Dark Horse Oktoberfest | Dark Horse Brewing Company

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Dark Horse OktoberfestDark Horse Oktoberfest
74 Ratings
Dark Horse OktoberfestDark Horse Oktoberfest

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Copious amounts of Bonlander Munich Malt give this beer a great malt sweetness and very big body to enjoy with the change in season. This beer is released to coincide with the official Oktoberfest in Munich Germany.

24 IBU

Added by proc on 09-09-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 74 |  Reviews: 23
Reviews by jcalabre:
Photo of jcalabre
3.59/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is definitely a beer that you don't drink straight from the fridge. Give it 10 minutes or so to warm up.
It pours a murky brownish color with a small head.
The aroma is sweet and malty. This brew is medium bodied.
Personally, I prefer the appearance of a filtered O'fest, but the flavors on this puppy are hard to dispute. Pretty nice.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of warnerry
3.31/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of chinchill
3.37/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz 2017 bottle served in a lager glass.
Pours with a reddish brown body that is dark for style. Likewise or the tan head. Decent lacing.
This is an American style version, not German, with bolder flavor and, I think untraditional malts. Mildly bitter and less drinkable than a traditional marzen.

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Photo of nortmand
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber-brown, with a tawny head.
Decent, yo guessed it, roasted smell, not unlike other Dark Horse beers. Also, sweet background notes and subtle hop overtones.
Very sweet flavor. WOW! Almost overpoweringly sweet. The roast quality also comes through in the flavor.
Smooth and moderately carbonated, but the sweetness hurts the overall drinkability.
Overall a solid beer, in a hard to make category. My first experience with a Dark Horse lager, and hopefully not my last.

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Photo of PaBeerLover
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Acuity
4.23/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Danielr26
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This one pours a nice dark-ish brown, with a fluffy white head, and lots of lacing.

This smells very, very sweet, almost berry-like, with toffee, and caramel.

This is the classic American-style over-caramelization of this type of beer, as this has a very sweet caramel malt character, and a completely out of place berry fruitiness. It's not dry in the slightest, there's no spicy hop character, it doesn't have that nice balanced malt richness I want from the style. This is quite disappointing.

The body on this is also far too big and beefy, and probably adds to the too-sweet feeling that this has. It's carbonated normally.

This is very disappointing, but unsurprising.

 678 characters

Photo of tommy5
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of Dreamer
4.75/5  rDev +28%

Photo of Canada_Dan
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%

Photo of HardyA
3.42/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of StoutHunter
3.77/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I picked up a bottle of Dark Horse's Oktoberfest last week for $2.09 at The Lager Mill. I can't believe that I've never had this beer before, but now it's time to finally give it a try, so lets see how it goes. 2017 Vintage. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a Oktoberfest Stein.

A- The label looks ok, it's a little cheesy looking, but it is also a little eye catching. It poured a brow and red color that took on more of a brown color when held to the light and it had almost two fingers worth of pretty cream light tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some nice rings of lacing behind. This is a good looking beer, but it's a little on the dark side for the style.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the yeast being the first to show up and it imparts a fruity aroma with some noticeable apple cider like aspects with a slight bit of dark fruits. Up next comes some doughy yeast that leads into the malts which impart some nice caramel malt, toasted, caramel, brown bread and bread crust like aromas with some sweet malts showing up right at the end. This beer has a nice aroma, but it's pretty robust for the style.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the yeast still being the first to show up and it still imparts some apple cider like aspects, but this time it has more of a general fruity aspect to it and it's followed by some doughy yeast. Up next comes the malts which impart all the same aspects that they did in the aroma and they seem to show up just as much and towards the end there's just a little bit of an herbal hop flavor. On the finish there's a higher amount of low bitterness with a very malty aftertaste. This is a pretty nice tasting Oktoberfest, but it's a little more robust than most in the style.

M- Smooth, slightly cloying, a little creamy, crisp, on the thicker side of being medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. The mouthfeel is pretty nice and it works well with this beer, it's pretty thick for the style.

Overall I thought this was a good beer and I thought it was a pretty nice example of the style, it was fairly true to style, but just about it each aspect had something that made it bigger and bolder than it normally is for the style. This beer had nice drinkability, I could drink a couple of these in the fall time. What I like the most about this beer is the appearance and the balance, no single flavor ever got to be too overpowering and it's a good looking beer. What I like the least about this beer is that it's just a little to robust for the style, it's more of like a Brown Ale than a typical Marzen. I would get this beer again when I'm in the mood for a more robust Oktoberfest and I would recommend it to anyone else looking for the same. All in all I liked this beer, but I didn't love it and I think it would be more true to style if the robustness was turned down a little. It's not a favorite Dark Horse beer and it's not the greatest example of the style. Nice job guys, this is a good tasting beer that's pretty robust for an Oktoberfest.

 3,228 characters

Photo of Zaphog
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of DrDemento456
4.18/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Buying this I had no idea it was an Imperial Oktoberfest beer! Beer pours a very dark amber brown not pitch very clear. Head is minimal just a 1/4 inch that settles to a good lace ring. Toasted bread and caramel malt all around with some woodsy body and a touch of peat. Taste is awesome tons of sweet malts, bready dough a touch of sour dough malts make this an easy drinker with a medium body brew. Overall I would love to get this again it is quite possibly the smoothest take on a Imperial (double) Oktoberfest beer!

 520 characters

Photo of StoutAtTheDevil
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BB1313
3.52/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a dark brown with ruby auburn hues; creamy khaki head that falls leaving great retention and sticky lacing. The aromas have a strong malt presence. Lots of caramel along with some hints of cocoa. Subtle hints of hazelnut. The flavors basically follow the nose. Caramel leads the way along with some toffee and cocoa. Moderate bitterness along with a moderate sweetness. Strong malt backbone. Alcohol basically goes unnoticed. Mouthfeel is nice. It's medium-bodied with moderate to active carbonation. It's smooth and easy to drink, although it's a nice beer to take your time with.

This is an alright Oktoberfest. It's a little rough around the edges for the style, but it's still enjoyable and fun to drink. It's not a traditional example of the style, but it's fitting for the autumn weather.

 834 characters

Photo of Sparty55
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of Bigtwin
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Sparty1224
3.71/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Serving: 12 oz. bottle poured into a Great Lakes pilsner glass. Bottled on 9/11/15, making this just under 1 month old.

A: Pours a very cloudy, murky, unfiltered almond-mahogany color. Frothy off-white head that laces well.

S: Very nutty, malty. Some cinnamon, nutmeg, whole grain. Some dark fruit, like figs or dates. Almost no hop presence.

T: Almond, nutmeg, raisins, figs, plum. Pure malt bomb, practically no hops.

M: Moderately full, low end carbonation. Very sticky-sweet and malty. Basically no hop balance at all.

O: One of the more hard to come by Oktoberfest beers in the Midwest, this was picked up at a Bottle Release at the pub last month. Lower bottle count and not distributed. But that doesn't make it any better or tastier. Compared to some other nice Oktoberfest beers I've had recently, this one is way on the malty side with practically no hops at all, not even for balance. This makes for a very sweet, sticky, syrupy Amber Ale-type beer. With a little more zest and hop presence, this beer could've been much more.

Recommendation: Unless you can add this in a trade for some other more desirable Dark Horse or MI beers, this one isn't worth going after alone.

 1,190 characters

Photo of Azpittil57
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of funkyaudio
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of JDizzle
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

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Dark Horse Oktoberfest from Dark Horse Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.71 out of 5 with 74 ratings