OktoberFish | Flying Fish Brewing Company

139 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Flying Fish Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GeoffFromSJ on 09-13-2002

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Reviews: 139 | Ratings: 380
Photo of illy44
2.55/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Another American craft brewery trying to brew Oktoberfest beer. The good thing, it does not taste like an IPA like many others that I tried. It also has 6% ABV which you can taste. Other than that it is an uneventful beer. It pours some head which lasts for a while but I did not get any taste of an Oktoberfest beer.
If you want to drink true Oktoberfest beer, get the originals from Munich (Paulaner, Hacker Pschorr, Hofbraeu or Spaten).
They even have a limited edition of "original Wiesn" (= Oktoberfest) beer that you can buy.
Also Karl Strauss from San Diego has a decent Oktoberfest beer.

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Photo of PorterLambic
2.92/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Pours the color of iced tea. Head is minimal at its best and quickly recedes to a thin film of light tan. No lace.
Smell is slightly vinegary, reminiscent of a biere de garde or wit. Notes of malt, green wood, nuts, and faint citrus also present. Balance is pretty good.
Taste is a decent blend of malt, nut, tartness/vinegar, and yeast.
Light bodied, medium carbonation. Unexpectedly warming after the swallow. Paired with the right food this would be a good choice. Solo, not so much.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

BBD 1/21/16. Slightly hazy amber pour. Outstanding head volume, lacing and retention.

Light nose of toasted biscuit with a caramel undertone. Rather bready.

Heavy light body with a smooth texture. Normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence in the middle and a weak burst in the finish.

The flavor profile is rather good and a bit atypical for the style. Intensity and balance are well done, but complexity is outstanding. Toasted malts yield a bready background similar to pumpernickel. The middle delivers a subtle floral bitterness and a plum/raisin undertone. As the finish approaches, the dark fruit aspect really shines as caramel cascades into the finish. The finish is clean with a subtle crispness.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear copper in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass and faint amber highlights. The beer has a finger tall foamy beige head that reduces to a medium to large sized patch of thin film and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of caramel, bready, and toasted malts with a light aroma of floral + earthy hops.

T: Upfront there is a slightly stronger than moderate flavor of light to moderately sweet caramel, bready, and toasted malts. There is a light flavor of floral + earthy hops which imparts a light amount of bitterness in the finish.

M: Slightly lighter than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth.

O: A little lacking in body/mouthfeel and a touch too sweet for me but still easy to drink.

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Photo of EvoRich
3.86/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Look: Dark amber in color, with a fizzy head with eventually fades to nearly nothing.

Smell: Very malty. The aroma makes me think of fall though. It does have a very nice smell.

Taste: Almost has a cough syrup type of taste at first sip. But the more you think about it, it turns slightly caramely.

Feel: Medium bodied. A bit fizzy.

Overall: Meh. It's drinkable. I'd drink it again if given to me. But not likely to ever seek this beer out.

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Photo of vette2006c5r
3.96/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

OktoberFish pours a golden color, with a big lacing head. Weaker, but nice warm caramel aroma. The taste has a sweeter, crisp malty and caramel flavoring. Much more of a German Oktoberfest then an American.

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Photo of ajilllau
3.01/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

I'm not a huge fan of octoberfests, but I did want to try something other than the traditional Sam Adams that you see at every other bar. This was middle of the road and left something to be desired. There was no complexity to it and was easily forgotten. I would probably not order again.

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Photo of TopherBreski
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Super carbonated with great caramel color. Smell is somewhat weaker than most Marzens but still very good. Taste would be better without the carbonation. Not a bad Marzen but not top tier.

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Photo of zymurgist12
3.1/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It looks like an Oktoberfest but the taste leaves something to be desired. In our recent Waterstone Beer Club Oktoberfest event it was in the bottom 1/3 of all Oktoberfests tried.

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Photo of FickleBeast
3.19/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a clear orange color with two fingers of foam. Aroma is malty with Munich malt. First sip is mostly dominated by a buttery diacetyl flavor. A small amount of hop bitterness, and the beer finishes on the dry side. Some fruity esters in the flavor as well. I'm having a hard time getting past the buttery flavor though - not sure if this batch wasn't aged long enough or what.

Overall, this is a disappointment for me. Buttery flavor dominates and I've had far better Oktoberfest beers recently.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.21/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

I tried this side by side with 3 other Oktoberfest beers this was enjoyed chilled in a willybecker and allowed to gradually increase in temperature.

The color is medium dark amber with good clarity and practically no head retention with visible carbonation. The smell has a fruity aroma with almost vinous/berry odor with light toasted malt and subtle spice smell. The feel is very tangy on entry with chalky and tannic with a medium high carbonation and noticeable alcohol in the bone dry finish.

The taste is interesting in that it is different than the aroma with woody and dry flavor with yeast apparent yet nice toasted notes mid palate and slight nutty flavor with mineral accent. The alcohol shows midway through into the finish which has a slightly plum/raisin-like flavor with dark malt coming through in the end with mild hint of burnt character -perhaps it is melanoidin since it does not lack for body in the least with an almost bran-like deep malt and earthy light mineral element in the end. Overall I would not recommend this it was probably my second to last favorite of 4 and just okay for the style in my opinion.

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Photo of Mrbseward
3.2/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured an amber color with little head that did linger a bit and leaves no lacing. Smells of bread, malts, and some clover I believe. Taste just like it smells. Bready and malty with some sweetness toward the end. Feels ok going down and is a pretty ok beer overall.

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Photo of Csikic93
2.66/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I bought this a few weeks into November when the store was trying to move Oktoberfest inventory to make way for winter brews. I was not a fan, wouldn't recommend it. There are better oktoberfests out there.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
3.73/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a pretty, clear, copper/amber color with a quarter of a finger of white head that quickly dissolved into a thin halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass and formed wispy clouds that gathered in the center of the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very Malty and bready. Strong notes of cereal and caramel. Subtle notes of black pepper, coriander and clover. Not much in the way of hops, however.

Taste: Very similar to the aroma. Lots of malt up front, slightly roasty, flowed by some peppery spice and caramel-like sweetness, finished by some really nicely balanced hops bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, with very little carbonation. With an ABV of 6.0%, there is no presence of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a decent American version of an Oktoberfest-style beer. Very tasty and very refreshing. Solid beer.

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Photo of Fatehunter
2.4/5  rDev -32%

Pours a thin head on a clear straw body.
The aroma is a confusing mixture of candy and malt.
The taste is candy sweet, mild grain and touch of bitter. Quite sweet overall.
The texture is sticky.
It's really sweet without balance.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.51/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

10/19...pours reddish amber autumn with a fast acting white foam that settles out. Nose of molasses, malt, caramel, sugars. Malt forward taste with a spiced middle. Slightly out of step bitter. Very euro. Good, not great.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.69/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – The beer is served a copper red color with a billowy head of two fingers of just off white foam. The head fades rather quickly leaving a lighter level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is sweet with a good showing of caramel and some fruit of cherry and plum. Along with these aromas comes notes of a roasted malt and a little bit of a grainy and hay-like smell.

Taste – The taste begins with a roast malt flavor and plenty of caramel and brown sugar flavors. There is a little bit of a fruity flavor of cherry and a little bit of apple. The fruit starts out light, but gets stronger as the taste advances on further. All the while, the roast increases a bit and is joined by some spice and a little bit of a nut. While the roast increases from the start initially, it fades again at the end and with more sweet caramel and some fruit coming to the tongue, one is left with a rather sweet and lightly toasty flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel- The body of the brew is on the thinner side in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the higher side. The feel is very nice for the fruity, sweet, and light roasted and nutty flavors of the brew and make for an easy drinker.

Overall – This is a rather enjoyable and easy drinking October fest with a rather sweet malty taste and a little bit of fruit and roast.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.28/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear copper color. The head is a finger high, with a shade that's barely off-white. Retention is average at best, and there isn't much lacing left behind. (3)

Smell: There is a lot of caramel here, along with some toffee, and a light kiss of noble hopping. What the, esters? This smells like an ale... *checks label* ...crap. Not like that's a bad thing, of course, but I feel this style works far better as a lager. Also, the maltiness seems obstructive. (3)

Taste: It opens up with a touch of grassiness, before transitioning into some caramel, and then a ton of fruity flavors. I feel like the best marzens have a powerful fruit punch character (hi, Great Lakes!), and this features such a flavor. The hoppiness delivers notes of lavender, apricot, flowers, and cherry. The actual taste is easily the best part of this beer - and isn't that what matters at the end of the day? (3.5)

Mouthfeel: This is very full and creamy for the style. Because of this, it's a slower drinker than other marzens - and really, I'm missing that lager crispness on the mouthfeel. Carbonation is medium for the style. (3.25)

Overall: We're all led to believe that "ales = good" and "lagers = bad". I really get why this is an ale - it's more complex than other marzens I've had - but I'd honestly prefer it if this was a lager. Still, I can totally dig this in the right scenario. It's nicely fruity, for starters, plus it's still reasonably easy to drink. (3.25)

3.3/5: Hits all the right notes, and some that go beyond the call of duty, even...I still wish it was a lager, though

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Photo of DIM
3.25/5  rDev -7.9%

Looks great, clear amber golden with a big fluffy head

Looks aside this is a mediocre festbier. More sweet than toasty and more sugary than nutty. Some grassy hops at the end help cut the sweetness. Had an o-fest itch, this diminished it but did not quite satisfy it.

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Photo of chinchill
3.56/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz 2013 bottle served in an SA lager glass.
Pours an orange-amber color with a high amount of visible carbonation and a very good head..

The aroma is rather fruity for style, with hints of peach and citrus in addition to the solid malt base. The hops are not so fruity in tasting but do result in a good, bitter-sweet balance.
Medium-light body with well-chosen medium-high carbonation.

O: a solid, slightly Americanized Octoberfest.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass, color is transparent amber, head color is off white and dissipates quickly to a ring; nice marzen color and clean head and carbonation.

Smell is nice and malty, seems to be mostly vienna or munich, hops are grassy and seem fresh.

Taste is nicely malty, not caramely, good vienna/munich flavors (hints of grape or light fruitiness comes through from these malts). Hops are clean, fresh, light grassiness.

Mouthfeel is a little crisp, lightly strong on the tongue, but good carbonation and balance for a marzen style.

Overall, a solid, good tasting oktoberfestbier. Very good malt flavors and not too sweet, good hosp and nice mouthfeel. Would like to have a steinfull.

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Photo of Leftsailor
1.78/5  rDev -49.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.5

Got a 1/6 barrel of this. Maybe because I just finished a Yards PPA, but this batch was awful! Smell and taste were d-. Think pumpkin. I like Flying fish, local, lots of options, but this was not the cats meow, it came from the other end. Brooklyn, Long Trail and Yards are my go to after this. Now I have a week of this. If it improves, and I grow to like it, I will revise review. The man cave needs top notch brew, and this does not not make the grade. PS- I have had more than 30 brews pass thru my tap. Update: after almost a week of this fish, I have gotten a little more used to the taste. Still would give a D grade. Ordered a 1/2 Yards PPA at $165 9.26.13. Pricy but worth it.

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Photo of rp07090
3.5/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a mug, pale color for a marzen, no head to speak of. Smell was pleasently surprising given the color with spice and cinnamon notes. The taste was unusual, dank, earthy and not typical marzen. Mouthfeel is this beers best feature, rich, soft and pleasing. This is not representative of the style but a nice drinkable brew nonetheless. For transparency, I had a Paulaner Oktoberfest right before this which is tough competition in this category.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.79/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Muddy light brown amber, quite light for an Octoberfest style brew, with a fairly clear appearance and some real microscopic bubbles rising. Head is a little fleeting, maybe two fingers off the pour, and faint tanish white color.

Light slightly cinnamon and fruity esters, with some spice caramel malt body to match. Looking for a little bit of sticky quality but not getting it.

Palate really surprises. Lots of large spicy cinnamon and clove qualities, nearly peppery warm. Finish has a nice earth dirt to it, warmth, and good spicy malt backbone. Very light bodied for a marzen, there's not a lot of depth here, ale yeast it says here which is making this beer come out quite unique. The light body still carries the flavors nicely and really helps for easy drinking.

I thought this was going to be a subpar brew, but this one came out nicely. It mentions ale instead of lager so I wasn't sure how this was going to come out, but I really like this light bodied hot cinnamon and spicy kick it has. Great take on a style and mixing it up.

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Photo of Huffs
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured in sam adams glass, developed a nice tan head which laced well for a moment, then all disipated (almost made me think my glass was dirty). Was a clear copper / honey color and had a nice malty bread aroma with a hint of caramel. Tasted of malt and caramel with hints of grain and grass. Nice mild body with a medium mouthfeel. Good stuff.

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OktoberFish from Flying Fish Brewing Company
3.53 out of 5 based on 380 ratings.
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