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Marzen - Sudwerk Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

46 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 46
Hads: 87
Avg: 3.52
pDev: 19.89%
Wants: 0
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sudwerk Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 46 | Hads: 87
Photo of pkalix
4.3/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

nice color, easy to drink, slight bitterness but overall mostly satisfying and enjoyable. sudwerk doesnt seem to be a very large brew capacity, and its beer and menu selection will not load off the their website. extremely average beer....more like a 'session beer' and not indicative of the original scope of a real marzen....

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Photo of DogFood11
4.27/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a sparkling amber with an eggshell thin capper, lacing is marginal but it leaves spotted DNA.

pretty spicey hop presence which caught me by surprise. It works well with this malted chewyness and toasted flavors. This is one tasty marzen and dare I say one of my favorites of all time. This brewery in Davis, California will receive plenty of attention from this household.

Oktoberfest / Marzen hold a special place in my heart as it was one of the transition type beers I tried while in Germany for 3 years.

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Photo of Offa
4.07/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a good, solid marzen, with nice cgharacter if a little thin and subdued compared to some others.

Light borwnish copper, it has a small, off-white head soon shrinking to a thin ring, leaving wisps and a tiny bit of lace.

The aroma is toasted grain, light caramelly bread crust, some apple. It's mellow but good.

The taste has more, a nice, fairly wel-rounded body with good sweet-bitter balance, a light sweetness slightly dominating yup front morphing into a light, slightly spicey bitterness at the finish. It has toasty, slightly caramelised, grain with spicey-peppery finish, hints of citrus (lemony) and a light aftertaste of a little grain dominated by zesty citrus. It's zesty, solid but not oily at all.

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Photo of bbb099
4.05/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours with a good amount of tan-colored head. Small amount of lacing. Clear, deep mahogany color.

S - A pleasant aroma of malt and yeast.

T - Not a very complex tasting beer. Flavor composed mainly of toasted malt and mild caramel. Not much in terms of aftertaste.

M - Medium to full bodied. Creamy on the top and average amount of carbonation.

D - Very drinkable due to the lack of any foul odor or aftertaste. Though it could probably use a little more flavor.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle Date of 03.13.07, Sampled September 2007
The beer pours with a frothy, initially three-finger thick, large bubbled, amber tinged, tan colored head. The beer is a brilliantly clear, rich amber hue that visually shows a light carbonation. The aroma is quite malty and even somewhat sweet. Aromas of caramel, browned bread crust, touches of brown sugar, biscuits and a definite sweet, slightly caramelized malt character.

Much drier tasting than the aroma would have suggested, but it still manages to have a fairly substantial body and even some palate coating character to it. The malt character is definitely dominant here, but there is a fair amount of hop contributed flavor as well. The hop character provides a solid, yet not overwhelming bitterness in the finish, as well as a herbal, not quite minty character in the finish as well. The herbal hop note actually is found throughout the flavor profile, it just becomes more noticeable towards the finish, and in fact lingers on in the palate (as does the bitterness) quite a long time after the beer has left my mouth. Lest I forget the malt influence, it is definitely here and fairly substantial. It is not overly sweet, yet does provide a richly caramelized maltiness, a crusty rustic bread flavor, a touch of toasted flavors.

This is quite tasty, and it seems to be another beer that is growing on me more as I work my way through the bottle. The aroma of this beer really starts to open up even more after warming up a bit; it becomes quite a bit more complex in its malt character, with even some aromatic notes reminiscent of honey. The flavor too picks up a flavor depth and richness as it warms as well. Overall this is a really great drinking beer. I haven't really had these beers in years, but used to really enjoy my visits to the pub in the 90s.

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Photo of SethB2
3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A - Pours a clean amber color with not much of a head. Carbonation seems to be lacking a bit.

S - Roasted grain and sweet fruits meld for a nice smelling beer. A little biscuity, and not much hop presence.

T - Roasted malts are the first thing that crosses the tongue, but it quickly goes very melon-like sweet before transitioning to a nice bitterness. Pretty good.

M - Very nice. Medium in body and a bit sticky. More carbonation would be nice, but that's my only complaint.

D - No problem at all. These things are very easy to pound. I know that from experience.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
3.97/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a coppery-brown with a short light tan head. No retention or lacing. Noticeable carbonation while looking through light.

Very pleasant on the nose. Nice sweetness. Caramel malt, burnt sugar and maybe a hint of sweet fruit.

Caramel malt right off the bat. Very well balanced with malt to mild hops. A very nice, cool hint of burnt sugar like cotton candy. It's sweet, but definitely not too sweet or heavy like sweet malty beers can be.

Mouthfeel Is very smooth, medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall I think this might be the best märzen/Octoberfest style beer. I very much see this being a great session beer come September-October.

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.97/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Reviewed alongside Widmer Brothers Okto Festival Ale.

A: Slightly hazy amber with two-finger, off-white, creamy head that lasted a couple of minutes. Okay lacing.

S: Sweet caramel malt. Fruit. Some spice. Nice.

T: Moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Caramel malt and fruit flavors to match the nose. Sweeter than most Oktoberfest ales I've had.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Silky smooth.

O: Sweet and smooth Oktoberfest. The appearance was a little disappointing, but everything else was quite good. I liked this slightly more than the Widmer Brothers.

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Photo of oberon
3.96/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a deep clear bronze with a fluffy well formed 1/2 finger head very rich and full in color,aromas of vanilla and caramel with some sweetish doughy qualities as well.Full creamy mouthfeel it almost coaats the mouth going down,pretty rich flavors for the style lightlky sweet and doughy up front with hints of vanilla and caramel finishing with a touch of peppery leafiness.Wow I really like this marzen its much fuller in texture and flavor than many but not overly heavy and I imagine probably very food friendly.

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Photo of bcm119
3.94/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber with very little suds. Soft aroma of molasses bread and dark fruit esters. Nice toasty malt becomes quite dry on the palate with spritzy, lemony hops. Finish is snappy and the lemony hops come through for a mildly bitter finish-- very nice. Despite the flat appearance it has a vibrant mouthfeel. The malt profile is very true to style, reminiscent of a German oktoberfest; the hops seem a tad more lemony and the finish a bit snappier than that of a German version, which is a good thing to me. The only drawback is a lack of malt complexity like you'd find in, say, the Ayinger marzen. Theres just one layer of malt flavor here, but its a nice one, and it improves with a little warmth. Overall a dead-on Marzen-- drinkable and very well-balanced. I could see drinking many pints of this along with some sausage and sauerkraut.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy ruby-orange copper with a thin but creamy bone-white head. It's retention is limited but it retains a creamy collar that can be increased simply by gently swirling the glass. Lacing is minimal as well, but some spotty lace is left throughout the glass. The aroma is quite intriguing with an initial dose of softly sweet and mildly toasted Munich and Vienna malts; followed by some fruitiness that's reminiscent of strawberry and melon; and then a very distant hoppiness. Fresh and inviting! The body is firm, and enhanced by a very fine carbonation that just lightly tingles the tongue. It's oddly somewhat crisp and creamy at the same time; and then smooth in the swallow. The flavor offers a bold combination of gently sweet and toasty - almost juicy - malt backed by some spicy hop flavor and a bold bitterness that leaves it dry and peppery in the finish. It's not as supple or malty sweet as some of the classic German versions; but rather offers an interesting California twist with it's slightly increased bitterness. Well done!

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Been a while since I had a beer from this great brewery (854 days to be exact), and I number this one right behind their aged Dopplebock as my favorites from their great line of beers.

A deep burnished copper color on the pour with a modest beige head that is creamy in consistency and the lace a silky covering sheet. Nose is sweet malt; caramel, citrus crisp and fresh a real pleaser to the senses, start is loaded with malt, lightly sweet, the top moderate in its feel to the palate. Finish has a mild acidity, the hops present but understated and the aftertaste quite dry, a real nice beer for the end of the day and the start of my evening.

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Photo of Mark
3.85/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Marzen is about he only Lager I seek out nowadays. This is one I have had before but not for sometime. Color is a deep copper, the head from this sample did not pour thick and disapated to a thin layer rather quickly. Lace was minimal. On the other hand taste is very smooth and drinkability is nice. Decent Marzen that is a no-brainer choice over say Gordon Bierch.

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Photo of tempest
3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single from Abe's Cold Beer. This marzen has some kick. I'm reminded more of Spaten Optimator than classic O-fest/marzen like Hacker-Pschorr. That said, I still taste the mild roasted malts and sweet, slightly fruity caramel. There's just a little extra licorice, like you'd find in a bock. The body is almost on the thin side for the flavor, and there's a very very slight astringency, but otherwise this is a mighty fine beer. Check it out.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this beer for some time, and since it feels more like October today than January, I'm going to pop it. 12 ounce bottle, on to the beer:

Poured into my Eisenbahn Weizenbock glass, this beer is pale amber orange in color, reddish hues in the middle of it, with the head holding up pretty well. The nose makes me think of October, it's a spiced maltiness, the standard goodness of an O-fest. Into the mouth...carbnonation is quite strong, the body is medium. Sweet doughy bread and cookie dough sweetness. High malt sweetness. Bit of earth and dirt. Caramel emerges. Hops are spicy, leaving an herbal note in the aftertaste.

I'm not sure what, but served cold on what was a warm January day (it reached 85 F here), this hits the spot.

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Photo of WilliamPhilaPa
3.8/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice red / amber body, with a creamy white colored head, which holds fairly well. On the nose the aroma is of malt. On the palate there is a slight hop spiciness, nice malt character, hint of caramel. Medium bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Overall a decent Marzen.

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Photo of ssam
3.79/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

I've had a few of these recently and I quite like them. The pour reveals a deep amber color and a nice full head. The foam retains well and leaves lots of lacing around the glass. The smell is nothing special-- nothing really bad or off putting about it but nothing special. The taste is mild but really nice, it has a good balance of malt vs hops, neither being too pronounced. The carbonation level is right where it needs to be and the mouthfeel is great. This beer is very drinkable and goes well with food. I like Sudwerk because its local to me and I can get super fresh and tasty brews.

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Photo of misterscooter
3.78/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I definitely have a soft spot for this beer but is definitely not as good out of the bottle as on tap at the brewery, but what do you expect? I love the clear brown and copper color of this beer but it doesn't get much head out of the bottle. Not one that lasts, anyway.

A solid smelling beer but not stupendous. A little malt, a little wheat, some hints of floral and fruit.

There is a light malted flavor to this one and the beer feels good in your mouth. Very smooth and mellow with a little caramel flavor and a slight hop taste when you swallow. I realize that this beer isn't as great as I made it out to be in college but it has sentimental value and I could drink these aplenty.

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Photo of Troyone
3.73/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a root beer color with copper hue and little to no head.

A sweet German beer (lager) smell with hints of roasted malt.

Taste has a sweet acetic flavor.

Mouthfeel is smooth light to medium body, dry slightly watery texture, soft carbonation, and a metallic slightly chalky finish.

Marzen is the only Lager type of beer that I like except for some types of Bock. I like Marzen beers better than any Oktoberfest, I know there suppose to be the same but Marzen is more like a Vienna to me. Maybe I really like the Vienna style.

Sudwerk has put out a fine flavorfull easy to drink Marzen much better than G & B, which is acceptable. The smell is nice and the mouthfeel is some what smooth. I try not to keep to much of this at one time cause it's to easy to drink.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.64/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass. A deep amber color. A good finger of head that quickly broke down to a quarter of the size.
Strong orange and wet malt smell.
Taste apple, bread and a mild hop ending.
Low carbonation and a crisp medium body.
A good beer, nice to drink and wish about being at Oktoberfest. A little more malt in the flavor and body would really round this out as a Märzen.

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Photo of wertperch
3.61/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is not at all bad - there's a neat hoppy bitterness to it that matches this autmunal weather almost perfectly. It's a rich and coppery amber with an initially lively head, which dies back quickly, leaving only a thin lacing. First impressions are of a slightly spicy nose, faintly toasty and a hint of citrus. The first taste is quite a surprise - it's not hugely complex, but neither is it uninteresting. Instead it's a clean, fruity flavour with a little butter, but the hops are in the forefront all the time, providing a little bitterness without the hop taking over.

Butter and bitter? Sounds odd, but it works. Add the slight toastiness and what you have is a Marmite sandwich type of a beer. I exaggerate somewhat, its not quite that dark and bitter, but it is certainly a refreshing change from the norm of pale lager styles; it's quite tasty and "more-ish", I found myself wanting another one almost immediately. That I needed another is partly down to the thinness, relative to my normal run of fuller-bodied beers, but that lightness is part of its strength.

It's definitely a refreshing session beer rather than a refreshing specialist, drink-alone beer. I want to load up a plate of sausages and good bread and sit down with several of them.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.6/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. brown bottle served in a pint glass. Pours a clear copper amber with a thin off white cap and a light effervescent carbonation. Retention is a bit brief though the carbonation does support a light cap..

Moderate caramel dominates the nose and is accompanied by a light and earthy hop presence. Taste is slightly sweet of caramel yet not nearly as overwhelming as many of the style, and without the syrupy feel and finish. Bit of roasted malt is evident as well due to the relatively light residual sweetness, along with some blood orange on the finish. Feel is light in body yet full enough and matches the flavor.

Good drink for the style though a relatively light interpretation. Yet that suits me well.

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.54/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to arbitrator for this beer. The extra effort is greatly appreciated.

Poured into my pint glass the beer is clear golden amber. About one finger of light beige head fades rather quick leaving no lace.

The aroma is very sweet. Caramel malt, vanilla and spices meld with the typical modest hop profile of marzens.

The flavor is mostly spiced malt with hints of vanilla and grassy hops. Right about where a marzen should be.

Medium to light body. A touch thin with low carbonation.

Overall a decent marzen. Nothing special but drinkable. Very glad I got to try this one though.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a clear amber, with a thick, tan head, more off-white than brown, small at first, but grows as the beer is poured, no real lacing to speak of, however, as the beer is drunk.

S: Light, some caramel notes, a bit of hops, though faint.

T: Quite hoppier than your average marzen, this is definitely an American interpretation, balanced with some light toffee and caramel, with a bit of apple to balance the earthiness of the noble hops, and possibly some Cascade, California hops, though I'm not sure.

M: Very good I thought, full-bodied for and Oktoberfest-Marzen, though overall, light and crisp and easy to drink, just the right amount of carbonation.

D: Good drinkability, I'd put this at just slightly above average, but it is nice to see a California brewery doing traditional German styles and session beers.

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Photo of EagleTalon
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled on 4/6/2011. Opened on 7/23/2011. Pours to to a thin off-white head and small bits of lace. Color is reddish-copper. Brilliantly clear. Aroma is a pleasant hit of Munich malt and a weird sour note with noble hops peeking through. It does not smell particularly bad, just not what I was expecting. Flavor is a nice toasty, dusty, MALTY flavor you would expect form a Märzen / Oktoberfest. But there is that sharp, cheese-like note similar to the aroma. Nice hop flavor and bitterness to balance it out. A bit drier than I was expecting. Mouthfeel is light-meduim and CO2 is moderate. Overall, this beer is good, just not quite what I would look for in this style. It could be a handling issue since the beer sat at room temperature for at least three months.

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Marzen from Sudwerk Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.