Weihenstephaner Oktoberfestbier | Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

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Weihenstephaner OktoberfestbierWeihenstephaner Oktoberfestbier

Brewed by:
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
Germany | website

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A full rich bodied, hoppy, seasonal lager. Especially brewed for the Festbier season. This beer truly represents the Bavarian way of celebrating. Deep gold color, great mouth-feel and lots of flavor. Prost!

Added by mzwolinski on 10-27-2002

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Reviews: 593 | Ratings: 1,449
Photo of DenisKolkin
4.05/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle served cold into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance - Clear and pale golden colored beer. Some lively action from the bubbles within. A finger and a bit of rocky white head is poured retention is quite good. Minimal lacing left behind. Not nearly as copper colored as every other Oktoberfest beer I've ever had.

Smell - Autumn harvest. Some large grainy notes, a slightly earthy aroma and hints of autumn vegetables. Some slightly sweet aromas on the back end too. A certain grape-like aroma makes itself known too.

Taste - This one's a little different. Coarse grain flavors dominate with some vegetative notes (reminds me of fall, squash and pumpkin without ever remotely tasting like a gourd). A vinous grape-esque flavor appears mid sip. the big brazen caramel flavor I usually get from a Marzen, is silent here.

Mouthfeel - Very light, soft body. Carbonation is present but subtle which seems to be a theme from Weihenstephaner. Finish is dry.

Overall - Definitely a little different than many others in the style, to me it tastes like if you crossed and Oktoberfest and a Kolsch, added some Munich Helles Lager and spun it around you might get something like this. Of course Weihenstephaner is one of the best breweries in the world, so the delicacy in shaping those flavors and smells is divine. I can see why this may not have struck a cord with all drinkers, but definitely worth a try, and I'm hoping one day this will come to Ontario.

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Photo of utopiajane
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is lovely and smooth. The color is exceptional. Perfectly bright amber. Creamy head of foam that does not waste too much time to fall. Nose is malty. A richness form malt. A very quiet coolness form hop in the background. An inkling of spice. Smooth mellow flavor with a tiny tingle from bitterness that reveals how clean the beer is. It has a moment in the finish I would describe as watery but then my attention is drawn back to the palate which has been enveloped by this malt. Crisp finish with a slight bite from carbonation. A touch sweet and without heaviness this goes down as easy as water. "I'll have six more of these please . . . in a big mug . . . Yes now. "

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Photo of kojevergas
2.87/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

BOTTLE: Brown glass. 330ml. Classy label art. Branded gold colour pry-off crown cap. Purchased locally in Centennial, Colorado as part of a 6 pack.

Served cold into a .33L krug. Expectations are sky high given the brewery, for which I have massive respect. Reviewed live as a festbier per the label (and name).

5.80% ABV. 2015 vintage. Imported to the U.S. by Total Beverage Solution.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: About 4 inches wide. Off-white colour. Quite frothy, to style. Nice consistency. Decent complexion. Retention is rather good - about 10 minutes.

BODY: Clear clean yellow. Filtration is obvious. No yeast is visible within. So transparent one could easily read text through this beer.

It's a clean, crisp looking festbier and is spot-on for the style, but isn't unique or special.

AROMA: Clean barley, flaked malts, pilsner malts, Munich malts. The restrained Noble hop character is grassy, but I'm impressed they get so much aroma for so little in terms of hops. Grainy to style. Attenuation seems ideal. Hints of sweet bread-like malts. Clean and fragrant, suggesting a balanced festbier with a classic flavour. Still, it does seem surprisingly sweet for a festbier...

Aromatic intensity is average. No off-notes, alcohol, or overt yeast notes come through.

TASTE: The sweet bready malt notes lend this beer surprising sweetness, and it never returns quite to form; the pilsner & Munich malts get trumped by the sweetness. Attenuation isn't quite high enough, with the yeast struggling to keep pace with the sugars. It does have a nice Noble hop presence, but the subtlety of the grassy notes gets lost in that pesky off-style sweetness.

I hoped for more balance in a festbier, especially coming from Weihenstephaner. I do like it, but this build just isn't dialed in. Not a gestalt beer, but an enjoyable and drinkable one.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, refreshing, light-bodied, and well-(if over-)carbonated. It's not the fragile delicate light-as-a-feather mouthfeel of the very best beers in the style, but it aids drinkability and complements the taste nicely.

OVERALL: There are effortlessly drinkable festbiers, but this is not one of them. Highly drinkable, yes, but not in the upper echelon of the style. I wouldn't want to put down more than one litrekrug of this beer - and that's essentially the test of a festbier, isn't it? I won't say I'm disappointed in this, but one always hopes for greatness when approaching any beer from a brewery as incredible as Weihenstephaner. Worth trying, but much to my shock, it isn't neatly within style conventions, and suffers from a troublesome sweetness.


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Photo of tekstr1der
3.74/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Big hopes for this as others from this brewery are fantastic. This was a letdown. It's not bad per se, but boring. Pours light straw color with thin white skim. Mild aromas of bread and maybe honey. Flavor is very mild malt with some earthly hops - again mild. Finish is very clean. This is not bad, just all around too light.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear golden color with white head. A lot of sweet honey character in the aroma along with white bread crust. Taste follows the nose exactly, slightly on the sweet side but overall quite balanced. Light body and carbonation is also pretty low, which I like. Alcohol is not detectable at all, making it very easy to drink. Probably on of the best Märzen beers I ever had.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a .5L bottle into a glass tankard, comes out golden and clear with a decent head that fades. Sweet grainy smell on this, flavor is pretty light, very similar to their Munich lager. Very doughy, malty, sweet, dry on the back and a little bitter. Thinner body, easy to drink, but mostly unremarkable. I guess if you're at Oktoberfest and need to crush some beers, these would do the trick.

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Photo of SuomiHobbit
2.75/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Not much malt flavor at all; not very sweet; surprisingly bitter for the style, though not unpleasantly so. Just a so-so beer; wouldn't know it was an Oktoberfest offering but would have considered it more like a ballpark brew.

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

A very clean tasting and easy to drink oktoberfest beer, light malt, balanced carb, slight sour aftertaste to matches will with brats, mustard, cabbage dishes etc.

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Photo of mmmbeer89
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

this beer is super smooth so i gave it a five on feel. this isn't my favorite style of beer but this one has got to be the best one of the bunch that i've tried so far.

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Photo of Taybeh
3.77/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

From an 11.2 oz single into a willi becher
pours a surprisingly pale gold with 3 finger foamy head that subsides after 2 minutes and leaves some decent lacing. Nose is fairly delicate but underwhelming: some faint sourdough notes together with a little lightly sweet apple. Follows the nose but a lot more depth, a bit perfumy and flowery, some honey, faintly tart, some crackery malt....it all integrates nicely. I get a little flowery hoppiness but next to no spiciness (which would be really nice). crisp and clean and perfect carbonation (on the high side)...drying out a little at the end but not too much.

This definitely isn't an amber marzen, but it is a very nice festbier. Super-fresh, I bet it would probably be the bomb. As is, I tasted it side-by-side with a local festbier (by Bauhaus) and they each had their strengths. This German is more refined but I don't know that it is more enjoyable for all that. Happy to have either one.

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Photo of VikingBeer
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Paddy Wagon (Richmond, KY). Pretty,if unexpectedly light-colored, pour. Aroma is rich as hell, all malty, slightly nutty, and honey-kissed. Malt-forward, naturally, with flavors of apples, honeycomb, hints of pepper, and a touch of grassy, herbal hops. Not as superlative as some Weihenstephaner brews, but nearly the definition of the style.

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Photo of Catracho5
3.99/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a stein

Pours a golden straw color, clear, lots of carbonation, white head with lots of tiny bubbles. Aroma, very malt forward, biscuits, hint of honey, graham cracker sweetness, no alcohol on the nose, pretty straightforward lager like aromas. Hit of honey up front, spiciness, getting tartness notes like green apples, very smooth and drinkable, very clean finish. Mouthfeel is light to medium body with a semi-dry finish. Overall, this is a very tasty beer but I don't understand why it's categorized as a marzen, it's pale straw colored, lack toffee and caramel malt notes, but it is very drinkable and tasty.

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Photo of logicalparadox
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An interesting offering for an Oktoberfest, from a brewery that ought to know a thing or two about the style!

This is perhaps the most distinctive Oktoberfest I've ever had.

First, it pours with an outstanding clarity and lightness. The color is light straw and clear as glass, completely translucent without a speck of haze. The head pours like a fluffy cloud, about 2-3 fingers for an aggressive pour. The head is about the purest white I've ever seen. If you'd not told me, I'd have thought this was one of the world's best pilsners.

The aromas are familiar for an Oktoberfest/Marzen, but lighter and more subtle--delicate. Cracker, bread, and a slight doughiness from the malts.

The flavors are crisp and astoundingly clean. A light sweetness showcases a refreshing and thirst-quenching pallet of flavors, that somehow are both in keeping with the style, and yet at the same time are more reminiscence of a fine pilsner (not that the two style are that far apart in terms of general character).

Mouthfeel is refreshingly, clean, light, and yet has a bit of chew to it. Really quite impressive the way it balances those traits.

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Photo of OldManMetal
3.77/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This crystal clear, highly effervescent pale straw festbier has a large, albeit transient, snow-white rocky head that leaves moderate ladders and clouds of lacing in its wake. On the nose, it is moderate in intensity: predominately biscuity malt, with lesser amounts of green apple and spicy noble hops, and faint alcoholic overtones. On the palate, it expresses itself moderately as well, up front as sour green apple; mid-palate, a moderate, balanced amount of spicy hop flavor emerges and fleeting peeks of the graham-crackery malt foundation are seen. The finish is graham-crackery malt with a hint of sweet, followed by the gradual onset of a moderate spicy hops bitterness that lingers a few minutes. The mouthfeel is biggish for the light body, and the texture is slightly creamy and prickly from the very fizzy carbonation. I find this beer replacing a lot of my pilsner consumption during the fall season. (11.2 oz bottle, 120 days after pkg.)

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Photo of James954
4.42/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer can easily be a 5/5 for the style.

L: Clear light golden yellow with a light carbonation that looks reminiscent of champagne.

S: light sweet fruit

T: Light Honey wheat bread and sweet and brisk fruit...well balanced.

F: Full-bodied and smooth with carbonation that is consistant enough to maintain a full head, but is light, soft, and fizzy.

O: It goes down so easy! I can't recommend it enough. Weihenstephaner always gets it right with me!

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Photo of dgmirelli
3.17/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

look is a light yellow pale color, smell is grain and grass, taste again is grassy with a slight malt mid to low carbonation on the feel, will be looking for a true Oktoberfest beer instead of this. need something heavier to kick off play-off baseball and cooler weather

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Photo of TH28
3.32/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

330cl bottle. Appearance: Crystal clear yellow with a light white foam head. Aroma: Bready malt with a strong floral, spicy hop aroma. Taste: Light, bready malt with a spicy, moderate bitterness. Very similar to a Helles, maybe slightly more on the bitter side. Mouthfeel: Light body with a brisk carbonation. Hint of alcohol warmth in the finish. Finish: Bready, spicy hop flavors linger after the swallow. Overall: Very similar overall to the Weihenstephaner Original Helles. Bitterness is slightly more pronounced and there is a touch of alcohol warmth not found in the Original.

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Photo of Buck89
3.54/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clear golden color with a thick white head. Good retention. Muted aroma with some malt but little else. Taste solid but nothing special for the style, with malt but little hop character. Clean finish.

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

From bottle, Clear golden color with one finger head. Sweet malty aroma, grassy. Taste is similar, with hint of banana easy to drink and not too sweet.

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Photo of Myotus
3.61/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a beer mug.
LOOK: Pours with a half finger's worth of white foam that halves itself after 30 seconds. Straw yellow in color. Lots of ascending bubbles. Lacing is subtle and thin.
SMELL: Mild aromas of pale malts, caramel malts, and sweet bread meet subtle aromas of spicy hops.
TASTE: Initial taste is of strong caramel malty goodness and sweet bread. Mild pale malt and spicy hop flavors enter immediately after. A hint of floral hops enter lastly as all previous flavors persist, except for spicy hops, which grow a little bit stronger.
FEEL: Full-bodied and moderately carbonated. Doesn't really go down too smooth. Finishes with a subtle dryness.
NOTE: I was disappointed. A good beer if you take it as it is. But a bad one if you look at which brewery made it. This brewery makes top notch brews and this specific beer was not one of them.

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Photo of ScaryEd
4.14/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear, straw color with an all-white head that's gone quickly. The head leaves almost no lacing.

The aroma is subdued and slightly floral, with notes of sweet, doughy malt.

The taste is rather sweet and bready, with faint hints of hops on the back end.

The feel is somewhere between light and medium, with decent carbonation. No alcohol is detected however there's a lingering spicy flavor that sticks on the tongue after each sip. Extremely crisp.

Overall, this was a lot lighter than I expected for a märzen but it worked very well. This beer is incredibly drinkable and has a pilsner-esque quality to it. The aroma was underwhelming but the flavors were excellent and more than made up for it.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.88/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at The Tap and Mallet in Rochester, NY.

This one pours a pale deep gold, fairly clear, with a small head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells like grain y cereal malt, slight grassy bitterness, and light caramel.

This seems like basically the prototype for the pale festbier style. It's got a great sweet and grainy cereal malt character, very slight hop bitterness, very crisp. With this brewery, how could this not be good?

This is light bodied, very crisp, and super drinkable.

A really quite solid Oktoberfest here, nothing outstanding, but solid and incredibly drinkable.

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Photo of Gajo74
3.91/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale straw, hint of Amber, head quickly disapates, ultra thin ring like lace disapates also. The light color is unusual for an Oktoberfest.
Fruity sweet aroma in the nose, then a mostly clean aroma that is hard to discern. I picked up some bready malts and a hint of floral tones towards the end.
Ultra clean taste, low carbonation, sweet and malt forward overall. Sweetness in the finish, but slightly dry and mild hops aftertaste. The body is very light for an Oktoberfest. Very drinkable; I pounded this one in no time. Flavirful and tasty. As with other commenters, it doesn't feel like an Oktoberfest, but it's nice.

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Photo of Premo88
4.16/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle poured into nonic

L: brilliantly clear yellow ... very light yellow, only the slightest hint of gold in it, 4-6 SRM, very pale and light for a marzen; solid 3/4-inch head of white foam; no major sticking or lace

S: super fruity, like an English pale ale, peach, no discernible hop presence

T: fruity and lots of bread-malt sweetness ... like the nose, has a bit of an English pale ale aura ... nicely sweet and malty

F: good heft for a medium-weight brew, solid carbonation with just a hint of softness

O: fantastic brew ... very light and fruity sweet with the malt shining as the brightest star here ... even the feel is a bit ale-like, so it really has a kinship with the English pale ale; over time the hops offer a little earthy balance; easily my favorite Oktoberfest so far.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a clear pale to medium yellow in color with moderate to heavy amounts of active visible carbonation rising quickly from the bottom of the glass and faint golden yellow highlights. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy bright white head that slowly reduces to a medium to large half finger tall cap in the center surrounded by a thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to heavy amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of slightly sweet bready malts and light aromas of floral hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate to strong flavor of bready and slightly sweet caramel malts. That is followed by light flavors of floral hops which contribute a light amount of bitterness to the finish which does not linger.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth.

O: Extremely easy to drink, flavorful, with well hidden alcohol make this beer seem sessionable. Very enjoyable.

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Weihenstephaner Oktoberfestbier from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
83 out of 100 based on 593 ratings.
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