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Okto Festival Ale - Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Okto Festival AleOkto Festival Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

392 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 392
Reviews: 171
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 13.62%
Wants: 8
Gots: 13 | 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
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Ratings: 392 | Reviews: 171 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of livingregret
2.4/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Serving Type: 12oz bottle

Appearance: Pours a lovely orange colour w/ nice clarity. Plenty of lacing makes for a nice looking brew

Smell: Some floral w/ a lot of malt and lemony smell.

Taste: Hmmm not what I was expecting. Tasted much like a IPA than a Oktoberfest. If you sip the beer you get some sweet malt and a strong lemon/grapefruit flavour. When taking a big mouthful it doesn't change a whole lot but you get a touch more of the malt. The beer does go down easy enough but a bit thin.

Drinkability: I'm not a huge fan of IPA's...and that's what this beer reminds me of

livingregret, Oct 24, 2007
Photo of Bookseeb
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance has a golden amber color with a dissapating thin head. Smell and taste of sweet malt, spice and biscuity with a good amount of carbonation making for a crisp fall beer. Mouthfeel is medium with good body. Overall not to bad, has a slight metallic bitter aftertaste that I could do without though.

Bookseeb, Oct 17, 2007
Photo of schoolcb
3.93/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-oz bottle. Deep amber/copperish colored, not much head, but the carbonation keeps a steady but thin film of bubbles on the surface. Wonderful, sweet toasted malty aroma! No hop aroma. Flavor is a sweet toasted malt with a caramel note or two. No hop flavor. This is a wonderful beer!

schoolcb, Oct 13, 2007
Photo of TiMX
4.45/5  rDev +29%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really am not a big fan of Widmer brewing. However this Oktoberfest is a beer that I will buy every year when it comes out.

It is very malty with a dry finnish. Great crystal clear brown/amber color. Very nice looking beer.

This beer is a crowd pleaser. If you can pick some up.

TiMX, Oct 13, 2007
Photo of ttu94
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

All Marzen all the time. First off I like the old bottle better than the new, it looked better. It seems all American marzen's look the same. Not really a bad thing but I think they all copied the Sam Adams version. Widmer bros. is also a dark clear amber with a good white head. Again with the malty sweet smell and taste. I find the Widmer version to be a tad bit thin on flavor. Overall a good beer though.

Zum what???

ttu94, Sep 28, 2007
Photo of IntriqKen
3.13/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A reddish amber with a finger full of tan bubbles fill the glass, but the head dissipates quickly to a faint ring of sticky tan or off-white.

Aroma is unusual in that it's sort of like floral amber malt. The floral from the hops absolutely blends with the nutty and sweet amber malt so that it is very hard for my nose to distinquish....it all comes at you at once.

Taste is toasted amber malt first, then some nice bready-type yeast followed by a citrus and floral hop bite on the end.

Mouthfeel is thick enough for the style...not too watery nor thin. Aftertaste is a slightly 'canned' taste of the amber malts.

Nothing earth-shattering...but very drinkable.

IntriqKen, Sep 26, 2007
Photo of flexabull
3.3/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber color, with a faint white head.

Smells odd... like a cheap red wine. Some floral notes as well.

Taste is bready and biscuit like. Light, and crisp. A bit dry with a bit of a grassy hop finish.

Mouthfeel is pretty good. Not bad for such a light tasting beer.

Drinkability is pretty good. Not overly impressive, but certainly not offensive. Worth a try.

flexabull, Sep 23, 2007
Photo of ccrida
3.1/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance is a toasted amber with a thin khaki head.

Smell is bready malt with a little brown sugar and diactyl, pretty strong over all

Taste is more subdued then the nose, semi-sweet and smooth melanoidin, with light hops and not enough malt richness. There are some fusels, almost like a clean, watery quad.

Mouthfeel is pretty soft but not to thin.

Drinkability is moderate, the taste was just a bit off so that I wouldn't want to drink to many of them.

ccrida, Sep 21, 2007
Photo of Halcyondays
2.48/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle,

A: Very good, bright orange colour, almost red, with a nice, white head, which has excellent retention and lace.

S: Very light, some toasted malts, and a bit of apple.

T: Toasty, bready malts, this is an ale though, it does have a bit of fruitiness, unique to an Oktoberfest, but overall, I found the flavour to be below average, and a little unappealing and metallic.

M: Light, sort of watery, smooth though, easy to drink.

D: A below average Oktoberfest in my opinion, they probably should have stuck to making a lager instead of spinning this into an ale. I'll finish the 6-pack with no problem, it wasn't that bad, but I won't be buying this again.

Halcyondays, Sep 19, 2007
Photo of allengarvin
3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice glass, it is a very nice reddish amber color; however, it fails to maintain any sort of head. Nose is faint at best, with light caramel and maybe a little toastiness--it's hard to tell, though. Pleasantly malty taste, mostly with sweet caramel flavor. There's a tad bit of odd yeast character, for an oktoberfest, leaning to the fruity side. Body is nicely creamy.

Easy drinking, but unexciting. Not a very good oktoberfest.

allengarvin, Sep 15, 2007
Photo of HardTarget
3.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Inspection: Brown 12 oz. bottle with raised lettering. Label works very hard at failing to give any useful information.

Aroma: Malty base is lightly toasted and a bit nutty. There is a definite floral hop element that accents and even deepens the malt character.

Appearance: Reddish amber mug shows great clarity, but the head collapses pretty quickly to a very thin cover.

Flavor: Balance is toward the malt but only with a light sweetness. Nutty character in the aftertaste with just a little yeast bite.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy body with a slick texture. Carbonation is low which leads to long pulls.

Overall Impression: My first Oktoberfest of the year, and it’s got me looking for the Oompah band! Taste is pretty close to style and no real flaws. It’s a lighter version of the style though. I'm ok with the Amber/Red category.
Worth a shot!

HardTarget, Sep 14, 2007
Photo of ElGordo
3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pretty orange-amber hue, topped by a half-inch of creamy white head that subsides rather quickly. Aroma of sweet caramel malt, light fruity hops, and just the slightest hint of molasses. Palate is a nice blend of sweet caramel malt and light noble hops. A subtle smoky character rounds this one out into a smooth, easy-drinking beer. It certainly sufficed at Widmer's Oktoberfest party this year, and comes through nicely in the bottle as well.

ElGordo, Nov 07, 2006
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours with a frothy, one-finger thick, light tan colored head that fades away fairly quickly. The beer is a brilliantly clear, deep reddish amber color. The aroma has a sweet, fruity, malty presence that is immediately noticeable. Notes of cherries and raisin mix with malty notes of caramel, toffee, and a light toasted grain note. Perhaps a touch of citrus character is found here and joins with the berry note, both of which seem to at the very least be hop accented. Yes there is a definite hop presence here, as well as the aforementioned components there is also a light menthol like note and perhaps a touch of pine.

The beer is sweet and fruity up front; both hops and malt contribute to this perception. I get notes of raisins, cherries and sweet tangelos. There is an almost cough-syrup type fruitiness here; a hint of that fake fruity cherry note that is often a component of cough-syrup. A solid bitterness runs throughout, along with a sharp pine and menthol note, it tries to balance the sweet & fruity notes. This definitely strikes me at times as a good example of an Alt. It has a nice maltiness to it, mostly caramelized but a light, almost roasty note is here in the finish as well. And the fruitiness is certainly characteristic of many a traditional German Alt. The body has a certain heft to it and this beer does have a lingering mouth coating character to it that is quite nice. A pretty tasty beer and if it was not for that fake fruity note I would say it is down right good.

Gueuzedude, Nov 05, 2006
Photo of umfskibum
3.05/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 0z. bottle with the bottling date clearly marked.

A: Orange / Amber pour. Thin white head. A little hazy with nice carbonation. Not much lacing to speak of.

S: Faint smell that is just a little malty.

T: Sweet and of malt, although fairly weak. Slight tastes of caramel and grain.

M: Thin and sticky, some nice bubbles on the tongue.

D: Quite drinkable. Tasty and goes down easy, through neither the taste or mouthfeel is remarkable.

Just a quickie review because, frankly, there wasn't too much special about this beer. A nice tasting offering for the season, but trumped by the plethora of other festival and autumn ales available.

umfskibum, Oct 10, 2006
Photo of RJLarse
2.88/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I picked up a six-pack of Widmer Okto at a grocery to taste review and enjoy. My first Octoberfest Ale of the season. I poured this beer in to a pint tumbler.

Pours a pale copper color and is clear. A tiny head formed and dissipated quickly to nothing.

The smell is faint, sweet and malty. There are some faint fruit aromas.

The taste is also sweet and malty. There are some sweet caramel and grain flavors, with a mild hop finish.

The mouth feel is thin and a little watery and flat.

This is a drinkable beer, and representative of the style, but I think it lacks character. It could be more full flavored. I'll be looking for a better Octoberfest Ale this year, and I'm sure I'll find one.

RJLarse, Sep 12, 2006
Photo of loren01
2.78/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a mahogany color, smallish head that dissipated quickly
S: Sweet malty scent, biscuty
T: Same as smell, malty biscut flavors. Could be much more flavorfull
M: Mild on the carbonation, was a tad bit flat
D: I was somewhat disapointed with this beer. Had it last year and I thought it was pretty good actually. Don't think I'd drink this again

loren01, Sep 06, 2006
Photo of bennetj17
2.85/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tannish orange color, slight haze. Faint crust of head yields to a weak ring in a moment. The appearance is dull and flat. Faint macro-like aroma with only the slightest hint of caramel malt. Nutty and dry in taste, lightly roasty with a tame bitter finish. Hint of leafy hop flavor. Light body, but not watery at least. Average carbonation. The drinkablility is average, no off flavors to speak of. I would label it "approachable" at best...

bennetj17, Aug 31, 2006
Photo of RoyalT
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance – This came out a light orangish-brown in color with a modest, dissipating head.

Smell – There’s a lot of refined sugar to this bad boy. The malts are lightly-toasted and maybe even a bit bready.

Taste – Surprisingly, the hops are bigger at the taste than in the nose. Otherwise, the sweetish malts come over as advertised. The hops though are PacNWy and somewhat annoying in the style.

Mouthfeel – This is a shade bigger than light-bodied with smallish carbonation and a distracting dryness throughout.

Drinkability – I thought this was way off-style to be a good beer, and on its own merits wasn’t that much better.

RoyalT, Jan 14, 2006
Photo of Hunter
2.13/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

appearance: Deep, dark amber brew topped by a wimpy head of thin white bubbles. No visible carbonation or lacing.

aroma: Very, very thin malt, faint notes of floral undertones.

taste: Not much different than iced tea. Aftertaste has some bit of hop to it, but this is bland all around.

mouthfeel: Sharp and light.

drinkability: certainly drinkable, but with the abundance of quality seasonal ales out there this time of year, why settle?

Hunter, Nov 03, 2005
Photo of russpowell
4.43/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoyed this one (one of my favorite styles!) & believe this sample stacked up against most if not all I had in Germany.

Pours a white fluffy monster head with intersting combos of big & small bubbles in attendance. Head retention was average. Copper colored with no hint of haziness.

Smells of biscuits, malt& peppery hops on the edges.

Tastes of hop bitterness on the tounge& corners of the throat that also compete with maltiness and some hints of nuts

A great balance, slightly under carbinated

Could drink this all the time, yum

russpowell, Oct 29, 2005
Photo of edmundfitzoil
2.98/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one is a unique review, and I fight the urge to slam this beer for a number of reasons. When looking at the bottle, one is to first believe that this beer is to be a marzen or oktoberfest beer. It's name on the bottle is distinctly labeled "Okto." Upon further investigation one finds the words "Festival Ale" written below it. I look it up online, and I find that BA has it listed as an Amber Ale. Why then the packaging implying that the beer is an oktoberfest?

Well... I'm confused, but I find the packaging confusing. But is the label for it purposely?

The beer itself poured amber colored with a fizzy head that came and went without any lacing and not much else. The scent was malt with little else. The taste was a malt, almost syrup flavored, with no real hop presence to speak of.

I was excited when I first picked this brew out to buy, but found it dissapointing. As an amber ale it is still dissapointing, and doubly so as it is not a real oktoberfest. I would go with something else before returning to this one.

edmundfitzoil, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of waldowin
3.3/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a ruby amber, with a two-finger white foam head, not very dense. Fades quickly to a ring, little lacing.

Smells of malts, pumpkins, and nutmeg. Curious...

And it tastes like a spiced-up Drop Top...with a front of pumpkin and caramel, and a finish of nutmeg and cinnamon. Very tasty for a micro so widely distributed. Drop Top is a pretty good beer, not sure how much this really improves things.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin, syrupy, and sticky. Some carbonation tickles the throat. It's mostly just sticky-sweet.

As rich and sweet as this is for a beer, one or two would do it for me. I've got so many better rarer beers in the fridge, it'll be a while before I drink this again probably. But, it's a solid daily-drinker for when I get my stash drank down a bit.

waldowin, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of JohnfromDublin
2.83/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Tasted on 21st Oct 2005. a 355ml bottle, with a batch date of AUG0405. No reference on the label to the ABV.

Poured a dark amber liquid with a tan head. Slight haze.

Smell: very faint maltiness. Reminded a little of Palm beer (BL).

Taste: not complex, malty. A bit sharp.
Mouthfeel:okay, a little syrupy.
Drinkability: Should be easier to find a better beer for a follow up.
Not too bad, though.

JohnfromDublin, Oct 21, 2005
Photo of Bitterbill
2.33/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

An Oktoberfest ale?
I bought a bottle of this in a mixed six pack of Oktoberfests:

Poured a nice, ahem, amber and the head was pleasing and somewhat persistant.

The smell was fairly strong but I couldn't say it was malty or hoppy...it's vegetal?

The taste almost reminded me of cinnamon but that would have been a welcomed note at this point. I'm not the biggest fan of the style but this is one that I'm sure that I won't try again.

Bitterbill, Oct 05, 2005
Photo of Mark
3.9/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It says Octoberfest, then says ale, what is it really? To me it tastes like a Vienna lager, and not a bad one at that. Deep amber body was topped by a thin tan head that left delicate lacing. Faint malty aroma was evident. Very smooth practically all malt taste, just a touch of hop, some roasted character as well. Refreshing and drinkable.

Mark, Oct 02, 2005
Okto Festival Ale from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 392 ratings.