1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Samuel Adams Octoberfest - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest

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

4,949 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4949
Reviews: 1914
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.9%


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)
View: Beers (117) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Octoberfest Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,949 | Reviews: 1,914 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mlazzaro
mlazzaro

Massachusetts

2.4/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

"octoberfest" renaming the style. 12 oz bottle.

a- copper color. low carbonation. quality clarity.

s- musci aroma. not very pungent.

t- sweet, watery. slight caramel tones. lager yeast flavor. the end of the sip reminds me a lot of Sam's Boston Lager. tastes watered down. slight sulfury character.

m+d - after having some really good oktoberfests this year; this kind of tastes like an oktoberfest brewed for 'very' general appeal. reserved and somewhat tasteless. glad I only bought one.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2010 14:54:26 | More by mlazzaro
Photo of spitInTheOcean
spitInTheOcean

Michigan

2.4/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

red-orange color. good clarity. good off-white head. good lacing.

medium malt aroma. clean lager aroma, that is predominant in the bouquet. no hop aroma. very light toasted aroma. subtle caramel/toffee aroma.

taste is initaily slightly sweet. low malt flavor. low hop bitterness. no hop flavor. finish is sweet. balance is toward the malt and the crisp finish overpowers the thin(delicate) flavor of the beer. the taste is pretty non existent on this one, and what flavor there is, is most notable that of adjuncts.

medium mouthfeel. crisp finish.

overall this is not an oktoberfest worth drinking.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2011 05:37:57 | More by spitInTheOcean
Photo of KomodoDragon
KomodoDragon

Virginia

2.4/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Deep copper, clear

S - Malty grain smell, burnt toast

T - Caramel Malts - with alcohol coming thru and very little else of substance. Roasted grain feel and little balance or finish

M- creamy and smooth and little carbonation

Not one to go back to despite the fit for the season.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2012 03:09:02 | More by KomodoDragon
Photo of CupcakeNY
CupcakeNY

New York

2.42/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Decided to try this, though I have not been that impressed with Sam Adams lately. And I was once again disappointed. Poured a medium brown, with little head, whatever there was quickly dissipated. Nose was a bit malty, with yeasty notes, but not overpowering or complex. Mouth feel was much thinner than I expected, watery, and relatively tasteless. Finish was somewhat unpleasant, a bit sour. All in all, I would not buy it again.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2009 13:57:04 | More by CupcakeNY
Photo of chris11554
chris11554

New York

2.48/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I tried this beer at barbecue restaurant in midtown that just put it on draft and was very excited. Unfortunately I was unimpressed. It has a nice dark amber color but the aroma was bland. The taste wasn't bad but it also wasn't special at all or what I was expecting. Therer was no extra matliness or hoppiness. It was as if they took regular Sam Adams and put carmel coloring in it. It's an extremely drinkable beer and it goes down easy. A good everyday beer but definetely not a specialty beer in my opinion.

Serving type: on-tap

09-08-2006 10:58:11 | More by chris11554
Photo of MJR
MJR

Missouri

2.5/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a nice, orange-amber shade with great clarity. A foamy off-white head starts off a good size and sticks around for the duration.

Smell: Aroma of caramel, a bit of toffee, sweet malt, and corn.

Taste: The strongest flavor is the sweet malt, with it's caramel and toffee notes, but a corn taste is a close second. Too much sweetness overall. That's disappointing, considering this used to be a really good Octoberfest offering.

Mouthfeel: Has a fairly medium body with a crisp, dry mouthfeel.

Drinkability: It would be a lot higher if the unmistakable corn aroma and flavor wasn't there.

This beer caught a lot of heat this year when many people detected corn in the recipe. You can say what you want about the Boston Beer Company...I know what corn tases like, and they used it here. Too bad....

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2002 12:20:12 | More by MJR
Photo of doho95fu
doho95fu

California

2.53/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Somewhere at the Boston Beer Company HQ there is a box marked "Oktoberfest Flavor" because it is not in the bottle - and I checked 6 times. It pours a nice color and the head looks great but doesn't last long. Not much lace either. The taste is bland and it just doesn't have that Octoberfest uniqueness. Its drinkable but so is water.... I don't like to bash, but this one is below average

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2002 17:13:03 | More by doho95fu
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

2.53/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was served with a thin head that didn't last long. Quite clear medium amber/orange colour. There was plenty of sweetness in the aroma, but not much malty depth and little in the way of hops. Low bitterness, lots of sweetness and this carries straight through to the end. A bit grainy with some corn flavour thrown in. Not very clean tasting, with a bit of fruitiness at the midpoint. The body fell away and became thin towards the finish, but still had some stickiness. A bit disappointing.

Serving type: on-tap

09-16-2005 01:41:17 | More by DrJay
Photo of crossovert
crossovert

Illinois

2.53/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Just by the title of "Octoberfest" you know this one will not be true to original form. Comes in a neatly decorated 12 ounce bottle. Best before March of 2010. The bottle proclaims it was brewed in "American tradition".

It doesn't look unlike a normal Oktoberfest. It has a large 3 finger head that quickly dissipates and a dark amber body. Lacing looks "dirty".

Smell is a bit sweeter, and almost pale ale like than most Oktoberfests. It literaly reminds me of an Eastern pale ale mixed with a Boston Lager rather than an Oktoberfest/Maerzen. Not sure what they were going for here.

Taste is rather absurd for an Oktoberfest. it tastes overly buttery and nutty. Also it is watered down and metallic. The hops are the only decent thing about this beer. The mouthfeel isn't too offensive, I figured it would be more carbonated but it has a similar mouthfeel to a traditional German Oktoberfest. The aftertaste of this beer isn't very good though, and there is something just off in the taste, I am content with drinking just one.

Overall this one fails as an Oktoberfest, for Sam Adams it is of decent quality. Overall a very offensive beer per the style, even when fresh.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2009 23:43:13 | More by crossovert
Photo of MaltsOfGlory
MaltsOfGlory

Oregon

2.53/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer is about one hair away from being a Budweiser. Let me first let all of you know that I am a huge fan of malty beers, and this beer is made with 5 different kinds of malts, so you would think it would be just for me, right? WRONG! I don't even know how sam adams could have gone so wrong with this beer. You get that run of the muck average gross beer taste. I swear to god it tastes just like a Budweiser but with a better malt taste. I mean yeah you get the malt taste, but it's not a good malt taste, it's just a sweet, fake taste. And then after that you just get the generic crappy beer taste. I don't know what to say other than this is probably the worst beer I have ever had by Sam Adams, and I have had a LOT of their beers.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2011 14:07:24 | More by MaltsOfGlory
Photo of Ianhockey91
Ianhockey91

Pennsylvania

2.55/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle yes, on tap no. This beer was lifeless, and flavorless on tap. Decent brown/orange color, but with no head and little to no carbonation. Not much smell either, maybe a little bread dough, and maybe some hops, but i couldnt tell. Tasted very watery (just like the mouth feel, no real powerful flavor to talk about. I wont have this on tap again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-06-2003 19:47:16 | More by Ianhockey91
Photo of ocpathfinder
ocpathfinder

California

2.58/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2004 Release

Presentation: brown bottle with "best by" date notched on label

Appearance: Pours clear copper. Decent sized head which settled quickly and left no lacing.

Smell: Lots of malt. Little bit of fruit and perhaps some corn/corn adjunct.

Taste: Starts out slightly sweet and malty. Finishes rather watery, with lingering aftertaste.

Drinkability: Wouldn't want more than a couple in one sitting. Probably wouldn't buy again.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2004 05:54:06 | More by ocpathfinder
Photo of jpkoch1962
jpkoch1962

Indiana

2.6/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served chilled at cellar temps. Appearance was nothing special. A standard, clean amber color, nice head and lacing. The aroma was bready, malty, and a bit beery. This beer could pass as an OK amber lager, but it is a far cry from an authentic Oktoberfest lager. The bottle adverts boast of 5 different malts and noble hops; however, most of the taste was dominated by a sweet yet astringent cloyiness of the caramel malts -which in my opinion were overdone. An authentic Oktober Fest should use only 2-Row Bavarian or Moravian Pilsner malt and dark Munich malts. The use of cyrstal or caramel malts only changes the color and adds sweetness, and does not necessairily add to the malt profile.

The taste did smooth out towards the finish probably due to the hops -but the chewy sweetness remained somewhat in the aftertaste.

A classic Oktoberest Beer should focus on a big malt body without being sweet. The end results should be a very smooth amber lager that touches a balance that between the malt and the hops; the finish should be dry and clean (which is in this case the main function of the hops). It appears SAs went overboard with specialty malts as this beer is way out of balance. I'd also like to know if they used North American or European 2-row barely. This beer is way too sweet and bready and lacks the subtlety of a true Oktoberfest beer. This is a surprise as SA makes a very nice, well balanced Scotish Ale. An authentic Oktoberfest beer is well within thier skillset.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2007 15:31:25 | More by jpkoch1962
Photo of TLove
TLove

District of Columbia

2.6/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(From Notes)

On tap at a bar in SW DC.

Really pretty in line with the style, but unfortunately not really remarkable in any way. This beer exudes mediocre craftsmanship and grassy, corn-laden structure. A decent try for the Vienna oktoberfest style with a stronger color, but the body gets a bit foamy and squeamish in the mouth. Irreverent lacing and not particularly noticeable in character in the smell, the beer does have a nice herbal, piney malt smell with some mint and rye grains in the mouth. Typical of the style. Slightly sweet, very calcic, and somewhat off in the finish. But overall, not shoddy. But nothing really notable either.

Serving type: on-tap

11-05-2009 04:01:50 | More by TLove
Photo of livingregret
livingregret

Washington

2.63/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Serving Type: Standard Bottle

Appearance: Pours a light amber w/ little to no head.

Smell: Sweet, bready and malt. Nothing to amazing here

Taste: A touch of caramel, a touch of dryness, hops aren't overpowering here, there is also some herbal taste mixed in. A touch of honey toward the end. All in all not a great taste but good for people who haven't had a true Oktoberfest beer. It's very thin

Mouthfeel: Light and thin. Pretty watered down, the taste slides off of the tongue instead of lingering

Drinkability: There are many finer drinks than this particular brew but it's a good intro beer for people just starting off into Oktoberfest beers.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2007 01:31:47 | More by livingregret
Photo of Bobzilla13
Bobzilla13

California

2.63/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Was feeling kinda seasonal--Fall and all that stuff---saw this sixer so piked up one--poped a top off soon as I got out side ---Totally Red experience--sweet--malty--but watery---Was hoping for a full flavor but the sweet really predominates---but to give it justice poured one into a chilled pint glass--taste came out a little better and it has a Pretty red color--light brown head maybe 2"-- but dissolved rapidly--some thin laceing left upon the glass---Not to bad but could be better---finished off the sixer---3 days later...I would not turn one down and would probably have a few more to be social, but don't think I would stock it in the fridge.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2007 04:02:33 | More by Bobzilla13
Photo of archyquaffer
archyquaffer

Montana

2.64/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a shaker. A moderate pour results in a 3/4 inch off-white head that sticks around pretty well. The beer is a somewhat pale yellowish-brown with a little bit of red.

I detect quite a bit of cooked corn aromas and flavors here, with maybe a little diacetyl. Very little hop aroma/flavor, and generally lacking any toastiness or complex malt flavors. A little bit of sourness in the aftertaste, with a bit of sweetness from the malt.

I'm not very impressed with this beer- it's drinkable and that's about it. Boston lager and ale is much better. I tried this last Fall and was similarly disappointed- I had hoped that bad feedback would have led the brewers to reconsider their recipe. This tastes more like a really corny malt liquor rather than an Octy. Boo! There are MUCH better Octoberfest brews out there.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2013 22:16:07 | More by archyquaffer
Photo of sopor
sopor

Oregon

2.65/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Take this review with a grain of salt, I've recently identified Munich Malt flavors to be problematic for me.

Crystal clear dark-red amber with 1" tan frothy head. Lots of bubbles race for the top. Smells of slightly rotten sweetness.

Just some slight crystal malt and a hint of roasted malt and the rotten sweetness that I identify with Munich malts. Some delicate hop bittering.

Lively but not foamy carbonation and moderate light body.

The malt flavors do me in, I'm unfortunately not impressed by any oktoberfests as they nornally leave a dull nausea in me that I connect with the "rotten sweetness" of the munich malts.

I could be totally wrong about the Munich malt, but after some feedback from the forum, I'm pretty sure I've locked that down to the root fo the problem.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2005 18:02:14 | More by sopor
Photo of DrinkingDrake
DrinkingDrake

Massachusetts

2.65/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Orange/amber color with about an inch of fluffy white head. Nose contains almost nothing. Only some slight malty bitterness. Light on flavor with some caramel sweetness. A lot of carbonation. Flavor and finish are lacking with only some caramel notes and only a carbonation tingle for the finish. Thin and almost bland on the malt flavors.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2011 00:33:21 | More by DrinkingDrake
Photo of JonMich13
JonMich13

North Carolina

2.68/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A = Amber - brown in color, something like iced tea. Small white head doesn't last long. No lacing.

S = Not much at all in the nose. Some bready notes. A musty smell as well. Hints of malt.

T = Weak malt profile. Sort of bland with a little unpleasant aftertaste. Not much to like here.

M = No complaints about the mouth. Somewhere in the middle.

D = Meh, drinkable in that it's not horrible and there's little alcohol. But not something I'd seek out.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2009 02:33:27 | More by JonMich13
Photo of twelvelookslikex
twelvelookslikex

Florida

2.68/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark amber color. Not much carbination. The smell is mild malty not much hop smell at all. Malty tast but very medium. Not too impressed with this beer at all. Better than the boston lager though in my opinion. But very simple flavors and quite borring.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2010 22:23:38 | More by twelvelookslikex
Photo of BigMike
BigMike

Pennsylvania

2.68/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on-tap at TGIF

A: Typical Octoberfest appearance. Pretty much a golden,bronzed orange color with a thin off white head. Larger sized bubbles that don't hang around too long.

S: A few different aromas come through. All very light with none outshadowing another. Toasted caramel. A bit nutty and spicy as well. Not overwhelming.

T: Toasty and grainy. An underlying sweetness brings it all together.

M: Pretty much on the thin side. Not watery but not far from it. Carbonation seems fine.

Overall: Oktoberfest lagers aren't typically my cup of tea but there are better offerings out there then this one for sure. My favorite being Victory Festbier.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2011 22:58:23 | More by BigMike
Photo of LBHops62
LBHops62

Georgia

2.68/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I was not as impressed with this Octoberfest that I thought that I was going to be. It did not have anything that really stood out to me. The beer was good overall, but did not have anything that hit me hard. To me, it didn't have any charateristics that were different from the norm. I probibly had too high of expectations. It had some of the basic octoberfest characteristics, basically tasting like an average medium lager. I had a high quality of ingredient traits, but it just didn't seem like the ingredient portfolio was very diverse. Just kind of small for a craft ocotberfest in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2011 14:52:12 | More by LBHops62
Photo of frank4sail
frank4sail

New Jersey

2.7/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 Oz. Bottle. Malty slight hint of cardboard (Oxidation?) Below average for the style. Decent mouthfeel, but nothing there of any positive taste. Not one of Sams best. I'm now sorry I got a case of this stuff.... It looks alot better than it tasted.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2002 20:58:30 | More by frank4sail
Photo of mrfosters
mrfosters

New Jersey

2.7/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark amber with quickly fading offwhite head.Initial malty taste that finishes dry ,bitter and a little mediciney.I noted caramel in the aroma and taste which is a minus for this style.As a dark lager maybe , but as an Oktoberfest?.. not quite.I like the new label.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2004 21:05:02 | More by mrfosters
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 4,949 ratings.