Festbier - Victory Brewing Company

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FestbierFestbier

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BA SCORE
83
good

1,664 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,664
Reviews: 728
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 13.04%
Wants: 26
Gots: 123 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,664 | Reviews: 728 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ExMachina1
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This has got to be one of the better October/Marzen beers I've had. The aromas and flavors are appropriately complex--bready and nutty with a smooth malty sweetness-- but overall, the beer is subdued enough that your palate never gets fried. This beer would pair great with a lot of foods. Beyond that, Octoberfest beer is supposed to be eminently drinkable and this one has got drinkability in SPADES. This beer is so clean that it exudes quality by its subtlety. I'm gonna go broke this fall!

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A golden brown colored body with a bunch of active carbonation bubbles. Two fingers of creamy off white head that has decent retention and leaves some nice lacing patterns behind.

The nose is equally expressive of crisp, cracker like malt and a spicy, earthy noble hop presence.

I'm not really sure which I would say I notice first here; the hops or the malts. Either way, I don't really care. The malt has cracker qualities with just a tiny touch of molasses flavor. The noble hops are very spicy, almost biting. I would definitely say this one is on the hoppy side of Oktoberfests, but not so hoppy that it disturbs the drinkability and great malt flavors of the style.

Crisp, highly carbonated. Moderate to slightly heavy body for the style.

I love good Oktoberfests and Victory's version is no exception. Very drinkable, but caution: a six pack may not be enough.

Photo of JMD
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark copper color with small head that fades very quickly.

S: Light aroma of toasted malt and carmel. Not bad, but the nose is just too faint. Even letting the beer warm didn't do anything to improve the aroma.

T: The prominent flavor for me was bready and bisquity malt. Followed by some sweet carmel, brown sugar and some spice. Faint hops are present as well.

M: A little on the thin side for the style, somewhere between light and medium bodied.

D: Overall, a decent American made Octoberfest. I found this one to be a little too bready for my taste, and not enough sweetness and spice. Not bad, but there are better domestic Marzens out there.

Photo of drpimento
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
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.

Photo of mirish72
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

First fall beer of the season. Pours beautifully with a nice two finger head and strong amber color. Smells of roasted malts, semi-sweet but nicely balanced. Malty taste with a little hop bite with a tangy aftertaste.

Easy drinking, nice session beer and big props on the bottle artwork.

Photo of BWMKappaSig
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hooray Autumn. I love Marzen!

A: Deep, slightly hazy amber, more on the red/ orange end of the spectrum than gold-yellow. Thin off-white head leaves very little lacing. To compare, this is certainly a few shades darker than say Blue Point's marzen offering.

S: Smooth malt and slight hops. Honestly not much smell, though there's a bit of a graininess that is reminiscent of their pils.

T: Bready malts not apparent in the smell are balanced by some mild hop bitterness. Nothing unpleasant, and pretty well balanced.

M: Smooth and medium bodied, with a really nice texture.

D: Smooth and delightful. Certainly a sessionable beer.

Overall a slightly underwhelming example of Marzen, but solid all around.

Photo of beerwolf77
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass it's orange amber in color. The head is about a half an inch and beige in color. Not much lacing is left on my glass. The aroma malty and sweet. Some hops can be detected but only after a good hard whiff. The flavor is malt with a hint of caramel sweetness. Hops are there but, not real strong. It has a flowery finish. The mouthfell is medium to light. A tad watery. Lots of carbonation. Another American Marzen beer that I feel is lacking. I'm going to try to stick to European Marzens for now on if this keeps up.

Photo of kimcgolf
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours from the bottle to a hazy burnt orange with very little head or lacing, and a nose that is malty cookie dough and candy, with a faint side of hops, apples and citrus fruit. Mourthfeel is fairly flat and non-descript, and I actually picked up the hoopy apples more than the malt side in the taste. No alcohol ever makes itself know, and the finish is so-so.

Photo of IceTrey9785
2.9/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Part of my Oktoberfest collection -- poured a 12oz bottle into a nice beer stein. I enjoyed this with Brats...

A: If poured blind I would have said this was a Yuengling. Nice orangey-gold color. Pretty good head, but rather stiff and airy. The foam never really went away, but didn't add to the overall presentation. Maybe closer to an Amber lager?

S: Very crisp and malty. I expected this beer to be a little on the sweet side, some yeast and sweet bread notes were overwhelming. Traces of alcohol at the end. Appetizing, not overdone.

T&M: Rather thin and watery. Lacked the bold mouthfeel that I was really expecting. I found it be lacking in flavor -- a lot lighter, and crisper than what I was hoping. Touches of brown sugar dusted cinnamon rolls hit me on the finish (along with a metallic twang). The hops were a little too overbearing -- I got a bone dry sensation after a few minutes. Overall, I just found it to taste rather cheap and watered down, but with huge potential.

Perhaps I just had a bad bottle? I don't know. All I really know is that I wasn't impressed by this brew. I paid $10 for a beer that tasted like a Yuengling (which I could've gotten for half the price). Is it a bad beer -- no, its just a beer that lacks concentration and leaves a mild-mannered impression. Hopefully next year's will be up to par.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a standard shaker "pint" glass. Appears a hazed golden amber color with about two fingers of pillowy off white foam. Nose and flavors are of medium toasted grains, a good dose of sweet malt, grassy, fruity hops. A notch or two better than medium bodied and adequately carbonated for it's style. One of my favorite marzens. By all means, check it out if you are a fan.

Photo of HalfFull
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap in a pint glass from notes, Oct. 2008. Pours a mostly clear reddish amber in color with a thin cap. Retention is brief and lacing is thin.

Light hops on the nose, warming up to yield some sweet toasted malts. Offers some more noticeable noble hops only when agitated aggressively.

Somewhat malty on the tongue, thick and simple with a uniform malt presence and a touch of woodsy spice. Rather bitter and smoky on the finish in sharp contrast to the initial sweetness. Carbonation was high and resulted in some oscillation between sweet and dry in the second half of the glass. Too confusing to reach for again.

Photo of allergictomacros
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mostly clear copper with a smallish head of foam. Slight caramel nose with some toasted grain and light citrus and herbs. Flavour is rich malt with some light fruit and toasted character. Hints of coffee. Light bodied and quite fizzy, fairly dry and very drinkable.

Photo of Rennpferd
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It poured pale yellow, it had a golden hue. It had a two finger head. It was very active.

It had a well balanced scent of malt, and floral hops.

It had a good malt, and hop flavor. It had an astringent off flavored finished. It was medium bodied.

It is a drinkable beer. If it did not have that off finish, it would be much better.

Photo of drtth
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review actually written in January 09 while drinking the last bottle from a case.

Lightly chilled and poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: Clear dark orange/amber with a 1" thick white head that lasts a long time and leaves lacing and thin layer of foam on surface.

Smell: The aroma is fresh and has malt mixed with faint floral hops.

Taste: The flavor is complex with rich and bready malty sweetness, some mild caramel and/or toffee with subtle floral hops in the background.

Mouthfeel: Mouthfeel is medium bodied with nice creamy carbonation. The finish is long and dry with an interplay of sweet bready malt balanced by a mild bitterness.

Drinkability: This is a very tasty and drinkable beer and I could do several in an evening. One of the nicest festbiers I've tried.

Photo of malcontent
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bright, clear amber with only a touch of white head to show.

Aromas of cherries in syrup, toffee and a whiff of corn syrup in there as well.

All malt for the most part with a bit of that same morello cherry flavor from the nose. Slightly bready with a little lingering caramel sweetness. Nearly no hop presence although the bitterness is detectable if only faintly.

Not a mold-breaking Marzen by any stretch and not the normal cut-above job achieved by Victory. Still, this isn't nearly as bad as other reviewers have mentioned and I find this to be plenty drinkable even a month after its freshness date has expired.

Photo of ROBORB
2.75/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a regular pint glass this beer produced a amber hue with a short lasting 1 finger white head. The aroma smells like like malts and perhaps sugar/something sweet. The carbonation is light but the taste is not great. I felt like this beer really goes outside of the regular Marzen characterization. Unfortunately this is not a repeat for me.

Photo of DijonKetchup
2.75/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice amber pour - very appetizing color. Head collapsed within minutes despite a perfectly clean glass. The dissipated foam then took on an unappetizing feel - looks like it actuall has floaties in it.

Taste is OK - I had expected more. Very malty and dry - almost over-hopped. I'm missing a bit of sweetness. I keep pouring, hoping that the head will build - too cold? No lacing, and I give up trying to make this more appealing.

Mouthfeel is good, I suppose average for the style. The aftertaste is rather unpleasant, with a bit of metallic. Where are the aroma hops? Now i know it's overhopped, as my teeth are grinding like an IPA - definately not in accordance to style.

I have heard much from Victory, but I just don't get this one. I do like the style, but this is off. A bit too free-wheeling in the interpretation of Festbier.

Photo of kkipple
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A. Good 'n clear. Bold amber-orange with a little fizz and a smallish toasted tan head. Retention is just ok. No lacing here.

S. Fine grainy and sweet malt profile. Crisp lager bite, nice reserved caramel sugars, the slightest touch of bittering hops. Not complex, but it shouldn't be. Very clean, very well put together. Impressive.

T, M. Taste follows - this is a very good Marzen. Slightly nutty and grainy malt sweetness conjures up visions of chill autumn afternoons spent in treehouses. The hops provide some balance and earthy notes. The finish is long and mildly sweet with a starchy, bready and nearly pumpkin quality. Very clean and well-nigh flawless, extremelly sessionable. Mouthfeel is well carbonated and fine-tuned for gulping. A six pack of this would die fast in the right hands... perhaps yours?

D. Very high if you like this sort of thing. Would go great with meaty and starchy dishes like bratwurst or a Shepard's pie.

Festbier is an above-average Marzen and one of the better American examples I've had. Recommended for those of us who can't afford a trip to Munich. This is good beer.

Photo of praufs01
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Clear copper color with a creamy off-white head.

Aroma - Sour dough bread dipped in extra virgin olive oil and fresh rosemary.

Mouthfeel - Moderate small bubble carbonation. Clean, but not thin.

Taste - Bready tasting with caramel and bitter orange.

Overall - the taste experience is one dimensional form start to finish. A good brew that is very sessionable.

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle tried 15 Nov 2008.

Poured in 0.4 L glass stein. Small parchment colored head. Medium carbonation. Clear rusty copper color. Aroma is light, slight maltiness and apples. Flavor is also light, caramel and pecans. Moderate maltiness. Finishes somewhat acrid. Medium light body. Alcohol very light.

Not my favorite from Victory.

Photo of Fredk24
3.43/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I snagged a forlorn bottle of this beer from my local package store's shelf a week ago, and I'm just getting to it. Sadly there is no production or freshness date on the bottle.

Upon pouring, the beer has a nice copper color to it, with a decent, quickly dissipating head.

The smell is unobtrusive, if anything there is a smell of slightly sour bread.

Decent maltiness, thin-to-medium body. Finishes clean.

I prefer Harpoon Octoberfest to this one because it has a deeper malt flavor. I'll probably give this another try next October.

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.35/5  rDev -9%
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.

Photo of jimsimply
2.7/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Well past its Enjoy by date, this poured a hazy amber into a pint glass with thin head. Not much aroma at all, a faint yeasty smell is all I can discern.

Taste is not much better. I generally like Victory's beers, but this isn't fantastic. Fairly sweet, but lighter in the mouth than I like, almost watery consistency. Carbonation there, but it doesn't add much.

All in all, not my favorite Oktoberfest by any stretch. I had to force myself to finish it.

Photo of Brewnami
4.38/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I just found this in the back of my fridge and I forgot how good it is. This particular one is not the freshest Victory Festbier I've had as I bought this in October and its been sitting in my fridge for almost 4 months, but its still great. Honestly one of my favorite Oktoberfest beers. I put this one up there with Paulaner and Spaten. Best American Oktoberfest I've had so far. Obviously you probably wont be finding this very easily right now and perhaps it may be best to wait for August of this year to try it for the first time. Sweet and malty, crisp and clean, very drinkable. Highly recommended for Oktoberfest fans.

Photo of magnj
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a - Orangey Amber color, 1 finger head settles to a faint ring. Quite a bit of bubbles rising from the bottom, fairly clear.

s - Fruity, a little dry.

t - Banana and Orange. Not real malty, sweet or hoppy. Has a slight twang. It really tastes like a Hefeweizen without the Belgian yeast. It's not bad but I've had better Octoberfests.

m/d - Pretty thin, flavor lasts only briefly. Sessionable but not too tasty. On the low side of carbonation. I bought this mid December on a whim. It's now mid January and probably past it's prime...I'll have to give it another chance next year.

EDIT: Bottle was in fact past it's Enjoy by date...but they must be drank.

Festbier from Victory Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,664 ratings.