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Festbier - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

769 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 769
Hads: 1,853
Avg: 3.73
pDev: 19.84%
Wants: 32
Gots: 207 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Festbier Alström Bros
Reviews: 769 | Hads: 1,853
Photo of bditty187
3.37/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This might be my last O-fest for the ’05 Season…

Clear, coppery-peachy-bronze in hue, the color of the liquid is typical of the style. A steady stream of animation slowly danced to the off-white head. At best the foam barley covered the liquid; there really wasn’t a true head. Disappointing. There was no subsequent lacing either, another bummer. For an O-fest I am saddened by the appearance.

The nose is clean. Too clean for me; it really doesn’t say much. I get hints of caramel malts and a trace amount of earthy hops. I get the impression this beer has German roots but it is difficult to tell exactly the direction this beer wants to go. Hells? Oktoberfest? I’m not sure. Low potency, it is too quite overall; the nose is passable.

The palate is soft but likeable. The maltiness is pliable, delicate with a caramel candy base, some bread, and some honey. The hop profile is light, some earthiness and spice at the back. Clean, as it should be, the finish is fairly long but uneventful. The palate is solid; I’ve enjoyed much better O-fests this season. I mean, this one is okay but forgettable. I was expecting Victory to nail the style, they didn’t. At least this beer wasn’t “Americanized” too much… but it was still a bit underdone. It is enjoyable but it is nothing extraordinary.

Medium in body, moderate-low carbonation, natural and fitting mouthfeel is firm but not rigid. On the tongue, this beer feels about right. Nicely done.

Drinkable and tasty it is. Special? Not so much. Of course not every beer needs to be the greatest beer in the world. If I could get this locally I would drink it. It would be a no-brainer! Is this good enough for me too seek out in the future? No. I wouldn’t turn one down though! I am very happy I could try it. Thank you RedHaze!

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.37/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

On draft

Medium brown in color, thin off white head that fades fast. Slightly sweet malty aroma. Taste is bready, a little brown sugar. Thin to medium body.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beautiful deep orange color. Decent off-white head with great retention and some lace.

Smells fallish - toasty malt and herbal hop with some mild spice and orange rind.

Crisp bready malt up front follwed by a smoother hop bitterness. Mild orange here and there. Despite the crisp carbonation up front, Festbier had a dissapointing syrupy mouthfeel.

Retained itself very well despite being near the end of shelf life.

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Photo of PhageLab
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap @ The Tap House in Hampton.

A - Nearly clear light brown, produced a 1/4 inch head that stuck around for a few after being poured into a pint glass. Minimal lacing.

S - Like roasted almonds and something sweet, possibly vanilla bean.

T - Lightly toasted malt profile with hints of something sweet, again I'm picking up vanilla. Well balanced as nothing overpowers your senses.

M - Average, decent carbonation and a light crispy body.

D - All in all, nothing spectacular here, but a decent brew that everyone should at least try once. I could definitely have a few, and next season, I will try a few more.

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Photo of WesWes
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark gold/amber color with a thin offwhite head that fades to spotty lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a musty and slightly malty scent that is dry and nutty. The taste is decent also. It has a complex, but not very good flavor. It is slightly malty with nutty hints and a dry lager yeast finish. It has a breadlike quality that detracts from the taste. There are hops in the aftertaste, but they are weak. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is an average Festbier. It tries to be unique and it succeeds. It is uniquely average.

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Photo of chodinheaven
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No freshness date, and since its an Oktoberfest beer, drinking it in May gives me some doubts. Cloudy orange hue, with a small off-white head on top. Smells malty and creamy almost. Maybe pecans in there too, or something giving it a nutty scent.

Not overly anything in the flavor, but certainly maltier than hoppier. Surprisingly, I pick up a note of booze in the flavor, right after a dose of unexciting malts and a small hit of hops that balances it out and gives it a little character, but its ultimately not enough to bring it to Victory standards. . It's smooth and goes down super easy, but it's also unexciting and unique like I have come to expect with Victory. I definitely need to try it again next fall just to compare and see how much freshness makes a difference.

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Photo of DirtyPenny
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into my New England Patriots pint glass while watching the surprisingly good Colts/Steelers game. Curtis Painter is not a real quarterback.

A: Poured with 1/2-finger of off-white head that imploded faster than the Vikings in the second half of any game this year. Festbier is an amber/honey color, as pleasing to look at as a football, thought somewhat lighter.

S: A whiff of piney/citrusy hops surprises the nose, much like the Buffalo Bills surprised the Pats today. Seriously, I expected a marzen to have a maltier nose (not a complaint), but it takes time to warm up and the real spirit of it to come through, much like Ryan Fitzpatrick.

T: Earthy caramel malts with a ghost of a fungus-like aftertaste. Cereal grain finish where I would have expected the hops. Curious what happened to the bit of hoppiness that was in the nose (and that the bottle promised). It was conspicuously absent, like the Steelers running game tonight.

M: Medium bodied. Carbonation was light but this brew was still a bit foamier and and rougher than expected. It's not anywhere near the chewiness of the turf Jay Cutler is constantly picking out of his teeth, but still.

O: Festbier is not a bad seasonal brew, but much like the Chiefs, I do not associate fall with Victory.

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Photo of hero27
3.35/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle.
Enjoy by Jan 18, 2009.

Pours a bright amber, manilla-colored head diminishes quickly.
Faint aroma of toasted breadcrumbs, earthy malts, and nuts.
Malt-laden flavor..toasted grain, sweet caramel malt, vanilla, and brown sugar.
Medium-bodied & slightly slick..some spicy hops linger in the aftertaste, and it goes down relatively easy.

an alright Oktoberfest, but I was expecting a bit more from Victory.

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Photo of brystmar
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Top Hops.

Average looking pour, minimal head atop the amber body. Aroma is the strongest part of this beer: spicy, fruity, floral, slightly hoppy, malts. Mmmmm.

Taste disappoints. Watery with sweet malt as the dominant flavor. Hoppy backbone shows itself at the end before fading. Not bad, not very good either.

Verdict: skip.

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Photo of PatrickCT
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I really didn't think much of this beer. The body of this beer has an okay color. Flat amber and crystal clear. No lacing to speak of. Malty and sweet. Almost like caramel made of corn syrup. Absolutely no relief on the way from either carbonation or any sort of hop presences. Pass on this beer.

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Photo of TLWalsh
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber tone with plenty of vanilla colored creamy head. This brew is kind of confusing - it comes on full bodied and malty with toffee flavors but then there's a middling thinnish mouth feel and an odd funky aftertaste. Like a spoiled honey weirdness. I really wanted to like this as I enjoy their other beers but I dunno . . . Maybe my sample was old or something . . .

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Photo of Pauly2X
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Solid amber hue produed a half finger head which faded fast.

S- Rich caramel malts, light hints of toffee.

T- Strong malt profile hilighted by caramel sweetness and toasted malts. Spicy hops add some balance.

M- Nicely carbonated and smooth to boot!

D- I didn't exactly plow through the six pack, but good.

Nothing too special but a good example of an american oktoberfest.

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Photo of constahoogan
3.33/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is of copper orange very translucent body the provides a cramy 2 finger head the slowly diminishes with little stringy lace.

The nose doesn't really deliver but from what I can extract is sweet caramel malts followed by a very subtle hop scent. The taste is very similar to the smel but a bit more straight forward.

mouthfeel is crisp just how a lager should be. It is a very enjoyable brew with very high drinkability.

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Photo of seanlanefuller
3.33/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Minimal head. Minimal carbonation.

Minimal lacing.

Nice clear copper appearance.

Nice fall aroma, but a little weak. Pumpkin, orange?

Taste is lager and pumpkin with a little mushroom.

Mouth feel is light with a little chew to it.

Taste lasts quite a while.

Overall it is a nice drinkable fall lager.

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Photo of Jayli
3.33/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured dark copper with an ample, beige head, which quickly dissipated. It has relatively good lacing throughout. The scent is slightly of malt and hops. The taste is much like the scent - malty at first. Slightly sweet, but finishes with hoppy bitterness. Overall, not a bad O'fest beer.

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Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
3.33/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours with no head at all and very little apparent carbonation. Smell is of fresh baked bread a hint of warm spices.

Taste is malty and slightly sweet, the carbonation doesn't add much pop on the tongue. The beer is very balanced and ever so slightly peppery, a very subtle and malty beer.

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Photo of climax
3.32/5  rDev -11%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one starts out average to be nice. Clarity is a bit hazier than I was expecting out of the style. The caramel color had a bit more brown than amber. The head was pretty weak considering how raucous I poured it.

The nose continues with definite malt assertiveness. Doughy wheat and caramel lead the show. Some darker bread, maybe rye, tones and ripe fruit about round it out.

The flavor pleases a bit more than the aroma. Some added spice and a kiss of dry hop flavor add to the otherwise malt fiesta. Autumn pumpkin spice, rye, and caramel, lead into a sour fruit aftertaste.

The body is medium/light with crisp carbonation. The finish is quite dry, making it easy to come back to and finish. There just wasn't too much to remember in this one, not Victory's best.

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Photo of Thur123
3.31/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This pours a nice brown/orange color with lots of carbonation, a crisp clear color and about two fingers of head that fade nicely into a small white layer at the top. The smell is sweet malt and a kind of fresh bread like taste.

Glug glug glug

Tastes like toasty bread with a bit of malt sweetness. A slight amount of caramel is in there to, but this seems quite biscuity to me. Overall pretty good, but also a little boring. The good thing is that is full and not too heavy, so I could drink many, which is also nice.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.31/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz bottle into a mug. Prost!

Appearance: rich amber-orange hue with a crystal-clear body and a thick finger of frothy ivory head. Great!

Smell: dry, biscuity malt, which is style appropriate but not my favorite interpretation of the style. It's a bit prickly and off-putting to me.

Taste: dry, biscuity malt. It starts out breadier and sweeter, but rapidly dries out on the palate. Style appropriate. Bitterness is pretty good, though. Not terrible, but really not to my taste at all.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good level of carbonation. Satisfyingly fizzy.

Overall: I'm just not in love with this beer. There are Oktoberfests that I like, but this just ain't one of 'em.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.3/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the river road tavern.
Pours a deep golden amber color with a smallish off white head with minimal retention and lace. Smells of caramel and bread and a bit of toast with an earthy floral hop component to it. The flavor is bready pilsner malt with a bit of caramel and sweet sugary malt. A bit heavy on the hops for the style, lots of earthy herbal hops compete with an inadequate malt base. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and an earthy slick mouthfeel. Decent enough beer, but like a lot of American interpretations it just doesn't measure up to the German brewed versions.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
3.3/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from session notes.

A. Another orange-tinted amber beer, with a minutes worth of sand-colored foam head and mediocre lacing.

S. Very light on the nose, just a faint caramel malt with a dash of floral and citric peel hopping. Could benefit from about 20% strength amplification.

T. Kind of generic compared to other marzens. Malty sweetness and a kiss of noble hopping, nothing particularly memorable stands out as special or unique in the flavor here.

M. Pleasant enough medium body but somewhat undercarbonated in texture again...

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Photo of drpimento
3.29/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Not bad, not great. But so far this year of the maybe 8 or so micro and german OKfestsbiers I've had, none have been the shit. Poured and ok medium to small off white head and bit of lace. Color is a nice medium amber. Aroma is very nice; malty and a bit spicy. Flavor is 'bout the same. Body's a tad thin. 'S'okay. Nothing to write home about. Drinkable. Session beer. Body's ok too.

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Photo of dmfrench
3.29/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A sweet, hoppy, spicy Oktoberfest that is somehow off.


A: Light, fairly clear amber/orange body with a somewhat persistent one finger off-white head. Not much lacing.

S: Spice is the first thing that jumps out at you, followed by caramel and pilsner malt. There's also a certain earthiness. An acceptable smell, but not my favorite Oktoberfest nose.

T: Similar to the nose, but floral hops are much more prominent. Really, this beer has a lot to offer flavor wise... a solid pilsner-ish malt foundation, sweetness, bitter and floral hops, and spice, but somehow I'm not enjoying it too much. Perhaps it's the slightly metallic taste that I'm also getting. Perhaps it's because Oktoberfest is not a favorite style of mine. Perhaps it's because it's stale (I'm drinking this in December). Regardless, I probably won't drink it again, but fans of the style should try one.

M: Typical slightly chalky medium weight Oktoberfest.

D: Would be quite high if it weren't for the metallic finish I"m experiencing.

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Photo of goz
3.28/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Slightly red-tinged amber, big white head that diminishes fairly quickly, and leaves very little lacing. Aroma is very light, some maltiness but not much else. Flavor is also fairly light, some caramel and other malt sweetness, and maybe a minimal hop hit at the end. Body is medium at best, mild carbonation, drinks easily, but is noting spectacular.

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Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.28/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Victory Festbier poured golden amber with a slight head and a little bit of lace.

It smelled and tasted like any ordinary lager. It was sweet, malty, and yeasty, with no significance in the flavor or feel. It was refreshing; however, and went very well with pizza.

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Festbier from Victory Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 769 ratings.