with moderate bitterness.
An okay oktoberfest beer.

Photo of russpowell
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%

Pours an effervescent orange/caramel with a finger of pearl colored head. Nice lacing & above average head retention (4.0)

S: Pears, white grapes & a little breadyness (3.75)

T: Breadyness, a little caramel & dryness, plus some pear & some leafy hops up front. Toastyness, a little caramel & dryness as this warms, plus a little more leafy hops. Finishes dry, fruity & with faint woody hops (4.0)

MF: Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, nice balance (4.0)

Drinks easy, a pretty good take on the style, not quite world class, but I would buy again if sold in sixers ( 4.0)

Photo of Gmann
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Pours a deep copper/amber color with a fluffy off-white head that settles into a light cap with some nice lacing left on the glass. 4

The aroma is of toasted bread, caramel. Strong mineral notes. Some spicy hop aroma. Quite an earthy aroma. 3.5

The taste has deep caramel notes with a toasted malt. The malt is substantial taking on pumpernickel flavors. A bit of a metallic or mineral presence in the finish. The hops are lightly spicy and provide the needed offset to the malt. I feel like I pick up a roasted note here and there. 3.75

Moderate feel with soft-ish carbonation. A bit sweet on the palate but that is balanced by the spicy hop. Drinks very smooth and fairly clean. 3.75

A deep marzen, very earthy and autumn like. The beer is smoother than I originally thought. I prefer the lighter Oktoberfest beers but this drinks well.

Photo of KTCamm
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%

8/23...finally the Fall Pack! This one pours amber reddish orange, with light white foam. Modest malty nose. Little sweet. All malt forward taste, caramel/bready/chewy. An ever so slight bite at the back. Crisp, clean, and loads of flavor. Excellent.

Photo of Treyliff
4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottled 7/18/14, poured into a pint glass

A- pours a clear deep copper color with a small creamy off-white head that retains nicely, leaving some short lasting lace behind

S- big sweet malty aromas with an emphasis on caramel/toffee, fresh brown bread, earthy/dried leaves, light spicy floral hop& a hint of chocolate

T- sweet and yeasty-bready malt up front, notes of caramel/toffee and bitter chocolate kick in mid-palate, toasted bread crust mixes with earth and floral hop near the finish, honey & vegetal notes on the close

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel, eventually leading to a creamy and chewy silky finish, high drinkability

O- a full flavored Octoberfest that highlights sweet caramel/toffee malt throughout, they should release this one is six-packs

Photo of KYGunner
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

This pours with a bubbly character and a lighter barley brown color. Airy barley malt aroma with a tinge of nutty biscuit. Taste has a bit of chocolate, barley grain, nutty pecan, toasted biscuit malt and a touch of caramel. Nothing about this is assertive but it does the job of relaying good complex flavor in a relatively inexpensive package.

Photo of goochpunch
3.66/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours out a deep orange-amber with a thin head. Smells malty, grainy, and with a hint of noble hop. Taste is huge on caramel, bread, honey, brown sugar, piloncillo, raisin, and Grape Nuts. Grassy and herbal noble hop comes out strong in the finish. A bit sweet for me. Mouthfeel leans towards thick and is sticky. The flavor profile on this is solid, but it's a tad too sweet overall.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.45/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap.

A: Poured a medium marzen-amber with a light fluffy white head. Visible carbonation was moderate.

S: On the nose was some fresh grains and some malt sweetness and fresh flowery hops.

T: For flavor there was a nice light toastedness, fresh flowery hops. The palate was very clean. Overall perhaps a tad to hoppy per style ending with a floral bite. Not nearly as malty or sweet as an Hacker pschorr/Paulaner but overall a good drink.

T: The mouthful was light-medium body making for a good session oktober.

D: a decent session beer, more typical of a summer picnic type of drink then a fall era.

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Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 566 ratings.