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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.
BA SCORE
83
good

6,264 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,264
Reviews: 2,005
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 67
Gots: 782 | 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: 6,264 | Reviews: 2,005 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ejimhof
4/5  rDev +9%

ejimhof, Aug 27, 2012
Photo of DoubleJ
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!

DoubleJ, Oct 15, 2009
Photo of rhoadsrage
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.

rhoadsrage, Oct 13, 2005
Photo of Huhzubendah
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's October, after all...

A: The beer is transparent with plenty of bubbles ascending from the depths. The color is an autumn shade of orange, akin to the changing hues of the leaves. There is about an inch of off-white head that leaves a fair amount of lacing.

S: It smells like a lager. The sweetness is subtle, with hints of fruit.

T: A nice take on a traditional German classic. The beer is mostly malty, with very little hop presence. It's slightly sweet and fruity, with notes of grain and/or barley.

M: The feel is thicker than I expected, in a pleasant way. There is a slight hint of astringency and/or alcohol in the finish that counteracts the otherwise fabulous feel on the palate.

D: 'Tis the season. It's not my favorite choice within the style, but it goes down just fine.

Huhzubendah, Oct 26, 2010
Photo of Zorro
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.

Zorro, Feb 24, 2004
Photo of jdhilt
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.

jdhilt, Sep 02, 2002
Photo of afsdan
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

afsdan, May 21, 2014
Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

LXIXME, Jan 25, 2014
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Copper in color with a nice white head that enveloped the glass with lace.

S. No aroma present besides some faint malts.

T. The malts used provide a sweet taste, the hops provide a nice herbal bitter, and neither wins out. A very well balanced brew.

M. Medium to full bodied.

D. A good session beer, one of the better O-fests I've had thus far.

Stinkypuss, Aug 28, 2008
Photo of BillRoth
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

BillRoth, Dec 29, 2013
Photo of Wasatch
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.

Wasatch, Oct 02, 2005
Photo of mdaschaf
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear amber with a very small head and little lacing.

S: Malty aroma with a sweetness as well. A very small hop kick as well.

T: Caramel and lightly roasted malts. Not as sweet as the nose. The hops are mild on the flavor as they were on the nose.

M/D: Medium bodied and pretty smooth. Overall it is a fine fall choice, not amazing, but definitely serviceable. I had this at a restaurant where it was the only "craft" choice. I feel that places like that it is always a good choice, but I probably won't go out and grab it for the house.

mdaschaf, Oct 21, 2010
Photo of smakawhat
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A nice simple three finger soapy head is produced, but not with much retention. Body is a classic dark amber red, crystal clear and looks very much like a marzen. Head seems to lose some staying power and looks a bit weak.

Bouquet is a sweet candy like malt and small fizz pop soda. Kind of odd but alright.

Taste is kind of lacking but has all the right ideas. Simple malt and light, some carbonation that is noticeable but has a medium sized body with a hint of thickness. After taste on the swallow is kind of tongue and palate numbing, almost novocaine territory.

Overall a slightly above average marzen. Will do in a pinch.

smakawhat, Aug 23, 2011
Photo of ppoitras
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.

ppoitras, Nov 19, 2004
Photo of brandoman63
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

brandoman63, Nov 29, 2011
Photo of John_M
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Detroit airport the other day.

The beer pours a mahogany copper color with good head retention and lacing. On the nose I get a hint of sweet malt and not much else. The simple flavors in this beer generally replicate the nose. There is some attractive roasty malt and light honey in this beer, but there really isn't very much flavor otherwise. The beer is somewhat watery, but there are no off flavors.

Pretty boring, but certainly not terrible. However, there are many, many other good marzen options out there these days to ever order this beer again.

John_M, Oct 15, 2008
Photo of biegaman
3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sam Adams Octoberfest is a myriad of the quintessentially fall-time shades of auburn and amber. It is a snapshot of autumn foliage. On the whole, it is quite dazzling; fiery tones of red and coppery glazed oranges flare up when the beer is held against the light. Like its clarity, a majority of the head persists. Although the bulk of it resides along the bumpers there is a thin film that manages to cloak the surface. Lacing drapes the glass.

The aroma exhumes a lot of sulfur. Don't be alarmed - this is common in many lagers. It isn't anything unappetizing but it's not exactly enticing either (and the sizable hint of diacetyl isn't helping things). But that sulfur element is definitely characteristic of many lagers and it is one you can likely learn to live with - if not come to enjoy. Besides, swirling seems to eradicate most of it. You might also note caramel and dried fruit.

A profoundly malty flavour hints at notes of caramel, crackers and cranberries. It is distinctly sweet; a trace amount of hops is detectable but contributes nothing more than a dash of earthiness. The aftertaste has a lengthy linger and leaves your tongue in the clutches of sulfur and dried fruits. I wish this was served in one of those giant 2 liter steins :(

I could probably drink at least a few of those. No kidding. This is one extremely sessionable lager. It is smooth and deliciously sweet. The maltiness is sufficient to provide flavour but not heavy enough to weigh you down. I'm not only drinking this in gulps but have actually caught myself chugging it. To call it quenching is an understatement. Admittedly, I wouldn't know where to draw the line drinking this one.

No wonder Oktoberfest is such a big celebration. Any type of beer this good - especially one only released seasonally - deserves its own ceremony and commemoration. This is a gorgeous, distinctly flavorful, endlessly sessionable lager - in other words, this is a beer perfectly designed for festivities. And you can bet Sam Adams' version will definitely be a source of merriment in my house each fall from here in.

biegaman, Oct 08, 2009
Photo of rab53
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

rab53, Nov 25, 2011
Photo of tdm168
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with 1/4" of head that quickly fades to a thin lace. Smells of caramel and possibly toffee. Taste is rich caramel but not sweet; very mild hop character for balance. Mouthfeel is smooth and well carbonated.

This is definitely a sessionable beer; rich and smooth, it's a decent octoberfest brew.

tdm168, Aug 24, 2011
Photo of plaid75
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark copper hue with a one finger pillowy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a strong caramel malt aroma with a smattering of aroma hops.

The taste was upfront malt sweetness with a solid toasted grain bill. A very good doughy aftertaste as well.

The mouthfeel was on the creamy side.

Overall a good drinkable Octoberfest. A bit on the sweet side and could have used a bit more hop in my opinion.

plaid75, Oct 10, 2006
Photo of Latarnik
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

Latarnik, May 27, 2014
Photo of billab914
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

billab914, Sep 14, 2014
Photo of chinchill
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A fine looking darkish amber leaning toward red; light tan head.

S - Mild, mainly malt aroma

T - More malty than hoppy; main flavor component is toasted malts. A bit of hops in the finish.

D - smooth and easy to drink

Very good for style which, frankly, is not one of my favorites.

chinchill, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of Kelp
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

Kelp, Jan 25, 2013
Photo of beerthulhu
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A bready beige head sits atop a light rustic-amber body coloring. Visible carbonation was extremely light, with soft whispers of lonely bubbles rising reluctantly. The head dissipates rather quickly leaving a thin film coating.

S: The nose was soft, light caramel syrup with only the slightest hint of hops of nobel flowery origins.

T: Sweet and syrupy upon the opening sip. Maplesyrup, caramel appear in the forefront while a light noble flowering hop presence presents itself on the tongue upon the swallow. Hints of chocolate and munich appear ever so briefly upon warming on the close.

M: Light bodied, you hardly feel this at all resting on the tongue. Nil carbonation factor, easily manipulated on the tongue.

D: As with most of Boston brewings beers this one goes down very smoothly with little effort or resistance making for a good session drink aptly suited per style. Pitches of this are optimal, Prost Zum Wohl.

beerthulhu, Oct 11, 2008
Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 6,264 ratings.