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Samuel Adams Octoberfest - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest

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BA SCORE
83
good

4,947 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4947
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)
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Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

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 BlackHaddock
BlackHaddock

United Kingdom (England)

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

12 Fl Oz bottle poured into a 'Back Forty Beer Co' badged US pint tumbler @ home on 28 Dec 2012.

Looked happy in an American glass: good deep amber hue to the body with a thin off-white covering on top.

Sweet malty molasses all over the place in the aroma and the first sip confirms what your eyes and nose were telling you: this is malts first and foremost, with the hops just there to calm it all down a little.

I'm sweet toothed so this was fine my me but it is far too sweet for a true Oktoberfest Marzen if you want to talk about styles.

Most enjoyable: the second half of the tasting was helped along by some soft French cheese and the UK's equivalent to saltine crackers. They went well together.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 16:39:53 | More by BlackHaddock
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

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

First let me state that this is clearly better than last years attempt at an Octoberfest beer, and this maybe my favorite Sam Adams product I have had (this doesn't say a whole lot not too found of ol' Sammy). Either way this one is worth a try, pours a deep ruby brown with a nice sized creamy tan head leaving full even rings of lacing beautiful appearance. Aroma is also up to par with Vienna toasted nut malt tones in the aroma and residual caramel notes arising one warming treat just a lil early in mid August in this heat, just not fall yet. Flavors blend well with a great toasted nuts flavoring from the specialty malts used and spiced up goodness to go around bringing not only a solid representation but maybe a lil uniqueness from the BBC. Finish contains som mild fruit tones and a bready characteristic that I call the Sam Adams funk, keep in mind not always a bad funk just goes here. Mouhfeel has a nice texture medium bodied rides on the palate oh so nicely very smooth. Drinkability don't knock it till ya try it, b/c I almost passed on it and with all the discussion on the Forum lately you'll be able to sound your opinion.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2003 16:14:53 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: copper / orange in color with a 1" head. No lacing developed.

Smell: very little aroma, as some soft sweetness is barely detectable.

Taste: caramel, mild fruit sweetness, a hint of nuttiness, and very mild bitterness. Overall a sweeter beer that is somewhat dry. Simple and straightforward.

Mouthfeel: smooth from start to finish. The finish is also a bit dry. Aftertaste is short with some caramel sweetness.

Drinkability: had a pint before dinner and two with dinner. Of course the restaurant selection was macro heavy, so my options were limited. But I found this to be flavorful and very easy to drink. Definitely worth trying.

Serving type: on-tap

10-12-2006 11:30:43 | More by Gavage
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

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

Orange-amber in color, clear with a pleasant head and tight bubbled sticky lace.

Aroma features a largely caramel smell. The malt is crisp with creamy milk sugars coming forward. Surprisingly, the alcohol warmth comes through, too.

Very round, rich mouthfeel. The flavor comes late, but strongly. Hop is strictly a balancing act to the full crystal malt flavors. The hop is more present after the swallow, but the aftertaste is still more malt; it's also long lasting.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2004 22:39:30 | More by smcolw
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, orange and blue colour, bought at the Hi-Times Wine Cellars, in Costa Mesa, CA, single,

A: Pours a beautiful pumpkin orange, with a nice white head into a pilsner glass.

S: Smells of malts predominately, a hint of hops, and a bit of smoke character I felt as well.

T: Malt is the word here, lots of caramel, but not as robust as I would have liked, easily drinkable, nothing offensive, taste is good overall, has nuance.

M: Typical lager, light and smooth, easy to drink.

D: An good Oktoberfest marzen, I've had better and I've had worse, nice colour in it, a traditional colour, I'll definitely buy some when they come out in the fall each year.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2007 07:42:25 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

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

Clean and malty with a scratchy touch of hops. Nothing very interesting about it but it looks nice in the glass with a real orange color for the season. Malty with a roasted edge. Hops are the earthy sort. Slight bitterness around the edges. Touch of saltiness along with the sweet malt.

Yet another perfectly drinkable beer from Sam Adams. Well made and balanced. Down the hatch and on to something else.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2011 05:01:02 | More by mactrail
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

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

Poured a deep orange color with a slightly foamy white head and decent carbonation. Nose is pretty flat but I did detect some spice and caramel. Taste is malt, perhaps Munich and caramel, fruit, spice, hops. Pretty balanced but also pretty ordinary on the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2009 02:55:40 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

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

this is a great octoberfest. looks pretty standard, autumn orange color with a lacey off white head that lasts awhile. smells like big german caramel malts and bready yeast. flavor is complex and not nearly as sweet as so many octoberfests are. i pick up so many fall flavors in this, like pumpkins, squash, and brown sugar, but that may just be a product of the season. mouthfeel is right on for the style, its lighter in body but not thin, just really drinkable. carbonation is pretty relaxed in this. its one of those beers that demands a huge glass. letting a one liter draft get a little warm as it drinks is how i always wish i was having it.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2012 15:57:09 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of tempest
tempest

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice fest-like beer. Looks a nice amber-orange with an aroma of toasted malts. Tastes "malty" the same way other good German lagers do with some caramel and toffee. I don't know how this is the #1 Oktoberfest beer as Sam claims, but its still very smooth and drinkable. Worthy of a litre stein.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2006 06:13:16 | More by tempest
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

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.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2010 22:21:02 | More by mdfb79
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.81/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

[Low C Overall]

Served on draught into a Miller Lite glass at the 9-0 Bar in South Central Los Angeles. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a half finger head of poor cream, thickness, and retention. Colour is an unappealing dark copper. I recall the head being better in the bottled version.

Sm: Absolutely nothing. Me broken nose can't detect anything. All apologies, lads.

T: Slight bittering hops, an overly commercialized barly/malt foundation, and no real substance. It's decent, but far from exemplary.

Mf: Very sharp, which turns me off from it. A touch too thick. Slightly coarse and wet.

Dr: It's decently easy to drink, but priced rather high. I prefer the bottled version.

---
Bottle reviewed 09/25/11.

33cl brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Acquired as part of the Sam Adams Harvest pack at Sam's Club.

A: Pours a four finger head of nice cream, good thickness, and fair retention. Colour is a semitransparent textbook copper.

Sm: Festive hops and light caramel. Me broken nose can't distinguish - all apologies, lads. Aroma is mild in strength.

T: Caramel and generic hops. You know, the marzen taste. It's far from special but has some l imited spice. Built simply, but balanced.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but a touch thick. Rather generic.

Dr: Easy to drink, average ABV, and average quality. I won't be seeking this out in future, but I might try it if I see it on draught.

C

---
I picked up another bottle with a Sam Adams variety box of 12 beers. Additional (truncated) notes from 09/04/13:

12 fl oz bottle served into a Spaten stangenglas in me gaff in Austin, Texas. Reviewed live.

Served cold. Side-poured with standard vigor.

A: No bubble show. Pours a two finger head of beige colour. Okay thickness and creaminess. No lacing as the head recedes. Retention is above average - 3 minutes.

Body colour is a somewhat dark amber-copper of average vibrance. No yeast particles are visible.

Standard fare for style.

Sm: Caramel, allspice, clove. Munich malts. Hints of pumpkin gourd. A touch of roast. Some grains. Generic floral hopping. On the sweeter end. Lightly bready. No yeast or alcohol is detectable. A pleasant aroma of above average to mild strength.

T: Nice spicing, with allspice, clove, and maybe nutmeg. Good caramalt build with some leavening munich malts in there as well. I pick up a buried hint of pumpkin and some traces of nuts and toffee. Fairly bready and grainy. Any hopping is minimal in strength/floral in character. A bit too sweet. Balance is decent for what it is. Unimpressed with the lack of complexity and subtlety, but hey, it's Sam Adams. Approachable and likable for what it is, but far from unique or special.

Average depth/duration/intensity of flavour. The sweetness isn't to style for a festbier.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with some unwelcome coarseness in the second act. A bit overcarbonated. Body is too full for the lack of diversity and depth of flavour. Subpar presence on the palate overall. It's pretty generic, and I guess it suits the flavour profile okay.

Dr: Downable but forgettable. A pretty average seasonal from Sam Adams. I won't look forward to this in future years, but it's tolerable inoffensive change from Boston Lager. Wouldn't recommend it to friends;. Not worth seeking out.

C-

[Low C Overall]

Serving type: on-tap

10-08-2011 21:38:58 | More by kojevergas
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle.

A: The o-fest is a coppery amber color, clear enough that I can see the decorative candle that sits on the other side of the glass. A decent head, nearly two fingers in size, overflowed briefly, requiring a quick clean-up. Light lacing followed.

S: The aroma is very malty, bready with a pleasant sweet streak that lightens things up. Hops add a balancing aspect only, little in the way of strong noble hops.

T: The beer has a light body, grainy but not too full. The standout is a dose of caramel, almost syrupy, that follows the initial malt wave. The sweetness that it brings livens up the taste. The hops are a little stronger here too, adding an earthy bitterness. The finish is fast, offering some graininess before fading away.

M: The lager is malty, no doubt about it. The flavor is solid though and the caramel really helps it work.

D: This is like comfort beer. I just feel good drinking it and it reminds me of a simpler time when I hadn't yet gotten into ales. Sammy A., thank you for a nice pint.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2009 01:58:37 | More by akorsak
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

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

First had: ? (have had on tap and in bottles)

A nice crack at a märzen by SA. Pours a golden orange color, very carbonated, with a delicate layer of bubbles for a head that doesn't linger long. Basic grainy, malty aroma, with a touch of sweetness. Mild, toasted bread taste, a bit nutty, caramel sweetness, but not too much, with some floral notes coming through. A bit of apples and oranges, finishing with a crisp hop bite. Light-meduim mouthfeel, pretty dry, and quite drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

06-15-2011 13:55:18 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, with freshness dating. Pours coppery almond, clear with a moderate white head. It also leaves a trace of lacing. Typical octoberfest brw thing going on here. Sweet malt carries the load, minimal hopping. pleasant brew goes well with sausages, onions etc etc.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2004 00:21:47 | More by Billolick
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer pours a light warm brown crystal clear body with a nice gentle carbonation and a thick creamy head of off-white foam.

S- Clean smell with hints of light toasted malt and some hop bitterness.

T- This beer has a smooth soft flavor of slightly toasted malt with a slight tanginess to it. This beer finishes crisp and clean with a German hop bitterness.

M- Medium mouthfeel with a bit of a watery texture. No astringency or fizz from the carbonation

D- This beer has a light smooth maltyness that I wish was stronger. The hops are in balance but to faint because the malt is rather faint.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2005 23:36:47 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

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

Moderate carbonation and frothy head that doesn't last too long but leaves some lace. Copper/orange color and more malt than hops in fact the hops are barely noticable. Nose has some fruitiness but it is barely noticeable. Finish is smooth with some sweetness but not cloying.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2002 18:10:46 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

A- Tight collar of tan lace stays true, vibrant yet rustic tawny color ... good clarity.

S- Nice malty aroma, toasted bread with light sweetness and faint herbal hop.

T&M- Very malty, not overly sweet. Lots of bready notes, lightly toasted crust comes to mind. Kiss of hops to balance, slight herbal flavor. Finishes semi-sweet with a lingering maltiness.

D- A tasty choice this year, its good to have a fresh O-fest rather than getting burned by a stale imported O-fest that has been sitting around since last year. A great contrast to some crab cakes with some homemade spicy remoulade sauce.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2006 01:18:03 | More by Jason
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

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

Pours a clear dark red/orange brew.

Smell is malty and floral with a mild spiciness. Mild banana scent is also present.

Taste is very malty with a touch of browned sugar. There is a bitterness here that counter-balances the sweetness. There are some woody and earthy tastes present also.

Mouthfeel is very good.

Very drinkable brew that I will buy again. A very well executed beer, almost a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2004 03:58:28 | More by Zorro
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dated by Feb 06. Also noticed it sez Lager on the bottle. Pours a clear deep golden color with lots of carbonation, small head, but lots of lacing. Scent of sweet malts. Medium body. Very nice taste kinda sweet. Man you could drink this all day long, very nice again by Sam Adams. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2005 00:45:12 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

2.95/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy dark amber color with bright orange edges and a one finger off white head that quickly settles into a thin ring. Not much in the way of lacing.

The aroma of this beer is really bland with an earthy quality along with some subtle spice but not much sweetness or malt coming through. Hints of floral, grassy pine along with some pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg. Very faint malt sweetness even as it warms.

Fuller bodied and more complex than I expected. The hop presence from the aroma is present up front providing faint dry bitterness which compliments the spice character. Hints of pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove linger over the sweet malt backbone into a slightly dry finish. The malt character is much stronger in the flavor than the aroma suggests with some sweet caramel and rye along with some faint pumpkin, toffee and biscuit. Decently balanced and sessionable but nothing extraordinary.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2011 05:53:26 | More by corby112
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12ozer that I was "forced" to take home after being the last to leave a football get-together. Oh, the horror. :-)

Poured into an imperial pint glass, a copper hued brew, with a beige 3/4" head. Lacing is good, plentiful and lasting. Aroma is slightly fruity, with a toasted biscuit backbone. Taste is caramel malts, with the frruity flavor pervasive, kind of hiding other notes. Mouthfeel takes a bit of getting used to with the fruitiness for me, but once you settle in, this gets pretty drinkable. An acceptable seasonal that makes a good backup at many a bar's micro draft wasteland.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2004 22:13:36 | More by ppoitras
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It is time of the Fall seasonals and I am trying some new ones this year while they are fresh.

From the bottle: "Samuel Adams Octoberfest is brewed with five varieties of malted barley for a deep amber color and a bigger richer flavor. It's everything we look forward to in Fall."

The pour produced a finger of fluffy eggnog-colored head with excellent retention. Color was a deep copper with NE-quality clarity, reminiscent of a former G/F's hair. Nose was rich and malty and very evocative of the style. Mouthfeel was medium and it was sweet in a toasted cereal way that reminded me of Wheaties, which my father would swear by. It was not cloyingly sweet, but more toasty sweet, if that makes any sense. I liked it simply because I do not like overly sweet anything. The finish was semi-sweet and very pleasant. Worth a try at this time of year.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2011 00:00:00 | More by woodychandler
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Draft offering served in a mug. The brew appears a clear copper color with an off-white cap of froth. Some patchy suds of lace stick to the glass.

The nose is quite muted with a bit of herbal hops, minerals and buttery diacetyl that blends to more of a scent of toffee as it warms up.

The taste is quite buttery and includes plenty of malt that imparts flavors of toffee and caramel. There is a soft touch of herbal hops present and a slight mineral feel towards the finish.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modes tamount of carbonation. It is crisp and nice but really buttery almost to fault for my palate.

Serving type: on-tap

10-28-2013 13:56:41 | More by stakem
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

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

From Flying Dog to Gordon to Karl to Sam, we enter the last beer of the American Oktoberfest Invitational, the tasting which I sample some of the marzen's of the bigger American craft breweries. Before I go on, I will say that this is the first SA Oktoberfest I've had in three years, which is the longest stretch I've gone without tasting a beer that I already sampled. To some, that may not sound long, but I've only been able to legally drink for only a slightly longer time. That will end very soon. Is SA Oktoberfest as good as I remember? On to the beer:

Poured into a stange, the beer's color is darker than other maarzen's with its rich amber red color. The head on top is semi-creamy/semi-fuzzy. It slowly drops. Light in the nose. There is some "raw" hop leaf crawling in the nose with weak notes of malty goodness. Where are my malts? Will I taste them?

Oh yes, I taste them, though on the lighter side. Bread crust and sweet King's Hawaiian rolls lead the way in this smooth, medium bodied beer. It's slightly fruity, and very faint alcohol hints itself on the palate. Dry biscuit malt finishes off the journey.

In the land of marzen's, SA Oktoberfest will hold its own given its distribution, freshness, and price advantage. Not as heavenly as I remember three years ago, but still very servicable and easy drinking. (In case you were wondering, Boréale Blonde is now the beer I haven't sampled in the longest time, dating back to December 2006.)

The American Oktoberfest Invitaitonal comes to end with these four beers, and now is the time to crown a winner. And the winner is....

Gordon Biersch Festbier!

No leftover marzen's at this Oktoberfest, and in the end, the guy who tells you not to trust a skinny brewer takes it all. Hope you're all full of pretzels and potato salad (and beer!) after this invite. Good night everyone!

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2009 03:48:37 | More by DoubleJ
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 4,947 ratings.