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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 bahumutx
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful copper color with about a one finger white head.

Smell: Bread dough leads the aroma with hints of caramel and hops.

Taste: Starts with a slight citrus taste and then moves right on to a doughy malt flavor. As the beer warms there is more malt presence and a caramel taste appears. There is also a slight sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth Mouthfeel with the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. I could have a few of these in a sitting.

This is another good beer from Victory Brewing. Keep up the great work!!!

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Photo of RedHaze
3.57/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orangey bronze color with tin 1/4 inch head that quickly disappears. The very thin ring that's left behind leaves only minimal lacing.

Smell; nice bread dough and caramel maltiness with a mild herbal almost spicy aroma. Nice, but not as good as I was expecting.

Taste; pretty much follows it's aroma. It has a solid caramel malt presence, and a little bit of the spiciness makes an appearance. There's also a slight hop bite in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with fairly low carbonation. This is not the best O-fest by any means, but it's still a decent stab at the style.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.02/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer came a dark burgundy with some orange highlights and no head. Smelled of a smoky sweet lager with some pasty oats and a slight nip of unobtrusive hops. Tasted of fruity raspberries, doughy and pasty oat malt with a nice bitter snap in the finish. Mouth feel was medium bodied with a sharp electric small bubbled carbonation.

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Photo of HugoGrim
3.95/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at the Victory Brewery.

The first beer I tried on my trip to Victory, it arrived a copper/bronze color with a small white head. Carbonation visible throughout, and nice lacing down the glass.

Scent is herbal/spiced hops with bread. Very clean.

Crisp. Malts and hints of caramel up front with Earthy hop spice backing it up.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: My bottle looks just the like captured in the Database. Best Before Date is Dec-12-05; guess its time to crack this sucker.

Appearance: Gorgeous ruddy copper and dark orange body. Vanilla white head is creamy and produces a thin but patterned lacing. Lively but with a low key carbonation.

Nose: Hmmmm……definitely a great component of this brew!! The nose is warming, slightly herbal, mildly spiced with warming toasted caramels and freshly baked bread. Very nice indeed, even a few days past its Best Before Date.

Taste: Parallels the nose, but the tastes are higher in strength. The toasted malts are herbal caramels are dominant. Spicy hops and a lovely soft finish that lingers leaving you wanting more and kicking up the Drinkability a notch or two. A myriad of flavors but they are all in check, controlled and assembled in a very clean manner.

Mouthfeel: The body is like one of the bicycles that Lance Armstrong rides, lightweight but incredibly strong, it never lets you down. Bolstered by a synergistic nose and taste profile the body feel is incredibly solid yet vivacious and fleet of foot. Smooth too!

Drinkability: A tasty brew that has a high end return factor. Oh so easy to put down the throat, but not so easy to put the glass down back on the table. I could easily manage a 6-Pack of these puppies, now worries.

Overall: Lovely Jubbly – one of the best US Oktoberfests that I have sampled to date. I picked this bottle up whilst in PA last month, it’s a real shame that this one doesn’t come West with the other Victory brews. Recommended.

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Photo of Dithyramb
2.77/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Purchased a sixer from Avalon Liquors. Took the good part of two months to finish during fishing trips (that is a bad impression, by the way. Paulaner, on the other hand was all drank the first non-striper catchin day)
Cloudy amber bad retention and lacing.
Caramelly malt and some unknown chalkiness in the aroma
Caramel and chalky malt. Overall rather limp with the same crappy hop that mister Cleveland0 detected.
The only Victory brew that's been difficult to finish.
Doesn't have the complexity and mouthfeel of the good to great O'fests out there, average all around.

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Photo of kmpitz2
3.76/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep copper color with a small sparse head over top. Nose is sweet and toasty, almost sugary sweet. I'd like a bit more of the bready and toastyness to come through. Flavor is pretty nice. Fairly toasty with just a touch of sweetness and a very very light noble hop finish. Very clean. Nice american example of the style. Feel is moderate with a moderate carbonation. Pretty solid brew here. Tasty.

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Photo of clvand0
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber color with a small head that falls fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma is mostly caramel malt with some sweetness and possibly a little toasted. I'm not a huge fan of the flavor. It's comprised of caramel malt and some toastiness but there's a hop flavor in there as well - whatever hop it is, I'm not a fan of its flavor. Not necessarily something off in the beer, I just don't like this hop. Finish is sweet and slightly bitter and the mouthfeel is moderate. Drinkability is ok.

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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 granger10
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This Victory seasonal pours a darker copper color with a medium tan head. Aroma is mostly caramel and toasted grains. Sort of weak. Taste is also weak and watery for my liking. The flavors aren't bad but they're too weak. A light grainy sweetness is prevalent along with some nondescript malts. Finish is fruity and sweet. This beer is ok, probably a good session choice, but I was expecting more from Victory.

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Photo of Sammy
3.08/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours little leasting fizzy head. peach colour. Initially quenching and fruity but soon strong carbonation overwhelms and burns, and sugar sweetness in finish it doesn't work for me.
Had it again a bit more than a year later and noted sourness as well as aggressive carbonation and peach colour.,

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Photo of Stubbie1
4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This Festbier poured a nice orange color with a slight off white head. Aroma is a bit bready/malty and a very mild hint of spice. Taste is upfront sweet malt and caramel and a slight dry finish. Smooth and creamy in the mouth and enjoyable to drink. Well done

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Photo of RoyalT
3.94/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – The head was a bit modest here and didn’t show a lot of good retention, but the beer itself was a brilliant orangish-brown.

Smell – The light grain shows a touch of class and is mixed with some caramel malts. I can also pick up a hint of molasses.

Taste – The caramel and gooey malts are more prevalent at the taste. The grain is light and of high quality (not the cheap husky stuff on most American lagers). The sugars are subdued but raw.

Mouthfeel – This is in between light and medium-bodied with some nice carbonation. It is very refreshing and thirst-quenching.

Drinkability – This is a true session bier and one of the better efforts at the style from an American manufacturer.

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Photo of Zorro
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled due to the efforts of Lackenhauser and The Great Pumpkin BIF.

Pours a nice orange to amber colored beer with a nice tan head.

Smell is quite fragrant, strong scent of malt and fruitiness. Scents of grain and caramelized sugar with a hint of rye? Maybe not any rye in this but that is what it smells like to me.

Taste is semi dry and fruity at the beginning. Moderate sweetness and mild herbal hop flavor throughout the experience. A tasty mild beer here.

Mouthfeel is solid.

Very drinkable beer here. Tasty and mild this is easy to drink and is a fine everyday type of beer.

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Photo of sacfly
4.42/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoy by Jan 1 06 on front of bottle.

Pours a clear amber color with a large, thick head of medium bubbles. Smell is a gentle mix of musty grains and slight sweetness. Fresh bread.

Taste is grainy, bread again, with a slight caramel sweetness and subtle hops. Mild bitterness comes in the aftertaste. Medium to light body.

Very enjoyable. I could drink this all day. Not too sweet like some Oktoberfest. A very well crafted brew!

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Photo of Shovelbum
3.46/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Creamy white head and a copper body with only a few carbonation bubbles. Smells of sweet and roasted malt. Taste is bitter, mildly sweet and a bit dry. Fuller-bodied than other lagers as expected for the style. Crisp despite the apparently low level of carbonation. Finishes smooth and clean.

A decent Marzen. True to design, it would serve as a good session/festival beer.

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Photo of Foxman
3.68/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a flashy ambery gold, crystal clear and flitting highlights about. A finger of pithy white head settles quickly to spring-fed islets of foam. Mere pinpricks of lacing punctuate the inner surface of the glass.

The aroma delivers a quick, basic tenet of lightly toasted autumnal malt, along with an earthy noble hops ambience that promptly whispers away.

The first taste carries a light film of breezy malt sweetness, developing into a rather sparse melange of flinty fruitiness and smooth rondelles of earthen hops. The finish fades to a strain of baked pretzel doughiness and noble hops dryness. It actually comes across as unexpectedly light and airy, and might not be the very best credit to the style, but it delivers something worthwhile.

Between light and medium bodied, it physically has a bit more spine than the flavor it strives to deliver. A classical lager dryness lingers glowingly in the mouth.

As happens at times, the rather simple and thin flavor goes a long way toward making this quite quaffable. It’s utterly inoffensive, and pretty much unremarkable as well. Still, it’s well better than just average, and it absolutely qualifies as satisfying. It’s not likely to stand up well to much but the more mild food dishes, but as a standalone session beer it would be nicely recommended. You can’t be amazed by every beer you try, but this one impresses just enough to make it desirable.

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Photo of burnstar
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

This pours a nice copper color with a small white head that dissipates quickly. Smell is very mild and malty. Taste is almost all sweet malt with just a little hops kicking in for the finish. Medium bodied, maybe just a tiny bit thin but I think the mouthfeel is about right for this beer. This is extremely drinkable, it really begs to be drank in quantity. This won't blow you away, but it's a nice example of the style.

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Photo of pentathlete
3.83/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dirty brass with a small head that finally falls to nothing. Nose is sweaty malt and some butter notes. Taste picks up with a fine blend of malt and just a bit of hops for a dry(ing) finish. Mouthfeel is thin but it increases during the taste. Very drinkable. Not bad at all. Try it.

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Photo of yelterdow
3.42/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Freshness date: "Enjoy by Dec 12 05". Served at fridge temperature in a Fuller's nonic, around lunchtime.

Appearance- A clean, clear reddish amber which displays a small, one inch head that deteriorates immediately. A thin rim of foam survives, without any lacing.

Smell- German malts, with their nutty, sweet undertones... not much else! Vienna malts and a mildly bready aroma.

Taste- A very familiar Oktoberfest flavor that incorporates the malts, bread, and very slight bittering in the finish... approachable, and basic. You can't write a book about it, you just enjoy it.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- A bit too carbonated in the mouth, it gets in the way of the taste and drinkability; Almost a tongue-encompassing hostage scenario ensues. Overall a decent interpretation of a Fest, just a bit loud.

Victory's brewing mastery resides outside of this beer, just try Storm King...

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Photo of Viggo
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear orange, small off white head forms, some sporadic lacing. Smell is smoky and sweet, some grassy hops and a little bit of citrus. Taste is sweet and grassy, some caramel and citrus, light touch of smoke. Mouthfeel is light bodied, with medium carbonation. A fine example of Oktoberfest. Thanks DrJay!

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Photo of ski271
3.27/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear medium-light amber with a small, off-white, foamy head with little retention. Only a little lacing as well. The aroma is malt-dominant of course, without smelling too sweet and bready. A pleasant nuttiness to it. The taste is a bit lacking at first with the malts coming off a little on the weak side. The hops only really make their presence known toward the finish. However, by the time I got halfway through the second bottle, I was enjoying it more. The mouthfeel is a bit watery and on the thin side. I don’t know, I guess I have just grown to expect more from Victory. It’s not bad by any means, but I’ve had better Oktoberfests this year. And with the higher-than-average price tag, I won’t be getting this again.

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Photo of jed
3.53/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Brown, 12 oz bottle with illustration of two peasants stirring beer. Small blurb explaining the beer. "Enjoy by" date 12/22/05.

Appearance: Pours a solid, reddish brown with one finger of head. Head rapidly shrinks, but around a quarter inch remains with good retention. As the head disappears, it leaves behind a trail of light brown lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Warm aroma, lots of toasted malt without associated citrus or spice of hops. Some caramel sweetness, hint of alcohol lingering.

Taste: Slightly sour mouth with slight hop bitterness, which gives way to toasted malt and lingering sweet notes. Finish leaves behind strong malt and more subdued bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly, a little bit on the thin side. Disappointing.

Drinkability: Would make an excellent session beer, flavorful without being too strong.

Victory Festbier has nothing to set it apart from a large pack of American craft brewers who make Oktoberfest biers. This isn't necessarily meant as a criticism — Festbier is one of many well-executed versions of the style that are good, but not amazing. I'd give the nod to Brooklyn's Oktoberfest over this, but if I found Festbier on tap I'd happily order a pint.

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Photo of DrJay
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear caramel/amber with a short stand of fine, off-white bubbles that showed good retention and a bit of lacing. Malty aroma with some toasty caramel, a slight smokiness and faint hops. A malty, caramel flavoured brew, the moderate bitterness continued and increased into the finish. Overall, a very clean grain flavour with some toastiness that's balanced by moderate hop flavour. Very smooth texture, medium carbonation, some residual sweetness and sugar. Clean, malty, and tasty -- an enjoyable offering from Victory.

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.11/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

It pours a copper shade in color, with a fizzy, pop-like head that almost immediately dissappears. The nose is packed with a rich, sweet malty scent. Smells delicious. The taste is also malty, but with a slight hop bitterness, or maybe tangy-ness, towards the end. The sip finishes with an odd aftertaste that I just cant seem to figure out. The mouthfeel is crappy. Maybe not terrible, but too thin and too fizzy when it first hits the palate. Drinkability is average. There are a lot better octoberfests out there, this one isnt terrible but it really isnt anything to get excited about.

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