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Samuel Adams Octoberfest | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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BA SCORE
83
good
2,142 Reviews
THE BROS
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Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States
samueladams.com

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-10-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,142
Ratings:
7,415
Avg:
3.66
pDev:
26.23%
 
 
Wants:
132
Gots:
1,907
For Trade:
0
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,142 | Ratings: 7,415
Photo of PhilHeinricke
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Summer's coming to an end

As the calendar gets toward the end of August and you see back-to-school advertisements on television and then you see the first school bus, you know that summer is coming to an end. Although you've had some good times this summer, it's a bit of a let down to see it end. One of the good things about this time of year helping to lift your spirits is the availability of the Oktoberfest beers. A lot of people have them, and they're all good.

I had been drinking light beer and shandies all summer whilst gardening and grilling in the hot sun, but I got a call from Precious. She was at Costco and wanted to know if I wanted some Samuel Adams Octoberfest. I said, "Hell, Yeah!" So I've got a 28 pack cooling. This stuff even tastes great warm.

It pours out a medium copper color very clear with a little more head than I expected. It has a great taste and great feel. Note that I hadn't had an IPA or anything stronger than 4% since March. This is great beer, and I'll be enjoying this for the next month or so. Hey, let me go check the fridge. They might be cold by now.

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Photo of Scheity
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of my favorite things about Boston in the fall is this beer. It mixes perfectly with the layers of red and orange and brown that carry through the air, with a taste full of spice (lots of cinnamon and nutmeg and pumpkin). Should be served a little bit warmer than one might be used to, just to evoke the harvest flavors.

Color's a nice golden tan with a nose that betrays the somewhat syrupy sweetness that follows up the first wave of taste.

Overall, Sam does a good job capturing Boston's fall in a bottle. Now, I'd prefer something like Smuttynose Pumpkin or Ipswich Harvest, but it's a very workable fall brew.

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Photo of tbeck
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish-brown but clear with a good, brown/white carbonated head. Has a sweet, malty smell that is not overpowering and a bit of hops. Taste was very well balance, primarily malty sweetness with cereal grains and a slight hop. Good texture, on the thin side but light and smooth. Not a heavy beer, so more than a couple is okay and it is very enjoyable.

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Photo of Donsolo420
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love it around autumn time . Gets me in the mood for fall and the holidays. Nice Amber color and good taste. Definitely a go to beer at that time of year. Nostalgic for me

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Photo of gr0g
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep copper in color. Pretty good head retention. Sparse lacing. Malt, fruit, and hop notes in the aroma. Floral hop contribution. Toffee and some dried, ripened fruit.

Loads of caramel-ish malt with just the right amount of bitterness to balance things out. Picks up some breadiness/graininess on the back end. Maybe I never noticed or paid attention to such things before, but more recent vintages have picked up some nice fruity, estery notes not unlike a strong English bitter. This and the skillful hopping separate this from the pack of bland, one-dimensional examples of the style. Carbonation is nice, not at all harsh. Very pleasant to drink.

Marzen is a style I cut my craft beer teeth on, and Sam's is still among my favorite domestic 'fests. Like Boston Lager, this is a very underappreciated yet excellent and widely available brew.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Nice, light orange body with a big head that held on long and laced the glass.

Smell – Lightly toasted malt in accordance with the style.

Taste – Smooth, creamy, lightly burnt malt flavor. There’s a little caramel touch at the end, but mostly just the smooth, easy, malt taste. Excellent rendition of the style.

Mouthfeel – No carbonation and very creamy.

Drinkability – This went down quickly, which is the telltale sign of a good Oktoberfest beer. When I lived in Germany, I used to drink these warm on tap (the bartender would warm it with a heated tool dunked in the beer specifically for that purpose), and they would often go down after just three or four gulps. I wasn’t trying to chug the mug, but they were just that smooth.

Comments – I drank this at room temperature, and it was very reminiscent of the Oktoberfest beers that I had in Germany. Excellent example of the style.

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Photo of grynder33
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Orange gold color pour, hoppy slightly citrus aroma, nice round malty citrus spicey taste. Sam Adams always seems to pack in a nice full bold flavor. The taste stayed full and bold to the very end. Sam Adams is truely one of the treasures of the world brewing market.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Crystal clear golden orange color with tight thin white head. Short lived with just a little lace.

Aroma is malty and spicy. Clean lager yeast.

Flavor is pleasant and easy drinking as most of the oktoberfest style tend to be. Malty and sweet, a bit of warm spice like cinnamon and clove.

Crisp clean mouthfeel, medium-light body, moderately carbonated.

Overall a solid example of the style. I think that is something that can be said of just about all of Samuel Adams beers which I think is pretty impressive.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Update from previous review: It's been 5 years since I first reviewed this beer. I've had it now and again, without issue, but I'm not so happy with this year's batch. I've had it several times and it just doesn't sit right. It's darker with more caramel notes, the hops lack character (probably just an actual hop crop issue), and the bitterness is seemingly a touch high. I see how it fits within the "Oktoberfest/Märzen" style, but with the addition of more caramel character it doesn't even suggest Munich malts, it just seems like an amber lager to me. On to my previous review...

Sam Adam's always delivers, so when I went to pick up an Octoberfest (OKtoberfest with a K is actually trademarked in Germany, so kudos to Sammy for the "C") this year I naturally gravitated towards them. Some of the O'fests from Germany have been getting weaker and weaker and more watered down over the years. Hell, some of them are gold in color!

It has a great appearance with a clear, orange and gold accented copper that just 'looks like fall'. It's got great head retention and it leaves some very nice lacing behind.

The nose is clean and fresh with some delicate, caramelish and toasty malt.

The flavor offers all of the soft, bready, and lightly toasty malt that you'd expect with a touch of tea-like and mildly floral hops to lend it some character. The bitterness is present but unassuming; and it finishes fairly short and dry. More importantly, it's remarkably clean, fresh tasting, and superbly balanced.

The mouthfeel is smooth and silky with a medium body and restrained, moderate carbonation that help to accentuate its malt.

It's refined. It has finesse. It's remarkably drinkable. There are other, more fully flavored fests out there, but I'm not sure any of them have quite the same quaffability that Sammy offers. Prost!

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Photo of SpdKilz
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Poured into my SA Octoberfest mug with a deep bronze/copper color. A nice finger of fluffy white head that dissipates somewhat fast but leaves great looking lacing on the side of my glass. This beer just looks good!

Smell - Not overly complex but delightful - malt, caramel, spices, a bit of toffee lingering in the air.

Taste - Roasty malts, biscuty, toffee, caramel...as it slides over my tongue it reminds me of cooler fall days and "easier" times...

Mouthfeel - Nice and creamy (medium body), smooth, highly carbonated so that it almost "pricks" the tongue but oh so enjoyable.

Drinkability - Very drinkable. This was the first beer that got me into craft beer. I remember just wandering into my local grocery store and seeing it and thinking "what the heck...it is the season" so I grabbed it. I enjoyed it so much it has lead me to this site, and many, many other amazing beers. Obviously not the best beer out there but extremely enjoyable nonetheless. Cheers for SA Octoberfest!

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Photo of Ottertude
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This poured a coppery orange color into my pint glass with an off-white head that left some nice lacing on my glass.

This has a more pronounced smell than some of the brews that I have been drinking lately. It smells bready and somewhat floral.

Ah, the taste. This is a malty treat. Some biscuit and caramel malt flavor with a kiss of hops to help balance all the malts. Tasty! Nice medium mouthfeel. I can drink a few of these. This is going well with my pizza tonight.

This is my favorite Samuel Adams Seasonal and the only one I actually look forward to drinking at the end of summer each year. I admit that I have only tasted a few Octoberfest beers but I really like this one.

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Photo of Axic10
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy copper with two fingers of fluffy foam that settles down to about a finger or a half a finger for a while.

Smell: Caramel and biscuit malt, very sweet with a slight tingle of hops in the nose towards the end.

Taste: Very sweet caramel and bready malt. Love the biscuity malt here, very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and creamy.

Drinkability: Hands down my favorite American Octoberfest. Say what you will about Sam Adams, but this is my favorite beer of theirs year after year. I definitely drink my share while it's in season.

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Photo of samie85
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours an reddish orange hue with a one finger white head.

S-Smells mostly of toast and caramel malt. A bit of spicy hop aroma.

T-Much like the smell, it tastes of caramel and toasty malt. Finishes with a nice, crisp, slightly bitter finish.

M-Very well carbonated, and you feel the prickly nature of this on the tongue.

D-It would be very easy to drink a few of these in a night. For whatever reason I had not been impressed this year by the SA Octoberfest. I decided with my last one to give it a fair go on a clean palate and it did the trick. This is the beer I remember!

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Photo of garbercury
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorite selections by Sam Adams. To me, this is their best seasonal by far. Lots of bready flavor highlighted by the caramel notes in the taste. To me, this is a great version of an Octoberfest, worthy of a try, particularly with a hearty meal on a fall night.

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Photo of TheLiterati
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful orange-amber color with a tan, two finger high, long lasting head. Smells of caramel with a nice balance of fragrant hops. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and rich, with caramel and hops aromas translating to the taste. There’s also nice hint of spice as well. This is quite a quaffable brew, and one I will look forward to tasting season after season.

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Photo of Stimack
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a shocker I have never reviewed the Sam Adams Oktoberfest. Well I guess no time like the present. The brew has the color of slightly dull copper with a nice sized head that is light tan in color with small bubbles that cling to the sides of the glass leaving a nice amount of lacing. This beer has a strong roasted malt scent, which highlights caramel and toasted aromas. The taste of this brew is very good which makes it easy drinking. While others will feel that this brew is unexciting, I find it to be a good version of a Marzen beer with is consistence and flavors. The taste is very malty which gives it a bread/dough like flavor mixed with a toasted like flavor. I do not pick up much of a clear hop presence meaning that I think things are fairly balanced out for this beer. The brew finishes relatively dry while having a fairly creamy feel through out. IMO this is a very good brew, flavors are good, freshness is there based on it being as seasonal and it really is an easy drinking sesional beverage.

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Photo of CherylM
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look forward to this beer--makes the end of Summer more bearable. Tried this season's both on draft and bottle and was pleased with it's annual consistency--very authenic Oktoberfest. Poured a medium copper color with a nice white foamy head, delivered lots of flavor--mostly malty, light caramel and somewhat dry on the finish. Some Oct. Fest beers are a little more hoppy, but this one is very tasty and pleasing. Acts as a wonderful transition beer from Summer to Winter.

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A good Sam Adams that captures the style is is going for quite well.

A- Dark red-orange-brown that looks like the color most leaves change to in Autumn. Very clear

S- Smell is of caramel and sweet rolls

T- Taste is like the smell but the hops become noticeable with a bitter citrus pinch on the tongue

M- Feel is light with a slight feel of syrup.

D- Drinks real well with a relaxed flavor and light body

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Photo of BWMKappaSig
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

The new American standard for Octoberfest has arrived for the 2009 season.

A: Deep red-amber color with a thin head that doesn't leave much lacing. Beautiful clarity to the beer.

S: Light caramel malts with a slightly roasted scent. Sweet and bready, with almost no discernable hops presence.

T: Sweet and bready, a little caramel as the smell would suggest. Hops are present in the taste and provide a nice balance.

M: Medium bodied with a very smooth finish. Almost no aftertaste.

D: As drinkable of a marzen as you'll find on the market.

While Samuel Adams often gets downgraded by a lot of beer geeks and gurus for being little more than a nice stepping stone between mainstream beer and craft beer, the fact is, they're as big as they are for a reason. They are experts in lagers and the Marzen is likely their best lagered offering. I usually try 10 or 15 Oktoberfest beers each year, but the Sam O-fest provides an excellent standard to match up to, and really should be appreciated for the excellent beer that it is.

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Photo of dmamiano
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer pours with a nice big head after a hard pour. Nice lacing left clinging to the sides of the glass as well.
Reddish orange in color, with many quickly rising bubbles.
Smell of strong malt, malt and malt. Notes of caramel seem to be detected. Bread come to mind as well.
Taste is big on malt, not quite balanced with hops. Just a malt bomb taking off. Really has a caramel finish on the palate.Good, full, slick mouthfeel.
Very good beer.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah, the beer that started it all. This was the very first seasonal I got into. I was, and still am, attracted to the history of European, and specifically German, culture and brewing traditions. This one was always there. Easy to find, easy to drink and a good representation of the style it set out to honor. I credit this beer with starting my love for all other beers. This review is long over due.

Pulled out of a Sam Adams fall sampler case and poured into my New Glarus pilsner.
A- An updated label has this beer looking better than ever. A nice autumnal orange colored beer with superb clarity. A big white head forms and leaves lovely lacing.

S- A nondescript aroma wafts through out the immediate vicinity of this beer. Getting a little closer I am surprised that the smell isnt stronger, given that I can pick up hits floating around the room. I can still pick out lots of smooth maltiness and spicy hop additions. A nice caramel base is under a fresh citrus and spicy hop bouquet.

T- Very extremely balanced. Big on malts. Peaty, caramelly, and nutty. Delicate notes of lemon-lime, tangerine, and floral hops ride over top.

D- It barely gets drinkable than this. Back when I discovered this beer I would have no problems putting away a 6 pack while everyone else sucked down their Natty at a homecoming party or something. Im glad this beer is back.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this last October and haven't gotten around to it until recently. I've had this in past years, but I wanted to see if this year's batch would be any different. That turned out to be the case, as this beer didn't have the smell or taste of other Octoberfests that I've enjoyed. Nevertheless, Boston Brewing did a find job with this and I thoroughly enjoyed this brew!

This beer poured a nice deep-orange amber with a slight amount of head, and no lacing down the side of my glass. In past years, I remember this being spicy and having hints of vanilla and cinnamon in it. This year, that wasn't true at all. It reminded me a lot more of their Double Bock than anything else I've drank in recent months. A very strong malted roastiness was this brew's hallmark, with lots of chocolate backing it up. The ABV seems like it should be much more than 5.70%, as it can be easily tasted here and the lack of hops and carbonation makes it that much easier to discern. It's the middle of winter now, but this seems to go perfectly with the weather outside and it's doing a nice job of warming me up!

There isn't a whole lot of depth to this, but I still enjoyed it and am glad that I gave it try to see how it held up to it's previous incarntions in year's past. I'm sure the Winter and White Ale's will also be different this year, but that's what makes microbrews so enjoyable to me. This one is no exception!

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Photo of DIM
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: This was an orange tinted chestnut brown color. It was served to me with a small fizzy cap.

s: Lightly toasty sweet caramel with mild leafy hops. Clean overall and very appealing.

t: Malt forward and delicious. Delicately sweet and lightly toasty with very subtle hints of fruit. There is an appropriately moderate noble hop bitterness at the end.

m: Fizzy carbonation and a crisp body suit the style just fine.

o: I don't go for fest beers all that much, but I thought this was an excellent example of the style.

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Photo of BigBass
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I'v been waiting for this to show up at the beer store all month. Last year it came in stock early and i could'nt beleive my eyes. Anyway, I got impatient today and drove an hour roundtrip to get.

Pours a rich brown but not to dark with a descent head that disappears quickly.

Smell is what I'v been waiting for all summer..lots of yeast, bread, toffee. YUM smells like fall is just around the corner.

Taste is similar to the smells with a good amount of carbonation and the alcohol is right up front. Finish is clean and crisp.

The guys at SA worked hard on this one...this is my favorite beer from them and I look forward to it every year.Hopefully they start getting it in around here next week.Cheers.

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Photo of VTaler
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A - Dark Amberish Brown Nice ivory head that stays for a while
S - Sweet spicy malt with a spicy hop present
T - spicy hops; malty. You can taste the lager yeast but it is very flavorful which is expected for a Samuel Adams. Tastes almost like graham crackers with spicy hops
M - medium everything
D - very drinkable, probably the best session beer

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Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.66 out of 5 based on 7,415 ratings.
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