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SurlyFest | Surly Brewing Company

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SurlyFestSurlyFest
BA SCORE
4.02/5
Exceptional
933 Ratings
SurlyFestSurlyFest
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
surlybrewing.com

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with three different types of Rye and a single variety of American Hops. Malted Rye, Flaked Rye, and Crystal Rye impart a distinctive biscuit flavor to the lush Vienna Malt body, and dry-hopping with Sterling Hops adds bright, floral hop aromas.

Added by feloniousmonk on 09-03-2006

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#3,388
Reviews:
382
Ratings:
933
pDev:
10.7%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
232
Gots:
87
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 933 |  Reviews: 382
Photo of jyoung66
1.04/5  rDev -74.1%

Photo of Bighuge
1.66/5  rDev -58.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

This beer is a bit of a conundrum. I'm not sure if anybody has touched on this yet, but this beer tastes nothing like a marzen. It's more like an IPA or actually more like a DIPA. The blue and white checkerboard background on the can reminds me of a German Oktoberfest banner (like the ones in "Strange Brew" eh?). But the beer inside is not even in the same ballpark. I understand it's a lager, but this has to be the most hopped up lager I've ever tried. Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Well actually, in this case there is.

Hazy, tarnished copper. Thin coating of beige head. Lace is moderate in amount. Sickly pungent pine needle aroma. It's like smelling the gooey sap straight out of a pine tree. And then licking it. The flavor is all hops. And in truth, these hops don't appeal to me. My belief is that they're 100% Sterling. If that's the case, Sterling is one hop I'll avoid when homebrewing. I get garlic and onion and clove. And an astringent tannic presence that muddles everything up as well. Ouch. This is not good. And my ratings are not due to the nonconforming style. I rated this as if it were an IPA/DIPA/Rye lager.

This is the first beer from Surly that I have not enjoyed. I see others have, so drink up. But I will pass on this next fall. Unless they try a new hop, like Columbus or Palisade or Simcoe. My opinion is that Furious is 10 times better than this.

 1,401 characters

Photo of MooseBoose
2/5  rDev -50.2%

Photo of DaPeculierDane
2.09/5  rDev -48%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Many thanks to Mike for the 4-pack.

Great Appearance. Dark orange body with a huge white froth.

Aroma: Huge citrus hops aroma. Touches of rye. No toast. No caramel. I know that this is a Surly hi-bred rypafest but honestly I’m not impressed. This smells nothing like an Oktoberfest.

Taste: Hops, Grapefruit. Virtually no malt. No toast. No caramel. No toffee. Rye? Maybe, but that’s a bit of a stretch.

Mouthfeel: Blistering. Unbalanced, overwhelming bitterness. Medium to light bodied. Aggressively carbonated. Not creamy or smooth as an Ofest ought to be.

Drinkability: Null. Hop heads will love this but I had a very hard time consuming half a can let alone a whole pint.

This beer really disturbs me.

 716 characters

Photo of Vidblain
2.13/5  rDev -47%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

I still don't understand why they dry-hop this. A marzen should be roasty and malty and warm. The hops add a floral element that makes the taste garbled and strange. It's the worst marzen I've had in years. I say this as a Surly fan - stop over-hopping everything. It's gratuitous and unnecessary.

 298 characters

Photo of Ilafan
2.25/5  rDev -44%

Photo of Proteus93
2.31/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Shared with CrellMoset and dkachur

A: A golden blonde hue. Head is a little short, white. Not a whole lot going on.

S: Not much of a rye scent going on here at all... rather vegetal, a little metallic. This is not starting off very well.

T: I am hoping that there is something wrong with this can, and presuming that it would be the case? It tastes, quite literally, like overcooked greens. Asparagus, brussel sprouts, collard greens. Oh Lord, it's not a very pleasant taste.

M + D: Feel is alright... medium bodies, but the flavour doesn't go over with it very well. I have been fond of the other rye beer I have had, so I'd be willing to give it another go based on that, but I'm not too interested in getting another any time soon.

 741 characters

Photo of slaintemhor
2.36/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got to try a can of this courtesy of a friend from Minnesota. The colour was golden straw with a thick head. The aroma was nearly nonexistent. I mean, maybe there were some hops and malt there, but I couldn't detect any. On the palate, there were faint hops and faint malt but generally it seemed quite watery. I guess I expected more form the folks who make the Darkness!

 372 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
2.41/5  rDev -40%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.25

Reddish-orange-yellow color with a 2 finger head of froth.

Aroma is much hoppier than expected, it just smells like straight sterling and amarillo. A touch of munich malts.

Yeah, flavor is way hoppier than expected. Some ugly caramel sweetness too. The Munich malt pops out a bit but that's the only thing distinguishing it from being an old IPA.

Feel is crisp and clean, with apt carbonation. Chalky residue on the finish.

This was a drain pour for me. Most of it, too. I was not expecting an IPA and I got one. Way off base.

 534 characters

Photo of EeeCeeTee
2.5/5  rDev -37.8%

First Surly beer I havn't liked. I had hoped this would be a more conventional lager. Does everything have to be flavored like an IPA?
I love both Surly Furious and Cynicale, so I'll stick with those Surlys.

 209 characters

Photo of Hopstout
2.5/5  rDev -37.8%

Photo of King_KongDCO93
2.5/5  rDev -37.8%

Photo of womencantsail
2.66/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks for sharing this can, Bobby.

A: The pour is a fairly opaque dark amber/light brown color with fairly minimal head formation.

S: There's a really weird aroma to this beer...some nutshells along with peanut butter. A mild breadiness as well as some misplaced acidity. The one redeeming factor is the touch of earthy hops that comes in toward the back end.

T: Lightly bready with a fruit character (white grapes?) that doesn't really seem to belong. Again, mildly acidic with some faint nuttiness. Really all over the place.

M: The body is medium with the carbonation fitting the same description.

D: A rare miss for Surly and this one is way off the mark. I know they're trying to put a different spin on the Oktoberfest, but this just didn't work at all.

 765 characters

Photo of Hendrick24
2.67/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Photo of tourdot
2.75/5  rDev -31.6%

Photo of Revenant
2.75/5  rDev -31.6%

Photo of argock
2.87/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 16 oz tallboy into a clear glass 20oz mug. Canned on 08/18/15 on bottom of can. Lugged by my parents from IA -- thanks M&D.

A; Slightly hazy light amber with 1/2-finger of off-white head with average retention but no lacing.

S: Minimal maltiness with a little bit of doughy, bready maltiness but none of the active aromas. Minimal to no hop aroma. No yeasat aromas. Bland.

T: Bland also with a bit of musty malitness. I will admit that I had a Bells Oktoberfest lage on tap this evening beforehand and it was not even close. The Surlyfest is very flavor-shy as a comparison.

M: Light bodied with moderate carbonation and clean finish.

O: Easily the worst Surly beer I have had. It was below average for the style and tasted like an average brown Munich Helles at best. This beer is overrated really badly -- not even close to 90.

 852 characters

Photo of InVinoVeritas
3/5  rDev -25.4%

Photo of masterofsparks
3/5  rDev -25.4%

Photo of Danegerous123
3/5  rDev -25.4%

Photo of smogfood
3/5  rDev -25.4%

Photo of nate_nate_nate
3/5  rDev -25.4%

If by "Oktoberfest," Surly actually means "pale ale," then OK. So not a fest bier.

83 characters

Photo of drpimento
3/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

ahhhh, I don't know.... Right now the overall score here is really good, but I can't go with it. I really like Surly stuff, but this isn't one a their best imho. So so head. no lace. Slightly hazy orangish amber color. Hoppy nose. Flavor picks up malt, a bit of roastiness. Helps make it more drinkable. Sort of an Oktoberfest. I guess. Finish is ok. I could drink a few more of these, but don't know if I'd go out of my way to do so.

 434 characters

Photo of kscaldef
3/5  rDev -25.4%

Photo of AdmiralOzone
3/5  rDev -25.4%

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SurlyFest from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 933 ratings
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