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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.

6,449 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,449
Reviews: 2,010
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.17%
Wants: 75
Gots: 874 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,449 | Reviews: 2,010 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of InebriatedJoker
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my favorite beer drinking glass from a bottle -

Nice orange amber color with nice foam that hung around for awhile -

Smells of malts and spices are evident -

Taste was pleasant not overwhelming - nice malt and spices

the drinkabilty wasn't to bad - doesn't compare to real German Oktoberfest beers but not to bad for a American version -

I would buy it again -

InebriatedJoker, Sep 24, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 09/22/10 notes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a nice amber color with twi inches of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of bready malts, caramel malts, nuts, and some fruity malts.

t - Tastes of caramel and bready malts mostly. A hint of fruit, mainly apple.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation.

d - An average octoberfest/fall beer. Mostly caramel and bready malts in the smell and taste. While that isn't bad, nothing really stood out. Have had several times and I'm sure I'll have it again sometime.

mdfb79, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of matt062286
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Appearance - Pours an copperish red color. Small head that dissipates quickly. Minimal lacing.

Smell - Scent of malt overpowers a hint of hops. Small hint of a caramel-like malt in here. There is a sweetness combined with a roasted smell.

Taste - Just as in the smell, malt dominates this beer. They are prevalent and have subtle nuances. The sweeter tasting malts are a bit stronger here than the more toasted flavored ones. Hop flavor is barely noticeable, but their weakness only multiplies the dominance and complexity of the many malts used. (According to the Sam Adams webpage, this beer uses six(!) different malts, so that explains that)

Mouthfeel - this beer is a bit on the watery side. Carbonation is low.

Drinkability - I've had many sessions with this beer, and drinkability is a shining point of Octoberfest. It is "watery" and lightly carbonation so that it goes down well, and is flavorful enough to want to keep drinking it. And hey, that's the whole reason for the marzen style, is it not?

matt062286, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of hopheadjuice
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle best by Feb with no year.

Pours a typical amber in color, filtered with some bubbles rising. 1 finger head that recedes fast leaving a little bit of lacing.

Smells very grainy with a hint od musty fruit. extremely low hop presence with a malty scent as well. something tastes off in this brew, tastes like boston lager with more malts.

Again something is off, the taste has a weird apple juiceness to it. very malty with slight hop bitterness and a malty finish.

Mouthfeel is soft to medium bodied with a soft finish.

I didnt especially like this marzen/octoberfest bier, I much prefer Bostons Harpoon octoberfest to this one anyday.


hopheadjuice, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of Star80
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours a deep copper color, definitely a few shades darker than regular Boston Lager. Smells like a good marzen should, malty with hints off toffee, very very faint alcohol in the nose. Taste is a nice interplay between the caramel sweetness of the malts, but with slight bitterness, from the darker roasted malts (five in all) along with a clean dash of hops on the tongue. This is really a harmony of different flavors, which honestly, can be a bit much at times, at least, the style in general can be. That is not saying that this is not a great beer, which if it weren't so darn rich and full, could be drunk in large amounts in true Oktoberfest style. I've had a good handful of the German ones and this one holds it own!

Star80, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of Shadman
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Surprised to find this @ a Coop gas bar/liquor store in Dunmore, Ab of all places.

Aprocot/amber colour, decent head and lacing.

Sweet bready/toasted malts. Not a surprise given 5 malt varieties are used.

What do you you? Malts dominate the taste profile. Toasted and sweet with that mineral water hardness that is so notable in their Boston Lager. Hops are there only in the background and lend a slightly dry finish to all the malt sweetmess.

Feel starts quite full and then migrates quickly to rather thin.

Not sure the Germans have much to worry about here. Nice, but the malty sweetness and rather bland overall taste get tired quickley

Shadman, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of Zundo
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a medium copper with a almost of finger of tan bubbly foam that dissipated quickly. With some lacing that does not last long.

S - tosted, caramel and honey with a decent amount of apple presence

T - Tastes of sweet caramely biscuits, with a carmel apple and rosted nuts aftertaste. Not overwhelmingly flavorful (good thing)

M - Smooth but a bit carbonated a light stickiness

D - The lingering flavor of alcohol is just about the only thing that brings the drinkability down due to twinging the palate.

Zundo, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of wheatyweiss
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a twelve once bottle into a shaker pint.

Pours a light copper to dark straw. Decent sized head settles to a thick whipped cream head. Perfect lager clarity.

Aroma is sweet malt and a smallish metallic tinge. Honey coated biscuits and yeasty sweet bread on the nose.

Flavor is sweet malt. Malt is slight dark fruit and a touch of molasses. Clover honey and crisp crackery bread. Hops are barely there, enough to cut the sweetness slightly with a honey dew melon flavor. Finishes sweet and with a touch of stick.

Mouthfeel is less than substantial and crisp. Leaves a small amount of stick on the lips. Carbonation is lively.

Drinkability is high as the body is light and flavor is decent.

Not a bad marzen, a little more substance, and a lot more hop and it would be a great one.

wheatyweiss, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of rkinsella
3.13/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bought a 1/2 barrel for our kegerator, and served it at our annual Oktoberfest party.

Clear amber/copper color, big off white/cream colored head, average lacing and retention.

Slight alcohol on the nose, small amount of toasted bread, touch of floral hops.

Fairly one dimensional malt profile, ends on a sweet bready note, mild tangy hop trail.

Medium body, medium carbonation.

High drinkability

I would say an ok beer overall, but not a great Oktoberfest. Very forgettable...drinks like an average amber lager. Missing some of the big chewy, malty, caramel/toffee notes and hoppy spices that make Oktoberfest beers so wonderful.

rkinsella, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of LacquerHead
3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had two 12oz bottles at Rudy's BBQ in TX
It pours a crystal clear brownish orange color with a white bubbly head.
There was not much to the aroma. The malts were very faint.

Like the aroma the taste was not too exciting. There was a subtle spice flavor that lingered about, but for the most part it didn't do much. The malt flavor was not very pronounced - it was rather thin. Other BA members were very descriptive and listed off a host of flavors. Maybe it's just me but I wasn't tasting too much in this one. For the most part I found myself searching for flavors and aromas, and I didn't find much.

If I had to describe this beer in one word it would be, uneventful. I haven't had one of these in a long time and I remember it being very good. However, this revisiting didn't live up to my memory. I might order this at a bar or restaurant with a limited selection, otherwise I have no need for it. Not the best example of an Oktoberfest beer...seriously I remember this being much better.

LacquerHead, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of Brewingbanjos
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A nice orange color and very clear. The taste is rich and bettery with malt. The mouthfeel fades quick despite the maltiness. The nose is clean with a slight hint of acorn squash. This is personal favorite to grab once a year just because it feels like it helps usher in the fall. This makes for a nice easy going Oktoberfest brew.

Brewingbanjos, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of feelmefoam
3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly orange ruby color with moderate carbonation running up into a finger of off-white head that doesn't last long and doesn't leave a lot of lacing around the glass.

Slightly malty nose, a little cinnamon (maybe), and some slight hoppiness.... not very fragrant either. Decent smell, but I have to search for it, which I don't like doing. I'm lazy.

Alright flavor, but it's sort of unimpressive. Some slightly toasty malts and a HINT of spiciness... really only a hint, not much else. Some mild hop flavor, too. Decent body... it's a carbonation supported medium body which makes it clean and crisp like crunchy fall leaves. I like the mouthfeel, just not too much else.

This is still a pretty decent beer, just not what I've come to expect from Sam Adams. It's kinda plain, which is not typical of the Boston Beer fellas. I could use some more flavor, some more spiciness, some more pumpkin... some more FALL! Anyways, it's still drinkable, but I need more from Sam Adams on this one. You won't hear me say that often.

feelmefoam, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of Kadonny
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a tap into a standard pint glass.

A: A deep copper color with hints of brown. A one finger fluffy slightly off white head provides lacing.

S: Biscuit, caramel, bready, a bit earthy and grassy with slight dark fruits.

T: Lots of caramel and bready biscuit flavors with some toffee, brown sugar and earthy tones. Some slight fig or prune or other dark fruits that just lay in with the earthy grassy notes. Finish remains a bit sweet with ever so slight hops poking through. I actually remember more hops on this the last time I had it. Finish is creamy smooth and mellow.

M: Medium at best, maybe even a bit thin. No alcohol and no real bitterness to speak of.

D: Pretty good, but there are other O-fests I would rather drink.

Overall a solid offering that falls short of any excellence. Still in beer mediocrity of many local bars, this is a welcome sight. Enjoyable but not a superstar.

Kadonny, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of Stigs
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz pour during a brief lay-over at PHL - served in a tall weizen-style glass for some reason...

A - short lived thin layer of film on top of the glass, hoisted by a deep orange, clear brew

S - bright malts showing off some caramel, honey-topped biscuits...subtle fruitiness (apples)

T - sweet malts bringing caramel, biscuits, honey, and some (untoasted) nuts...bready with a finishing kiss of grassy hops

M - light bodied, smooth and clean with moderate carbonation

D - this will probably be a lot of people's first experience with the style - and thats probably a good thing. easy to drink and a solid gateway to other (better) Octoberfests.

Stigs, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of aranheaney
3.13/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A-Deep orange, a good solid two fingers of head, nice lacing that holds up

S-good, I get the earthiness that some others mention, don't really pick up on the Marzen that one might expect in this type

T-not offensive, just not very memorable, a bit of bread and some fruitiness, again just nothing to blow you away

M-ok, felt as if it wasn't that festive

D-ok, easy to have a few during a Sunday afternoon of football

aranheaney, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of GallowsThief
3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On draft from one of the local Pleasure Island kiosks.

A - Poured a deep amber color with a huge creamy head. Left a nice amount of lacing that did not recede at all.

S - Was much sweeter smelling then I was expecting. Also had a fair amount of earthy smell.

T - Much less sweet then the smell. You can taste the earthy malt in this. Fairly average.

M - A good amount of carbonation here. Has a nice creamy texture. Very clean and light for a fest beer.

D - Sure but there are much better fest beers.

GallowsThief, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of bigfnjoe
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a perfect pint

A- pours a dark amber with a one finger offwhite head. Looks like the dictionary definition for an marzen.

S- strong malty characteristics, lots of sticky caramel coming through. There's an almost toffee like sweetness to it too...very nice

T- yeah, this is really malty...picking up hints of cinnamon in addition, but I'm mostly getting that strong malt backbone. But its not overly malted, which is a positive. There's a slight sweetness to it too...interesting

M- I've mentioned the maltiness that gives it the body it has...nice backbone. Solid body

D- its my standard marzen for the season...there are better, there are worse, but this is a great example of the style

bigfnjoe, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of Evocatus
4.22/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber orange with a white head. Aroma was pretty good. Picked up hints of fruit and malts. Taste was a mix of malts, fruitness, and slight hop bitterness. Good body, not too thick or thin. I could definitely have a couple of these in one sitting.

Evocatus, Sep 19, 2010
Photo of Reaper16
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served on-tap @ The Downtown Pub, Tuscaloosa, AL, into a pint glass

Pours an expected bronze/copper color, though a touch darker than many other beers of the style. An airy froth of eggshell head, one finger plus, whisps around.

Initial impression of the aroma was that this isn't much different than Boston Lager. The malts that Boston Beer Company uses for their lagers all seem to smell similar. Grainy, nutty, maybe too sweet. Some candy apple fragrance. German hops. Par for the style.

Thankfully, this beer tastes a whole lot less generic. A clean, well-blended malt profile lifts this beer. Warm, browned malts meet richer, nutty flavors. Steely hops undercut the potential buildup of sweetness. Not too much apple ester sort of flavor but enough to keep things interesting.

I didn't once consciously think about the mouthfeel during my two pints of this. It wasn't offensive or distracting. Those kinds of mouthfeels are generally good. Drinkability is darn good. A low ABV% of 5.3 and a clean, easygoing flavor makes for a nice Autumn session candidate.

For me, this is the second best beer that Sam Adams puts out. Easy-drinking & all-purpose.

Reaper16, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of rtepiak
3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A hard style to get right and this is on the way. Look is proper with a caramel color and an off white head. Palate is the typical stale apple marzen malt and straw. A bitter of husk and a body that carries you through. But this is done correctly at best. Nothing exceptional about it.

rtepiak, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of thebrood1987
4.22/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap a couple of weeks ago just as it was coming out for the season. It was a very nice penny color with a nice malty Samuel Adams type smell to it. (if you had their other beers you know what I'm talking about) Also with that trademark spicy Noble hop smell but dialed back a bit more when compared to their Boston Lager. The taste is better than the smell actually with a really rich malt taste and an amazing body feel for the lower alcohol content it has. The hops are subtle just to add to the malt. Very nice sweet malts as well. On tap it had more of a crisp hop bite to it then it does in the bottle. With that aside it still has a nice Noble hop character to it that balances out the sweet flavor of the beer. Probably my favorite fall beer I've had.

thebrood1987, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of Phelps
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap and into a standard pint glass. Happy hours are fun!

Looks: perfectly clear deep almond-ornage in color, with a khaki head that looks stickier than it is, since it dissipates to a heavy layer of foam within a minute, leaving minimal spots of lace.

Smells: like an apple tree, tinged with the colors of autumn. Lots of lager yeast and sourdough bread, with the light nuttiness of almonds and walnuts along with a hint of sweet red apple cider.

Tastes: far nuttier, with some peanuts added in with those almonds and walnut. Also get some lightly toasted wheat bread and dried apples before a snappy finish. All these flavors, however, are just a little light.

Feels: watery. A medium carbonation fizzes up the beer as it moves about the mouth. Light-bodied.

Drinks: easily and quickly. A little light on flavor, but a crisp finish keeps you going back for more.

Phelps, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of tlazaroff
2.9/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 5

Drank from Sam Adams glassware.

A: Amber color with orange highlights when the light hits it. Tan foamy head that went from 2-fingers to nothing in no time. Lacing doesn't stick to glass very well.

S: Very clean smell with subtle hints of roastyness. Not very impressive.

T: You can get some roasty notes, but again, it's very subtle and clean. Burnt caramel and not bitter at all.

M: Very watery, moderate carbonation.

D: High drinkability, it goes down very smooth. I'd buy this before any BMC product, it's a little better than those "lunar" series of beers.

tlazaroff, Sep 17, 2010
Photo of Tone
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, copper color. 3/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and slight lacing. Smells of hops, sweet malt, pale malt, grain, and a hint of yeast. Fits the style of a Marzen / Oktoberfest. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of pale malt, grain, slight hop, hint of yeast, and a hint of sweet malt. Overall, hops and sweet malt are background flavors compared to the pale malt and grain.

Tone, Sep 17, 2010
Photo of gromis
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First off, this beer has one of the best heads I've ever experienced. Very nice consistency, long lasting; it's mouth-watering creamy goodness!

The nose is a light combination of malt, hops, and a slight fruitiness.

There is a pronounced pleasant light hoppiness all through the taste on this one. Fade is a nice combination of hops and malt.

Definitely would drink this again.

gromis, Sep 17, 2010
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 6,449 ratings.