1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Samuel Adams Octoberfest - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest

Educational use only; do not reuse.

6,595 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,595
Reviews: 2,032
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 78
Gots: 1,031 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-10-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (120) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Octoberfest Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,595 | Reviews: 2,032 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dmfrench
3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Putrid fruity, but otherwise pleasant Oktoberfest

A: Clear red-orange body with a fleeting one finger off white head.

S: Some buttery biscuit malt, some sweet fruit, some nuttiness, and a very typical dusty, earth, and slightly spicy Bavarian hop profile. There's even a bit of alcohol, which I don't mind at all. The defining characteristic here is the fruitiness.... drifting toward Nut Brown territory.

T: Up front you're greeted by a large, impressive malty body, but that quickly gives way to a sort of putrid and metallic/hollow fruitiness that I can't say I'm enjoying. Hop flavors are pure bitterness and a lingering spice.

M: As stated before, the malt body is full and creamy for the ABV.

O: Some strong characteristics, but the taste blows it.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass. A nice amber color, transparent with a only a short white head and quickly disappeared to only barely cover the surface.
Smells good. Obvious wet malt, caramel and candy.
A little watery at first. Then a malt flavor being held back from being too much. Good balance there. Maybe too balance since there is not any flavors really coming through.
Very carbonated, light bodied.
Nice to drink except for the high carbonation level.

Photo of wrb357
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I remember having this beer many years ago and it sort of changed my outlook on German beers. Now, I know this is an American beer, but it's a German style, and now that I've developed more of a palate for beers of all types, coming back to it I find myself less mesmerized, but still enjoying the experience.

It looks good - nice amber hues. The head is pretty week, but it retains lacing. It looks like changing leaves of Fall.

Smells very spicy to the nose. One of the best qualities of the beer - instantly reminds you of pumpkins, nutmeg, the Fall air, etc.

The taste is less than I remember. Not less as in bland, more so it is less of an Oktoberfest taste (or Marzen taste) than I would like. It's very sweet - not sickly so, but less complex than say a Paulaner or a Spaten. Now, to be fair, Paulaner or Spaten may taste more watery - but that makes it easier to drink, in my opinion. Lots of spice notes to this one, some caramel - not bad at all, but maybe a bit too strong?

The taste carries over into the feel. It lingers on the tongue, but not in a completely satisfying way. I say this after having put back a few Paulaners (my favorite) so maybe my taste is a bit jaded. Will have to revisit this one tomorrow on a clear palate.

Overall, a good beer for the fall. Easily available gives it more points, and the fact that it's an American take on a German style that doesn't sacrifice any flavor gives it more points too.

I recommend trying it, especially for novices.

Photo of 3rdRowTailgater
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Pours a nice red, amber color with an off-white head.

Sweet, malty aroma. Bready.

The taste is sweet and falls in line with the aroma with a slight earthy note.

Good mouthfeel and carbonation and the lingering aftertaste is nice.

Photo of iSip
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Samuel Adams Oktoberfest: Out at a restaurant, I tried a bottle of Samuel Adams Oktoberfest. This beer had a translucent brown color, and thin off-white head which faded quickly. Not much carbonation. The aroma was pure roast malt. And so was the flavor, big and malty. Good, but not much complexity. Overall, I was hoping for more. And yes, I saw that it got a bronze medal in the 2011 GABF German-Style Marzen category.

Photo of aseiter
4.55/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the most anticipated releases annually for me, between the the beer and the weather this combination is not equaled by any other large brewer in America. As usual with SA October has a strong and spiced flavor that stays with your palette til the next gulp. The head doesn't remain as long as I would like but that doesn't mean the flavor disappears with it. Overall a beer that goes with any autumn activity!

Photo of obrike
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had one at my dad's during a visit yesterday.

Copper pour, fairly light head that did not last too long...very spotty lacing.

Fairly tame scent...sweet malt and not much else...maybe cinammon?

Wow, much more flavorful than I anticipated based on look and smell. The sweet malt was there, as was an almost spicey, peppery flavor. I really thought the combo was pretty good. Fairly carbonated, very sessionable. I woulda had a few more if there were any left.

Nice effort here by Sam Adams. I'll get this one again if I see it on sale.

Photo of falloutsnow
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drank from autumn seasonal pack, bought from Hyvee in Omaha, NE.

Poured into a standard US pint glass. Best before February 2012.

Pours a 1cm head, eggshell white in color, of medium-sized bubbles. Decreases over a minute to reveal a decent, if small amount of lacing. Residual is a ring around the glass. Body is a reddish amber color with orange highlights. Transparent with active carbonation.

Aroma is of very sweet maltiness and not much else.

Taste opens up with an aggressive amount of malt sweetness tempered with a background of herbal and semi-spicy hoppiness. Mid-taste of almost cloying sweetness with little hop presence. Aftertaste is of some breadiness. Would have liked something more than just sweetness and faint hops in the taste, like some more noticeable breadiness or biscuit character.

Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation, this is quite pleasant on the palate. Finish is dry.

A fairly satisfying American Oktoberfest, good, but not great. A bit cloying on the sweetness: not sure what malt profile they used, but I might tone it down a notch and focus on getting a few more flavors and scents into the batches.

Photo of kflorence
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a lovely amber color with a fair amount of off-white head that lasts and leaves lacing as you drink.

S: Smells of malts, caramel, roasted biscuits, hops and even a little pumpkin.

T: Palate follows the nose: caramelized malts, hops, bread, toffee and a bit of pumpkin. Very malt-heavy, but the hops are there. Finishes malty with a lingering aftertaste of bread and pumpkin.

M: Rather light on the tongue, a good amount of carbonation and a nice, creamy body. A good amount of substance here.

O: A pretty decent beer, but nothing special. Goes down smooth and easy and makes a nice addition to your fridge in the fall. One of the better brews from the fall seasonal variety pack. Still, there are far better options out there, but definitely worthy of a quaff.

Photo of Chaney
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Stone Brewing Co. pint glass.

A: Liquid came out a peppery orange color, like a melted orange popcicle, clear as a bell, with a good size ghost white head that retained itself throughout.

S: Faint malty puff, bready, and with a slight Amercan hop profile as opposed to a German one.

T: Bready, malty, and not very drying on the finish. I did get a slight bit of vomit on the aftertaste that went away after a few sips.

M: I dug the carbonation on this. The lacing basically fell back into the glass and the sweet elements didn't linger on the palate for too long.

O: The quintessential Americanized Octoberfest.

Photo of rebelthrower
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear reddish copper in color. Head is a off white in color. Very little lacing

S - Lightly toasted malts, bready, and caramel.

T - Malty at first, some caramel and sweet in the end.

M - crisp and clean. Smooth taste. Medium carbonation.

D - Very drinkable and refreshing.

Photo of Swarp
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. 09/30/2011

A locust honey color,one finger,short lived head, minimal lacing.

S sweet faint herbal and earthy somewhat bready.

T sweet slightly fruity bready malt. A bit tinny at the end.

M medium bodied soomewhat chewy nice overall and very drinkable.

O Just getting started with marzen style and find this a very enjoyable beer. I will have another.

Photo of hdf561
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I have been wanting to try this beer for a while

Surprisingly this is pretty good. Definetly heavier than the beers I normally frequent, but still very drinkable.

The only complaint I have is that it leaves my mouth EXTREMELY DRY even more so than Long Hammer IPA, other than that I would definetly get this beer again.

Photo of wordemupg
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into the perfect pint glass 28/9/11

A clear copper body with lots of big bubbles that feed a very short lived finger of head that leaves no lace

S dry cereal with some hard toffee, not much really what is there is pretty faint

T some fruity sweet malt is much stronger the smell and adds too it, a little bread and honey poke out as it warms

M light bodied with enough carbonation to give it some life, earthy aftertaste lingers for a little while

O decent but fairly plain, not much for smell and it looks pretty basic

I was told this is the largest craft brewery in the world, it that a better oxymoron then Military Intelligence?

Photo of ShanePB
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at Austin's into a standard pint glass.

A: Clear copper colored body with touches of burgundy throughout. A bubbly off-white head stuck around for a decent amount of time, but did eventually recede into absolutely nothing. No lace or retention which seems to be par for almost every beer in the style.

S: Lightly toasted malts, caramel, toffee and very bready notes make up the base of the aroma. Perhaps a hint of floral hops are towards the very back end for a split second but the rich, robust malt profile is the focus.

T: A touch of sweetness initially, but the malt profile comes in again midway through. It's more of the same, caramel, toasted malts, and bready/doughy flavors. There's a very clean quality about the taste that I attribute to not overloading this with an intense flavor. Nothing off or astringent in the finish, either.

M: Crisp, light and prickly on the palate. Again, it feels extremely clean coming and going without leaving anything behind to throw off the experience of the beer. To style, it's extremely good.

This is certainly one of the more easy drinking Oktoberfests on the market, and one that has proven to retain quality year after year while being made on a large scale. It's not the poster child for the style but one that is close enough to be extremely refreshing, crisp and enjoyable.

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.05/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a 2" beige head. Nice clear amber appearance. There's almost no smell, even after warmed, but what I do get would amount to malt. There's a slight hint of malt in the taste but nowhere near the five kinds of malt they claim in the ads. Wee bit of spicing. Hey, it's fine, a drinkable beer, and it does match the Fall season, but nothing blows me away here.

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a pretty nice orange with a small, half inch head. Decent lace hangs follows the beer down the glass.

Pretty traditional smell, caramel, slight flowers and some earth.

Goes down ultra smooth. Light caramel malts, minerals, slight plum and some earth. Not too watery, which is my main complaint about the style in general. Nice body.

A good American example of the style. Makes me wish I was heading of to Deutchland this fall.

Photo of ScorpyX
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Clear, bronze pour with a thin white head which quickly gives way. Plenty of bubbles in this one.

S: Pleasant smells of grain and malt.

T: Surprisingly crisp, almost a lager taste to it. Aftertaste brings the malt and slight pumpkin flavor one might expect with a touch of caramel. Pretty typical taste for an amber, but that's nothing to complain about.

M: Medium-bodied, but leaning toward the lighter side. Has a clean crispness to it.

D: I'd be happy to sample this again. One of the higher quality Sam Adams I've had.

Photo of greybeardloon
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.

Photo of BdubleEdubleRUN
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Harvest pack bottle
Most Samuel Adams have a pleasant apperance, this one is a dark golden amber with a finger of off white head with very slight lacing. The nose is pretty faint even as it warms, whats there is caramel, yeasty bread and a malts. The tast is Malty, caramel and toffee. Light bodied and well carbed. A good example of the marzen style.

Photo of FanofHefe
3.33/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It's that time of year - pumpkins and Octoberfests. Bottled poured into a tulip; labeled is notched as best by January. Clear, light amber body with a bit of orange hue. Big three-finger light tan head that has good retention, but leaves only bit of lacing.

The aroma is underwheling - sweet malt and lager yeast is what I am detecting. But, a hint of earthy hops seems to linger in the background, but average at best.

The flavor is a little better. The malt and light hop flavor blend fairly well, and there dwells a bit of tartness, most likely attributed to the hops.

Medium to light texture in the mouthfeel and no notice of any alcohol. A little dissapointed overall.

Photo of Ryan011235
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sam Smith pint glass on 9/11/11

Enjoy by March 2012

The beer is a burnt, rustic amber color with singes of rusty brown and boasts exquisite clarity. Poured a fast-rising two finger head that thinned shortly to about 1/4th inch layer of foam. A thinner layer holds throughout. A few clumps of lace; not much.

The aroma is filled with toasted grains, bread, caramel and an earthy notion; all of which is pleasant. What isn't so pleasant is an aroma that I can only describe as half shaved metal and half hand lotion; yeah, I'm not at all digging that part. As it warms, suggestions of campfire emerge; I can live with that.

The taste is more enjoyable than the aroma. It started off with refined, earthy hop bent which is quickly enveloped in toasted grains left and right. Grains and bready flavors abound, causing the caramel suggested by the nose to be downplayed; fine with me. On the outskirts are the occasional wisps of mild fruit esters. This critter tastes really good and is well-integrated.

The toasted flavors when coupled with brisk yet restrained carbonation make for a reasonably crisp medium body. Some bready residuals linger, but the finish is quick and mostly clean. The feel is pretty much spot-on.

Overall, this is a decent one. Aside from some of the strange aromatics (which do seem slightly tamed as it warms up more), it's pleasant enough to drink.

Photo of B967ierhunter177
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a bold, clear auburn color with little head or lace. The aroma is of caramel, toffee, and a hint of nuts and spice. It's flavor is a malty sweetness with just a touch of hop bitterness. There are notes of roasted malt, spices, nuts, and caramel. Well balanced. The mouthfeel is medium. Samuel Adams Octoberfest is a good beer, a good representation of the style. Recommended!

Photo of jtierney89
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice amber/orange color which looks perfect for fall. I had this both on tap and in a bottle and I must say that where I had it must've taken great care of their taps. Also out of the bottle I found their to be less scent.

But anyway, I went into octoberfest expecting not to like it since everyone in the world built it up like crazy, but after trying hacker pschorr's and brooklyns, I must say Sam adams is awesome.

Light crisp, malty, and brisk. Just a tad bit tinny and slightly sweet.

Photo of breakofdawn
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I first had Sam Adam's October Fest offering my sophomore year of college. It was a welcome change from all that Bud Light, let me tell you!

Pours a light copper color, perfect for autumn. Smells of carmel and malt. Taste is reminiscent of brown sugar, along with caramel and malt. Somewhat dry; begs for you to take another sip.

Overall, a fine brew to enjoy when the weather turns a bit cooler and when there's football on tv. Enjoy!

Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 6,595 ratings.