1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Okto Festival Ale - Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Okto Festival AleOkto Festival Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
79
okay

404 Ratings
THE BROS
87
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 404
Reviews: 172
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 13.62%
Wants: 8
Gots: 14 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Altbier |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Classified as a German Altbier by the Widmer Brothers; brewed with an (ale) Alt yeast strain.

availability: early Aug. - late Oct.
bitterness : 28 IBU
original gravity: 13.5° PLATO

(Beer added by: RedDiamond on 09-09-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Okto Festival Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 404 | Reviews: 172 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DoubleJ
3.58/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Roscoe's, on to the beer:

This beer is colored light caramel with a short head that retains itself fairly, dropping to a lace around the glass. There's some toasted malt and a little toffee in the aroma, all good here. It reminds me of a Sam Adams Oktoberfest when I drink it, more of a toasty malt experience with a little sweet, bready malt and toffee. There's a pinch of hoppiness that is noticed as the sweet flavors dry up. Lighter bodied and easy to consume.

A solid drinkable beer that's versitile for most situations, including lunch with a gigantic BBQ beef sandwich and a tremondous helping of curly fries.

DoubleJ, Oct 30, 2010
Photo of drpimento
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not bad; going in the right direction. Poured with a medium sized very light tan head that is somewhat persistant and some lace. Color is a clear orange amber with lots of little bubble trails. Aroma is malt, fresh beer, and a bit of fruit. Flavor is much like the nose plus some caramel and a little on the dry side. Body is good; ditto carbonation. Finish is like flavor and somewhat short in length.

drpimento, Oct 26, 2010
Photo of budgood1
3.98/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours out a slightly hazy auburn colour with a thin off white head that reduces quickly to some sparse but sticky lace that looks appropriate for what i'm a bout to taste. sweet fruity nose; definitely smells like an ale with a smoky brown sugar nuance that is very intriguing. love the aroma of this one. the taste is more of the fruity ale notes complimented nicely by some sugary malts...definitely munich in nature but paired with some other malts that make the ale experience all the more enjoyable. some floral and herbal hopping balance things quite nicely. this offering certainly has lots of character compared to the usual suspects in the o-fest category. with this being listed as an altbier, it certainly leans that way just because of the ale yeast used. either way it's pretty tasty. seemingly ample bodied with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel. very nice. quite drinkable...just lots of interesting twists for a fall type of beer not pigeonholed into the oktoberfest style.

definitely not an oktoberfest, but inspired and influenced by the style into a sort of alt. recommended and worth a six pack or so every fall.

budgood1, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of isualum12
3.85/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Copper gold
White thick head....Holds it's self

Poured into a frozen mug.

Smell- Sweet malt with hops

Taste: Easy drinking with a smooth finish. I was looking for more spice and sweet out of it but yet still felt like it delivered.

I could see my self having a few of these which instantly brings my drinkablity up.

I am a sucker for Widmer espcially a tasty season.

isualum12, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of Offa
3.98/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a fairly simple but nice, firm, solid, and very enjoyable alt.

Copper, it has a medium-small pale tan head slowly shrinking.

Aroma is very caramelly barley, lightly toasty, with caramelised bread crust, light leaf and pepper, perhaps a hint of lemon. Simple but nice, full, and right on.

Taste is caramelly toast, gentle light fruits, light leafy-peppery bitterness just dominated by the creamy-caramelly light sweetness.

Offa, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of SolomonGrundy
2.4/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Long day of watching Night Ranger and some other old school rock bands in the sun! Time to cool off...Pours a slightly cloudy reddish amber, no real head to speak of and not much, if any, lacing. Lightly carbonated also, so I'm guessing above average sweetness and chewy mouthfeel. Very faint aromas - maybe some maltiness and caramel, but not much. Flavor is thin and front-loaded with barley, in the middle, and on the finish it thins out to be hardly discernible. Not much hop character to balance it all out. Kind of too much malt. Actually, there is some hops in there now that I have a couple more sips: some right in the beginning, and right at the end, but it's faint, like that high school girl you crushed on...When you first met her you didn't think you had a chance, and then as a senior you decided to give it a go...and neither time worked out for you. Overall a disappointment and there isn't a lot going on here. Well priced six-pak brings up drinkability, but only slightly.

What I like Most: The color and price.

What I like Least: The thin flavor in the middle and finish.

Verdict: probably worth the price, but you get what you pay for.

SolomonGrundy, Oct 11, 2010
Photo of Nerudamann
3.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Look - pale brown in color, slightly murky. Not a whole lot of head, but good carbonation.

Smell - just slightly malty, with a subtle sweetness. Also at points it seems like I can pick out the crispness of the hops.

Taste - fairly well-balanced in scale, but closer to the bitter, more hoppier side. I can't pick out many spices or additives. Slightly hoppy tasting aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - fairly well-balanced as well, but closer to the creamier side of texture.

Drinkability - Aftertaste is a little much for me, but not too bad. Good brew in general, but not terribly complex. Smooth enough to make it worth coming back for though.

Nerudamann, Oct 07, 2010
Photo of ebrauser
3.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Copper gold with thick white head. A mildly aggressive pour helped create this beautiful head that had some real staying power.

Aroma: Sweet Bavarian malt though a hint of European hops can be detected

Flavor: Easy drinking, probably because it is not very sweet, though the malt is definitely Bavarian and reminds me of a German beer to be enjoyed on the streets of München. Flavors are not that intense and it would be easy to drink a lot of these over the course of a dinner. A slight hop note can be tasted right before the clean finish.

Overall: A good drinking beer to be enjoyed in large quantities with friends. Classic Widmer

ebrauser, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of gkunkle
3.18/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a copper/amber color with a 1/2" white head that leaves a little bit of lacing in the glass. Smells of a bready malt, there is a little bit of sweetness in there too. It looked like a marzen when I poured it, but I really noticed it wasn't when I took my first sip. Taste is of a sweet malt, finish is just a little bitter. Mouthfeel is medium with medium carbonation. Overall, it was a good beer, but I am not that into Altbier and there are other beers I would rather have when it comes to Oktoberfest brews.

gkunkle, Sep 14, 2010
Photo of cswhitehorse
4/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The look of the Oktoberfest was a yellowish brown with a 1 finger foam head and not much retention. Not much in the way of lacing.

The smell was biscuity with a soft fruitiness to it. The taste was a medium body with a crispness to it. It had a component of the biscuit like malt that stuck on the tongue. It stays in the mouth for some time as a pleasant after tone. Overall I was pretty impressed by the brew.

cswhitehorse, Sep 12, 2010
Photo of emmasdad
2.88/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked one of these up last week as part of a mixed six pack. Expectations were not high, and this beer did not fail to live down to them. Pours a dark amber color, with a good inch or so of tan foam. Aromas of caramel, sweet malt and not much more. Similar on the palate, somewhat hoppy with a long, bitter finish.

emmasdad, Sep 09, 2010
Photo of chumba526
2.78/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appears a translucent but dark orange color with an off white colored head that's the size of my pinky.

It smells of sweet caramel, bready malt. There is a slight grassy/ floral hop smell as well.

It tastes quite grainy; there is a slight bit of caramel flavor. There is also a slight unpleasant metallic flavor as well. There is a slight grassy hop taste.

Carbonation is moderate high.

Drinkability is ok, I guess average for the style.

Overall not a bad beer but not particularly good just kind of bland. There are far better Oktoberfest beers out there.

chumba526, Sep 07, 2010
Photo of EwaldEichstaett
3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The bottle says "Munich Style Ale"... I'm sorry, I've lived in Munich, there is no such thing as Munich Style Ale... (OK, rant is over, time for the review)

A: Looks great, brown and orange color with great head/retention/lacing.

S: Caramel and malt, some hops detected in the nose. It is quite pleasant.

T: I am not familiar with Alt as a style. However, this one's taste reminds me of an English Bitter with some more caramel malts. Tastes more fruity or floral than a real Oktoberfest styled beer.

M/D: I like this beer quite a lot. It actually reminds me of a Goose Island Honkers Ale. I had a some trouble rating to style as I am not familiar with it. (I read the style description)

5th beer in my Oktoberfestbinge-- it is the best tasting one. But it is also disqualified for being an Alt... Come on! I know lagers can do better than this... whats wrong?!?!

EwaldEichstaett, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of Buebie
2.75/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a deep amber with redish hues, very good color here, love that its darker, yet its still transparent. Good head staying power, pouring to an inch or so of thick whipped cream froth. Retenttion is good and lace is stellar. Thick and clingy.

Aroma seems a bit off as compared to other marzen-fest beers. I will blame that on the ale yeast. Mild fruity esters though, also a stinky cheese smell, or sweaty feet.
Behind that though is a multi layered aroma with breadyness, malt and sweet aromas. Stinky feet aroma unfolds to just a cheese aroma and honey malt. Weird....

Taste contains a good amount of malt and bready flavor, with a rye spice but falls off into nothingness. Bland and not very interesting.

I love Widmer beers, but this one is not getting allot of love from me. Taste is somhwat bland, aroma is not pleasant and it just doesnt have the flavors that it should in my opinion. Although with an ale yeast that could be one of the factors, but even still it is not somthing I'll return to.

Buebie, Aug 27, 2010
Photo of philbertk
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Widmer Brothers Brewing Company, Ltd.--Oktoberfest Alt. 1999-12 oz. Bottle. 5.50% ABV. (3.0 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Clear bright rich golden red color. Light mild front. Dominating impression is smoothness while flavor seems to be missing. Oktoberfest impression, with detectable old fruit bread flavors. Dry. 9/3/1999

Oktoberfest--Crisp Amber Beer. 2000 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV. (3.75 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Clear bright thin amber color. Malty crisp mild hop front. Smooth body with malty mild Oktoberfest flavor. Medium body has tasty restrained malt spice zing. Light clean chalky malt finish. Good but light. Sampled 8/30/2000.

2001 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV. (3.5 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Clear thin amber light red color. Mild slightly nutty malty front. Crisp very dry body with light toasted fruit malt notes. Nut hints. Light malty mild hop end. Light dry Oktoberfest flavor. Bland. Sampled 9/6/2001.

2002 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV. (3.75 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Clear thin amber color. Floral malty front. Thin crisp smooth Oktoberfest light sweet malty caramel body. Smooth easy mild hop end with subtle malty spicy Oktoberfest note. Tasty but quite mild. Sampled 8/21/2002.

2003 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV--20 IBU's. (3.75 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Clear thin bright amber color. Light mild lace head. Light toasted malty mild floral hop front. Crisp smooth tangy mild toasted sweet malty caramel body. Clean creamy mild malt hop end. Mild Fest. Sampled 9/12/2003.

"Oktoberfest ""Crisp Amber Beer" 2004 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV--20 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Mild lace head. Clear bright thin rich amber bronze color. Toasted mild hop front. Crisp tangy malty toasted caramel doughy dry sweet thin body. Tangy crisp cloying mild hop end. Tasty mild Fest. Sampled 7/28/2004.

Okto Otoberfest Festival Ale--2005 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV--20 IBU's. (4.25/ 5.0) Oktoberfest--Mild lace head. Clear bright rich amber color. Malty mild hop front. Crisp mild sweet malty light toasted caramel mild fruit body. Clean tangy mild citrus mild hop end. Smooth easy rich Marzen. Sampled 8/18/2005.

OKTO Oktoberfest Festival Ale--2006 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV--20 IBU's. (4.25 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Creamy lacy head. Clear pretty bright rich red color. Malty toasted mild fruit hop front. Creamy lager smooth rich mellow toasted caramel fruit body. Smooth refreshing clean mild hop crisp end. Malty. Sampled 8/14/2006.

OKTO Oktoberfest Festival Ale--2007 12 oz. Bottle. 5.00% ABV--20 IBU's. (3.75 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Missing head. Clear thin bright pretty amber color. Crisp mild hop malty fruit front. Flat smooth mild toffee caramel fruit ester hint tasty mild Fest body. Refreshing clean mild hop malt tang end. Sampled 8/23/2007.

OKTO Oktoberfest Munich Style Ale--2008 12 oz. Bottle. 5.50% ABV--25 IBU's. (4.25 / 5.0) Oktoberfest--Tight lacy head. Clear pretty thin bright amber red color. Toasted malt mild hop front. Smooth mild creamy sweet toasted smooth malty caramel biscuit mild fruit body. Refreshing lingering rich malt mild hop clean satisfying end. Rich tasty malty Fest Ale. Sampled 8/12/2008. 6-Pack $7.99.

OKTO Oktoberfest Munich Style Ale--2009 12 oz. Bottle. 5.50% ABV--25 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Amber Ale. Thin thin lace fizzy white head. Clear deep bright rich amber red color. No sediment. Malty caramel mild hop front. Smooth mild sweet doughy toasted biscuit caramel fruit hint rich amber ale body. Smooth fresh satisfying clean mild hop lingering malt end. Aged Well. Sampled 7/10/2010. 6-Pack $6.99.

Widmer Brothers Brewing Company, Ltd.--OKTO Oktoberfest Munich Style Ale--2010 12 oz. Bottle. 5.50% ABV. 25 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Amber Ale. Mild lace thin fizzy off white head. Pretty bright rich ruby amber color. Lightly toasted malt mild hop fruit hint front. Delicate sweet doughy biscuit toasted caramel black cherry malt rich refreshing body. Clean smooth tasty mild hop lingering Fest end. Sampled 8/17/2010. Sampled three bottles. 6 - Pack $7.99.

philbertk, Aug 18, 2010
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Autumn leaves orange with Sunkist highlights and a lovely looking crown of toast colored foam that filled almost half the glass on the pour. As the head slowly shrinks, fine sheets of torn lace are beginning to appear.

The aroma could be more powerful, but is otherwise as expected. It's toasted and earthy with caramel malt underpinnings. Even if the ingredients weren't listed above, pretty good guesses could have been made by anyone with a functioning nose.

Okto is an Oktoberfest, not an altbier. It says so on the label and on the Widmer website. Not to mention the fact that it looks, smells, tastes, feels and drinks like an Oktoberfest. Okay, now that that's settled, on with the review.

The beer is considerably more malty sweet than hoppy bitter, which is par for the style course. It's also six months old (but doesn't taste or feel like it), which means that the starting 25 IBUs are probably about half that now. It's on the simple side, but is pretty good beer in the end.

Specifics include toffee-caramel, a little brown breadiness, sugared pecans, and a hint of earthy tobacco and tea. Drinkability is good. A big stein of Okto alongside a sausage and peppers sandwich and some German potato salad would be outstanding.

The mouthfeel falls just short of medium for the style and could use more bubbles. It doesn't miss the next highest score by much, however.

Widmer Brothers releases some pretty impressive beer on occasion. Most notably, Drifter Pale Ale and Brrr. Okto isn't quite that good, but my opinion might be colored by the fact that I don't like Oktoberfests as much as APAs and winter warmers. Worth a single and maybe even a sixer.

BuckeyeNation, Feb 07, 2010
Photo of CRichardsMN
2.7/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance:
Pours a bright orange with a thin ring of head that leaves a nice sticky lace.

Smell:
Pretty average smell of light malts with some flowery citrus hops that don't typically show up in an Oktoberfest.

Taste:
Sweet caramel and malts, light flowery hops and bit of spice and citrus. Smell is actually larger than the taste.

Mouthfeel:
Medium body and crisply carbonated. Average at it's best.

Drinkability:
Though a little off of the typical Oktoberfest / Marzen with the inclusion of a trace of hops, this is again, at best, an average beer.

Comment:
Bought this on the Oktoberfest spree with no preconceptions of what it would be. Not bad but I can do without the hops in this style. I know it says Altbier but is more of a weird O.

CRichardsMN, Nov 15, 2009
Photo of Haybeerman
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Deep, clear reddish0gold. Poured a 2 finger tan head the dissipated to a fourth and held. Lacing washed down the sides of the glass.

S: Slightly sweet bready malts and we crackers. slight hop and citrus aromas.

T: Big, slightly sweet malts and some light-colored fruit. Finishes with a farily sharp bitter.

M: Medium body. Medium carbonation. Some of the fruity taste lingets a bit in through the dry finish.

D: Flavorful, smooth and fairly balanced - probably more so than many of the Alts from US craft brewers.

Haybeerman, Nov 07, 2009
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a deep, deep orange body with good carbonation and a small white head. Nose is caramel sweetness with some fresh bread around the edges. Taste starts with a layer of malt,and a slight hop twang at the end. Very clean, definitely German as opposed to American, but not very interesting.

barleywinefiend, Nov 06, 2009
Photo of chezztone
2.1/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I love Widmer Brewery and I love Oktoberfest beers. And Widmer being a German-style brewer, you'd think they'd do a bang-up job with their Oktoberfest, eh? Alas, no. This is a big, round, strong, heavy beer. Like a Northwest ale without the hops. Completely misses the flavor and body of an Oktoberfest. Just kind of the blimp of beers. Pass.

chezztone, Oct 01, 2009
Photo of ZAP
4.03/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours an impressive brilliant burnt orange

S-Rich maltiness but not ofest style maltiness...I see this is listed as an alt and that seems to make sense from the aroma...it smells like an alt.

T-Rich maltiness with some fruitiness as well..a little mineral water note as well...again seems more like an alt.

M-Medium bodied...a little sticky...not as clean finishing as I like my alts...finishes slightly dry

D-Enjoyable beer...definitely more of an alt than an ofest.

ZAP, Sep 19, 2009
Photo of KarlHungus
3.4/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a clear red color with a small white head that recedes slowly into sparse lacing. The aroma is dominated by a sugary sweetness covering up anything else. The taste is still sweet, but it is a malty sweetness that lets some floral hops come though. Still it is overly simple. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with nice carbonation. Overall, this is an okay beer. I could drink it again, but I can't see what situation would drive me too.

KarlHungus, Sep 07, 2009
Photo of velosuds
3.13/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a clear pint glass. Bottled on July 14, 2009. Single purchased from a broken six-pack at local grocer for $1.00, or $5.99 a sixer on sale.

A-Pours a reddish medium to dark amber with a one finger light tan head that quickly dissipates leaving virtually no lace.

S-Fruity hops and earthy malts.

T-Somewhat sweet and fruity. Pleasant at first, but left me with a tangy aftertaste I didn't like.

M-Smooth, but a tad watery due to insufficient carbonation.

D-Only average. My third try from this brewery's offering. Doubt I will try much else, at least not that I am willing to pay for since there is much yet to try from other brewers and much I like better from competitors.

velosuds, Sep 06, 2009
Photo of Docer
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Yay, finally grabbed a 6'er at a Whole Foods the moment they put it on the shelf... saw it at many other places as well... 12 oz. bottle... bottled Jul. 22 09

- Nice dark clear and rich caramel color... dark copper.. almost like a red ale.... fluffy white foam head... mild lacing all about....

- Crisp and bitter hop... some pine.. bit of sweet malt.. nice zing.. some zest, citrus and lemon.. almost reminds me of the hefe..

- Sweet and smooth malt... almost a bit of brown sugar or molasses... creamy... slightly thick... very tasty.. some bittering hop... bright pine... almost too balanced.. I am a big fan of Alts...

- Slight dryness.. some chewiness.. bitter sweet finish...

- Super drinkable, and as good as I remembered from the last one I had about 4 years ago... been looking forward to it again this year... a must have.

Docer, Aug 14, 2009
Photo of jujubeast6000
3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 9/24/2008 (Draft @ Gingerman, Houston, TX):

Pours an amber brown, body somewhat opaque. Big creamy light tan head. Good lacing. Grape juice aroma, some maltiness. Somewhat malty taste, almost sour aftertaste. Some grapey foretaste. Some balance, but more on the malty side. Pretty good session beer.

jujubeast6000, Mar 24, 2009
Okto Festival Ale from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 404 ratings.