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Samuel Adams Octoberfest - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest

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

5,203 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,203
Reviews: 1,917
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 49
Gots: 273 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-10-2001)
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Ratings: 5,203 | Reviews: 1,917 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Groomsy
Groomsy

Kentucky

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with "Best by" of January, poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: The beer pours a clear copper, almost light brown with highlights of orange in the light. Topped by a one-finger head of white foam that fades fairly quickly with spotty, wispy lacing in its wake. Carbonation is persistent and steady to the top of the glass. A nice looking brew.

Aroma: Along the same lines as some other offerings from SA, but enhanced - fruity hops (think green apples), a touch of grass, some caramel and grain sweetness, and just a kiss of fresh baked bread. Definitely has "fall seasonal" written all over it; just balanced enough to stake off any cloying sweetness from the malt, though a very malty beer overall. Digging it.

Taste: The malt takes the forefront of the taste with flavors of caramel and toffee, sugary and sweet. This is followed by a flash of herbal and grassy hops, which linger into the finish where flavors of bread hang around on the back of the tongue with some subtle flavors of honey. Very "full" and rounded malt flavor here, just kept in check by the hops. Not super-filling, but very crisp and refreshing. A nice drinking lager.

Mouthfeel: Rich medium body, but still crisp and refreshing. Maybe a little too heavy for sessionable drinking, but definitely fitting for a fall brew, and on par for Sam Adams' beers. Some kick from the carbonation, but not fizzy. Finishing flavors are slightly cloying, but not too bad.

Overall: Another nice seasonal from Sam Adams, and my personal favorite from their seasonal line-up other than Noble Pils. Not as good as I remember it being on tap, which I'll have to try again. Nevertheless, a supremely drinkable and full-flavored fall beer that's good for just about anything and can be found anywhere.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2011 01:58:54 | More by Groomsy
Photo of Mustard
Mustard

District of Columbia

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz. brown bottle with a "for brewery-fresh taste, purchase before month notched" warning -- in this case February (2004) -- printed on the label's leftmost corner; $6.99/6 pack from Ralph's; drank this after eating a spoonful of horseradish mustard (hence the handle).

Appearance: Pours a brilliantly clear amber-brown with a fat, foamy, three-fingered head; head retention absolutely stellar -- two of those fingers made it down to the bottom of my 20oz. pint glass; thick, foam lacing.

Aroma: Toasted Munich and Caramel malts with notes of noble hops and a slight fruitiness.

Taste: Upfront, much like its aroma; a light to moderate hop bitterness (earthy) fights its way out in time, as does a touch of grain. All in all lightly sweet and moderately malty with a touch of bitterness.

Notes: A respectable rendition of the Oktoberfest style. Slightly superior taste profile to that of Paulaner's Märzen, which I drank juxtapositionally.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2003 04:32:44 | More by Mustard
Photo of ckollias
ckollias

Maryland

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this 12 oz bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Mahogany in color with a white, 1.5 finger head that quickly dissipates leaving no trail down the glass and ending in a white wispy lace.

S: Strong malty musty aroma. Smells slightly sweet and slighly hoppy.

T: Malty flavor dominates this beer. It is slightly sweet and a hint of hops to balance it out.

M: Medium carbonation and medium body,

O: This is a so-so Oktoberfest. I've had better and this one almost seems a little watered down. I enjoyed it, but it nothing I would look for again.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 02:01:15 | More by ckollias
Photo of jeffmonarch
jeffmonarch

Maryland

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Dark orange brown with little head.

S - Spices and honey. Semi-sweet.

T - Smooth and spicey. Nice crisp flavor with a good finish.

M - Light to medium bodied with good carbonation.

D - I love this beer. This is my favorite Octoberfest beer and i'm so happy that it is out this early.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2008 22:14:03 | More by jeffmonarch
Photo of Bruiser81
Bruiser81

Kansas

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearence was deep amber. Head was minimal diminishing quickly. However it did leave a fat lip around the edges and some lacing.
Smell was faint but consisted of caramel, sweet malt and a slight whiff of alcohol which I thought was weird. Almost a bit sour smelling.
The taste was pretty damn good. Not very heavy but refreshing. Dominated by malt. A little sweet up front followed by caramel and toffee, although none of it was very distinct.
Mouthfeel was a bit thin. I think this is my favorite Octoberfest so far this season. I'm not a huge fan of the style which is maybe why I like it. Not as much of a flavor profile as others but still good.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2003 02:28:26 | More by Bruiser81
Photo of Smittysguinness
Smittysguinness

Michigan

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured from the tap into my glass in a nice amer hue. It left a thin, off-white head that disappeared quickly (no big deal; more beer for me!).

I smelled a very floral smell to the hops, and a nice sweet malt. I picture, like a Bugs Bunny cartoon, little fingers of scent beckoning me towards the beer as I lift off my feet and float towards it. Yummy!

The taste was very sweet, almost syrupy, with a nice balance of hops. My only disappointment was that it wasn't as full-bodied as some of the other Oktoberfests I've been quaffing, like the Hacker-Pschorr. Sam Adams always crafts a great beer, but their last few seasonals have been, I think, maybe "dumbed-down" just a little bit for the general masses. A little watery and not as full-bodied as the past. But hey...I ain't gonna kick it out of my fridge, you know!

Mouthfeel, again, was a bit watery, but on the up-side, it didn't leave that high-alcohol feel on my tongue that other beers of its alcohol level can sometimes do.

Drinkability: absolutely. I'm a sucker for Sammy A, so even though it wasn't everything I hoped for, I'm still going back for more!

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2005 21:07:04 | More by Smittysguinness
Photo of dfitch81
dfitch81

Oregon

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm a big fan of Ayinger and Paulaner's Oktoberfest brews. IMHO, when it comes to Märzens these two are the ones to beat - a feat that Sam Adams' Octoberfest does not manage. That said, however, Sam Adams' interpretation has absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. This is a highly satisfying, well-crafted Märzen. Even better, its less expensive than the Germans and its brewed right here in the grand ol' US of A.

Color is a perfect autumnal copper-orange. There is room for improvement in the head, which quickly thins and ends up as a whispy ring confined to the sides of the glass. Lacing is entirely absent.

Smell was barely there at first. I had to really bury my nose in the glass to pick anything up. Eventually detected faint aroma of caramel and alcohol. Nose emerged more fully with warming, with the alcoholic character giving some ground to a subtle spiciness (nutmeg, a little cinammon).

Tastes of caramel with a hint of honey, pronounced toasted crackery malts, minimal hopiness - just enough to contain the sweetness. Subtle spiciness detected in the nose is also present here. Smooth mouthfeel with moderate carbonation complements the flavor perfectly, and although the palate definetly leads toward the sweet side, this is still quite drinkable.

All in all this is a very good - if not great - beer. Recommended without reservation, would buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2010 01:24:24 | More by dfitch81
Photo of greybeardloon
greybeardloon

Rhode Island

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

best before March

A: Clear, dark red with a fluffy head.

S: Herbal hops and lager yeast byproducts.

T: Primarily buttery, bready malt that avoids being too sweet. There are earthy and herbal hops (which take on an almost medicinal quality as the beer warms) and something like apple cider in the mix too. (The apple cider isn't bad.) The flavors are well balanced.

M: Crisp and prickly.

O: Pleasant and very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2011 00:38:35 | More by greybeardloon
Photo of tronester
tronester

Oklahoma

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This Marzen is a dark reddish orange in color. Had no head when served to me. Smells of faint grain. This is a malt fan's beer. Quite a rich, sweet grain flavor, with a hint of hops to round it off. Full mouthfeel with good carbonation. Quite drinkable as well.

Serving type: on-tap

11-04-2007 04:31:30 | More by tronester
Photo of Jacobob10
Jacobob10

New Jersey

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep orange/amber color with a small head. Little lacing is left behind but the head disappates fairly rapidly. Malty aroma that is not overpowering. The taste is full of roasted and caramel malts. The balance is thrown a little towards the malty side, however the hops are still noticable. Slightly dry, bitter mouthfeel keeps this from being an outstanding session brew. I always look forward to this brew when the fall season comes rolling around.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2005 15:59:33 | More by Jacobob10
Photo of dpend
dpend

Florida

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I agree with what "beerluvr" said about this beer being different in the past.It seems to be more malty and syrupy than that of previous years.The carbonation appeared to be off as well(not as sticky).I did drink this as soon as it was released as opposed to drinking last years after it had aged a bit.Some guys at my work had questioned the difference too, so I knew I wasn't crazy.All in all a good beer, but not a favorite and I will hesitate next year.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2002 12:12:18 | More by dpend
Photo of Mosstrooper
Mosstrooper

California

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a light caramel color with a large orangeish head. The head is thick, dissipates quickly, with only a little bit of lace.

Smell: Smells sweet and a bit roasted. All kinds of malts.

Taste: Starts with a slightly sweet flavor, ending with hints of caramel. Again, all kinds of malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, balanced carbonation.

Drinkability: A good Octoberfest beer and, once again, a solid effort from Sam Adams. This is my go-to O-fest beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2009 01:11:54 | More by Mosstrooper
Photo of NClifestyle
NClifestyle

North Carolina

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

After year upon year tasting of this seasonal, I know that this isn't the best Oktoberfest beer out there. However, I still have a place in my gut for this brew, and I still love it.
Pours up a great clear orange/red color with lots of bubbles and thick, barely off white head. Drops to a thin layer over the rest of the beer.
Smells of slightly sweet malt and some spicyness in there as well. Taste is a sugar bread malt thing at the front, with a fizzy hop taste in the back. A great balance of malt and hop, and a solid, crisp aftertaste. As it warms, the brew gets more bitter, less sweet, but that's not a bad thing.
There are just enough bubbles to keep things lively in the mouth, and I think I could drink quite a few of these beers.
I always crack a huge smile when I see the first glimpse of the purple and orange box of Sam Adams Octoberfest. Mmmmm.

cheers...

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2005 00:30:56 | More by NClifestyle
Photo of BretSikkink
BretSikkink

Mexico

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tan lace over an orange-brown, Octoberfest-looking beer. Head retention is pretty good since there wasn't much volume to start with.

Toasty, lightly sweet aroma; mostly malt here but some faint hops also present.

Not too sweet, but caramel malt is the show here. Toasted flavors, slightly biscuity, with a hint of herbal hopping. Malt lingers after the crisp, slightly oily mouthfeel.

Nice balance, excellent and fresh domestic Octoberfest. Prost!

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2007 19:58:09 | More by BretSikkink
Photo of donteatpoop
donteatpoop

Ohio

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice orangey blush color with good a retention of white head.

Smells like beer. Hops, mostly. Nothing special.

Tastes good, the hops are present but not overpowering, the malt provides a light caremal sweetness to it.

Feels a bit creamy in the mouth. Easy to drink, goes down smooth.

Surprisingly one of the best Octoberfests that I've had this year.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2008 05:40:11 | More by donteatpoop
Photo of beersheppard
beersheppard

Texas

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear amber with tan head that retreats rather quickly, decent lacing.

Smell: caramel malts

Taste: caramel malts mask hop flavoring, I also detect some black tea notes and toffey undertones.

Mouthfeel: not overly carbonated, but nice presence on the tongue.

Drinkability: easy drinking pleasant tasting marzen. Nice to have at this time of the year. I won't miss it too much though come

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2008 03:32:35 | More by beersheppard
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sam Adams Octoberfest is a myriad of the quintessentially fall-time shades of auburn and amber. It is a snapshot of autumn foliage. On the whole, it is quite dazzling; fiery tones of red and coppery glazed oranges flare up when the beer is held against the light. Like its clarity, a majority of the head persists. Although the bulk of it resides along the bumpers there is a thin film that manages to cloak the surface. Lacing drapes the glass.

The aroma exhumes a lot of sulfur. Don't be alarmed - this is common in many lagers. It isn't anything unappetizing but it's not exactly enticing either (and the sizable hint of diacetyl isn't helping things). But that sulfur element is definitely characteristic of many lagers and it is one you can likely learn to live with - if not come to enjoy. Besides, swirling seems to eradicate most of it. You might also note caramel and dried fruit.

A profoundly malty flavour hints at notes of caramel, crackers and cranberries. It is distinctly sweet; a trace amount of hops is detectable but contributes nothing more than a dash of earthiness. The aftertaste has a lengthy linger and leaves your tongue in the clutches of sulfur and dried fruits. I wish this was served in one of those giant 2 liter steins :(

I could probably drink at least a few of those. No kidding. This is one extremely sessionable lager. It is smooth and deliciously sweet. The maltiness is sufficient to provide flavour but not heavy enough to weigh you down. I'm not only drinking this in gulps but have actually caught myself chugging it. To call it quenching is an understatement. Admittedly, I wouldn't know where to draw the line drinking this one.

No wonder Oktoberfest is such a big celebration. Any type of beer this good - especially one only released seasonally - deserves its own ceremony and commemoration. This is a gorgeous, distinctly flavorful, endlessly sessionable lager - in other words, this is a beer perfectly designed for festivities. And you can bet Sam Adams' version will definitely be a source of merriment in my house each fall from here in.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2009 01:23:58 | More by biegaman
Photo of montecristo2
montecristo2

New Jersey

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

I love October and this is why-Octoberfest Beers!

This is a nice offering- pours a off white head, two fingers in width.

Smells bready, malty, and a bit of caramel.

The smell doesn't last once you get halfway down- I miss that smell and wish it would stay.

Amber/copper color, very little lacing on the sides of the glass.

This is a malty beer- 5 styles used for this. I definitely find this to be the predominant ingredient and you can taste it. I get a little hop bitterness, but very little. Maybe that could be more pronounced?

For an octoberfest style, this is a good one to drink all night. It is a low alcohol, tasty and totally drinkable. Worth a try.

Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2010 23:14:33 | More by montecristo2
Photo of Fazulka
Fazulka

Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Good beer - I've had it before and bought a case of bottles. Poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance - Poured with some head that dissolved quickly and left no lacing on the glass. The beer looks exactly as an Octoberfest beer should - a rich dark amber color.

Smell - Rich strong smell of malt, molasses and caramel. I don't detect hops.

Taste - Tasting this reminds me of the brewing process. The taste is a nice grainy / barley / cereal taste that makes me think of tasting the used grains after the mash. There is a present malt taste. There is an aftertaste of the beer that makes me think of Sam Adams Boston lager, although not nearly as strong.

Mouthfeel - The beer is smooth, and thick. There is a light carbonation, but it is not under carbonated.

Drinkability - Easy to drink for a fairly strong beer. The low carbonation makes it go down easily.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2010 04:05:38 | More by Fazulka
Photo of marburg
marburg

Michigan

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rusty amber tones with a rapidly disintegrating head that starts big, fluffy, and off-white and retreats to a small-ish film. Lightly hopped aroma laced with bits of holiday spices and a clear malt presence (as it should be, dammit!) Fairly filling for a medium-bodied lager. Very smooth and malty sweet. Not spectacularly complex or original or even perfectly on-style but pretty cohesive and very well balanced. Toasted malts and just the slightest estery quality rounds it out nicely. Hops don't quite clean up the finish all the way. With the familiar Sammy label staring you in the face, this is probably a good Marzen to use on unsuspecting folks in early-fall beer conversions.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2003 22:16:14 | More by marburg
Photo of PittBeerGirl
PittBeerGirl

Pennsylvania

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Its been almost a year since the SA winter mixed case introduced me to the fine world of craft beer and this is the last SA seasonal left for me to sample.

A- Completely transparent dark amber body that pours with 1 finger foamy off-white head. Head quickly fades to a thin collar and little lacing is left behind in the glass. Bubbles are seen constantly rising to the top.

S-Nose is subtle. Warm caramel malt upfront and a cool refreshing hop scent in the background.

T- A balance of caramel malt and toffee upfront with a slight edge of hop bitterness. The flavor peaks and becomes more intense for the finish but shows the same balance as the initial flavor. An abundance of toffee and caramel malt lingers with no hop presence.

M-Carbonation is high and assaults the tongue. Medium bodied and full.

D- This is a nice Oktoberfest beer made by BBC. Not the best O-fest but still decent and very drinkable. I probably won't buy this again before the O-fests leave the shelves for the winter seasonals.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2007 17:17:20 | More by PittBeerGirl
Photo of ckeegan04
ckeegan04

Texas

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Clear orange color with hints of amber. Light tan one-finger head with decent retention and unremarkable lacing.

S - Very faint bready malt aroma with hints of spicy/herbal hops. A little doughy sweetness in the nose as well.

T - Strong taste of bready and doughy malts with a lingering sweetness. A herbal spiciness comes through mid-drink and provides a nice balance.

M/D - Medium bodied that seems to thin as it warms. A very drinkable O-fest but not one of the best I have had.

Serving type: on-tap

10-08-2008 14:56:24 | More by ckeegan04
Photo of 1fastz28
1fastz28

Illinois

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

probably the first octoberfest i ever tried, never got around to reviewing it till now. pours a nice amber color with a white fluffy head, aroma is of a biscuity maltiness, slight sugary caramel also in the nose. taste if malty again, i can't decipher any hop note at all. mouthfeel i a bit watery, and could use some body. drinkability is high cause it is a pretty good all around beer at a good price sam again does a nice job

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2007 00:11:55 | More by 1fastz28
Photo of Gambrinus1184
Gambrinus1184

Connecticut

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured on-tap at the Red Door in Watertown, Conn.

A: This brew poured a dark orange with a 1/4 inch head that disappeared rather quickly. Nice color, not too bad of a lace.

S: Smells sweet and toasty, with definitive malt sweetness and some sugary grain thrown into the mix for good measure.

T: Taste is sweet and malty, just as you would expect from the smell. It tastes like a fuller-bodied Red Ale that's been given more malt, and thus, more character.

M: Mouthfeel is medium to full-bodied, I'd say, for an American Marzen. Not too heavy to enjoy more than a couple.

D: Drinkability is high, despite the higher than average ABV tap offering; it's smooth and tasty, and too good to turn down, given the season we're in. So many of these could be had.

This particular night, it's all that could be had, and for a change in seasonal brews, I say, welcome to the Oktoberfest season, with this American offering of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

09-22-2007 06:10:12 | More by Gambrinus1184
Photo of malcontent
malcontent

Illinois

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep, clear auburn body crowned by an imposing head that unfortunately recedes more quickly than I'd like.

Great scents of honey and apple skins support the gloriously malty nose. Iced tea attributes creep up on the finish.

Rich roasted undertones compliment a robust but controlled malt sweetness. Apple-y notes surface once again with a brown sugar theme throughout. Moderate bitterness tempers the sweetness somewhat on the conclusion.

Thick without any syrupy tendencies, carbonated without leaning toward fizzy. A tad heavy but that's the nature of the style.

This has really renewed my faith in Boston Brewing Co. after suffering through their dreadful summer line-up. Mr. Koch, more beers like this, please!

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2007 15:26:20 | More by malcontent
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 5,203 ratings.