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Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager - Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thomas Hooker Octoberfest LagerThomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

163 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 163
Hads: 260
Avg: 3.91
pDev: 13.55%
Wants: 40
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company visit their website
Connecticut, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2003

Originally brewed to celebrate the beginning of the German brewing season and the 1810 wedding of crown prince Ludwig of Bavaria and his bride-to-be, princess Therese of Saxon-Hildburghausen. This amber beer was brewed in March ("Marzenbier") and left to age in cool lagering caves during the heat of the summer. Our rich and satisfying Bavarian-style OctoberFest comes from a special blend of imported German malts that creates a full-bodied brew and stresses a malty flavor and lingering aroma. Gently hopped and delicately balanced, its true-to-style, slow fermentation and long, cold maturation produces a luxuriously smooth, award-winning brew.

16 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager Alström Bros
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Reviews: 163 | Hads: 260
Photo of BranfordBound
4.04/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap many a times. Actually one of my favorite home grown marzens. Try this one fresh and you will see why. Nice caramel sweetness through with a touch of herbal hops.

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Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep orange, almost amber color with a thin white head that trails the glass. The wheat and malt come through nicely. The taste was mellow but well balanced with everything to make a delicious and filling oktoberfest style beer. Enjoyed it a lot.

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Photo of digitalflood
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Pours an amber red with a good head that reduces to very good lacing. Smells of malts, barley, some smokey peat, and biscuits. Smoked burnt biscuits on first taste. Was honestly kind of off-putting given you're expecting more caramel and sugars courtesy of the Marzen label. If you let it sit and get closer to room temperature that is when all the magic happens. The smoke peals back and reveals a pound cake and coffee combination taste. That happens from the barley and malts dancing around from the nose to the mid-palate. There is some good caramel and malt notes in between. The aftertaste is where the Marzen malt shines. That hint of smoke becomes less noticeable and more part of the taste notes as you move along. At the end of the glass I was very pleased. Nice balance. Complex flavor. Develops well as you move through the session. Started rating this a 3.5 and then went back to 3.75 and landed on 4 out of 5 when all is said and done. Definitely grows on you if you give it a chance.

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Photo of Samp01
3.4/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber brown with a medium off white head. Aroma is of barley, malt, yeast and fruity notes. Taste is sweet mildly toasted barley, some caramel flavors as it warms up a bit with some moderate amount of bitterness. A medium body, smooth with moderate carbonation. Finishes with some toasted barley and caramel, yeast and bready notes with some moderate bitterness on the end for balance. Overall a good and tasty brew.

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Photo of justintcoons
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%

12 oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

Amber with 1 finger of off-white head. Crystal clear with medium-light carbonation.

Caramel, bread, and brown sugar.

Caramel, sweet brown breads, and hints of brown sugar. Slight toastiness with touches of earthy hops.

Medium-light bodied, crisp, clean, smooth, and refreshing.

Pretty textbook, pretty good.

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Photo of MMarkMelly
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Great Clean Taste - No Sharp Bite

Love That This Stuff Is Pure CT - Couldn't Find It In Boston! Compares To Great Beers Had In Munich/Stuttgart/Rottenberg/Tübingen.

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Photo of Omnium
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle > Pint Glass
A - Clear amber with a finger of off white head with some compact bubbles making up some minor lacing.
S - Sweet malts, caramel, bread, earthy tones, some spice, a touch of cinnamon.
T - Classic sweet Marzen kinda flavor with a nice touch of some dark earthy hops, some cinnamon, a little pepper.
M - Partly creamy, well carbonated.
O - Good Octoberfest for sure, like the earthy quality it has to it.

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Photo of Kooz
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nut brown with a tightly packed off-white head.

Smell some kid of spice, maybe cinnamon. Not too strong, but nice.

Tastes nice. Slightly bitter up front, but mellows into a smooth warmth with an occasional pinch, which is nice.

Very good body and a creaminess lacking from a lot of Marzen style beers (maybe intentionally?). I am a fan.

This is a good Oktoberfest beer, the only one I've bothered to rate this year. I recommend it.

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Photo of Carolvs
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh, clean, and crisp - no unpleasant aftertaste at all.
Not a particularly strong smell one way or the other.
On the appearance side, my only negative comment is that the head was a bit thin and fleeting.

Overall though, fantastic lager that is as smooth as it comes. Makes you feel like you're at a pub in Munich!

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Photo of searsclone
4.13/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bottle into a flared pint glass.

hazy copper color with a sticky tan head and good lace

smell is malty sweet and earthy

taste is malt and caramel with a slightly bitter hop finish. nice balance

mouthfeel is chewy with a wet finish

overall, tasty and easy to drink

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Photo of KTCamm
4.69/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours light to medium copper, orange hints. Foam vanishes fast. Clear looking. Malt bomb nose, some hints of spice - cinammon/nutmeg. Taste is a delicious malt full of flavor and smooth. Some sweetness which is balanced by a full bodied mouthfeel, Wow, really kicked me back a bit - just outright excellent.

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Photo of IronLover
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bright copper orange in color with a slight chill haze at the onset that ultimately cleared nicely. Poured with a thick foamy off-white foam that left a ladder of sticky lacings down the backside of the glass. Earthy, sweet caramel, toasted malt and toffee aromas with earthy grain and floral hop aromas. Delicate, smooth, velvety feel with subdued carbonation upfront that thickens through the middle and toward the finish. Flavor is a nice carbonation of floral hops, caramel and toasted malts from beginning to end. This is a nit more hop forward than your average oktoberfest. Finishes crisply with a light floral hop character followed by toasted malt. A nice, drinkable, slightly hoppy fall offering.

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Photo of JayQue
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good One!!! From a style that can often be pretty bland. Pours a hazy orange amber color with and average size off-white head. Average head retention and good size bands of lacing around the glass.

Smell is fairly mild, mostly malty.

Taste is very good. Strong, somewhat sweet malty backbone and good robust bitterness. Not IPA bitterness but some subdued European hops. The balance is great. This is not some bland watery beer.

Mouthfeel is rich and crisp. Just right for the style. The bitterness is a treat for the tongue at the end of a malty sip.

This is what a Marzen should be. Not the most exciting style in the world but a great beer for pitchers and mass quantities on a fall day.

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Photo of alexgash
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle. Born on 8-21-2012.

Tawny, burnt sienna body. Clear. Finger of moderately thick, bright light khaki head. Some lacing. Nose full of malt: caramel, butterscotch, cookies, and blondies are all over the place. Maybe a slight vegetal hop hint.

Toasted biscuity malt up front. Spicy, vegetal hop bitterness also shows up, but stays in the background. Very caramel-y, with plenty of cookie dough and a little butterscotch. Butterscotch and brown sugar into the finish. Spicy hop bitterness lingers a while, as does the cookie-ish malt. Medium bodied, with a slightly syrupy feel. A very nice ofest!

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear copper. Whitish head and lacing. Good looking brew.
Smell: Yeasty bread, slightly earthy. not a lot happenin but nice.
Taste: much like the nose. Bready and malty. Tasty though not exceptional.
Overall: Decent enough. Enjoyable but no standout.

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Photo of 57md
4.07/5  rDev +4.1%

Copper color. The nose is malty and has a nutty character to it as well. The flavor profile is malty and bready. It also possesses the same nutty character as the nose. The body is right on for style. This is a perfect beer to enjoy when the temperature outside starts to cool.

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Photo of dday1231
3.12/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice aroma, but I’m not crazy about the taste. My biggest gripe is the impression it gives during my first few sips. It’s difficult to explain what I don’t like about the initial taste other than it’s a copper flavor that seems awkward with the sweet and spicy background. I’m not thrilled with it, and probably would not buy again. medium sweetness, lightly bitter, lightly sour.

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Photo of Schmidts
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle pumpkin orange with a 1/2 inch white head that drops to a 1/4 inch with lots of lacing.
Smells of breads and malts and herbel earth.
Taste is caramel, malts and herbel balancing hops.This is really the way a marzen October Fest Lager Beer should taste. It is creamy and smooth in your mouth and refreshing to your taste! This is a October Fest thats bids you drink More. I give this one an overall of 4.5 this is a truely worthy October Fest. Give it a try it will delight you. Great Job Hooker!

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Photo of simskl
4.45/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A new favorite.
Found this at Stew Leonard's only a few miles from the brewery so it was sure to be fresh.
A very nice copper maybe closer to burnt orange color with a nice malty smell.
The taste was fantastic, it had the typical malty Marzen flavor but you could also taste some hops, not too much but enough to let you know they're in the beer.
There was a mild sweet aftertaste that disappeared quickly.
I like the fall because I like finding Marzen style beer and this one will make its way into the seasonal routine, it may even be pushing some of the others off the shelf a bit.

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Photo of BeerResearcher
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle.
Served in a heavy glass mug.
It pours a deep golden amber color with a fast-fading off-white head along with some patchy trailing lacing.
A strong whiff of wet sweet malt rises up at first pours and lasts for quite awhile. Smells of mixed fruit cup, citrus and cut field hay follow, as does a bit a alcohol fuminess.
This is as bold as an Octoberfest can be without rising into a stronger Lager style range like a Maibock, but I like it as it is.
Flavors of sweet caramel malt, tastes of pears, fresh bread, tea-like, and citrusy hops are finished with a light taste of golden rum.
The body is full and somewhat slick. The flavors come together and blend nicely as it warms.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy amber-copperbody with golden and orange highlights. Creamy antique-white head. Great retention and lacing.

Smell: Malty: grainy, bready, and toasty.There's also some yeastiness, a hint of floral hops, and a bit of fruitiness that I believe is due to the darker kilning of the Vienna malts in much the same way that some of the darker crystal malts have an almost raisin-like flavor, but not quite exactly to the same extent.

Taste: As is commonly the case, the flavor follows the aroma with a few additions. Bitterness, for example, cannot be smelled, and yet it's there. It's fairly moderate though, and quite appropriate for the Maerzen style. There's just enough to balance it from start to finish: nothing more, and nothing less. And there are some more hops. It's a slight touch spicy, and beneath that there's a little bit of an herbal thing going on. Not unlike the bitterness, however, the hop flavors are restrained to the point that they don't really stand out anymore than anything else; and in that way this is a really balanced and polished brew.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and gently crisp, as expected. Any more carbonation would bring out the bitterness and cut down the smoothness, and any less carbonation might allow it to become to flabby and malty sweet.

Overall: There's a lot of nice flavor across the entire palate, and it lingers quite pleasantly with a touch of malt and a balancing note of hop spiciness. Remarkably drinkable. Well done. Prost!

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Photo of Durge
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Gambrinus for importing this fresh growler of brew direct from the Bloomfield mother lode. The color was a distinct, clear copper with a weak white head and only nominal lacing. The aroma brought grassy malt and some clove with just a touch of herbal hop. Very nice. The flavor seemed dead on with the aroma so I can only repeat that while malt is the base theme, the grassy-clove idea hung true. It's not quite the clove you get with a Belgian brew but it had that sort of near minty character. I couldn't put my finger on what to call it, but it's likeable enough. It's a medium-light bodied brew though a bit aqueous I thought. The somewhat strong flavor here holds it back from being a big session choice but it works well in conversation with fellow beer enthusiasts. Certainly worth trying as a variation on the Oktoberfest theme.

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Photo of metter98
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear coppery orange in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige head that died down but consistently covered the surface and left lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of earthy yeast and toasted malts in the nose.
T: The flavor is rather malty and has flavors of toasted malts with hints of butter, caramel and toffee. There is a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness in the finish.
O: The beer is very drinkable because it has a good balance between the malts and hops.

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Photo of bogus564
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 fl oz, poured into a pint glass at my favorite watering hole.

A: Not bad - very dark amber in color, almost no head to speak of. Couldn't create one, even with an aggressive pour.

S: It's sometimes difficult to discern smells in a bar, so I have to give this the benefit of the doubt. I do pick up some light hoppiness and spice.

T: Decent. I'm getting some orange, light on the pine hops, and a sweetness like mint almost.

M: Okay. Light-bodied, good carbonation, easy on the palate, slightly citrusy finish.

O: Good, not great. It had some flavors I like, not nearly as pronounced as I like them.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a large foamy head of light brown with a medium brown pumpkin orange color.

S: Aroma of a slightly sweetened spiced oktoberfest with some decent roasted malts and a hit of molasses.

T: Thick spicing and sweetness. A bit of caramel followed by a respectable noble hopping. This had plenty of flavor for an oktoberfest and not in the way that Sam Adams has done it. There is more to the body and less spices with more expensive ingredients I feel taking this a notch up.

O: I like this as a Marzen. I will know just how good this compares after drinking fresh Marzen at the real Oktoberfest in a few weeks in Munich. Cant Wait!

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Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 163 ratings.