Wachusett Octoberfest Ale
Wachusett Brewing Company

Wachusett Octoberfest AleWachusett Octoberfest Ale
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American Amber / Red Ale
Ranked #1,029
Ranked #44,586
3.46 | pDev: 11.27%
Wachusett Brewing Company
Massachusetts, United States
Wachusett Octoberfest AleWachusett Octoberfest Ale
Notes: Using traditional Oktoberfest specialty malts & hops, it has a balanced bitterness & beautiful copper coloring.

Availability: Aug – Oct
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Reviews: 83 | Ratings: 164
Photo of PatrickCT
3.21/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

How does one rate a beer named Octoberfest that is really an amber ale? Not favorably.
I am on the fence concerning whose fault it is that I picked up a single of this while trying to work in new Oktoberfests into my Marzen Marathon. While it does say Amber Harvest Ale on the bottle, the lettering is very small beneath a giant claim of "Octoberfest." I don't think that one should have to investigate ever bottle one buys but every now and then I need a reminder to do so.
As an "Octoberfest," 0.0.
As an amber, I suppose it isn't too bad...bready with some fruit from the yeast. Raisins and some dark stone fruit, very faint. A bit of thyme and pepper from the hops. Dry finish with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of chefhatt
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

This had a light brown color body with a thin head.
the aroma had a deep maltyness to it
the taste was malty up front and and had a little roasty sweetness to it.
mouthfeel was thin and overall a good beer.

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Photo of jlindros
3.67/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An American Oktoberfest, probably all caramel and sweet malts, and it's even an ale, so we'll see. At least it's local.

Pours a smaller fizzy bubble 1/4 finger head that fades fairly quickly, touch of lacing, quite clear medium copper apple juice brown color.

Nose is full of copper malts, some toastiness and sweet grainy aromas, little caramel and touch of a syrupy like sweetness, fairly light ale like crispness and that typical ale aroma that's hard to describe otherwise except what comes in usually malty crisp ales.

Taste starts the same, lots of toasty copper malts, a little toasty and grainy but not much, some caramel flavors and a little toffee biscuit. A fair sweetness comes in with the caramel and a little syrupy flavor, grainy biscuit like malts really start to come through with a faint nutty flavor. Hops are there but very light, little grassy earthy like hop profile. Finish is drier but not a lot, little more sweet caramel and copper malts lingering, with a little grassy hop touch, and more of a basic clean ale finish.

Mouth is med bod, touch syrupy, and nice carb.

Overall not bad, as expected fairly syrupy and a bit sweet, lots of caramel coppery toasty grainy malts, very little hop, etc. Typical American Octoberfest which is a completely different style than the true German Oktoberfest/Marzen style, but I'm starting to warm up to the idea of the American Octoberfest as it's own style, as long as it's separated from the Marzen style.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.23/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Bottle from Harvest Market
Pours a clear copper color with a smallish off white head that hangs around for a bit. Light toffee and earthy floral hops in the aroma along with a hint of mineral water. The flavor is light toffee and sweet malts with a light fruity twang. Light earthy hop provides some balance. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a slick watery mouthfeel. Nothing horribly exciting here, pretty poor excuse for an Oktoberfest, I wouldn't buy this again.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.74/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on September 17, 2013.

The color is amber-brass in tone with a white head that dissolves quickly. Ongoing carbonation.

The aroma is mildly sweet with butter, biscuit, and malty characters. Not so much in the way of hops.

Medium body and somewhat creamy.

The taste begins with decent caramel sweetness followed by a slightly bitter but not offensive dryish finish. Lingers a little. It was a likable enough beer.

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Photo of metter98
3.48/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is relatively clear yellowish amber in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high off white head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface.
S: Light aromas of earthy and fruity yeast plus toasted and caramel malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and seems fruitier compared to being malty. A slight amount of bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels nearly medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink—lacking the maltiness it's definitely not an Oktoberfest—but it is and easy-to-drink amber ale.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
2.73/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a very clear amber/orange Pillowy cream-colored head shows great retention. Small patches of lacing.

S: Thin caramel and toffee, a slight grainy smell, and berries and bubblegum. Earthy hops far in the background.

T: Chewy caramel and toffee open. Touch of woodiness. Toasted grain. Estery with tastes of bubblegum and berry. Maybe even some oxidation present here with a hint of wet cardboard. Earthy hops stay far in the background, as in the nose. Drying finish of toasted grain and a touch of sherry (probably also a product of oxidation).

M: Stodgy medium body with a deep firmness. A touch chewy. Mild carbonation. Round and smooth enough, but perhaps a bit big and half-baked.

O: I bought this on a closeout sale at the end of the fall season, so it may not be the freshest possible, but there's no way of knowing without a freshness date on the bottle. Still, oxidation should not be this obvious at this point. Even underneath the flaw of oxidation, this seems to be just a very average amber ale that the brewery decided to to call an Octoberfest for the sake of seasonal marketing.

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Photo of albertjr21
3.48/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Into a pint glass, pours a clear dirty amber color under a frothy resilient head. A pleasant aroma of lightly toasted biscuity malt with significant notes of berry fruit stirs in the nose. Fruity flavors take hold in the taste in a way I'd expect from a fruit ale however I can appreciate the Fall characteristics here at play in the malt body and hops. A fruit forward Fall offering.

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Photo of claspada
3.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright amber color with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves some spotty lacing.

Aromas begin with some light caramelized malts, nutty malts, some faint hops and some fruity esters.

The tastes begin with a burst of fruity, honey sweetness, then some spice and caramel, backed by a hearty and bready malt character. There’s a decent hop presence but they aren't discernable to a fault. More sweet overall than the traditional examples with more fruity accents.

The mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with medium carbonation. Finish is smooth and clean with a little crispness.

Overall this is a decent example of a mock-toberfest Americanized style. There is nothing inherently wrong with it but it isn’t good enough for me to select it over an authentic Oktoberfest beer.

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Photo of NODAK
3.38/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma here seems somewhat sugary to me. Certainly fairly sweet, but not necessarily in a caramel or toffee way....just kind of sugary.

Pours a light brown...kind of like an iced tea in my pint glass with a 2 finger, loose head. Head doesn't really last, but the lacing is pretty decent.

The taste is pretty subdued, to be honest. Sugary sweetness, though mild, is observed right away on the body of this beer. From there is a good toasty flavor that is present in many Oktoberfests and is one of my favorite things about the style. There is a hop character here, perhaps more than most beers in this style, that ends out the beer somewhat dryly.

I don't think this one stands up among the all-time greats from Germany or even some in this country but it's pretty drinkable thanks to its subdued sweetness and somewhat dry finish.

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Photo of BOSMECH
3.55/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A is a lite gold in color with about a 1/2 inch head that settles down easy.

S the smell is a mild hop smell but not over bearing like a IPA.

T the taste is like a mild IPA with the hops to give it that mild taste.

M this is were I feel it takes it's best part a mouthful is very smooth with that hop after taste and it is very very smooth after the mouthful.

O it is a very good seasonal beer and I have found that Wachusett beer company makes a very good beer and compaired to Sam Adams it takes the award for Massachusettes beer makers.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

orange with a nice deep color to it. Lots of carbonation on this one was evident from the very start. Huge chains of bubbles just cascading from the bottom of the glass up towards the top, continually reinforcing the foam layer on top.

Lots of floral tones here coming off almost immediately, which again was very good to see. Rich orange and tangerine, were interlaced with a good amount of malted grain that gave it a little more depth in the overall scheme of things. Very nice blend of aromas, but still leaning heavily on the hops here for support. Some hints of cereal grains and a touch of what almost tasted like corn was floating around, but by far the most predominant flavors were that of the citrus hops. Light flavors of orange were quite sweet and light, not bending your taste buds, but definitely showing their strength here. Lots of complexity here, especially for an amber, and honestly one the easiest drinking ales I have had in quite some time.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.06/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had as a donation from my father, pours a red/orange color into the pint glass, medium sized head to it. Smell is of faint roastiness. Never have been a huge fan of fall seasonal beers and this one really doesn't change that notion. Taste is slightly watery with a bland, subdued Octoberfest type of taste. Really nothing special going on, at least not for me. A solid beer, and drinkable for sure.. but nothing to separate it from the other 1000 fall seasonals available.

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Photo of seesnow3
3.06/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bruges glass. Unknown freshness

Pour-Medium, creamy slightly off-white head that fades very quickly to a film. Medium amber, light effervescence, slow running, thin layer of lacing

Nose-Subdued spice, subdued yeast, hint of malt, not much going on

Palate-Lightly sweet, good amount of sour, a little bit of bitter. I don’t like the yeast taste to this one, very mild flavor, the spices are barely there, it almost tastes like pumpkin. Maybe some berries?

Body-Medium light with a good amount of carbonation on the tongue. A slightly dry finish. This is a very drinkable beer, session beer if you will. The yeast flavor is slightly distracting. It’s not a very balanced beer but overall it’s okay and easy to drink, nothing offensive that is glaring. There are some better of this style, though it’s not bad.

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Photo of Jayli
3.46/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had at The Harbor Grill and Lounge in East Providence
Poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours a deep, hazy copper/burnt orange color with a one finger of white foamy head. Head retains ok, leaving spider webbed lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is a good dose of caramel and toffee malts, a bit of breadiness, and bit of fruitiness.

T: Taste starts with a toasted, breadiness mingled with some fruity notes. Caramel and toffee take over and carry on through the finish. I expected the sweetness to be very cloying, however it wasn't.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, relatively dry throughout.

O: Goes down easily, tasty, not filling, light kick, ok representation of style. Not a great beer, however it was a great alternative to the macro offerings.

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Photo of BennyL1
3.12/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best by Dec 2011. Glass - SA Perfect Pint.

Body is an amber/orange. Slim but sticky white head with minimal lacing.

Nose is heavy with caramel malt. Also some nuttiness in there as well.

Sweet caramel and toasted malts in the taste. A bit of that nut aspect as well with the hops being barely noticeable.

Mouthfeel on the thinner side but with a smooth finish.

Not a bad brew, I just wished they would brew a true Marzen style for the fall. Wachusett is pretty good with the malt bills that they use so it would probably be pretty good.

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Photo of fx20736
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a mug.

Dark pumpkin orange with a 1 finger capuccino colored head, hardly any lacing.

Smell of baking brown bread

mouthfeel is fairly full.

Taste: malts up front followed by this inviting creamy nuttiness with just a kiss of spicy hops on the tail end.

Notes: This Fest is in the same camp as Great Lakes & Sam Adams but I think it is a little better than either; almost as flavorful as Great Lakes without the cloying sweetness, just as balanced as Sam Adams but a little tastier. I would buy another sixer of this.

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Photo of Kendo
3.15/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured from the bottle into a Sam Smith's nonic-type pint glass. Body is hazy, coppery-amber with a small off-white head. Some splotches of lace, but not much.

S: Faint. A bit of brown bread and some generic sweetness. Slightly fruity.

T: Fruity - overripe apples and some berries (raspberries, I think) - and some caramel malt sweetness. Slickness is there - could that be diacetyl? Hops are virtually nonexistent.

M: Carbonation is too active or sharp. Weight is light-to-medium.

O: Nothing special.

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.28/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Minimal head but still with a lot of carbonation. Caramel, toasted bread sweetness in the nose along with a small amount of spicy hop character. Flavor has a large amount of the malty bread that is typical for a Oktoberfest but there is a fruity hop flavor that was not noticeable in the nose. Finishes with an earthy bread bitterness but balanced with a lot of malty sweetness. I bought a six because I don't mind Wachusett but if I'm going for an Oktoberfest it most likely wouldn't be this one.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
2.73/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Clear orange with a thin white head. No lace but persistent retention hangs around until glass bottom.

Smells a lil' grainy, a lil' fruity, and not too much of anything. This beer could use some smell. Taste is fruity toasted malt with a swampy lump in the middle. Way too much fruit meandering around. Mouthfeel is slimy and clumpy.

Update: Despite this being a very average Marzen style it was the hit of my recent Halloween party. 12 bottles of this vacated my fridge before even a dent was made in the other, vast, offerings. Go figure.

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Photo of cbutova
3.68/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes over the weekend.

A- Deep copper with a creamy white cap that has good retention. A coat of spotty lace.

S- Apple and fruit notes atop a light malt sweetness. Slightly caramel and nutty.

T- Fruit notes (apple, light) and bready malt are the most prominent thing here. Earthy hops and some citrus zest. Slight caramel nutty malt and some nutmeg/coriander/floral hints.

MF- Light creamy body with smooth low-end carbonation. Slight bitterness.

DB- Drinks fairly easily. The buttery sweet aspect reminds me of many other Fall ales. A one to two bottle thing for me.

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Photo of jiggahertz
3.88/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Nice 3 finger head on top of a caramel brown beer. Head dissipates very slowly and good lacing throughout.

S: Sweet malty notes, yeast.

T: Roasted malts, nutty, caramel sweet finish.

M: Medium body, med carbonation.

D: A bit sweet and lacking some finish but overall a nice amber.

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Photo of uustal
3.34/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with a redish/orange hue. Slight off-white head that struggles to lace and stay into the beer. Not much aroma at all. Hints of bread, but one of the faintest smelling beers I've had. Very toasty and bready flavor profile. Yeast as well. Toastyness lingers well into the aftertaste. Hints of sweet malt as well and a little bit of spice right off the bat. A little dry, but a decent Octoberfest overall.

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Photo of DrJay
3/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Lightly hazed, light amber colour with a bit of an orange tint. Beige cap, slightly coarse, not much stickage. Malty aroma, a bit fruity and earthy. Light bitterness throughout, mostly malty in flavour but with some fruity, squash-like character. A hint of spice in the finish. Medium bodied with average carbonation. Not much to say here. Pretty average overall, some decent features, some that I'm not sold on.

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Photo of bort11
3.21/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a weizen glass. White head with pretty good looking head. Color is a clear coppery red with medium carbonation activity.
Smell is a toasted malt. There is like dry leaves. Taste is a little like apple bread.
Mouthfeel is light and finishes clean. Not a very exciting beer, but good enough as an out of state sample

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Wachusett Octoberfest Ale from Wachusett Brewing Company
Beer rating: 79 out of 100 with 164 ratings