Oktoberfest (2018)
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Oktoberfest (2018)Oktoberfest (2018)
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Style:
Lager - Märzen / Oktoberfest
ABV:
6%
Score:
91
Avg:
4.08 | pDev: 9.8%
Reviews:
218
Ratings:
552
From:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
 
California, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  7
Gots
  110
SCORE
91
Outstanding
Oktoberfest (2018)Oktoberfest (2018)
Notes: We’ve partnered with Bavaria’s Weihenstephan, the world’s oldest brewery, for this American take on the classic German Oktoberfest. A malt backbone is balanced by subtle hop character in this crisp, clean, and drinkable crowd-pleaser. Nothing captures the spirit of celebration like a beer among friends.

YEAST Lager yeast
BITTERING HOPS Sterling
FINISHING HOPS Sterling, Spalter, Record
MALTS Two-row Pale, Steffi, Pilsner, Munich

BEGINNING GRAVITY 13.9° plato
ENDING GRAVITY 2.8° plato
IBU 20
Reviews: 218 | Ratings: 552 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Psilo:
Photo of Psilo
Psilo from California

4.69/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours deep golden amber, clear as day, with a finger of off-white foam that lasts as a cap and leaves moderate lacing. 

Smells like an Oktoberfest, sweet toasted malt and light hop spiciness.

Tastes like toasted bread, cracker, biscuit. Light sweetness, light hoppiness. Crisp, clean, beautifully lagered, the carbonation is just right. 

Goes down really easily. The Germans have a word for this sort of drinkability, if I remember right. I imagine I could put away a boot of this with ease.

My favorite of these collaboration Oktoberfests so far! 

Aug 30, 2018
More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens from New Mexico

4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A clear copper color with a tiny head.
Sweet malt aroma, some grassy hops.
Caramel taste with a hint of hops.
Sweet, easy drinking beer. Looking forward to the rest of the 6 pack.

Sep 10, 2018
Photo of PatrickCT
PatrickCT from Connecticut

3.62/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

The combination of sterling and record hops makes this beer taste like cranberries. Smooth light body with a complex aroma-grainy malts, lemony and botanical hops.

Oct 21, 2018
Photo of Squire
Squire from Mississippi

4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Deep, rich amber gold color with white cap and lacing.

Aroma of caramel malt dusted with spicy hops. That doesn't sound like much but malt is strong in this one.

Flavor is malt forward with great depth and complexity. It isn't just malt, it's malt personified with a wieldy room filling presence. I quite like it and this may be my eventual choice over those that preceded it. Sweetness is present yet in a restrained way that complements the flavor profile rather than being a defining influence. Hops are there like Rococo flourishes on the edge of a large gilded frame which is to say they're noticed but don't really draw attention away from the main picture.

Medium full texture with balancing carbonation.

Overall I'm glad they chose to go in this direction. An Oktoberfest that shows the rich lushness of Autumn with all the bounty of Summer behind it.

Aug 28, 2018
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gr0g from New Jersey

3.64/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Golden amber color. Very nice head retention and lacing characteristics. Biscuity, slightly toasty aromatics. Hops (Sterling, Spalter, Record) contribute some floral and herbal aromatics. Flavor profile is firmly in the dry and hoppy corner, as opposed to e.g. Sam Adams Oktoberfest. Bitterness picks up on the finish. Not all that robust of a malt profile. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this is reminiscent of Weihenstephaner Festbier, which is a good but not great Marzen, in my opinion.

Sep 05, 2018
Photo of Fordcoyote15
Fordcoyote15 from Kentucky

4.51/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bready, crackery, lightly floral, doughy, mild earthiness.

Color is higher on the amber side but it's certainly not sweet. Malty, yes. But not sweet like a SA or great lakes. More hop bite than many but in no way hoppy. Just straight up loaded with flavor with nothing overpowering.

Arguably one of the best oktoberfest I've had to date. I'd argue it's only contenders are last year's SN version and Penn brewery's version.

Aug 07, 2018
Photo of utopiajane
utopiajane from New York

4.17/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This oktoberfest is very much like what I think of when I see the word festbier. Pours handsome and deeply amber. Clear and bright. The bubbles seem to exchange their lightness for air and top this beer with a cream colored head of thick graceful foam that falls slowly. Nose is a sumptuously floral hop with plenty of earthy spice. A sweet kiss from malt that adds a rich elegance to the nose. Cracker and biscuit. The malt combines with the Spalter to give the taste of toasty sweet hay. Drinks with a touch of fullness and a bit of breaddy sweetness with floral notes and not too much bitterness. Crisp bubbles. Steffi malt, pilsner malt, Munich malt and two row.

The beer is festive and food friendly so soft pretzels with mustard. I made orange chicken. Next week some sandwiches with this. At 6% it is still within sessionable range and with it's light sweet hints it will also take you to dessert in a great big mug or two. The Sterling are a clean and moderate bitterness. Clean meaning not imparting any hoppy mouthfeel to the finish. This beer is mild.

Aug 27, 2018
Photo of Kendo
Kendo from New York

4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured from the bottle into a pilsner glass. Body is golden-copper with a small whitish head. Nice slow-rising bubbles give this one a nice look.

S: Cereal grainy malt (think wheat bread crust) with a touch of fruitiness and grassy hops.

T: Cereal grains and caramel malt are followed by fruitiness and a hint of lemony bitterness that lingers on the palate. Clean.

M: Light in heft, appropriate carbonation causes some burps.

O: Very good. Sierra Nevada and Weihenstephan have created a nice Marzen/Octoberfest beer. A little high in ABV at 6% would keep me from quaffing gallons of this in Munich, however, but on this cool day in Albany County, I'm enjoying the single bottle I purchased recently.

Sep 09, 2018
Photo of obywan59
obywan59 from Virginia

4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Crystal clear and a light orange/copper in appearance with a 3 finger off white head that leaves moderate lacing.

Aroma of grain with a spicy backbone.

Sweet grainy malts with light spice. Almost citric. The tartness and spice remind me of a wheat beer. Probably the Wiehenstephan influence.

Medium full in body and fairly sticky. Great retention.

A great beer! Full flavored, aromatic, and great body.

Aug 13, 2018
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis from North Carolina

3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a crystal clear pale to medium bronze in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass and moderate medium golden yellow + amber colored highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense creamy foamy light beige head that very slowly reduces to a couple of small patches of thin film surrounded by a large patch of slightly mottled very thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of doughy + toasted + caramel + cereal grain malts with a light amount of grainy + caramel sweetness. That is followed by light aromas of spicy + grassy hops with a hint of lager yeast.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of doughy + toasted + caramel + cereal grain malts with a light amount of grainy + caramel sweetness. That is followed by light flavors of lager yeast and light flavors of spicy + grassy hops which impart a light amount of lingering bitterness.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Very slightly crisp upfront with a smooth mid-body with a relatively clean finish.

O: Easy to drink with well hidden alcohol. Enjoyable with a really nice malt backbone and noble hop presence. Very nice example of the style and I'm glad I found a single of this one to grab.

Oct 11, 2018
Photo of TheSixthRing
TheSixthRing from California

4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 07/27/18

Appearance - Pours clear and amber orange in color with an off-white, finger width head. Fair retention before breaking down to a barren surface and a few suds found around the edge of the glass. No lacing.

Smell - The nose elicits notes of lightly toasted bread, caramel, orange, floral character and a touch of spice.

Taste - Follows the nose. Bready, light toast upfront, then a touch of orange zest and spice. Hints of floral character and faint caramel sweetness mid-taste. Finishes with aforementioned lingering hop notes playing off that layered bready backbone.

Mouthfeel - Light-t0-medium in body with fair carbonation. Slick, easy drinker with a crisp, refreshing finish.

Overall - Perhaps the best okto beer I've ever had, or at least top 2 with the Hacker-Pshorr offering. I'd love to try a side-by-side. Flavorful, amazing balance and quite crushable. Not surprising given the last collab between these two breweries produced an excellent hefe in Braupakt.

Aug 18, 2018
Photo of Apellonious
Apellonious from North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle 7/23/18 poured into a Guinness 2009 St Patty's glass. I told myself I was going to wait until after Labor day to start sampling the Oktoberfests this year. Seasonal creep gets you every time. The appearance is clear amber/orange, with gold highlights, a one finger head that retains for the majority of the glass before slipping to a thin lace. Decent retention on the side of the glass. Aroma and flavor are both straight up bready malts mixed with light floral hop and grassy notes. The feel is surprisingly smooth, a medium lo amount of carbonation with a medium light amount of heft. Session-able sure, now just need to get temps to drop below 90. Great Collab with Weihenstephan.

Aug 17, 2018
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SpdKilz from Illinois

4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sep 18, 2018
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nwhittin from Indiana

3.89/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sep 23, 2018
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pants678 from California

3.55/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber, white lace.

Malt, yeast.

Spice more than sweet, but a medicinal/cola quality. Some caramel.

Light body, prickly.

Sep 12, 2018
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Spaceman_Jer from Colorado

4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sep 29, 2018
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BlackBeerPirate from Illinois

4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Taste: semi sweet, deep caramel malts, toffee,with a clean finish. Toasted malt grain nose. Golden/Amber hue, clear, with a refine head and lace. Medium to med/full body. 20 IBUs

Sep 13, 2018
Photo of Buck89
Buck89 from Tennessee

4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful in the glass. Crystal-clear amber-orange with a thick off-white head. The foam stayed for several minutes before slowly receeding. The aroma was rich bready malt with a slight floral hop presence. The taste did not disappoint - more rich bready flavor, balanced with a subtle floral and citrus bitterness. Medium bodied but the feel is really light and silky. Clean finish with outstanding drinkability. Exceptional beer.

Aug 13, 2018
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RitzCarling from Illinois

3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jun 29, 2019
Photo of GrumpyGas
GrumpyGas from Illinois

4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz draft pour into a pint glass shows a bright, clear gold body with a persistent whispy cap and ring of tiny white bubbles, leaving erratic lacing.

Aroma is a cracker malt, slightly fruity with pear and apple, and fresh air.

Flavors of caramel malt and an unassociated fruit sweetness are well balanced by Noble hops.

Mouthfeel leans a lighter medium and cleanly clears the palate.

Overall a really well done festbier.

Oct 06, 2018
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lemmy187 from Missouri

4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sep 09, 2018
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IronLover from Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Golden orange in color with perfect clarity. Poured with a moderate, creamy, white foam with moderate retention. Clean malt aromas, bread crust and light toasty notes. No hop aromas. Medium  bodied with medium carbonation and a delicate, creamy smooth feel. Malty, bready and toasted malt flavors followed by medium light earthy hop flavors and bitterness. Finished with a light, crisp cleaness followed by light doughy, bready malt notes. Malty, clean, delicate, very drinkable.

Sep 28, 2018
Photo of pianoguy
pianoguy from Washington

3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 Oz bottle. Bottled 8/15/2018

Pours a fairly clear orange body with a white head. Lots of visible carbonation. Minimal retention and lacing

Not very prominent scent but what I'm getting is definitely malt forward with some yeast. Very slight hop presence.

A clean Marzen malt /yeast taste follows the nose. Slight sweetness

Very nice low medium feel is not overly carbonated. Nice!

A nice effort. I liked the feel and taste (in that order) . I will always enjoy Sierra Nevada's Oktoberfest collaborations. And while I'm a richer man for having tried it, I think I'm a one and done for the 2018 version. There are so many other great Marzens out there...

Sep 16, 2018
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tone77 from Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a bronze color with a 1 inch head. Smell is malty, some sweetness. Taste is of caramel malts, bready, a touch sweet, light hops, very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

Nov 04, 2018
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justintcoons from Pennsylvania

3.32/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle poured into a Pilsner glass.

Appearance
Golden. Excellent clarity. Moderate carbonation. 1/2 finger white head.

Nose
Sweet brown bread, caramelized sugars, butterscotch, and slight toffee.

Taste
Sweet brown bread, caramel cubes, butterscotch, and toffee. Only a touch of earthy hops.

Mouthfeel
Medium-light bodied, crisp, clean, and sweet.

Overall
Very much on the sweeter end. I'd prefer more balance in my Oktoberfest beers.

Aug 28, 2018
Oktoberfest (2018) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 552 ratings