Festbier | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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84
good
779 Reviews
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BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
779
Ratings:
1,910
Avg:
3.72
pDev:
20.16%
 
 
Wants:
33
Gots:
228
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 779 | Ratings: 1,910
Photo of kaufmaal
3.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This one pours a nice deep orange color with some ruby-red/pink grapefruit highlights. Starch-white head that collapses to a thin layer. Not overly malty on the nose; some yeasty bread, honey, nuts, candied fruit, a little funk. The initial taste is sweet vanilla followed by tangy fruit (some citrus), pine, minerals, and hops. And the hops linger. For me, a bit too hoppy (and too carbonated) for an Oktoberfest, but Victory being Victory, I guess we should have expected more hops than less.

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Photo of the42ndtourist
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A golden copper colour - amber, if you will. Little head, and not much lacing either, still it seems to suit the beer. Everything about this brew is smooth - smooth but unobtrusive maltiness, an ever so slight bitter finish, a smooth aftertaste that loses all bitterness. Very drinkable.

This went perfectly with the meatless burger (surprisingly tasty) that I shared it with. They complemented each other very well.

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Photo of andjusticeforale
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This looked and smelled like an Oktoberfest, with a caramel swirls and a sturdy malt backbone, in fact, upon first taste I was surprised that it wasn't a stronger beer. There is no %alc on the label. The taste is nice and malty without being sweet or minerally, it has a victory water taste to it, a smoothness. The finish is nicely carbonated. This beer was a great find because it acheived moderate depth without the overuse of hops in the mix. There was balance but not to extremes.

All in all a terrifically drinkable festbier. Prost!

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Photo of SwillBilly
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Forgot I had this in the back of the fridge from the fall. Glad I had another one.

Appearance: Pours copper in color and crystal clear. Head is very minimal and fades very quickly to the faintest wisps of lacing topping the beer. Lacing on the glass is minimal.

Smell: Nice and malty with hints of caramel, brown sugar, with a bit of a bread or biscuit like quality as well.

Taste: Starts nice and malty with the crystal malt showing a nice caramel like sweetness along with hints of brown sugar and possibly raisins. Festbier finishes with a very nice, light bitterness as the hops make an appearance. A nice finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium in the mouth with decent carbonation. Somewhat slick.

Drinkability/Notes. Glad I found this guy in the back of my DBF, just what I was looking for to offset all of the big winter beers I've accumlated. A nice malty beer with plenty of caramel malt giving the beer its sweetness that also finishes with a nice hoppy twang that lingers long on the tongue after the swallow. Super drinkable and one the would make a good session beer if so inclined. Definitley recommended and will buy again next fall.

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Photo of sraimondi
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An interesting take on a Marzen. Auburn colored brew, a bit darker than traditional German O'Fest. Aroma is bready, but with just a hint of hops. The taste is very good, bread and malt conquer the hops on this one for sure. Nice mouthfeel, fullish. Drinkability is good. This one rivals the best USA O'Fests; not quite as balanced as this year's Brooklyn O'Fest though. I'm glad I can get this one in Ct, although the supply was very limited.

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Photo of GnomeKing
2.85/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I'm surprised how thick and heavy this is. The moutfeel is surprisingly creamy, and the beer goes down heavy. This is not what I wanted out of a marzen. The taste is grainy, with a little hops and a little maltiness. There's not much to say. It goes down hard, but the taste isn't complex enough or stron enough to explain why it goes down that way. Eh, Oktoberfest only comes once a year.

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Photo of Czarkazm
3.67/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Not a big fan of these styles but this one was a little bit more complex and enjoyable than most of the others I've tried (mostly macro offerings). Poured an ice tea colored body with a thin off white head that disappears completely. A lot of toasted malts on this one, creating aromas of sweet bread and granola, assorted nuts, toffee, dark caramel, and faint earthy hops. Easy drinking and sessionable with light/medium mouth feel. The taste is a lot of the same, sweet toasted malts with a woodiness, toffee; pleasantly malty without being too overpowering. A clean example of the style with increased complexity and flavor.

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Photo of pvsob
3.74/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Bright, clear copper color with a half-inch head that seems to disappear almost instantly. Leaves little to no lacing.

S- Roasted malt, burnt bread crust, toffee, faint smoke, musty earth, and just a touch of hops.

T- All malt, with very little sweetness. Some soapy flavor comes through in the finish. Finishes dry with some nice hop bitterness.

M- Medium texture with above average carbonation. The level of carbonation keeps the usually sweetness of this style in check and allows the malts to really shine through.

D/O- A well done interpretation by Victory. Nice malt characteristics and a balanced sweetness. This is one of my favorite American takes on a German Märzen. Recommended. Cheers.

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Photo of racer2k
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass

A: Dark translucent amber color with a tan colored head. Very little lacing on the glass after the pour.

S: Sweet malt profile with caramel, corn and grains with a slight hop smell.

T: Sweet malt with a fruit and nut background. There is a presence of grains and earthy tones in the taste. This is a chewy and bready beer.

M: Moderate carbonation with a malty sweet backbone. There is a moderate body to this beer

D: Good fall session beer in the spirit of Octoberfest.

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Photo of dmfrench
3.29/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A sweet, hoppy, spicy Oktoberfest that is somehow off.

---

A: Light, fairly clear amber/orange body with a somewhat persistent one finger off-white head. Not much lacing.

S: Spice is the first thing that jumps out at you, followed by caramel and pilsner malt. There's also a certain earthiness. An acceptable smell, but not my favorite Oktoberfest nose.

T: Similar to the nose, but floral hops are much more prominent. Really, this beer has a lot to offer flavor wise... a solid pilsner-ish malt foundation, sweetness, bitter and floral hops, and spice, but somehow I'm not enjoying it too much. Perhaps it's the slightly metallic taste that I'm also getting. Perhaps it's because Oktoberfest is not a favorite style of mine. Perhaps it's because it's stale (I'm drinking this in December). Regardless, I probably won't drink it again, but fans of the style should try one.

M: Typical slightly chalky medium weight Oktoberfest.

D: Would be quite high if it weren't for the metallic finish I"m experiencing.

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Photo of happy4hoppybeer
4.88/5  rDev +31.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Having had nothing but pumpkin ales for the last two weeks, I tired of that and decided to get back to the fall classic: Oktoberfest-Marzen. For good lager-type brew, can't do better. Saw this in the store and picked it up, as I love Victory Brewing and surprisingly haven't had it yet.

Freshness date is: enjoy by Jan 29 '12

Here goes:

Pours a beautiful shiny orange/copper-amber with a solid thick and bubbly white head. Nice retention. Thin lacing that sticks for a reasonable while.

Aromatic notes of sweetness, caramel-like barley, bread and dryness.

Toasted barley, and sweetness all around wave on the tongue,followed by a slight hint of faint hop twang, and finishes nice and dry. Medium body, with very minimal carbonation,allowing the barley sweetness and other characteristics to come through easily.

I really like this one. As good as any authentic made-in-Germany Marzen. And a lot better than some.

Victory scores another home-run with this one, but then again, when do they not?

Four Stars(out of four)

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Photo of JDK
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very nice clear amber color with about 1/2" of head that quickly diminished.
Very light lacing which didn't hang on very long
Nice taste but has just a bit too much hop after taste for me.
Good Oktoberfest beer but I like others like Summit, SA better

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Photo of greybeardloon
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No clear date.

A: Amber.

S: Grainy malt with a touch of spice.

T: Bready grains with less butter than I often get in marzens. Nice clean hops on the finish. Crisp finish.

M: Fiesty carbonation.

O: I'm not usually a fan of the style, but I rather like this one. It is remarkably drinkable.

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Photo of mattbk
3.84/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Clear, amber/copper, minimal carbonation.
S: Malty, faint noble hop aroma. Nice.
T: Nice munich malt flavor, backed by subtle bitterness and subtle noble hop flavor. A bit musty, maybe slightly oxidized. Maybe slightly estery, but otherwise fairly clean. A nice beer.
M: Medium bodied, medium-low carbonation. Appropriate for style.
O: Enjoyable, fairly flawless except for slight oxidation I am getting in taste, simple yet enjoyable beer.

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Photo of gabeerfan
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear reddish-amber color with a nice 1"-ish very light tan head that falls to a thin cap.
Light aromas but still distinct aromas of toffee and caramel, some breadiness. Light hop aroma as well.
Lagery twang followed by dark and/or toasted bread, toffee, caramel and hop bitterness.
Light-medium mouthfeel. Good carbonation.
Quite drinkable. Meets the goal of a good Oktoberfest in that I could down several of these without too much worry.
A very good example of one of my favorite beer styles.

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Photo of Greenlabel
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased a very fresh 6-pack at Julio's Liquors in Westboro, MA in the first week that Octoberfests arrived on the scene.

This is a very solid but a bit short of exceptional Octoberfest. Pours an attractive amber color with reasonable head. According to the small print on the label side, this beer is "full bodied yet infinitely smooth" and "seductively malty with a kiss of the hops for balance." The brewer stated it well and I quite agree with that description. It's also described as an "Amber Lager" and this is probably a better category than the more common "Marzen" for this particular Octoberfest.

The 5.6% ABV does not assert itself in such a way as to be obvious. Not hard to enjoy more than one and I intend to do so. I didn't expect to be disappointed by a Victory product and I definitely wasn't with this one.

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Photo of praufs01
3.1/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Clear copper color with a creamy off-white head.

Aroma - Sour dough bread dipped in extra virgin olive oil and fresh rosemary.

Mouthfeel - Moderate small bubble carbonation. Clean, but not thin.

Taste - Bready tasting with caramel and bitter orange.

Overall - the taste experience is one dimensional form start to finish. A good brew that is very sessionable.

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Photo of WestValleyIPA
4.13/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Stone IRS tulip. Gorgeous amber color and a frothy, off-white 2 fingers of head. Smells of sweet malt, earthy grain, a roasted nut quality, light hop scent. Up front a light fruity sweetness, followed by a blast of nuttiness. Lots of barley/undefined grains. Extremely light hop bitterness on the finish. Dry. Very creamy mouthfeel. Little to no prickly bubbles. Just smooth, easy drinking. Great Marzen.

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Photo of wailingwench
4.57/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Eye Candy: Dark transparent copper, pours with a fizzy white 1 finger head.

Aroma: Toasted malt character. Slight nuttiness. Clean and balanced.

Tongueland: Well balanced beer, toasted malts that finish with a nutty finish. Light to medium m/f.

Bender Factor: Adheres to the O-fest style.Perfect to guidelines. Similar to Otter Creek without the metallic afttertaste.

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Photo of rx-beer
4.33/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 fl oz bottle poured into a 0.5L dimpled stein

A -Clear Orange amber with about two inches of cream-colored head. Light carbonation..Head fades to a nice, slim ribbon. Patchy lacing sticks beautifully to the dimpled glass.

S - Toasty breadiness with slight dash of hops

T - Malty, toasty, biscuity with a touch of spice and a hint of caramel (very light on the sweetness). Light bitterness from the hops comes out for a crisp finish.

M - Minimal carbonation for this medium-bodied beer. Some tingling accompanies the finish.

O - Very enjoyable beer. I would definitely have this beer again - glad I got two of them...and I'll likely be going back for more. Although I prefer the caramel sweetness from Samuel Adams' Octoberfest, I still think this is a pretty great beer. Hell, doesn't need to be one or the other - I'll have both!

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Photo of bierman2000
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A better Oktoberfest beer, very malty and somewhat dry. There is a slight hop character. Very refreshing and a great beer to drink with almost any food. It is not overpowering and leads to being drank with ease and in copious amounts. Worth seeking out on tap as it is much better than the bottle version.

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Photo of Terp96
3.43/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is one of my annual buys around this time of year. For the record, I think it was better last year.

Pours a bright amber into the glass with minimal head. The beer is clean and pretty highly carbonated which I thought was strange.

Smell is decent for the style. Typically malty but not over powering. I couldn't smell too much of the hop profile.

Taste is a little sweeter than I expected. The sweet malted backbone soon gives way to a surprisingly strong hop presence. As a hophead, this was the best part.

Mouthfeel was decent as well. A little sweet and thick for my liking. Bitterness in the end allows the beer to linger a little longer and that helps.

Overall, a decent attempt at an Octoberfest Marzen. I liked the variation of the theme with the hop presence but I think it lends itself to more criticism from the style police. It is still pretty drinkable but not as much as a Hacker-Pschorr or Paulaner. I will go back for this one.

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Photo of Misfit138
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

A- Nice deep amber color with two finger head

S- Soft scent of caramel malt, not much else

T- Very malty. Smooth. Not much bitterness to it at all.

M- Fairly heavy with mild carbonation

D- My initial reaction to this beer is that it reminds me of Fat Tire. I like it but it probably isn't my favorite octoberfest beer. It is an enjoyable beer and pretty easy drinking.

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Photo of fattyre
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a slightly hazy medium orange color with a moderate dissipating tan head. The smell is a pleasant roastiness with a faint background hoppy aroma. The taste/mouthfeel is very slightly roasted maltiness with a mild hopiness which gives it a crisp clean finish. A drinkable clean octoberfest, while not the best it is very drinkable.

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Photo of barknee
4.18/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Updated on 11-1-08
I must say that I am certainly enjoying this years vintage of Festbier. Generous malts and a perfect hint of hops make for a brew that is massively enjoyable and delicious. The last time I imbibed unto this brew, last season actually, it was quite one dimensional and uninspiring. If you can find this at your local, pick it up and try it; I think youll like it. Rated as the number two "Oktoberfest" brew by the NY Times recently, blowing away the mass Germanic imports in a tasting competition.
For once I agree with the leftest SOB's at the NY Times. ;-0

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Festbier from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.72 out of 5 based on 1,910 ratings.
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