Gordon Biersch Märzen | Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant

292 Reviews
Gordon Biersch MärzenGordon Biersch Märzen

Brewed by:
Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant
United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our most popular beer, Märzen (Maert-zen) is a smooth, mildly sweet, auburn colored lager. This beer originated from Bavaria, where it was brewed in March (Marz in German) and stored in caves to be enjoyed during warmer weather. At the end of September, any remaining kegs of Märzen were consumed during the two week celebration which became famous as Oktoberfest. We hope you'll enjoy it year round.

18 IBU

Added by Jordan on 12-07-2001

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Reviews: 292 | Ratings: 765
Photo of Libeertarian
3.33/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

From notes taken 12/29/16:

Fairly clear orange-amber with thick tannish head of foam, Moderate retention with no lacing. Sweet aroma, mostly grain and caramel, a pinch of something juniper-like. A little weird, both for the style and in that pine is better. To palate, more so caramel than grain, even a little toffee and dark fruit character. Some booze spiciness throughout, as well as more of that juniper way in the back, overall bordering on peppery with retro-olfaction. Medium-bodied, watery. Carbonation is semi-flat sudsiness to mild effervescent and mellows a lot very quickly.

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Photo of Guppy314
3.19/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

On tap at the Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant - McLean (Tysons Corner), listed at ABV=5.7% & IBU=18, pours a clear light brown with an off-white head that quickly dissipated leaving a slight lacy-ness. Aroma of malt and perhaps caramel. The flavors are very malt-forward with a roasted caramel and (very slight) hops on the back end. Carbonation is decent, but the mouth feel is weak leaving an overall not quite satisfying impression.

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Photo of StArnoldFan
2.53/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Terrible, just terrible. Has a sour taste hat I've never ever had on any Marzen I have ever tried. I will never reach for this again. If they say this is their most popular beer, I have no interest to try anything else by them.

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Photo of ByronDBeer
4.31/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Brown, clear, nice.
S: N/A
T: Dark with good malts providing enough taste, but not overpowering, and crisp and refreshing like a lager should be.
F: Crisp and refreshing

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Photo of Beginner2
4.04/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Never had a Gordon Biersch brew, despite living in the Bay Area for 10 years and visiting often since then. Always nice to find a brewer who understands the craft beer market. And it is good sign that this brewpub got distribution in LA where I found it.
This is a nice Marzen. Malty, but balanced and comes off as a dry finish.
I enjoyed this more as it warmed as the malt stood out more.

Reviewed in MJ's 1999 edition "Pocket Guide", he gave it 3 of 4 stars and proclaimed it "a smooth, malty,amber and slightly dry for the style."

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Photo of Troy-Hawaii
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of a variety 12-pack $13.49 Foodland
Amber color
Medium carbonation
Medium-heavy mouth feel
Smooth caramel taste
Overall the best of the bottled Gordon Biersch beers. On tap is even better.

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Photo of DJChaseTheBase
3.41/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

I really just wasn't feeling this beer. Good taste initially, but the aftertaste (well it just didn't do it for me). They had plenty of other beers at the brewery that I like though, although this one I just wasn't feel. Maybe I got the end of the keg....

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Photo of gautch726
4.29/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful golden orange with a moderate head with decent foaminess. Sweet, toasty aroma that is a nice introduction. The taste is malty and strong. Definitely a beer for when you are in the mood for BEER. Weakest point is the mouthfeel is a bit on the shallow side.

Very enjoyable overall.

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Photo of chinchill
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Atlanta brewpub. Served colder than ideal temperature.

Look: deep amber body with excellent clarity and a creamy tan head.

Aroma: mild mix of malts and hops, with notes of caramel.

Flavor: follows the aroma. Very clean but a bit milder than ideal.

Mouthfeel: near medium body and carbonation. Nicely smooth.

Overall: Compares well to a bunch of Bavarian marzens I have had lately from a Xmas Advent beer calendar.

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Photo of metter98
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Gordon Biersch, San Francisco Airport Terminal 3

A: The beer is clear deep amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a short off white head that died down, leaving a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of sweet, toasted malts are present in the smell along with a bit of caramel.
T: The taste has flavors of toasted malts along with bits of malty sweetness and a light amount of bitterness. There are also some hints of spicy hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is a rich and malty Oktoberfest. It isn't a bad representation of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

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Photo of MacMalt
3.69/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I had this on draught. The color is an attractive dark amber with a thin, milk-white head and lacing which quickly disappeared. The smell was malty, bready, with some sweet caramel and fruit. The initial taste is quite sweet, with fruit, molasses, and malt. There is a slight bitterness at the finish. This ale is medium-bodied, but refreshing and very easy to drink. It is lightly carbonated. Overall, it is a very nice example of this style, perfect for a mid-fall afternoon, and it paired very well with a pulled port sandwich with barbecue sauce.

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Photo of thebeers
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dark amber, approaching brown, with a finger of tan-tinted head. Roasty, bready, sweet aroma. Sweet and slightly nutty tasting, with hints of bourbon in the background. Fairly light bodied and somewhat creamy. Middle of the road Oktoberfest.

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Photo of jlindros
2.87/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tap at the pub in San Fran airport.

Very small head, clear auburn red color.

Nose mild sweet malts, fruity esters, very fruity, unhappy lager, mild metallic note, sweet candy, meh.

Taste is like a macro lager, some toasted reddish candy malts, otherwise pour lager, minerals, unhappy lager yeast esters, fruity, messy, icky skunky like lager, caramel, sweet candy, and even sticky finish, herbal hops, etc.

Mouth med bod, sticky syrupy, light carb even for draft.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.79/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I had this beer on-tap in a half-liter straight side glass at the Seattle location.

Appearance: medium-dark orange hue with no haze and a good effervescence. Head is a thick finger of creamy ivory foam. Quite good!

Smell: lightly sweet with a dash of fruitiness. I like it.

Taste: toasty as well as sweet with a nice autumnal character. Not bad.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a nonetheless good creaminess.

Overall: pretty good -- a very straightforward Märzen.

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Photo of ELLipke
4.67/5  rDev +30.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Strong clear amber color and a good head. Malty flavor with little after taste which I prefer. Smooth mouth feel. I prefer it on tap but bottles are reasonable alternative.

I think most West Coasters will find this beer lacking due to its favoring malt flavors over hops. But I prefer it to the ales that are so prevalent in my market. Every palate is different and most brewers out here have singular focus on hopped up ales. I welcome brewers like GB who try a variety of brewing styles. Marzen is their flagship and I would love to find it in my local store. Alas, that is no longer possible here in Southern Cal. I still seek it out when I shop and travel.

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Photo of RoyBrentJr
3.96/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Still my fav from GB—and about as close to the opposite of a west coast hop bomb as you can get. Light on the nose but matches its dark color with malt, caramel and toast. If I'm honest, though, I'd kick the hops up just enough to add a little bite, à la Sudwerk.

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Photo of F1Robert
4.15/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From Bottle. Just hoppy enough for a good mouth feel. Slightly malty with a touch aftertaste of anise. Overall a warm, not heavy, beer great for the evening.

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Photo of RonaldWilsonReagan
4.08/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Delicious and unique – is that black licorice? Regardless, it’s nice, nice, nice. First time I tried this was on draft and delightful; it’s equally good from the bottle.

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Photo of Ranger337
4.82/5  rDev +34.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I remember this as being my very first beer outside the realm of Coors and Budweiser. I loved it, and still love it today. Best balanced beer I have ever had,

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Photo of Brenden
3.62/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sample #4
Appropriate for the style, this beer is a transparent and shining coppery orange color. The head is a lightly tanned foam, reasonably sized with pretty good lacing to speak of.
While the nose is a little too light to draw as much from as I'd like, the flavor manifests a little better and showcases interesting charred nut, caramel and steel along with a curious smokiness underneath that ties in pretty well.
The feel gives a good balance between crispness and smoothness and is clean in a nice semi-dry medium body.

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Photo of scottfrie
2.98/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into SA Perfect Pint glass.

A: Pours a nutty amber color with two fingers of soft light tan head that slowly faded into a thick fuzzy film.
S: Bready malts and dry grains dominate over a hint of caramel, honey, and toast. Bread crust malts overall.
T: Bready malts follows the nose, but the beer is more syrupy and slightly metallic than expected. The finish is full of dry grains and toasted malts, and I get a hint of sugary caramel and molasses in the aftertaste. A bit synthetic and syrupy overall.
M: Medium body, splashy medium-low carbonation that isn't distracting, but a synthetically sweet and slick mouthfeel that leaves an unpleasant almost metallic tastes in my mouth. Slightly bitter aftertaste.
O: A pretty average beer. Not necessarily bad, but nothing I'd purposely drink again.

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Photo of BrewThru_29
3.83/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap at the restaurant.

Appearance is a nice dark copper with a 2 finger head and decent lace.

Smells like roasted malts. Little sweet smell. Not a lot on the nose.

Taste is roasted carmel malt balanced near perfectly against a mild hop profile. Great balance.

Mouth feel is medium body. Smooth. Very tasty.

Overall this is a great beer and the only brew worth ordering at Gordon Biersch in my opinion. Very tasty.

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Photo of BigBry
3.71/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Tried on tap at San Jose location.
Clear, copper color, with a soapy head. Foam settles to a film, with thin patchy lace.
Smell is of toasted malt and some caramel sweetness.
Taste has the same roasted and bready malt sweetness.
This beer has an average level of carbonation, slightly crisp mouth feel, quite drinkable.
Overall, this is a pretty good beer that maybe my personal favorite from their ine up.

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Photo of T100Mark
3.69/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap, at the Gordon Biersch bar, in the San Jose Airport (very close to the brewery).

Appearance - Nice copper color. Surprising clarity. Minimal head. Minimal lacing.

Smell - Slightly sweet. Slightly herbal. Not a big nose on this beer.

Taste - Sweet malt flavor. A touch of peppercorns. Slight citrus note. The hops do produce a bit of a bite. Nice malt/hop balance.

Mouth - Slightly spicy. Subtle carbonation. Not bad.

Overall - A nice, unassuming beer. Your American Adjunct Lager drinking buddies should have no issues with this beer. Ultimately, however, this lager is little lacking in character.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.86/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a pilsner glass

Appearance – The beer is served a deep amber color with a head consisting of one finger of just off white foam. The head has a moderate retention, fading over time to leave some streaky lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma was heaviest of a caramel and toffee like sweetness mixed with some lightly toasted malt and bready smells. Along with these aromas are some other light smells of a grassy and herbal nature, adding a slight hop dimension to the overall sweet and lightly roasted smell.

Taste – The taste begins with a sweet and doughty flavor, with the sweet being mainly of a caramel nature. The sweet caramel is joined by some more buttery flavors producing a toffee like flavor on the tongue. At the same time, some roasted flavors come to the tongue as well as a little bit of a lighter fruit flavor of apple and pear as well a very mild spice flavor of cinnamon and nutmeg. Toward the end, a very light hay and grassy flavor join the tongue, leaving one with a rather sweet and malty, lightly spiced, Oktoberfest style flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is average in terms of its thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the slightly lower side. The moderate body is rather nice for the sweeter flavors of the brew; keeping it rather easy drinking, while the slightly lower carbonation keeps it heavier then it really is and matches well the bready and lightly spiced flavors of the brew, allowing them to be fully sensed.

Overall – A fairly sweet and malty brew at only 5.7 % abv with a nice easy drinking feel. A very enjoyable, year round Marzen style beer.

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Gordon Biersch Märzen from Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant
3.59 out of 5 based on 765 ratings.
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