Goose Island Beer Co.

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Lager - Märzen / Oktoberfest
Ranked #441
Ranked #42,045
3.59 | pDev: 11.7%
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Notes: Goose Oktoberfest is brimming with notes of toasted malt and freshly baked rye bread. This light bodied German lager is clean and crisp with a fine noble hop character and mild earthy bitterness that is the hallmark of Hallertau hops. Raise a few steins of Goose Oktoberfest this fall and celebrate this time honored tradition. Prost!

23 IBU
Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 55 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of SuperGrover
SuperGrover from Minnesota

1.71/5  rDev -52.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

I have no idea what happened with this beer. It looks right for a Marzen, and it smells fine. But this may be the worst beer I have ever had. I can’t even describe the flavor- “God-awful” is the only thing that comes to mind. I needed a Natural Light after drinking this to get the taste out of my mouth.

Others rate this much higher than me. I don’t understand why. I could not finish it. I gave it to friends who will drink ANYTHING, and they refused to drink it. I love Oktoberfest. This is garbage.

Nov 14, 2020
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Stevosps from Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This Marzen style lager when poured from a can has a half inch foamy head. It is a clear dark amber Color with a fresh malty aroma. A slight bitterness with a tender sweetness of Carmel savored for the taste buds. A nice full Refreshing Octoberfest Maren flavor to quench the fall thirst.

Oct 25, 2020
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barnzy78 from Illinois

3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can
date stamped 18JAN21
L: slightly hazed caramel colored bier; foamy beige head
S: toasty grain, caramel, herbal hops
T: nicely balanced; caramel, toasted malt, bread crust, herbal & spicy noble hops
F: medium body, ample carbonation, crisp & balanced finish
O: a good representation of the Märzen style

Oct 16, 2020
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daliandragon from Maryland

3.55/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

So, weirdly. although I have been drinking Goose Island on and off for twenty years, I don't have many GI reviews. One is the Goose Fest. So now, like two fifths of my all time Goose reviews are Marzen. Crazy world, huh?

Anyhooo, translucent dark copper color with big head that quickly ceases to be. Nose is caramel and grain. Taste is pleasant although generally uninspiring and watery at the end. Not a good example of the style but hits most of the main characteristics. Quaffable at any rate. Would do in an Oktoberfest pinch, but no more.

Oct 11, 2020
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HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey

3.76/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Really nice clear amber. Medium bodied with about the same for carbonation.
Aroma is malt, caramel, sweet doughy bread.
Taste is mildly sweet with some caramel. Malt, some honey, sweet doughy bread.
Overall it is a pleasant beer that's flavorful and goes down easy. Could easily have a few of these in a row

Oct 04, 2020
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Beginner2 from Illinois

3.74/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

One sip and I knew I'd had this before. But not necessarily so. I'd had Goose Fest Bier several times, until last year. So I'd like to have it and Oktoberfest side-by-side. Since that is unlikely, let me guess that Oktoberfest is a tweaked Goose Fest. Disagree with my theory.

They both really Look great, a very pretty amber and crystal clear. Smells are mostly sweet malt. In the Taste, hops emerge in mid-palate for balance; but both seem true to the tradition of a sweet malt that has an interesting semi-dry finish. In the mouth, sufficient bubbles to clean the palate. Both Goose O-fests are good with non-spicy foods. Both are table lagers.

As my hometown crafter made big by a macro, Goose still seems to me true to its roots. But when a decent Goose Fest gets goosed by this O-fest upstart looking for a little more market share, it makes me think that this style really has become a playground for the established crafters with wide distribution. That is OK, but it will still be hard for anyone to match the Bavarian masters for quality. Prost !

Sep 22, 2020
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MercInc from Wisconsin

3.67/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

It's that time of year and I have been out trying a few of the "Oktoberfest" brews that appear.

Poured at 39 Degrees into a pilsner glass, typical light amber, white head. malt notes with a hint of yeast. enough hops for a clean finish.

As a note, I try to use "Ayinger Oktober Fest-Marzen" as kind of a "Control"

Sep 18, 2020
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hoptheology from South Dakota

3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can, blue color, $1.49, into Goose Island nonic pint.
Best by 12/21/20.

Appearance is a burnt sienna-copper with a creamy finger of grey head. Impeccable clarity.

Aroma is of toffee candy, some wet earth, slight caramel sweetness, toasted malt, and slight onion.

Flavor brings caramel malt with slight crisp cracker, some slight hop spoilage (already?) with onion and caramel, some fruity yeast, and bread.

Feel is crisp and semi-clean/semi-starchy, with a light to medium body. Carbonation is proper but on the busy side.

Overall, an okay Oktoberfest, I wasn't missing much by passing it over all of these years. All I can remember is those funky goose bottles with the blue and white checkerboard. I passed it up for like 5 years straight. This blue can got me to purchase it - weird huh. Probably won't do it again though. Not even at a bar.

Price paid : $1.49
Would buy again : no

Sep 14, 2020
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BFCarr from New Jersey

4.09/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

a very nice marzen, had on draft. Pours copper with a thin white head that fades to a white ring. Aroma is a little sour with some malty grain notes. Taste is malty (surprise!) But not super sweet. Feel is very nice and full, especially for the style. Overall it's very tasty.

Sep 12, 2020
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quaffinganale from Maryland

4.3/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 12 oz can
Look: poured hard into a shaker pint, nice developed thick persistent off white head. Crystal clear! Exceptional presentation. This looks promising!
Smell: malt, caramel, bread. Good clean fermentation, no phenols, esters, very, very slight sulfur.
Ahh, its gonna be good!
Taste: rich, full, medium body, Toffee, caramel, clean, clean clean. Medium carbonation. Satisfyingly rich.
Feel: medium body, medium appropriate carbonation.
Overall: for me, a very very good example of a Mäerzen, good clean fermentation, these people know lager!

Aug 19, 2020
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Mindcrime1000 from South Dakota

3.46/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a can into a Nonic glass.

Pours crystal-clear and caramel-gold with limited head and lacing.

Mild aromas of caramel malt and earthy hop. Simple but balanced.

The flavor follows the nose. Solid caramel malt sweetness up front. Cereal grainy flavors in midstream. Very mild grass and somewhat stronger earthy hop goodness balances at the finish. Everything is very mild. Well-balanced but not spectacular.

A well-carbonated and very drinkable version of the style from a feel standpoint. Could easily knock more than one of these back on a slightly-chilled evening.

Overall, another decent but "nothing special" Marzen.

Aug 16, 2020
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AdmiralOzone from Minnesota

3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful clear copper amber with a large ivory head. Minimal lacing. Aroma is mild caramel malt and earthy hop. Flavor follows the nose, sweet and malty. Feel is on the light side of medium bodied with decent carbonation. Overall a very nice Oktoberfest.

Aug 10, 2020
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Hopheadjeffery from Illinois

3.46/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Tasted in a plastic cup from a 12 fl oz can at the Chicago Botanic Garden on October 24, 2019. Enjoyed this at the Gardens Night of 1,000 Jack O’ Lanterns.

Mar 09, 2020
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BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the can, the mass marketed version of the Goose Island Oktoberfest pours a clear darker amber with a nice head, soon reducing to a robust ring and continent. In the nose, it is nicely malty. In the mouth, it is the same.

Jan 01, 2020
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yuriyt from New York

4.02/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into glass from bottle. Pours a deep copper. Aroma of roasted grain, bit of toast. Decent caramel malt notes with little hop character. Finishes dry, medium-light body. A decent example.

Nov 25, 2019
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Peach63 from New York

3.66/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours light amber with 1/4 inch cream colored head. Light lacing.

Aroma of spices, mostly cloves. Also A touch of cinnamon.

Taste is malty, spicy, wheaty, roasted malts. Light bitterness.

Medium bodied, semi dry finish. Light carbonation.

An average Oktoberfest. Not bad, but not great.

Nov 11, 2019
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izraelc from New York

3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours clear amber. Smells malty. This one is different. Starts malty and finishes with a mild refreshing hop flavor. Slightly bitter. Not like most Oktoberfests I've had.

Nov 01, 2019
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nicholas2121 from Ohio

4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oktoberfest brewed by Goose Island Beer Co., with an ABV of 6.40% This German Marzen / Oktoberfest pours out of a 12oz glass bottle into a pint beer glass. The color is a nice copper color with a nice white head. There is also a nice amount of lacing to this brew. It sticks to the side of the glass well. The smell is roasted goodness. Lots of roasted grains and malts mixed with sweetness. You also pick up some nice mirror hops in the smell as well. So far Oktoberfest is a nice inviting brew. Now for the taste, it is Bold with flavors. You pick up a nice amount of roasted goodness in this brew. This brew has the look, smell an taste of most Oktoberfest brews on the market, not saying that is a bad thing. The sweetness is a nice touch to this brew. The body is a solid medium. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it has a super nice balance to it. It is really hard to pick up on the 6.40% ABV in this brew, it is just that smooth. The mouth feel is Bold, Rich, Clean, Smooth and Refreshing. Overall I am going to give Oktoberfest a solid 4 out of 5. I would definitely look this brew up again givin the opportunity to.
Goose Island Beer Co., Did a super nice job with this Oktoberfest.

Oct 26, 2019
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Vetbidder from Pennsylvania

3.59/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Mine is listed as 5.7% 23 IBU. Completely see through and darker golden maybe copper color with a decent off white head. Malty sweet caramel nose. There is something metallic in the slightly bitter bready aftertaste. Easy to drink and slightly sweet. Decent carbonation and almost a creamy feel. This ain’t bad.

Oct 20, 2019
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kevanb from Illinois

2.64/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle, best before Feb 15, 2020, poured into a 16 oz tumbler glass.

The beer pours a lighter amber copper color, orange hues with a thin off white head that has poor retention and yields a few spots of soapy lacing. The aroma is underwhelming soft grain, a bit of noble hop, lightly toasted, something almost soapy lingers. The flavors are fine, soft and meek amber grains, a bit of richness and some brown sugar but it comes off a bit watery, just a light dose of piney noble hop. The mouthfeel is weak, a lighter and softer body, lively carbonation that struggles to coat the mouth and finishes tamely.

Verdict: A disappointing Märzen from Goose Island. It's weak flavor wise and body wise, lacks any true balance or intrigue and just comes across as a boring and unappealing beer.

Oct 14, 2019
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Mark-Leggett from Missouri

3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap: Caramel in color with a good sized head and good lacing. Not much on the nose, malt and grain. Malty and slightly sweet with caramel hints. Smooth and good mouth feel.

Oct 06, 2019
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BikeChef from District of Columbia

3.01/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I've enjoyed some of Goose Island's past Oktoberfest versions, but this just had way too heavy a caramel note-- a very off-putting maltiness that became cloying after the beer warmed up a bit.

Sep 09, 2019
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officerbill from New York

3.08/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

L: clear amber with a tan head that quickly dissolves into a lace
S: faint malt & caramel aroma
T: overly sweet. Malt, caramel, brown sugar, and bananas (?)
F: mild carbonation. Sticky bitter-sweet molasses coating on the tongue with an odd aftertaste
O: not a particularly good oktoberfest, frankly I expected better. Too sweet and molasses flavors.

Sep 02, 2019
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Dr_Gonzo from Kentucky

3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look: Poured into a tall pint glass. Color is clear and glowing amber, finger and a half worth of bubbly white head. Decent retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet caramel upfront, with toasted grains. Getting some brown sugar, toasted malts, and butterscotch.

Taste: Much like the aroma, although there are some roasted nuts as well that creates that central European impression.

Feel: Medium-bodied.

Aug 12, 2019
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EMV from Pennsylvania

3.52/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2018 Goose Oktoberfest. Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Clear caramel golden color with 1.5 fingers of fizzy white head. Modest ring of lacing.

S: Toasted grains and caramel.

T/F: Just like it smells... toasted cereal grains... brown sugar and caramel. Semi-sweet up front... nutty/earthy and with modest hop bitterness towards the finish. Light and well carbonated.

O: A pretty average/drinkable Oktoberfest. Nothing special but not bad either.

Apr 04, 2019
Oktoberfest from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 55 ratings