1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager - Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thomas Hooker Octoberfest LagerThomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

252 Ratings
THE BROS
96
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 252
Reviews: 164
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 33
Gots: 22 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager Alström Bros
Ratings: 252 | Reviews: 164 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A clear, darkish copper body, with good carbonation. Topped by a fist full of soft, creamy bona china colored foam.

Big buscuit / fresh bread aroma, with a hint of grass outside the bakery window.

Good malty start, with real depth, much more a dark chocolate than pixie stick kind of sweetness. Good earthy hops arise to both balance and take a little bow of their own. Real solid taste, firm, and well integrated. Liquid brown bread - high praise from an Irishman.

Mouthfeel is great, drinkability superb.

Just a joy, up with Ramstein and Brooklyn as my favorite domestic O'fests. Guess I have to go back to Connecticut next fall.

Photo of OatmattStout
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It is a redish/orange amber color with a really nice head and nice lacing. The smell was of toasted grain, sweet bready malt with a faint sour dough nose quality. The first impression is a really nice full mouthfeel of flavor. The flavors are a rich malty sweetness with a small hop balance. Has a slight spicyness to it that really makes it enjoyable. It was the best of the octoberfest I tasted out of 15 at an octoberfest tasting I attended recently.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light copper color with a very thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a very thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malt, with a good hops background. There’s a little bit of brown sugar & dark fruit as well.

T: A good hearty roasted malt flavor indicative of the style starts out. Sweet flavors of caramel, brown sugar and a little bit of dark fruit follow. The hops character is mild but it’s very complimentary to the other flavors. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Very tasty, goes down easy, good kick, not very filling, good representation of style, I could stick with this beer for a while. This is one of my favorite O-fest beers.

Photo of Deus1138
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I wish I had tried this earlier in the year. I expect it to disappear from store shelves now that it is November. Oh well, I know now for next year.

This is an exceptional Octoberfest. I was surprised by the sweet malts that come through after your sip. Kind of caramel, brown sugary in character. I like Octoberfests for the strong flavor. This brew has the expected strong flavor, but it's sweet and smooth. Very creamy mouth feel. I did not detect the hops until the aftertaste. Not an overwhelming hop flavor, just enough to let you know they're there.

Very easy to drink this one. Flavorful, sweet, smooth, and well balanced. Not "too much" of anything. I'll be sure to get some as soon as it is available next year.

Photo of oxmasterscream
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Six-pack courtesy of UnionMade, big up.

Appearance: Poured a clear, deep amber with just a splash of red. Head was about one finger but fell quickly, leaving just a thin covering atop the brew. The casual bubble drifted upward.

Aroma: Very German. Subtle wafts of toasted, sweet Bavarian malts (caramel and something pilsnery) and hints of apples. Very inviting. Smelled very authentic.

Taste: As expected by the inviting aromas, an extremely balanced, well-executed version of the style. Sweet and malty first, then slightly spicy, then a zing of apple cider and a touch of noble hop bitterness that gently coated and dried my mouth. It begged me to take another sip. Very authentic.

Mouth: Medium-bodied with just enough carbonation to keep your tongue awake. As mentioned above, dry at the finish.

Drinkability: Extremely drinkable. Great great great for the season. Lovin' it. Thanks again to UnionMade for the opportunity.

Photo of markman
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager:

Crystal clear copper color, really nice to look at. Appears as though it has it’s own light source…just kind of sits there and shimmers. Minimal head that settles to a gossamer film and hangs there a while. Wow, a Märzen to marvel. Toasty, malty sweetness with a spicy almost rye-laced hop bite at the end. Lacing is beautiful, and nice served at slightly less than cellar temperature. But as it warms the dry maltyness fills the palette even more. Really good, the best O’fest I’ve had to date.

Cheers…

Photo of Jason
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown bottle. No freshness date and contract brewed & bottled in Saratoga Springs, NY.

A- Billowing foamy head, clear deep pumpkin orange color.

S- Mildly sweet malt character with suggestions of toasted grain and caramel.

T- Heavy waves of sweet toasted malt with a slight caramel backing. The hops are ample enough to balance and leave a kiss of herbal flavor in the semi-sweet finish.

M- Very crisp and smooth with a creamy mouth feel.

D- Hearty enough to show the rest that it has more character, enough flavor to keep on wanting more.

Photo of Schmidts
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
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!

Photo of DousedInStout
4.31/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer poured a beautiful, bright orange color with a solid head and long lasting lacing. The nose was sweet and malty, and the taste was prefect to style. Very well balanced - caramel malt at first followed by some noble hop crispness. Overall, the best Octoberfest I've had this year.

Photo of Greenlabel
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had heard that this product received a silver medal at last years's GABF so I really wanted to try it. After picking up a 6-pack in CT, I now understand why the product was so highly regarded. Definitely an outstanding Octoberfest from the bright orange pour, lacy foam and pleasant mouthfeel to the lack of any unpleasant aftertaste. A drier rather than sweeter Octoberfest interpretation with roasty malt overtones. Now I need to get back to CT for a few more 6-packs as I don't believe it's sold out of its local market.

Photo of SteveO1231
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. brown bottle with an orange label. Pours a dark reddish copper with a very nice tan head that melts into the glass quickly. Low carbonation, tiny bit of white lacing. Aroma is full of German malts, fruity, hints of chocolate, caramel, and honey oat bread. Medium to full bodied. Sweet caramel, honey flavor, hint a chocolate. Finish is nutty with a drying bitterness. Very crisp, excellent O-fest, really good beer for this time of year.

Cheers!

Photo of UnionMade
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

The beer is a deep reddish amber, topped with a thin white head. The head diminishes to nothing about halfway through, leaving a little bit of cobwebby lacing at the top of the glass.
The aroma is mainly a rich, robust caramunich maltiness. Lots of caramel, with some toastiness. Mild noble hops, providing a slightly herbal charater. Very clean, no off aromas. A light waft of alcohol is present.
The flavor starts with a rich, sweet caramel maltiness. Some toasted flavor, with the barest hint of fleeting smokiness towards the middle. Mild hopping comes through towards the end. Herbal, with a touch of citric bitterness. Some apparent alcohol in the very end, leaving off with a malty caramel aftertaste, which retreats quickly. Medium to full bodied, with gentle, small bubbled carbonation. A very mild, smooth mouthfeel, yet robust and strong.
Extremely clean, particularly for an american brewed beer. This one could definitely pass for an authentic german brewed version. An excellent local oktoberfest marzen. Probably my favorite this year. Very drinkable, although a sixer of this in one sitting will definitely put me down for the count.

Photo of tsm2011
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of DNICE555
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brass city crewfest

A - burnt orange color with a white head

S - Malt and grain

T - Malt, grain, somewhat bitter up front with a sweet finish

M - One of my favorite octoberfests. Enough bitterness to balance it away from being a malt bomb. Very smooth and hearty.

D - Very well done. Compliments a nice fall day very well.

Photo of albertjr21
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Heading into more fall-like weather here in the Northeast, I figured I'd reach into the back of my fridge and have the last of the six of these. Into a pint glass this pours a clear brownish amber color under a thin but well sustained head. The aroma doesn't disappoint either with a generous crisp and sweet toasted biscuity malt nose. There's a robust yet smooth malt body here that nicely delivers itself into a hearty finish that echoes toasted grainy bread and generous amounts of "Octoberfest" spices. Wonderfully masks its abv as well. Delicious and I can't wait for next year's batch...

Photo of Doomcifer
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, bright amber color with a fantastic cream colored, frothy head that retains very nicely. Smells biscuity, bready malts, earthy tones. Taste is more bready and biscuity maltiness, earthy, noble hop spice, very pleasing and balanced. Fantastic Marzen. Slightly creamy mouthfeel, crisp. Very drinkable and one of, if not the best, Marzen I have had this year.

Photo of drcarver
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep amber color with a frothy 2 finger, offwhite head. Head thins quickly to a 4mm thickness leaving nice lacing down the side of the glass. Great looking beer.

S - I'm digging the prior descriptions of graham cracker, but I'm getting a little cookie in the malt as well.

T - Alcohol followed by steel/iron (almost like it was out of a can). Finished with a roasted malt flavor. The first flavor is there and gone quickly. Needed another quaff to find the cookie malt in the forefront. Creamy and medium-full bodied. Sweet aftertaste sits in the back of the mouth for quite a while.

D - Great Oktoberfest beer. Generally not a fan of Thomas Hooker, but this is a real winner. Paired with a nice stew or pot roast on a cool fall day and I'm 1 step from heaven.

Photo of Hagbard
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A huge tan head forms from an average pour. Four inches, it fills the entirety of my half-liter mug. The color is mahogany and it is fairly clear, allowing sight lines to some tiny carbonation bubbles. The aroma is subdued when it's cold, but strengthens a bit as it warms. It is comprised of a strong maltiness and bread, nice but not assertive enough. Thankfully the taste makes up for this. The maltiness and breadiness are there and are still the stars, but there is much more going on. There is some sort of fruity sweetness in the background that lasts until a certain hoppy bitterness comes in. An unsweetened chocolate taste comes on during the finish. This is a great tasting Oktoberfest that has some untraditional marzen flavors that work very well and provide a depth of flavor and nuance to the beer not found in most examples of the style. Extremely clean, there are no off-tastes making it very drinkable. A must try for anyone who can get it.

Photo of Zorro
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled through sinstaineddemon and Secret Bunny '08 BIF.

Clear amber to reddish brown colored lager with a strong tan head.

Smell is very clean with a fair amount of caramel. Lots of toasted grain aroma and a faint grassy aroma. What is absent is much hop aroma at all, just a little grass.

The taste starts out sweet and malty with lots of Munich malt and a solid drying bitterness. Flavor doesn't change a lot as you drink it; it's just plain good. Little bit of raisin bran flavor here, like you see in a lot of Octoberfest beers.

Mouthfeel is good.

Quite nice drinkability here, I would have no problems drinking this for a month or six as my only beer. Add a little more dry hops and this would be about perfect.

Photo of erosier
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a nice amber orange color with a medium sized and medium bodied white head that laces the glass on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet roasted malts, some caramel, and a slight earthy hoppy aroma at the end.
T: Very big malty base that makes up the body of this beer. Nice caramel notes and then some fainter earthy hops at the end.
M: Very crisp, fresh, and lighter feeling than I thought it was going to be. Nice amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable beer and I wish they had these seasonals all year round.

Photo of bjohnson
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep copper almost reddish color with a one finger cream colored fizzy head. Dissipates quickly but leaves a film on top.
S: Good sweet malt presence with notes of caramel and some spices. Toasted grains with a sugary presence to them.
T/M: Maltyness dominates the taste buds with distinct flavors of caramel and burnt sugar with a spicy interlude. Creamy yet fizzy as it crosses the palate. Slight fruity hop presence which I first mistook for dark fruit malt usually noticed in bocks. Fizzyness is a bit overpowering, but doesn't hinder anything. Medium body with a smoothness to it.
D: Very drinkable O'fest. One of the better ones I've had this season so far. The abv is a tad higher than the others I've had, but it's not noticeable

Photo of Carolvs
4.2/5  rDev +8%
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!

Photo of pittvkyle7
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from 2006
A-A hazy dark amber/brownish color, white heads that fades to a ring in about two min. Some lacing but it's not very sticky.

S- Candy sugars and some yeast, very sweet, no hop aroma

T- again on the sweet side of things, tastes like a lot of other octoberfests I've had. toasted sugars, nutty, just a bit of hop bitterness to even it out.

M- At first I felt it was more carbonated than other TH beers, whatever the case, it is still smooth and goes down easy. light mouth feel

D- good drinkablility

Edit:
I had the 2008 version, and I have to say that is the BEST Octoberfest I've had all season. It is just full of flavor and makes others seem watered down, just really good stuff!

the 2006 got a B from me, but now I'm changing its score for 2008

Photo of Soozy
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Nice amber/orange color

S - Malt, caramel, some hops

T - Awesome. That's all I can say. Tastes like pure caramel, crystal malts, nice hop finish. Very, very pleasant. Easily the best Oktoberfest I had this year.

M - Low carbonation, great for style

D - Pretty good; I was not expecting this to be 6%. I could drink a few of these in a row, but probably not the six.

I had a different Oktoberfest immediately following this one and I was surprised at how watered-down it tasted... it couldn't hold a candle to it. I

Photo of UncleJimbo
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 12 oz bottle.

This Oktoberfest poured a clear, copper color with creamy, tall, light brown foam that persisted but slowly settled. The smell was malty with a hint of sweetness and a touch of caramel. The taste was malty with a bit of bread, a touch of caramel, a hint of Munich Malt, and a mild, modest hoppiness in the finish. The mouthfeel was smooth with good carbonation and medium body. Overall this beer was nicely dry with a malty aftertaste. This was a very rich and malty Oktoberfest, but was very easy and enjoyable to drink.

Thomas Hooker Octoberfest Lager from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 252 ratings.