Berkshire Oktoberfest Lager | Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

BA SCORE
88
very good
381 Ratings
Berkshire Oktoberfest LagerBerkshire Oktoberfest Lager
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Massachusetts, United States
berkshirebrewingcompany.com

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 09-27-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
381
Reviews:
204
Avg:
3.95
pDev:
13.16%
 
 
Wants:
60
Gots:
43
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 381 |  Reviews: 204
Photo of mikesgroove
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another gem of a New England fall seasonal that I was able to pick up and enjoy recently. This one I was most anxious to try as I have really enjoyed everything that I have come in contact with from them so this was naturally my next choice. Served cold and right out of the fridge and poured into a tall pilsner glass. This one was consumed on 10/22/008.

The pour was very nice with a nice brownish tinted light amber coming through right away. Great clarity here allowed me to really get a nice glance at the more then adequate carbonation that was streaming up from the bottom of the glass. This formed a very night little puff of white on the top that held its own for a little while before settling down into a nice little layer across the top.

The aroma was rich and malty. Nice tones of bread and grain that were mixed in well with a subtle touch of caramel and spice. Not as big of an aroma as some of the others I have seen, but still very nicely done. The flavor was clean, crisp, and full of depth. Very nice rolling flavor of light caramel that started off the show. This morphed nicely into a tight little grain profile that then became the backbone of the flavor. Some nice light bready taste in there as well as it started to come together. Quick clean finish on here left me looking for more right away and left the palate clean with little in the way of a long aftertaste. Nice light to medium body was not as full as I would have though, but actually turned out to benefit it in the end. Superb smooth and easy drinkability was the way to go here, and this went down with little to no issues.

In the end, another winner here for both my seasonal fest bier quest, and from Berkshire. They are delivering consistent good brews every time and I would love to be closer to them/ Go get this one, very solid offering indeed.

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Photo of mdfb79
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 10/31/11 notes. Shared a bottle of this with my girlfriend, poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Bell's tulip.

a - Pours a hazy amber-orange color with one and a half fingers of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Some nice head retention and light lacing left on the glass, looks great.

s - Smells of bready malts, toasted malts, caramel malts, light spice, and light fruity. Heavy on the malts but very nice.

t - Tastes of toasted malts, caramel malts, bready malts, roasted malts, light spices, and a hint of fruit. Again, very malty and enjoyable.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy and pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a very good lager and a really enjoyable marzen. Lots of malts and could have drank the whoel bomber by myself. Would certainly have it again.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours amber in color with a couple fingers of khaki colored head.

S: Aromas of toffee and bread with a subtle toasted malt character. There is a fair bit of yeast as well as some fruity esters such as apples. A touch of caramel in there, too.

T: A bit of a popcorn type flavor, maybe caramel corn when combined with the caramel sweetness. Toffee and toasted bread malts are also present. Some yeast and fruity, sweet esters.

M: Medium bodied and medium carbonation.

O: A bit one note, but not a bad Oktoberfest.

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Photo of johnnnniee
2.95/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle at America on Tap
Slightly hazy deep golden color. Aromas of sweet bready malt and plenty of diacytyl. A bit too sweet and the butterscotch doesn't do this style any favors.

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Photo of ejimhof
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of JAHMUR
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Billolick
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

BBC bomber bottle, with freshness dating notched onto the label. Pours a rich almond shade, off white head and just leaves a minor amount of fine lacing. Nose of light rum, raisins and malt. This a rich, strong, full flavor O'fest brew. Full of malty layers of creamy smoothness. Vanilla, oak, caramel all picked up. I had a chance to sample this brew on tap as well. It was wonderfully creamy and smooth. Fine creation, well worth seeking out and enjoying this fall season

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Photo of mklisz
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.03/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Hazy, fuzzy, dark orange coloration, slim fizziness above.
Herbal, vegetal nose, malty, some caramel tones showing, as well, though ultimately, it's on the mild side.
Big, juicy fruit blasts the tongue on first swallow, then softly slips away. Bit over-carbonated. Bold, sparkling, and a small bit sour. Very unusual mouthfeel. Nowhere near as smooth as we'd prefer. Bracing puckeration at first sip, then it fizzes against the tongue undcomfortably.
I had every hope in the world for this, but it's not a pleasant drinking experience, a regular chore to finish. It's like a Jolly Rancher dropped in a bottle of Mike's Hard Cranberry...or something like that. Needs more malt, less fizz...as I near the end of the bomber, I find that I'm not liking it any better, and I yearn for a more satisfying brew. Up the malt, tone down the carbonation, maybe a touch less alcohol, but if they do the first two, it won't be necessary...perhaps...perhaps then, it will be a better brew. Just my 2/5 of a nickel...

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Photo of MasterSki
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Reagan1984. Served in a Struise cervoise.

A - A finger of white foam settles to a thin cap and thicker collar, leaving negligible lacework. Transparent dark orange-brown body.

S - Slightly buttery biscuits, toasted malts, some fruity notes that come out as the beer warms up. Clean lager taste, and on point for the style.

T - Taste is better, with stronger malt, biscuit, and toffee flavors, mingling with fruity notes and a bit of hop character in the finish. A nice solid Oktoberfest.

M - Smooth texture, lightly sticky medium body, medium-low carbonation, and no obvious alcohol. Pretty much what I want from this style.

D - One of the better offerings I've had from Berkshire, and competitive with the better local Oktoberfests I've had. Still, it'd be hard to pick out of a lineup.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to ybnorml for this brew.

Pours a nice hazy golden brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger plus creamy off-white head, lots of nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, slight yeast, very slight spice, with some caramel. The taste is big on caramel malts, slight yeast. Medium body. Drinkable, this is still a tasty brew. Thanks Wayne.

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Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of tempest
2.96/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had the same problem as Jwaks (see below). The diacetyl is out of control for an Oktoberfest Lager. This tastes like a sweet Ringwood ale from Middle Ages or Shipyard. Still, behind that is a big dry toffee and cherry malt character that I really wish stood out more. This seems like a case of good beer gone bad.

UPDATE: This batch was recalled. Next time I get a bottle, I'll have to re-review.

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Photo of Nichols33
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a beautiful amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, pilsner and Munich malt scent along with a fruity lager yeast aroma. The taste is good as well. It has a very nice malt profile that boasts of pilsner, crystal, and Munich malts. It has a light sweetness along with a dry bready character. It goes down easy with a dry, malty finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate/good carbonation. This is a well brewed Marzen. It's tasty and easy drinking; a damn fine seasonal.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 22 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on September 20, 2012.

Poured into a tall German stein. It has a decent looking medium amber, copper-orange tone with a significant, long lasting fluffy head and slow moving carbonation.

The nose is full of traditional Oktoberfest aromas including sweet caramel malts, yeast, toffee, and biscuit.

The body is creamy and smooth and falls into just under the medium range.

The taste starts out sweet and malty like a good Oktoberfest/Marzen should but then an unexpected earthy bitterness flies in from out of left field and takes it all over. That bitterness lingers. Overall, the beer is quite drinkable.

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Photo of biegaman
3.38/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The brewers weren't kidding when they said its hue was reminiscent of fall foliage. Indeed, this is a blazing, multi-toned ensemble of orange-amber tones that burns quite brightly. Despite the bright colour, its body is too dense to permit transparency. Its head is essentially non-existent but little sudsy spatters manage to dot the glass somehow.

The aroma is rather dynamic and I think, although I could be wrong, more than a little bit of it can be attributed to the extra couple notches of alcohol. There is a spicy, ethanol-induced flare to the beer that normally isn't found in lagers of these types. For the most part, it seems to crowd out most of the sticky, fruity, sweet maltiness.

I wouldn't say Berkshire's Oktoberfest is hard to drink but it definitely doesn't have that same level of limitless quaffability that the bests of the style do. As already noted, the extra alcohol does not go unnoticed. Where as most of these lagers sooth the palate like a massage chair, this one throws you down the stairs.

And in large part this 'roughness' is perceived because of a lack of flavour. It does offer a worthy plate of plum pudding, over-ripened pear and apple, a splash of Gran Marnier liqueur, muscat grapes and some freshly made caramel syrup. But it certainly isn't sweet, which is typical of the style, and instead drinks thin with a cringing spike of alcohol.

What makes an Oktoberfest so different from other lagers is a full bodied, chewy, biscuity, intense maltiness. This simply does not have that. Lagers are typically plain and brainless - but that's what makes them drinkable. An Oktoberfest should have that quality as well as the added dimension of lively flavour. Again, this does not.

Whether it's the alcohol or simple displeasure, I am (literally) stumbling to the finish of this bomber. I have to admit I was anxious about a double-sized serving of an Oktoberfest but it turns out that this isn't exactly what I had in mind. Even the best breweries have occasional hiccups and we'll chalk this one up to an off batch. Thanks mcBrewsAlot!

 2,075 characters

Photo of Davepoolesque
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of wrightst
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of rudzud
3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split with JLindros. Reviewed from notes.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice crystal clear light copper hue with a good one finger off white head that faded to leave a light creamy blanket.

S - Aroma is fairly typical for an oktoberfest. A bit on the malty/bready side for me.

T - Taste is more of the same, caramel (lots of it), sweeter malts, biscuits, slight toffee. Again, a bit too sweet for my tastes.

M - Mouthfeel was fairly solid. Nicer carbonation here little sharp on the tongue.

O - Overall, slightly unimpressed by this one. Its a decent Oktoberfest, but just a bit too sweet for my tastes.

 620 characters

Photo of tigg924
3/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: 1/2 inch head, brownish red in color, hazy, high carbonation

Smell: toasted malt, faint spices, and grain

Taste: toasted malt, grain, some cinnamon

Mouthfeel: sweet with a tad bit of bitterness, high carbonation, light bodied

Drinkability: This to me is an average Octoberfest in every sense. I like the maltiness but am not sure if I would get this again. I like several of Berkshire's offerings a lot better.

 426 characters

Photo of PEIhop
4.75/5  rDev +20.3%

Photo of VelvetExtract
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a shiny copper color. Head is foamy and off-white. Head is smaller and it retains its thin stature. Inconsistent lacing rings. Body is mostly clear.

S-Sturdy Marzen nose with a slight Pumpkin Ale twist to it (spices are the culprit). Hops are herbal and quite light. Lots of rich, sweet toast. A ton of caramel too. Almost buttery. A bit of booze.

T-A robust Marzen flavor too.Autumn spices and toasted nuts. Biscuit and toast. Sweet, lightly burnt caramel. Light grassy hops. A bit of alcohol. Cola notes too. A really nice overall flavor for the style.

M-Heavier bodied for the style. Light, tingly carbonation. A bit too brash with the alcohol, but I'll take it.

O/D-One of the best Marzens I have run across. Actually, this one probably is my favorite. Berkshire has some great brews. Happy to have tried it. The style is weak, but this one is a star.

 867 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.06/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22ozer bottle from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a dense 1 1/2" tan head above a dark copper ale. Laces excellently. Aroma is lightly of caramel malts and hops, but wish it was a bit more intense. Taste is malty, with minimal hops presence, and a small kick of alcohol at the end. Mouthfeel is very smooth, and drinkability is excellent. Seems they've satisfied both worlds here, a flavorful beer which lends itself to the Oktoberfest sessions. Search it out and decide yourself.

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Berkshire Oktoberfest Lager from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
3.95 out of 5 based on 381 ratings.
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