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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.

5,186 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,186
Reviews: 1,917
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 48
Gots: 265 | 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: 5,186 | Reviews: 1,917 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dpasotti


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Super-fresh Octoberfest is a perfectly clear copper-orange color with a slight ruby shade. Light gold highlights near the edges. One finger of off-white foam quickly dissipates to a tiny film and leave minimal lace. The aroma is dominated by toasty Munich malt with a little caramel underneath. Definite clean lager character, but there are some esters that remind me of English yeast. Slight herbal hop presence.

The taste is nearly identical to the smell, but the malt turns more to a light caramel flavor with a hint of sweetness. Surprisingly, the heavy toasted malt from the aroma takes a step back here, but it is still the main focus of the beer. No noticeable hop presence, but enough bitterness to perfectly balance. There's just a bit of alcohol, which would be welcome in most Märzens but is unexpected in such a modestly-sized one.

Body is medium in weight and carbonation. There's some creaminess that lingers after each swallow, which really adds some appeal to an otherwise unexciting beer. Good thing "exciting" is not really something Oktoberfests strive to be. Don't get me wrong. Even though I'm not a huge fan of Märzens (or Sam Adams for that matter), this is a solid brew that nails the style. It's also very versatile: mild enough to drink all night, but enough flavor to have with dinner. It is actually great with milder meals like rice & beans or a grilled chicken sandwich. Trust me.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2011 23:35:33 | More by dpasotti
Photo of DannyDan


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a copper hue with a foamy white head that has good retention and fine lacing. The smell consists of caramel, grains, sweet malts. The taste starts out with caramel, some sugars, apples, and dates. I get some hops in the back that keep the beer from being too sweet, but gives it a nice balance. The mouthfeel is crisp and smooth. A very enjoyable beer for the fall season.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2011 01:44:27 | More by DannyDan
Photo of Guinness4me


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

While I usually find most Sam Adams' a bit too hoppy, this beer gave me only a glimpse of hops before the malt and caramel...and I liked it!

The color was the obligatory amber but also a glimmer of rose'...almost a deep, white-zin-wine color. The head was great at first, but fizzled quickly leaving sparse, dotted lace.

The hops scent was slight and quickly gave way to caramel sweetness with a slight pungency (or is that a zing of citrus?).

The taste was the best part of this beer, other than the appearance. It was a perfect blast of carbonation at the tip of my tongue, a quick, and I mean QUICK burst of hops, then a malt taste that would rival a Whopper malted milk ball. Yummy!

This could be one of the most drinkable Sammy Beers I have found.

10/22/04-I had to edit this review and rate it higher in drinkability. My hubby surprised me with it in the kegorator and I've only grown to love it more. It's so easy to drink, it's dangerous.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2004 02:14:53 | More by Guinness4me
Photo of curasowa

New York

3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear copper color with one finger of head that fades to a ring with little lacing.

Aroma: Toasted malt with a brown sugar sweet note over top and a touch of metallic-ness.

Taste: Toasted and nutty, but with an ever-present sweetness in the background. Moderate Carbonation picks up in the middle cutting the flavor and ushering in some mild earthy bitterness, the finishing fairly fast with some residual nuttyness.

The Rest: A very simple, medium bodied and easy drinking marzen. It's a touch on the sweet side, but otherwise pretty good.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2011 21:42:28 | More by curasowa
Photo of Jarod


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer poured a golden orange color which seemed to glow, it was crystal clear and well carbonated. The head that was produced was tight and compact, off white /cream in color and about 1 1/2 inches thick and well lasting. There was a nice sheety lace left behind that lasted to the end of the glass. The aromas were not as strong as I would have thought and liked, but noticable and pleasing, I nosed lots of rich and sweet malts, spices and some light hops. The tastes were more pronounced, ton of mixing malts and spices, from sweet malts to rich malts and defined spices, caramels, and some notes of dark fruit (as it warmed), hints of hops (mostly a spicey hop, but slight floral became noticable as it warmed) swirled in and out near the middle and end of the swallow and turned to a dry hop flavor as a last taste down the throat. Some malty aftertaste and dry hops were left. The body was light medium, not as thick compared to others of this style I have had. Drinkable and worth a try every year.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2005 21:29:41 | More by Jarod
Photo of Chaney

District of Columbia

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.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2011 01:50:49 | More by Chaney
Photo of jlandis


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Crystal clear copper in color with 1 inch fluffy white head. Looks like a perfect Oktoberfest!

Light toasty malt is about all I get from the aroma. Maybe it's just a style of beer I don't appreciate, but I'm not impressed yet.

Lightly toasted grains with subtle hop bitterness. Fairly clean flavor over all with a bright crisp bitterness. A nice sweetness and subtle fruitiness. What impresses me most is the clean freshness to this beer.

Slightly thin body with subtle carbonation.

It's a very solid Oktoberfest beer with a nice toasted malt profile and slight hop character, but unfortunately I'm not a huge fan of most lagers. Crisp and clean and well constructed.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2010 16:39:56 | More by jlandis
Photo of ThaSmokinGun


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was at Oktoberfest in 2004, hit a bunch of tents (including Paulaner), and I have to say that the best bier that year was in the Hacker tent (Hacker and Pschorr have two different tents and two different beers).

That being said, this is the 2nd best Oktoberfest bier I've had. It is hopped a little more crisply than the German versions, but the malt flavor is spot on. This beer loses its head much more quickly than the German ones did, but they don't have much head either. I'd expect to see about a 3/8" to 1/2" on a liter mug.

Mouthfeel is pretty much the same as what I remember from Oktoberfest, but maybe slightly thinner. Or that could just be my mind playing tricks on me. Either way, pretty .... close to style in my mind.

Drinkability is about the same as the Hacker Oktoberfest. Make sure you designate a driver or bring a 6 pack home :)

To me, the extra hops are not an issue, and this is better than the Paulaner Oktoberfest. To the style purist, Paulaner is very slightly closer to style than this beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2006 05:23:55 | More by ThaSmokinGun
Photo of Walsar


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a much better brew than last years fest.

Typical Sam adams quality.

Nice orange to amber color. Slight hop taste.

An enjoyable quaff that would pair nice with many foods.

The beer is better as I near the half glass - not room temperature but not ice cold.

Enjoy the fall of the year.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2006 20:59:11 | More by Walsar
Photo of MrHurmateeowish

New Hampshire

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

The beer looks gorgeous. Beautiful orange/red body with initially thick head that thins but does not dissappear. Smell is a plethora of hops, yeast, and wheat. Some caramel-like scent there too? Very flavorful. Sweet, malty, and yeasty, with some hop bitterness present. More or less well balanced, and medium bodied. A very decent beer. Definitely among the best Sam Adams beers I’ve ever had. I am impressed. I love fall beers anyway though.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2006 00:50:44 | More by MrHurmateeowish
Photo of Shrews629


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Nice amber, copper color with some red highlights peeking through. Slightly off white head that didn't hang around too awful long, but did settle to a fine ring. Not a lot of lacing left on the glass however.

Smell - Picking up a fair amount of malt along with that dry earthy, "leafy" smell. Touches of caramel malt coinciding with the bread and biscuit nose that have become more prominent as the beer warms.

Taste - Again picking up the malt with what I detect as butterscotch. Rather pleasant I think. A little bit of the breadiness coming through at the end, which I tend to favor.

Mouthfeel - Medium, dry, crisp, chewy mouthfeel. Nice dry maltiness really sticks to the tongue until the next sip.

Drinkability - I could put a few of these back during one setting with no problem. Personally, I think Sam Adams does a great job with most of their seasonal brews. I actually really appreciate all they do for craft brewing. This beer really sets the mood for those crisp, cool Fall afternoons.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2010 01:23:35 | More by Shrews629
Photo of zerofear13

New York

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

Although Samuel Adams and many other breweries released their Octoberfests in mid-August, I have waited until September to try out my Octoberfest. Pours out a dark copper, almost brown color. Nice head, good retention, but nothing out of the ordinary. Smells of sweet malts and hops. Tastes noticeably sweet and finishes a tad bitter, but in a good way. As the beer warms up, the malts get sweeter and sweeter. Delicious beer and I was glad I picked it up and saved it for a colder day.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2007 20:57:30 | More by zerofear13
Photo of industrialswill


3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber with not much of a head but with a nice amount of carbonation none the less.
It's good a fairly hoppy bite for a mass marketed beer.
It's malty enough to leave a slight syrupy mouthfeel.
Overall, I think this is good beer.
I like this more than their standard lager.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2011 00:33:56 | More by industrialswill
Photo of N8TheGreat

New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured a wonderful dark copper with a frothy and attractive off-white head.

S- Smell is layers of malt with caramel, toffee, and doughy notes dominating.

T & M - Sweet and bready malt notes are kept in check by hop bitterness. Hint of herbal hop flavor. Finishes with caramel and metallic? notes. Mouth feel was a little thin.

D- I really wanted more malt flavor in this lager. The whole experience seemed subdued. Past years were more impressive.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2008 22:06:43 | More by N8TheGreat
Photo of merlin48


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2006 edition pours a radiant copper amber body with a small khaki head that retains well and produces some attractive lacing. Aroma is disinctive noble hops and caramel malt. Mouthfeel features spritzy carbonation and a light medium body. Taste is a well balanced blend of toffee and caramel maltiness and noble hop bitterness. Crisp and refreshing. An excellent American Oktoberfest that is tasty and sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2006 19:20:19 | More by merlin48
Photo of bsp77


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Summit Pint glass.

Appearance: Clear amber-orange with thick foamy head that really lasts.

Smell: Smells very dry, with notes of toast and spicy noble hops. Really don't detect very much here.

Taste: Light flavored Marzen overall. Slightly sweet caramel and toast. Minor spicy noble hop finish. Don't really notice much biscuit, as expected for the style. While it sounds like I am complaining, I really do like this beer and its overall balance.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium but thin body, fairly smooth and slightly dry finish.

Drinkability: This may be the easiest drinking Marzen out there, but that doesn't necessarily make it the best, as it is just slightly too light on flavor. Great nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2009 02:16:31 | More by bsp77
Photo of r0nyn

New York

3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap from Smith's Bar in New York City.

Poured into a pint glass. Very pretty and clear burnt orange/amber color with a smallish head, but with some decent lacing. Smell isn't strong at all, slightly malty and spicy.

I don't usually like the taste of Samuel Adams beers, but I decided to be adventurous and I'm glad it was the Octoberfest because the taste was clean and delicious. I caught hints of caramel and spicy sweetness, which was quite refreshing. There wasn't too much carbonation, just enough to caress the tongue a little bit and dissipate, which suited me just fine.

It's on the sweetish side, which enhances the drinkability for me. The clean looks and taste are quite appealing, and it goes down easily. I finished it quicker than I thought I would. The only reason I didn't order another one is because my friends and I had to leave.

Serving type: on-tap

08-30-2009 06:06:37 | More by r0nyn
Photo of Chris585


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

Poured into my Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company Glass....

Appearance is dark amber with minimal head and little retention. Smell is pretty good with that great Sam Adams Malty twinge....when I drink their beers, I always have that in the back of my head, Stocky Bearded guy pouring malts in....carrying barley up a flight of stairs....tuggin on the overalls and smiling because he loves his job....anyways...

Taste is of malty goodness, not too sweet, not too much carbonation, little head, but thats ok too...tasty as always from Sam Adams...just a respectable brewery that I have always went to, even though I havent tasted all their offerings, this brew is GOOD...nothing extraordinary, a little too dry without the hops, but TASTY.

Of all the variety of Octoberfest beer, this one is another of my cant waits.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2011 20:40:41 | More by Chris585
Photo of jim102864


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

Poured into my Duvel tulip glass and noted the nice copper hue with a thin, slightly bubbly head. The carbonation bubbles cling to the glass throughout the exprience. The aroma speaks of hay, copper pennies, somewhat metallic and grassy. Interesting combination of aromas. The taste is slightly nutty and grassy. There is some carbonation mixing in which impacts the mild bite in the finish to a certain degree. Not an overly malty flavor. The mouthfeel is carbonated, moderately bitter in the finish, quick and slippery in that it doesn't leave any lasting impression after the swallow. It's a nice seasonal brew that is not overly exciting. Still, it is quite drinkable. Also not a session brew but worth the price for a pint.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2007 19:06:23 | More by jim102864
Photo of errantnight


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

Another on a virtually endless list of beers that I've had too many times to count and never gotten around to reviewing. And other than ticking off additional reviews there's not necessarily a lot to be gained from it... but this is a beer deserving of review and evaluation. It's pretty mild as a marzen... a pleasing caramel and light toast biscuit wrapped around a bit of noble hop goodness in a solid, medium body with a crisp finish. A purdy ruby tinged orange. Crystal clear. It gets looked over... but it's long been my favorite Sam seasonal... and while in LA there's hardly a fall, it's nice to sit back on one of the rare cool evenings and suck one of these back and imagine that we do.

A very good beer, if unremarkable, but worthy of a place in your fall fridge.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2008 05:42:13 | More by errantnight
Photo of heissebier


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

I was very surprised by how much I liked this beer compared to Sam Adams' usual offerings. My first Oktoberfestbier of the year, and it really hit the spot.

Color is a lively deep orange, with an off white head. The taste is malty, with a few spices and a dash of hops thrown in for balance. The mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing, it's the kind of beer that makes you want another sip. and another.

It's not particularly bold, original or complicated, but it is a well done Oktoberfestbier nevertheless, and you can't beat the value.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2011 02:32:47 | More by heissebier
Photo of Pegasus


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

Appearance: Dark reddish brown color with a thick and persistent off-white head, lots of lace, slight carbonation. The appearance of this beer is quite striking - in my opinion, a textbook example of what a beer should look like.

Arom: Rich and malty, with distinct bread notes, spices, and a mild noble hop presence.

Taste: Begins with a rich malty taste, dominated by roasted malts and a wave of caramel throughout. The finish is dominated by lingering metallic hops, which seem a bit inappropriate.

Mouthfeel: Soft on the palette, smooth and pleasant, fairly full.

Drinkability/notes: An pleasant example of the style and eminently drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2004 05:57:16 | More by Pegasus
Photo of MrIncognito


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

A - A dark copper clear body beneath a white two-finger foam. Very nice lacing on the glass.

S - Sweet maltiness with some spicy hops. A hint of caramel.

T&M - Sweet caramel malts upfront with the spice of the hops coming in the end. Nice semi-crips mouthfeel that isn't too dry. Nice and smooth, goes down nice.

D - Very easy to drink. Not terribly complex but a nice, straight-forward Oktoberfest brew.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2008 17:16:36 | More by MrIncognito
Photo of jwc215


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

Pours orangish copper with a thin head that becomes a thin patch. Minimal lacing is left.

Smells of sweet bread. Some subtle floral hop presence is noticeable.

Tastes of malty grains. Bread and some hops are mixed in. It seems, to me, to be a maltier, sweeter version of a Sam Adams lager (not just an amber ale with some caramel maltiness as some craft brews do).

It's fairly smooth, but a bit too sweet for a "session". Although not quite in the same category as a Bavarian O-fest in Germany, it has a freshness to it, and is one of the better of the style that is available in America that hasn't been sitting in who knows what conditions to arrive here.
A bit better on tap, IMO.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2006 01:59:51 | More by jwc215
Photo of soupyman10

District of Columbia

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

Got this one on-tap at Dick O'Dowe's in downtown Birmingham, MI. Poured a deep brown-orange color with a hint of white head over a crystal clear beer. Maybe a hint of lacing. Nose is very mild, but mostly caramel malt with some light dried fruit. Flavor is fairly similar. Sweet malt, cotton candy, raisins, some berries too. A very sweet beer with extremely light hop presence. Feel is solid with good carbonation. Can't complain about this one; it's a solid beer with a nice sweet flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

09-22-2007 14:24:47 | More by soupyman10
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 5,186 ratings.