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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.
BA SCORE
88
very good

163 Reviews
THE BROS
96
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 163
Hads: 256
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 8.86%
Wants: 35
Gots: 23 | 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
Reviews: 163 | Hads: 256
Photo of erosier
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
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. (518 characters)

Photo of Gmann
3.48/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden amber color with a small off-white head that dissipated into a small cap. The aroma is quite faint, I pick up the caramel malt, brown bread. The taste is a bready toasted malt, caramel, and a touch of metal. A nice malty flavor, could use more of a Saaz hop presence. The feel is moderate with nice carbonation. The brew finishes with a nice malty sweetness balanced with a toasted malt bitterness. A solid malty brew. Something about this brew does not scream out Marzen/Oktoberfest but it is still a good offering. Sample is probably a bit old at this point. (581 characters)

Photo of Zorro
4.21/5  rDev +6.6%
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. (723 characters)

Photo of GatorBeerNerd
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a dark amber brown color with a half a finger thick head that quickly disappears to a ring around the rim. There is no lacing due to dissipation of the head.

S: The main smell is of roasted malt. There is a hint of a chocolate aroma as well.

T: The aroma carries through to the taste. A hint of chocolate and a roasted malt taste. I like it, but it is just a tad too bitter for my tastes.

M: It has a nice thickness that makes it enjoyable in the mouth. However, there is no carbonation at all. I think it would be much more enjoyable with at least some carbonation.

D: The bitterness makes this one a sipper for me. I enjoyed this one a lot, but there was no way I could knock it back. (699 characters)

Photo of jackorain
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber, almost brown, slight chill haze. 1-inch head fell to tall collar and really nice splotchy thick coat.

Smells of sweet malt, caramel and biscuit too, alittle yeast

Tastes of caramel maltand biscuit up front. The middle is toasty. There is a nice balance in the hop bitterness but it is fleeting as the mlats come back t finish this beer.

Medium body and quite fizzy.

decent drinkability. I would not be adverse to having a couple of these. (454 characters)

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a sixtel this fall... just getting around to typing up the review

Regularly poured with a nice 2 finger head, which quickly dissipated. Burnt orange in color - attractive.

Found this to have a rich, malty smell. Didn't catch any special spices to note.

Tasted of caramel, a hint of chocolate, faint hops, and an overall rich flavor for an Oktoberfest.

This was very smooth on the palate.

Found this to be a pleasantly sessionable selection - well done, and recommended! (482 characters)

Photo of pittvkyle7
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
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 (763 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Blood orange with a warm sunset glow. The liquid slid into the glass with a silent creamy smoothness that should have positive implications for the mouthfeel. Up top sits a small crown of pastel orange-gold that exudes quality. A jagged king's crown of lace cements the already solid look.

The nose is on the tame side for the style and doesn't feature an abundance of Munich malt. That's okay, but there needs to be something in its place that gets the drinker excited about taking a sip. A light fruitiness helps.

THA & L Octoberfest Lager is my kind of Oktoberfest. It favors the lighter (although not overly light), less earthy end of the style spectrum. However, there's enough pale malt present to provide a honey-like sweetness and to fill out the body. I could drink a lot of these.

This brew is more malt-dominant amber lager than Oktoberfest. Of course, that's pretty much what an O-fest is when you get right down to it. Keeping the earthy-nutty flavors to a minimum and accentuating the lightly sweet, lightly toasted, golden grain-like flavors was a good call.

It's a wonderful thing when the sound and the feel of the pour matches the mouthfeel so perfectly. Lagers don't always deliver in this arena, but when they're good, they're very, very good. THOL is remarkably creamy and plush, with an expansiveness that indicates quality brewing.

Octoberfest Lager has been on my 'wants' list for some time now because I've reviewed all of the brewery's other regular releases (to date). It's a fine example of the style and was definitely worth the wait. Thanks to far333 for the surprise package. How did you know that my birthday is next week? (1,659 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
3.48/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served right out of the fridge and poured into a Pint Glass

A – Poured a very nice orange tinted amber with a good two finger high head of frothy white lace over the top of the glass. Very nice clarity in this one a you could easily make out the chains of carbonation that were racing towards the top of the glass to replenish the frothy white cap on top. After an average fade what was left behind was a decent amount of side glass lace and a thin film across the rest of the top of the glass. Overall pretty average looks for the style.

S – The aroma was full of musty bready malts. Not overall strong or pungent, it was just rather average with a slight hop twang to it as it started to warm up. There was really a nice grainy back that you could pick up on the aroma and the overall blend of smells was your classic malt filled marzen with a nice little bit of sugary notes added in the back.

T – The flavor was very nice, again rather typical but still very nice with a good amount of bready malts giving it that musty kind of taste. Had a little touch of sugar and a bit more grain and it was kind of skewed a bit towards a red ale to be honest. A slight note of hoppiness floating around in there as well giving the profile a little more depth and a bit more of something to work with then it had had before. Overall again fairly average for the style but still pretty decent overall.

M – Your typically well carbonation light bodied lager here. Nice crisp clean feel, not too thin and defiantly not watered down. The carbonation held up well throughout the entire session and it really was quite a clean feeling ale with no real issues.

D – Superb for a session beer, this was perfect for just sitting back and downing a few with no real issues. There was a really great flavor to it and the carbonation and light body held up very well and really made this something that went down quite quick and you were left looking around waiting for the next one to come.

Overall not bad. I honestly thought I was done with the Oktoberfest beers a long time ago, but I had this one sitting in the closet so I really wanted to be able to clear it out. Not bad overall, not the best I ever had but I would not snub my nose at this one either. Probably a good call in a pinch and something that could go down quite well in the fall. (2,350 characters)

Photo of Deus1138
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
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. (723 characters)

Photo of number1bum
4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my contributions to NEPA BC split #8.

Pours a perfect dark amber color with great clarity and about 2 fingers of light tan head. Head recedes slowly leaving a nice, thin lace and even some patchy stick on the sides.

Smell is toasted grain and caramel malt along with some spicy hops.

Taste is also primarily toasted malt and grain flavors with some caramel malt sweetness. Hops are mildly bitter and have some spice through the finish. Finishes dry but smooth with a crisp and medium-bodied mouthfeel. Smooth and refreshing flavor makes this one an easy drinker.

This is truly a top notch oktoberfest. This isn't my favorite style and I've sampled a lot of mediocre ones, but this one rises above the crowd. Pick it up. (731 characters)

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a very nice beer, although I think it blurs the line a little between an Octoberfest and a pumpkin beer. Dark amber with red highlights and a medium sized head. Caramel malt aroma. Likewise in the taste, although fairly sweet. A good deal of spice also. Smooth and enjoyable. (283 characters)

Photo of Gatch
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Has this on tap last night at West Wings in West Hartford. Not a huge difference between draft and bottle, both were very smooth.

A - Thick, off-white head and a medium-amber body. I love the look of an Octoberfest.
S - Very sweet and delicious malt w/ a hint of spiciness. Perfect for the Fall season.
T - Very clean and crisp. So much flavor and just the right amount of sweetness.
M/D - No problem enjoying this one all night. There's no need to try a different beer at the bar. Another great Octoberfest from a great brewery. (530 characters)

Photo of smcolw
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Excellent rocky head with some lasting power. The lace is slippery and spotty. Close to clear with a light amber color.

Fresh (Crystal) malty aroma with light hop.

Classic Marzen flavoring, although the body is richer than I'm used to in this style. The taste is spot on.

I think this is one of the better offerings in the Octoberfest category. (349 characters)

Photo of sleazo
2.6/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a medium chestnut. Small head. Decent lacing however

S-sweetish roasted malt. Not much else

T-man this is sweet. Caramel malt dominates with vague hints of bitterness in the aftertaste. Really this is a one sided affair. There is a bit of toast in here as well making it slightly better.

D-slightly syrupy.

D-way too sweet for an Oktoberfest beer. I prefer a dry crisp one. I actually considered dumping it. So many good oktoberfests, wy choose this one. (465 characters)

Photo of DrJay
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very clear auburn. A foamy beige head full of soapy bubbles fell quickly to a thin cap. Clumpy lacing was short lived. Grainy malt aroma, a little toasty, with herbal hop notes. Pleasant malt, but bitterness is definitely out front here. Herbal, grassy hops stand out while sweet, toasty malt sits in the background. The malt tastes a bit thin and there's a lingering metallic bitterness that is a little distracting. Medium/light bodied with moderate carbonation level that felt a little coarse. I still thought it was okay, but it just seemed to miss the mark for the style. (576 characters)

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle from Florian's in Auburn. Translucent Brown-red body with a thin light tan head. Smells slightly of caramel malt with hints of chocolate. Tastes like roasty caramel malt, sweet, with a fairly clean finish. Medium bodied with a bit of an aqueous quality to it, perhaps enhanced by the clean finish. A fair bit of carbonation but not overwhelming. Not bad. Very drinkable, and doesn't leave much flavor afterward. (429 characters)

Photo of BuckSpin
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz bottle in a thumbprint Seidel mug

Poured smooth, thick & silent. Sweet malted nose, light spice, orange & caramel, very appealing. As it warms it gets a little leathery, somewhat earthy, mildly bitter. A thin 1/8" head of loose ivory stained foam faded rather quickly to a transparent sheen and a bubbled edge ring overtop a rich, brassy, cherry amber tea hued body. Some isolated bubbles rise slowly through it.

Lighter than I was expecting, very clean & balanced, crisp, semi-dry. Its subtly malted with a tea-like bitterness over some delicate spiciness (cinnamon and a peep of white pepper). There is a citric chewiness as well, creating some barreled spirit characteristics. Rounding out all of this is a noticeable burnt caramel bittersweetness as well as some nut aspects. There is a nice dry "snap", which provides a subtly "hot" bite that is very refreshing and helps to lighten it at the same time it also warms the drinker.

Growing drier on the palate, it gets sharper, nuttier, caramels growing more tea like with orange, finishing chewy & painted, bittersweet, a little burnt, with an tannic aftertaste.

A rather nice, atypical Octoberfest. I enjoyed the crisp spiced aspect and the soft heat it provides. This would be killer with a good aged cheddar, any gourd style veggies, a pepper encrusted steak. Very enjoyable and recommended. (1,371 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark amber body with a frothy, off-white head.

Smell: Toasy caramel malt aroma with mild, floral hop notes.

Taste: Again, more toasted caramel flavors with a bit of apple and earthy cinnamon. Fine, floral hop flavor and bitterness. Finishes flat and wholly underwhelming.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Not really one of my preferred oktoberfests. (412 characters)

Photo of BlindPig
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Big light tan head on a clear dark ruby body.
S- Grass hops, sweet caramel malts, some fruits, munich malt?, and a few others I just can't put my finger on.
T- Sweet caramel malts with a big dry bite to them. Rougher fruits, some kind of grass hop that leaves a light bitterness on tongue, and some light hints of pumpkin.
M- Thin body with medium carbonation.
D- It is alright. I wouldn't get this again though. (419 characters)

Photo of arnulfooxblood
3.24/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Part of a Thomas Hooker Sampler. I was a little surprised to find in there since it wasn't listed as one of the beers included.

Poured from 12 oz. bottle.

Appearance--Orange/brown in color. Minimal head. Notable carbonation.

Smell--Very sweet smelling brew. Quite malty. Caramel notes.

Taste/Mouthfeel--Nothing outstanding here. Not nearly as malty as the smell led me to think it would be. It sort of lacks any real identity up front, and as it goes further back on the palate, there's a bit more of a smooth malty flavor. Crisp, almost sharp mouthfeel, that is rounded out by having a solid body.

Drinkability--I could have another, but I probably won't go out of my way to pick this up in the future.

I may need to revisit this one. The taste really kind of puzzled me. (791 characters)

Photo of jcdiflorio
3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured into a pint glass from a 12oz. brown long neck bottle with a crimped-on cap.

Bright medium amber color with a 1"white head dissapating quickly down to a slight coating of foam with a ring around the glass. Moderate carbination with a few tiny strings of bubbles rising to the surface.

Clean aromas very fruity,hints of fresh apples and sweet carmell with a slight burnt note.

Burnt carmell taste,tart,fruity,grassy hop feel. Finishes with some bittersweetness,tatrness,very clean with a good sharp feel.

Medium mouthfeel clean and refreshing. Good drinkability could easily put back a few of these. A nice Octoberfest beer even in Feburary. (659 characters)

Photo of fank2788
4.07/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a mug
This beer pours a nice dark red copper color with a thin white head that fades quickly. The smell is some sweet malts, caramel and butterscotch with a touch of spicy hops. The taste is much like the smell a little sweet from the malt with a hint of bitterness and spice. Mouthfeel is good decent medium body average amount of carbonation with a smooth clean finish. All together it's not a bad marzen definitely goes done easy, an oktoberfest beer that tastes good in any month. (510 characters)

Photo of NEhophead
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 fl oz brown bottle, served in a nonic.

Clean, light maple with a highlight of ruby. Plenty of noticeable carbonation. Creamy, off-white head that recedes to a half intact sheet after a moment. Condensed lacing with decent strength.

Moderately sweet caramel and light toffee. Pleasantly toasted malt character with a clean aroma of diacetyl. Clean earthen, floral hops that round out the sweet aromas rather nicely.

Bright floral hop presence up front; rather clean with just a touch of metal. Creamy and moderately sweet caramel, light milk chocolate, and hints of toffee. Clean breadiness that comes to light at mid-sip joined by a touch of earthy bitterness. Sweet caramel, dried coffee beans, and toasted biscuit make for a pleasant aftertaste.

Almost full in body; creamy, earthen. Completely balanced texturally and remarkably smooth.

Very tasty and well rounded. A near perfect domestic version of a Marzen: probably the best I've had to date. Another accomplishment from Troutbrook! (1,007 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
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. (834 characters)

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