Octoberfest Beer
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store

Octoberfest BeerOctoberfest Beer
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Style:
German Märzen / Oktoberfest
Ranked #302
ABV:
5.5%
Score:
83
Ranked #40,380
Avg:
3.66 | pDev: 11.75%
Reviews:
561
Ratings:
1,254
From:
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
 
Michigan, United States
Avail:
Fall
Wants
  42
Gots
  127
SCORE
83
Good
Octoberfest BeerOctoberfest Beer
Notes: Crafted as a flavorful session beer and perfect for autumn, Octoberfest spends a full six weeks fermenting.

With herbal hop aromas, this balanced amber lager focuses on lightly toasted malt that lends body without too much sweetness. Perfect for a week-long wedding celebration in Germany or the start of the Michigan autumn.
Reviews: 561 | Ratings: 1,254 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of timon
timon from California

3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

The look and smell are nothing special. Looks hazy copper, little head or lacing, smells similar to Old-E. BUT, the taste is on point and so is the mouthfeel. Very boozy, malty taste and nice creamy mouthfeel. Drankable, but not exceptional.

Mar 13, 2020
Photo of Franziskaner
Franziskaner from Missouri

3.24/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Golden colored with a heavy amount of light sediment suspended within. There’s a fingernail of off white around the rim and covering most of the top. The aroma is of caramel and baked bread. I’m tasting muddled caramel. The mouth is light and quaffable. It was bottled on 8/7/19. I’m not sure if this didn’t age well or what. I will probably seek it out again next year to see if my opinion was valid.

Jan 03, 2020
Photo of GarrettB
GarrettB from Colorado

3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

October 5th, 2015 - It's that time of year, where we transition from one slightly overwrought trend (pumpkin beer) to one more tailored for my tastes: Oktoberfest. I know Bell's darker beers are quite famous, but this is the first time I've spotted one of their seasonal lagers. In the glass it is a brightly lit orange brew, with the smell of a corn maze. It's a sweeter aroma than many Oktoberbests, but not too sweet, evocative of glazed carrots and a little fresh glue. The body is moderately full, with enough heft to carry some malt, but thin enough to be fresh and drinkable. The aftertaste coasts for a long time with a clear, swee pumpkin flavor (oh, the irony), and a more general vegetal and squash taste. Overall, this take on the Oktoberfest feels well balanced. Even if it leans to the sweeter side of things, it still expresses as a well balanced brew.

Dec 01, 2019
Photo of Danieljm
Danieljm from Missouri

3.02/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours nice orange color. Bit of a bread/biscuit with just a hint of caramel. Mouthfeel is a bit thick for an octoberfest. Taste similar to smell some light malts but finishes a bit more bitters than others of same style. Nice beer but many better beers of this style

Nov 09, 2019
Photo of Nass
Nass from Florida

3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pour is between dark orange & light brown. The taste is caramel, soft whole wheat bread, malts, & slight apple which was previously mentioned on this page. There is a bottled on date & a best by date as well. Cheers! B

Nov 01, 2019
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NeroFiddled from Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bell's Brewery, Inc. "Octoberfest Beer"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "PKG 08/27/2019 PRN 26463"
$2.49 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes via stream of consciousness: I'm glad that Bell's chose to use "Octoberfest" over "Oktoberfest" as "Oktoberfest" is a trademarked name in Germany. It's also a wide ranging style, and a style that a lot of American breweries falter on as they tend to over-do it so let's see how they've done. I've let it sit for quite a few minutes and the head has held up really well, and there's almost solid lacing where the head has fallen. The body is a clear orangeish copper in color, and the head is slightly off-white. The aroma is floral and malty with a suggestion of toastiness and soft golden caramel to it. The flavor confirms that, and it's rich without being too intense or too malty. It's not overly complex either. It's caramelish and toasty, probably coming from Vienna malts, and the floral and spicy hops are threaded through it nicely, and just at the right level of intensity to balance the malt perfectly. There's also a very light fruitiness to it that I think might be coming from the Vienna malt as well, or it could just be from the yeast, even if it is lager yeast. It's got a median bitterness and it finishes dry with a dollop of toasty malt lingering shortly followed by some longer lingering spicy and mildly herbal hops. In the mouth it's medium bodied, gently crisp with a minor bristle on the tongue, and then smoother as it warms. As far as Märzen goes they've kept it towards the middle of the scale, which is where I found most of the examples on my recent trip to Germany to be (2017?). I've also had lighter versions, so there's that to keep in mind, and they have maintained the flavor profile really well. It's an excellent, really well-done beer. Now, could it have been bigger and still not been overblown, yes, I can't argue that, but what I will argue is that it doesn't need to be. I'm sure that many will be disappointed that it's not darker and more malty, and thinking about that I could use one of them right now, but I could also use another one of these as it's got great drinkability.
Review #6,767

Oct 30, 2019
Photo of NWOBHM7
NWOBHM7 from Illinois

3.3/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

OK Marzen. Good overall color and flavor. To be quite honest if you are going to drink a Marzen this time of year I would stick with the German offerings. Specifically Paulaner which is the benchmark for me.

Oct 19, 2019
Photo of k1001001
k1001001 from Tennessee

2.7/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I love a good Oktoberfest Märzen. This one deviates from the norm a little bit. I personally did not enjoy this one. The color is correct. The mouthfeel is a little heavy/thick compared to others in the style. The toffee flavor is there, but the after taste is quite bitter rather than sweet compared to other Märzens. I’m not regretting this beer, but I wouldn’t buy it again.

Oct 14, 2019
Photo of oddcopter
oddcopter from Texas

2.47/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Not special at all and I had to pay up for Bell's. There are a couple of local Märzens brewed near Austin that are top notch. This is an example of where the name is more important than the quality of the beer. This is somewhat light in color and taste and too dry. There is very little malty sweetness that I like in the style.

Oct 11, 2019
Photo of MikeWard
MikeWard from Pennsylvania

3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a plastic cup while tailgating before the Penn State game today (it's 5 o'clock somewhere) this falls release.

Poured a nice deep amber auburn color, nice and clear. Small off white head retained in some form throughout, leaving a little lacing.

Nice strong sweet caramel malty aroma.

Upon taste, well, it follows the nose. Very clean beer, no aftertaste I sometimes get from marzens. Sweet, malty, bready, you know the drill.

Mouth around medium, finish sweet and bready.

Overall, good representation of the style. Happy to have the rest of the 6 pack in the fridge at home.

Oct 05, 2019
Photo of jrc1093
jrc1093 from Connecticut

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 8/27/19

Pours a clear orange-copper body topped with an airy, pillowy white head of foam; great retention yields lasting, layered chunks of thin, soapy lacing and a bubbly collar along with thin islands of cap.

Aroma features robust malts at the start, introducing sweet caramel, doughy biscuit, some toasted bread while a light minerality sits in the background.

Taste opens with a vague minerality, giving way to toasted oak, burnt bread crusts, and grass on the mid-palate; a fading caramel sweetness through the finish.

Mouthfeel shows a rounded medium body with fluffy carbonation leaving room for a crispness to shine across the palate; very subtle bitterness as a slight sweetness builds in the background; somewhat thin/watery into the finish as an oaky dryness takes over.

All the tropes expected from an American Oktoberfest, but executed with the cleanliness and quiet depth of a more refined lager (the consistency of Bell's likely coming into play here); a straightforward take on the style that doesn't blow you away, but drinks well enough to return to.

Oct 05, 2019
Photo of BEERMILER12
BEERMILER12 from Maine

4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep copper color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a good cap

S: Some grain, caramel, and bready malt up front. Very light fruitiness in the back

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with the caramel and grain and then picks up some breadiness and light fruit. Finishes with lingering grain and bread

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A solid Oktoberfest that is super easy to drink. Worth a shot

Oct 04, 2019
Photo of Buckeye55
Buckeye55 from North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark gold with heavy carbonation. Aroma is like an aal but different. Tastes malty, grassy and somewhat bitter. Kinda watery mouthfeel. With a smooth finish. A good brew, just not great

Oct 04, 2019
Photo of defunksta
defunksta from Illinois

2.99/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a deep fiery orange, amber color with a creamy, white head that is lattice, lacy, and clinging to the sides of the glass. SRM of 14. The color looks very similar to the label on the bottle which is interesting (4.25)

Aroma: Aromas of lemon, honey, and lots of corn. Very much like an adjunct lager or cream ale. A touch of grass but no breaded malts like I would expect. (3.25)

Flavor: Flavors follows the nose well with lemonflower, honeysuckle. Drinks like a cheap American or Czech-style pilsner. Slight bread but no toasted flavors at all. Finishes relatively dry. (2.50)

Feel: Medium-bodied for the style. Creamy and low to moderate carbonation. (3.50)

Overall: This is a let down of an Oktoberfest as some others have mentioned. Drinks like a slightly heavier, cheap American lager. Could also be mistaken for a blonde or cream ale. Not an Oktoberfest or Marzen. It malts taste like cheap adjunct malt flavors. Very simple beer. Maybe a cheap Vienna lager at best. I don't really know what there is here to appreciate. (Final Rating: 2.99)

Sep 21, 2019
Photo of Greywulfken
Greywulfken from New York

4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium amber -colored and clear under a finger or two of white foam... Nice roasty, toasty, chewy brown grain, rustic and hearty, with a little chew, a little molasses-like sweetness, and some deeper dark citrus and lighter, tarter oaky notes... Nice and fresh here, too, with an 8/21/19 bottling date... Light-bodied and lively carbonation and a little tickle on the tongue, but also some lingering bitter shellac...

Sep 15, 2019
Photo of Sabtos
Sabtos from Ohio

4.07/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Lightly chill hazed perfect amber with a tightly compacted but lumpy khaki head.

This has a nicely toasted malt character with a bitter grassy bite that's a little sharp but pleasantly contrasting. A hint of Corn Pops surfaces occasionally.

The crisp medium body comes to a semi-dry finish.

Sep 10, 2019
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Scrapss from Pennsylvania

3.49/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into nonic pint.

A:. Light copper with small head that leaves quickly. A collar 2mm is holding on for dear life.

S: light herbal and noble hop nose. Some light toasty malt.

T: initial herbal, earthy light bitterness then a pleasant light toast. Not as malty as I'd think per the less light color of the beer.

M: slightly sweet turns light creamy then a herbal light chalkiness. Medium-light body.

O: crushable, but not as big as others in malt notes given color. Pretty good but not spectacular.

Sep 08, 2019
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

3.56/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On draught at Old Chicago.

Pours a slightly hazy orange gold with a healthy head of foam, healthy amount of lacing.

I notes of bread, a light fruity character, my nose doesn't pick up very much.

Taste is bread, grainy, earthy, no sweetness light bitterness.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

An okay example of the style.

Sep 04, 2019
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas from Colorado

3.36/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BOTTLE: 12 fl oz brown glass with standard pry-off crown cap. Orange label with minimal art. Packaged 08/20/2019. Shelf life 3 months.

"Marzen." 5.5% ABV.

APPEARANCE: Fluffy off-white head. Light and airy..

Brilliant vibrant gold body - the stuff of dreams. Deep gold with copper hues and remarkable shine. Clear - obviously filtered. Devoid of visible yeast/lees. Decocted?

AROMA: Subtle breadiness married with an ideal level of Munich malt sweetness. Pilsner malt. Scintllae of toast and honey. Faint floral and grassy hop notes. Promises a delicate malt-forward brew with a perfect level of sweetness. I'm eager to try it.

Aromatic intensity is mild overall, but typical of the style. No off-notes are detectable.

TASTE: Honeyed Munich malt, 2-row malted barley, pilsner malt, faint grassy hop character. Sweeter than the aroma suggested, which is a bit too sweet in my book. Not quite as bready or toasty as other beers in the style, which gives it increased drinkability at the cost of complexity and depth of flavour. Comes off a bit simple as a result, but it's not shallow per se - there's just room for deeper more vivid flavours.

TEXTURE: Medium to full-bodied. Smooth, wet, wonderfully soft, slightly creamy, a bit refreshing. Its softness is its standout characteristic, but I'd prefer it a bit lighter...it's hard to imagine quaffing this by the litrekrug at a festival. Well-carbonated.

OVERALL: A competent Marzen from Bell's but not a festbier proper nor a real contender in comparison to the best German-brewed expressions of the style. A beer I'm glad I picked up at $9.99 USD plus tax here in the New Orleans market, and a beer I'd probably pick up again at the same price in future seasons, but I'd sooner nab Surly's SurlyFest or Great Lakes' Oktoberfest when forced to buy an American-brewed stab at the style.

B- (3.36) / WORTHY

***
11.06.19 bottle courtesy of Katelynn - thanks!

Scintillae of toast and caramel accompany the otherwise straightforward Munich malt backbone. Hints of subdued floral hop notes. Sweetness is about right.

Lacks the depth of flavour I'd hope for in a great festbier, but it's well balanced in spite of its relative shallowness. Very drinkable, clean drinking, and competently executed, but not dazzling.

B- / WORTHY

Aug 29, 2019
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Pegasus from Texas

3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Caramel brown in color, with a little haze. faint lacing adorns the glass walls

Aroma and malty, with distinct bread notes, spices, and a mild noble hop presence.

Taste: Begins with a Bourbon nose , dominated by toasted malts and a wave of caramel throughout. The bourbon notes really shine Finishes with lingering note of caramel and spices.

Mouthfeel: Soft on the palette, smooth and pleasant, fairly full.

Drinkability/notes: A excellent and drinable example

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twelve-ounce brown glass longneck bottle, with a pry-off crown, served in a Sam Adams Boston Lager sensory glass.

Dec 16, 2018
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jjamadorphd from Florida

3.43/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This wasn't memorable but it was solid enough...

The thing I liked the most about this beer was its coloration - a color reminiscent to a pumpkin, if it were in liquid form. The brew tops off with a nice white, thin foam (in terms of height but thick in terms of its presentation to the eye. The odor that emanates from this is mostly weak, not much to pick out in my opinion, which is followed by a watery mouthfeel that eased up on carbonation as it warmed. Taste-wise this wasn't anything overly special, it pretty much follows the style, good enough in my book and better than any macro take on this. Overall, I rated this good as i definitely enjoyed it on a lazy Sunday evening.

Nov 05, 2018
Photo of PatrickCT
PatrickCT from Connecticut

3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks again to Corey for the beer.

Beautiful, clear amber body. One finger white head that dies down to a wispy cap and faint ring.
The aroma is lightly toasty malts, doughy and with some caramel sweetness, crisp red apple and a mineral presence.
The taste follows the nose but more delicate and complex. The doughy and toasted malts mingle with caramel and apple with a mineral and slight medicinal top finish.
Light mouth feel, a touch grainy with a crisp finish. Medium body, medium carbonation.

Oct 21, 2018
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NotAlcoholicJustAHobby from Vermont

3.89/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

pkg 08/22/2018

L-The beer pours a clear light amber. The head is off-white and around 1 cm in height. The head recedes to a thin film and ring leaving no lacing behind.
S- The nose is clean and bready with a subtle sweetness. There is a light spicy hop presence. Overall intensity is above average for a octoberfest.
T-The taste follows the nose with a lightly sweet malt base that finishes with a spicy hop linger.
F-Mouthfeel overall is medium. Carbonation is also medium and prickly. The finish is not quite dry.
O-One of the most balanced Octoberfest beers I've had. Straddles that line between sweet and hoppy almost perfectly. The mouthfeel is almost too much for drinking in multiples. Overall though one of the better domestics I've had.

Oct 21, 2018
Photo of mvanaskie13
mvanaskie13 from Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a grip shaped goblet: color is amber, head is light tan with fine to small bubbles and presents about 1/2 inch thick and then dissipates to a solid top with some light bubbly lacing on the glass sides.

Smell is munich malt forward with toast, biscuit, crackers, light fruitiness, then some clean and earthy hop notes.

Taste is quite pleasant with munich malt flavors similar to the aroma with toast, biscuit, crackers, subtle grape like fruitiness; hops are floral, earthy.

Mouthfeel is fairly crisp, moderate carbonation, slight bite in the finish.

Overall a pleasantly malty oktoberfest, mouthfeel is a bit over crisp with dry presence and moderate carbonation.

Oct 17, 2018
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LifesAnesthesia from Virginia

3.91/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

L - Orange with a burnt orange center with a moderate amount of clarity. A medium tan head that dissipates quickly and doesn't leave behind much lacing.
S - Clean, crisp malt along with notes of bread and caramel - with a slight hint of pretzels. The smell is pretty faint however.
T - Follows the nose: crisp, clean bready malt up front followed by notes of caramel, spices, toasty.
F - Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Clean and crisp
O - A pretty solid oktoberfest that doesn't deviate too much from tradition, but seems to fall somewhat short of the better brews out there in terms of look, smell, and overall flavor profile. Good, but not great - enjoyable, but I'd prefer others out there.

Oct 14, 2018
Octoberfest Beer from Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 1254 ratings