1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Festbier - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
FestbierFestbier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

1,596 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,596
Reviews: 723
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 13.32%
Wants: 26
Gots: 94 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Festbier Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,596 | Reviews: 723 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beernut
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle a nice amber/orange color with a head that lasted maybe 10 seconds, no lacing at all. Aroma of caramel, malts and some spices. Pleasant taste, with some caramel and spice. Full bodied and pretty smooth with a touch of hops. Carbonation is not too heavy, very little if any. A good beer for the fall.

beernut, Sep 12, 2008
Photo of gabeerfan
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear reddish-amber color with a nice 1"-ish very light tan head that falls to a thin cap.
Light aromas but still distinct aromas of toffee and caramel, some breadiness. Light hop aroma as well.
Lagery twang followed by dark and/or toasted bread, toffee, caramel and hop bitterness.
Light-medium mouthfeel. Good carbonation.
Quite drinkable. Meets the goal of a good Oktoberfest in that I could down several of these without too much worry.
A very good example of one of my favorite beer styles.

gabeerfan, Sep 12, 2008
Photo of Kolsch
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: On tap at home.

Appearance:very inviting dark amber with 1 inch head that dwindles to a wisp

Smell: malt and light hop

Taste: exceptional taste! Great balance of malt and hop produces a flavorful but not too sweet lager. I like marzen's when they are not malt heavy and this fits the bill.

Note: when I first had this on my tap system, I was not too impressed at all. But after having it on a couple of weeks now, this has really grown on me and is something I will have again.

Kolsch, Sep 11, 2008
Photo of SiriusAth
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into a pint glass a clear light amber, almost reddish brown with a minimal head, just a collar really. Some lacing is evident but not much.

The nose is full of malty goodness. It has the classic marzen aromas of caramel, toffee, and a nice toastiness; lovely. Hops play second fiddle to the malt with a slight herbal character.

The taste is similar to the aroma. It starts toasty with toffee and caramel sweetness and glides along to a mild herbal hop finish with a touch of bready/doughy flavors lingering after. Balance in this brew is wonderful.

Body seems to fall somewhere between light and medium; the beer goes down very smooth and easy. Clean, fairly crisp, good carbonation.

I am a marzen fan, and Victory doesn't dissapoint with a good interpretation of the style. It's not mind blowing, but it is tasty and I could easily drink quite a few of these back to back and still come back for more. Prost!

SiriusAth, Sep 09, 2008
Photo of glid02
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this from Green's in Atlanta.

Pours a completely clear amberish-brown color with a head of just under one finger. Head recedes pretty quickly to a wispy layer of bubbles on top and a very thin ring around the glass.

Smells good. Lots of bready and sweet malt aromas, with some noble hops. There's also some caramel in there.

Tastes about the same as it smells. The sweetness brings itself to the front a bit more than in the smell, and there's a good amount of bitterness at the end.

Mouthfeel is a good, but a bit thin. However, the carbonation is good and it goes down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. The tastes are pretty well-balanced the whole way through, and they go down pretty easily.

Overall this beer really doesn't differentiate itself from any other Ofests, but it's a solid offering. Worth a shot.

glid02, Sep 09, 2008
Photo of Gmann
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice coppor color with a small and short lived head that settled into nothing, bit disappointing. The aroma is of a steely caramel malt, bit bready and grainy. The taste has a nice bready malt base, caramel, touch of grain, not much noticable hops; pretty clean. Nice moderate feel, with semi-soft carbonation, chewy; finishes slightly dry. An good example of an American Oktoberfest; nice bready caramel malt. I expected a bit more of a hop presence from Victory but this malty lager does well.

Gmann, Sep 07, 2008
Photo of Jayli
3.3/5  rDev -10.3%
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.

Jayli, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of GilGarp
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from a 12oz brown bottle into a pint glass. Good 1.5" head, golden amber brown color, great clarity, no lacing.

Aroma is mostly malty with just a hint of hops.

Flavor is considerably better than the aroma would have me believe. There's a great balance between sweetness and bitterness. It has German malts which definatly shine here and the hops are just right.

Mouthfeel is good, medium body, medium to low carbonation. Very drinkable and a likely candidate for session beer of the autumn. As the temps didn't even hit 60 today, I think of this as a great beer to lead into the cooler months ahead.

GilGarp, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of LumpyGuitar
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Picked this up on a whim, I'm a sucker for seasonals.

Poured a crisp amber with an orangey hue. Thin white head and no lacing.

Smell is faintly earthy, with a faint waft of hop and yeast.

Taste is pretty average fare for the style, bittersweet with a mild hop presence, yeast is sharper than I'd like.

Mouthfeel is again average. Fairly light with a decent amount of carbonation.

Drinkability here is lower for me. I can tell from others in the style what I think this should be - clean, crisp, with a light hop feel and a nice and easy mouthfeel and drinkability. I can't say that this doesn't match that profile, but what I can say is that it doesn't do it very well, at least the way I like it. Theres better out there but this is a good try.

LumpyGuitar, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of Oxymoron
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A new beer available as Supermarket Liquors in Ft Collins. Pours a sparkling clear amber color with a hint of orange. A soft white head and good retention and lacing throughout the tasting.

The nose is more along the commercial European O-fest beers. A light malt note with a more pilsner aroma. Subtle hints of Vienna and a very feint note of Munich. Some nice earthy hop aromas a detectable but light as should be. Very clean yeast aroma with a crispness to it.

The taste is similar. A bigger Pilsner flavor with a more noticeable Vienna quality than the nose first indicated. Again limited Munich quality. Hops come out more in the finish and really balance the malt side well. Very clean yeast flavors, no faults. I suppose this is more of a preference, but I really would like to see more Munich to balance this out. Has more of a Vienna Lager quality.

The body is moderate with a nice balance sweetness. Good light carbonation. Overall, there are very few faults and very clean tasty beer. My problem is the malt bill. Would like the toasty caramel flavor to come out. Really tough for me to knock this beer. Sigh.

Oxymoron, Sep 04, 2008
Photo of Greenlabel
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased a very fresh 6-pack at Julio's Liquors in Westboro, MA in the first week that Octoberfests arrived on the scene.

This is a very solid but a bit short of exceptional Octoberfest. Pours an attractive amber color with reasonable head. According to the small print on the label side, this beer is "full bodied yet infinitely smooth" and "seductively malty with a kiss of the hops for balance." The brewer stated it well and I quite agree with that description. It's also described as an "Amber Lager" and this is probably a better category than the more common "Marzen" for this particular Octoberfest.

The 5.6% ABV does not assert itself in such a way as to be obvious. Not hard to enjoy more than one and I intend to do so. I didn't expect to be disappointed by a Victory product and I definitely wasn't with this one.

Greenlabel, Sep 02, 2008
Photo of Lexluthor33
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This amber colored beer had a small head and a little lace.It had the aroma of malts,caramel and some light fruit notes.
The taste was sweet and pretty much followed up with malts,caramel and fruit hints.
The feel was thin,light beer with medium carbonation and a smooth finish.

Notes: An o.k. beer with good drinkability.Decent balance and while I may have expected more I can not say this was not worthy.

Lexluthor33, Aug 31, 2008
Photo of maddogruss
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this at the Cloverleaf Tavern last week.

A: Pours a dark, amber body with a thick and very silky, white head with excellent retention and lacing all the way to the finish.

S: A slight, sweet malt smell that was fairly average.

T: A sweet malty taste that seemed a little bit watered down. A bit of a sweet, honey aftertaste, but nothing too impressive.

M: A pretty watery and fairly thin mouthfeel that I felt hurt the overall drinking experience with this one. Not impressed.

D: A fairly drinkable beer, but the mouthfeel seemed like it needed a little work. The taste was okay, but could have been a little more robust. Overall, a fairly drinkable beer, but nothing too impressive.

My friend picked up a growler of this from the brewery and claims the beer tastes better from the growler. I will try it out and write a review on that; I am hoping for a better drinking experience with a "more fresh" Festbier.

maddogruss, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of opwog
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Now listening to: Eek-A-Mouse - Wa Do Dem

Had this early arriving Oktoberfest beer on tap thanks to Beechwood!

A - copper color with exceptional clarity. Nice head that is perfect to drink through.
S - mild malt and bread
T - grain bread, some citrus, clean finish
M - Typical medium body for an American made Marzen. Maybe a little more carbonation than I like. Very dry finish.
D - Not overly strong in alchohol, not too thick on the palate clean finish all make this a great beer to serve for your home Oktoberfest party.

opwog, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of aerozeppl
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

September looms.

A: Very nice reddish copper color. Poured with a finger and a half of white head. Very nice lacing. Just about picture perfect for the style.

S: Some spices up front then a wonderful bouquet of apples and other assorted harvest fruits. Lager smell in the back.

T: Nothing better than a fresh Marzen. The fruit is all up front. Almost like a fresh slice of an apple. The spice is there as well. Damn this yeast is nice.

M: Medium body with a slightly syrupy tone.

D: Half the reason people overlook this style is that the beer must be fresh. By the time most of the German imports get over here they are past their prime. When they are fresh they are a wonderful style. Really well done by Victory.

aerozeppl, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of treehugger02010
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got a growler of this at the Victory Brewpub in Dowingtown, Pa and poured it into a pint glass.
Appearance: It pours a dark amber, yet translucent body with a good sized light tan head on tap. The retention is good but the lacing is pretty much non-existent.
Smell: A mild aroma of caramel maltyness and earthy hops.
Taste: A bit of a hop bite, but mostly just sweetness from malt, a bit grainy.
Mouthfeel: Crisp.
Drinkability: Good.
Don't drink and review.

treehugger02010, Aug 25, 2008
Photo of Halcyondays
4.3/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours orange with a small white head, average retention.

S: Strong malt, light caramel, sweet.

T: Strong caramel and cereal malt flavours. Sweet, almost a pastry flavour. Hops are noble and give a light grassy and herbal feel, all around a great taste.

M: Carbonation is quite light, you could drink a lot of these, creamy, soft.

D: This is a really good marzen, my first of the season, even though it is only August. I would not hesitate to have this again, this is one of the best Oktoberfests I've ever had.

Halcyondays, Aug 22, 2008
Photo of DownDaHatch
2.55/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I have loved the Victory label, so I was excited to give this beer a whirl. The best I can say of this beer is that it is unremarkable. It certainly lacks complexity. I am certain it's intent is a munich-like style Octoberfest, but falls a bit flat. It looks wonderful, pours great, but generally stops there. The slightly malty nose is also a nice compliment. The taste seems hopless with some floral and fruit (Pear/apples?) undertones. It is medium bodied and copper colored and has a bit of a dry finish. I love Octoberfest beers, but this one left me a bit flat.

DownDaHatch, Aug 18, 2008
Photo of Proteus93
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle expired Feb. 24, 2008, consumed June 27th, so that's taken into consideration... purchased at The Wine Seller in Herndon, VA.

A: Deep orange / copper with a golden tinge. Nice and foamy finger five head. Retention is great, leaving a trime of lace well after the head dies down.

S: Modest malts, biscuity. A little on the doughy side. The hop aroma has held on a little, providing a touch of an herbal scent.

T: Bready, malts and a soft - definitly time-dwindled herbal hops which are rather muted. A little diacytal, perhaps.

M + D: Medium body, a subtle ABV - easy drinking, and something I look forward to retrying hot and fresh this fall, because the older brew manages to do alright.

Proteus93, Jul 22, 2008
Photo of Seanibus
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is an amazing session beer, a real pleasure to find on draft.

It pours a lovely reddish amber with light head. There is a pleasant but slight malty aroma. The flavor is of a perfect amber malt character with a light floral hop flavor, with hints of pear and apple on the finish. The mouthfeel is light, but more than a mere throwaway draft beer. This is an outstandingly drinkable beer, worth far more than the sum of its parts.

Seanibus, Jun 09, 2008
Photo of SurlyDuff
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this a couple times 2 years or more ago, back when I was lazy reviewing. Just having visited the brewery gave me the perfect motivation getting around to trying this one again (and reviewing it!).

Light copper with a monster head. Give it up for the bartender...sheesh.

Great Oktoberfest with bready yeast and malt representin'. Noble twang to the hops, with a spicy herbal/earthy profile. Good medium body with really wet mouthfeel. Sweet caramel and bitter hops hold up to eachother for a nice balance.

Good typical marzen abv makes this a fine drinker and something that won't knock you down before the nights begun. Good one Victory!

SurlyDuff, May 27, 2008
Photo of Drewcifer
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a fairly clear copper color with a finger's worth of light tan head.

Aroma is malty sweetness, bready tang, and some flowery hops.

Flavor is mostly bready, slightly sweet malts, pretty much no hops. Well balanced, but very mild flavors.

Mouthfeel is very good - a medium/light body, light carbonation, very smooth.

Overall, a very drinkable brew. One of the better American representations of the style, not as unique as some Marzens/'Festbiers, but very accessable.

Drewcifer, Mar 06, 2008
Photo of Biscuit033
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear copper with a two finger foamy white head.

S: Huge aroma of bread, crackers, toasted malts, and a bit of sweetness.

T: Crackers, toast, very slight sweetness, bitter hop flavors come through as well.

M: Creamy with a slight petulance, with a bitter yet dry finish.

D: This is one drinkable lager. The sweetness is nice balanced. I can't wait until the Victory Fall Fest.

Biscuit033, Feb 16, 2008
Photo of beerthulhu
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: light cranberry-amber color with a very light, thin tan head.

S: lighty toasted sweet munich/Vienna malt sweetness and bite followed by flowery hop notes.

T: The flavor had a nice dry flowery hop bitterness with a light graininess along with some sweet caramel that creeps in. The palate is fresh grains with some light notes of dry fruitiness.

M: The mouthful was medium bodied, lightly carbonated with light fresh grains on the tongue.

D: Drinkability was smooth though not as sweet as typical marzens, dry, hoppy with some wet grains make for a nice fest style.

beerthulhu, Feb 01, 2008
Photo of yourefragile
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle just a few days past best by date

A: Bright, clear copper with orange/brown tint. Cream/off white head that is thin and quickly dissipates to a film with little lacing
S: Mild mix of sweet from malt, caramel, etc and a little bitter. Nice, but not overpowering.
T: Medium body, very mild well balanced flavors (sweet and bitter). Toasted malt is most pronounced flavor with toffee, caramel flavors and a semi dry finish with some hop bitterness. Medium carbonation.

Overall, very easy to drink. Flavors are very mild, but not in a bad way. Very smooth and light in the mouth. Nothing bold going on here, but very good, probably my favorite of this style I had this year.

yourefragile, Jan 20, 2008
Festbier from Victory Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,596 ratings.