Samuel Adams Octoberfest | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams OctoberfestSamuel Adams Octoberfest

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States | website

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

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Reviews: 2,099 | Ratings: 7,266
Photo of MikeyBadnews
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Sam Adams Octoberfest.

I'll probably catch a lot of crap from the beer snobs but I expect it to be overridden by mass adulation from the people in my area (boston) for how high I rate this, and granted my views are skewed by a nostalgic feel this beer gives me, but I think this is a tremendous Americanized interpretation of the classic German Marzen for which it’s styled after. I don’t have a lot of other beers of this style to compare it to so maybe it’s the absolute bottom feeder of it’s class, but we’ll overlook my naivety and just focus on the beer itself.

One of Sam Adams more popular seasonal brews Octoberfest pours a dark ruby red that softly fades into a medium bodied copper. Poured at a finger and a half head into an Octoberfest styled dimpled beer mug (thanks Michele) my nostalgic side takes over as the summer humidity is immediately sucked from the room and the crisp apple picking morning fall air is ushered in in a zephyr of fall winds with the falling autumn leaves dropping at my feet, Glorious!

Beer has a chewy citrus to toffee flavor that finishes thick and sticks to the pallet and throat. Tastes like a 1 pm Sunday afternoon football kickoff…. Or a caramelized sugar coated and pan fried pear chased with heavy malts.
Smell is similar and quite appeakling

To me this beer *IS* fall. Popping open a can or bottle of this closes the door on BBQs and beach parties. Days at the pool and drenching humidity and ushers in football, leaf raking, frosted morning windshields and hoodie weather.


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Photo of illpass78
3.96/5  rDev +8.2%

12 oz. bottle poured into a glass tankard.

Appearance: Pours a crystal-clear amber with a big foamy white head. Some lacing on way down.

Aroma: It's malt-forward with toffee and caramel and a slight grassy note.

Taste: Big malts are right up front, with a pumpernickel taste balanced by caramel sweetness. Toasty. Nice toffee presence, too.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light of body, but not in an unappealing way. Typical lager depth.

Overall: This is my favorite of Sam's three consistent seasonals (the Spring one seems to change annually these days). It's a tasty, approachable lager that should suit anyone on a fall day. Great beer for an autumn afternoon with some pretzels and football.

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

Appearance is standard octoberfest. Smell is kind of lacking. Not muck comes to the nose, whomever I did pour into liter boot so a little more difficult to smell. A little more hoppy than most, and that is good. It is a very smooth drink with Carmel taste. The smoothy finish is the best part. Overall not to bad. Could drink several of these.

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Photo of JLSIV
3.55/5  rDev -3%

Poured clear amber into a SA glass. Decent one finger head, dissipated a little too quickly, some lacing

Malty aroma, with a little toffee

Taste was mostly malt, with a little caramel and some pear like fruit in back

Mouthfeel was on the full side of medium, appropriate carbonation.

This is a very good fest beer, very suitable for the typical food pairings. I am usually under impressed with American Marzens, so this is a worthy choice for the season. I also like that Sam Adams BBC release it on an appropriate schedule

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Photo of ThomasMetal75
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

A- Dark ruby red as Sam Adams says on their site. Had a frothy, 1 finger head that died. Head was rocky and pillowy. Egg shell colored head.

S- Big malts. Toffee like sweetness, toasted notes. Brown bread crust.

T- Light hop presence. Toffee like sweetness. Toasty. Has graininess as well. Lightly fruity.

M- Medium on the body. It is crisp clean and refreshing. Not quite as dry as American lagers.

Overall you can tell that your drinking an American interpretation of the classic fest beer from Germany. It's got standard Octoberfest flavors, but with a bit more hop presence and a fruity taste. Not bad at all, but not one I need to rush out to get this fall.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Sampling right now on 9/3/14, though it it has been about 2 years since I had one! Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a "Sam Adam's Summer Ale" pint glass.

Pours a rich copper-amber in color with a thin off-white head. Some spotty lacing is seen but not a lot, which is common for many brews of this style. The aroma for the most part is of sweet caramel malts. The taste is pretty close with a hint of burnt brown sugar in theere also. Medium bodied. No bitter or harsh aftertaste at all. Goes down easy and it a really good Oktoberfest style brew. I bet it is even BETTER on tap! Prosit!

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Photo of BoilerMo
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

If you can't find any other Octoberfest beers this one isnt bad. Aroma and Appearance are nice are right but the it lacked a little in subtle taste of it's German counterparts. It is a true to from Octoberfest brew in mouth feel.

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Photo of lordbrad1
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

I can't say anything that hasn't been said before; so I won't. It's a good jumping off point for O'fest style beers, but there are better offerings. Also, as one of the Alstrom bros. stated, I feel this beer has been subtly changing from year to year. It's 2014, and this is not the same beer I first tried back in 2006(ish). I can't put my finger on it, but it has definitely been changing over time.

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Photo of jsausley
4/5  rDev +9.3%

One of Sam Adams best beers - in my opinion. It's certainly better than the Boston Lager (which isn't bad) so I look forward to this beer being placed on tap in early Autumn every year.

This beer pours a gorgeous golden brown and amber red. It has a nice head, good lacing and a good body. It smells like an amber but with a tinge of spice on top and it tastes like that too: crisp, clean, balanced with a nice malty spine. The spices on top give it its character.

Is this the best beer from the Boston Beer Company? No, definitely not. But I promise you it's the best one you can buy in a bottle at your local gas station.

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Photo of BrandonLBC
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

A--Dark reddish brown in color. Tan head disappears quickly. Transparent.

S--Not a lot on the nose. Trace of malts mostly. Simple and enjoyable.

T--Very malt forward, rich with a caramel taste. A bit of spice at the end that's pretty dang good as well.

M--Medium weight, but drinks almost like a light lager. Goes down pretty easy. Just a bit of carbonation.

O--In my mind this is one of Sam Adams best beers. I look forward to it and I'll certainly have a few more this fall.

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Bottle best by January 2015

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Photo of CTbrew32
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

appearance- dark copper/amber in color. Pours a tan two inch head that has a pillowy/foamy texture to it.

aroma- Pretty high on the herbal/spice hops and some sweet caramel malts.

taste- Toasty/bready malts at first followed by a snap of spicy hop bitterness. Caramel malts are prevalent throughout.

feel- medium bodied, medium/high carbonation, clean, and easy to drink.

overall- very nice oktoberfest style beer that strikes a good balance balance between sweetness and bitterness.

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Photo of kkleu357
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%

From notes on 9/28/13

Decent. Poured out of there new sweet looking can. Props for the design. Color is darkish brown with brownish white head. Not much aroma. Very malty flavor.

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Photo of Randygroves
5/5  rDev +36.6%

I dont think there can be better. Felt the hint of fall in the air and cracked open one. Ahh just like last years flavor. Almost like dinking that Fall feeling. Sweet flavor of spices and a very pleasant lingering after taste. Thumbs up Sam!!

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Photo of WhiteHillsStore
3.71/5  rDev +1.4%

Pours a deep orange/brown color with a thin head. The smell is full of mellow flavors and toasted malt. The taste was very nice with good mixtures of heavy malt with a slight citrus tang on the end to make this a great easy drinking beer for when the seasons start to change. The mouthfeel was nice, and refreshing.

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Photo of joe12pk
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Pours a gorgeous deep, clear amber. Two finger head with spotty lacing. This is a sweet malty brew that's tasty and goes down smooth. Nothing to write home about; the hops are sorely missing (or very light). One's enough.

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Photo of Roxie_B
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Serving: Bottle into pint glass
Looks: Copper color with garnet highlights transparent with a thing bone white head that dissipated into a collar.
Smell: Oranges, Biscuits and Honey.
Taste: Citrus, Apples, Yeast.
Mouthfeel: Crisp and lightly carbonated.
Overall: A good introduction to the style. Perhaps serving with sugar cookies is not the best idea as the combination of the apple/orange juice and cookies took me back to preschool.

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Photo of JHubner73
4/5  rDev +9.3%

I've been drinking Sam Adams Octoberfest for five seasons now, and it never disappoints. With its auburn color and thin head it looks tasty in a chilled mug(my dad's trusty Stroh's mug to be exact.)

It smells hoppy, with hints of various spices. Taste-wise it hits the the tongue and you get a tangy pinch on the taste buds. Malts, hops, and various autumn spices create a refreshing experience. It's not a heavy beer, so they go down smooth. The colder the better.

For me, Sam Adams Octoberfest is a fall tradition, like Halloween and the changing of the leaves. Without it autumn wouldn't be the same.

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Photo of JAck199
3/5  rDev -18%

A bit better than last year. Still yearning for the beer they brewed years ago. I use to buy 10 cases when it was a craft brew.....unfortunately, now mass produced it has lost the subtle flavors that made it great. I'm now down to one beer a year.

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Photo of Kris450
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

I really liked this beer. Very light mouthfeel with a beautiful caramel color. It had a warm feel to it, like a good friend. I would drink a few of these for sure!

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Photo of PorterPro125
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Serving Type: Bottle

Poured into a Heineken Pint Glass

A- Pours a deep amber colour that is almost orange in nature. This beautiful hue is topped with delicious 2 1/2 finger lumpy head that is stuff of absolute perfection. Samuel Adams Octoberfest is a stunning beer to behold.

S- The aroma of this brew is pure sweetness! Tons of malt action going on that is well accented by some caramel notes . The scent is not offensive in any way and is actually quite inviting!

T- Much of the taste is similar to the aroma but without the sweetness. Lots of malt notes going on along with the caramel notes that are accompanied by some interesting toffee/taffy-like flavours in the aftertaste (think salt water taffy). Incredibly delicious and very satisfying.

M- Low-Medium carbonation that is appropriate for the style. Mouthfeel is somewhat thick but not chewy by any standards: Very nice indeed..

O- Samuel Adams Octoberfest, although being my first taste into the Oktoberfest style, was an enjoyable experience to say the least. Not only is the beer nice to look at but it holds some beautiful aromas and tastes that leave you in satisfaction. This brew is easily my favourite Lager and also my new favourite Samuel Adams beer! Well done, guys!

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Photo of hopsputin
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

a: its a very clear dark amber color with some hints of brown and low ruby red. 3 finger white somewhat-rocky head

s: malts, malts malts. caramel, sweet toffee, hint of baking sugar. a very faint hint of dark fruit

t: not as overly sweet as the aroma indicated. there is definitely a ton of malts in here - caramel, toffee, light brown sugar. but there is also a pretty big, what i'll call, lager quality in here. almost like a bready cracker. perhaps the yeast? finishes with a bunch more malt toffee sweetness, and something with a hint of bitterness; like a very faint earthy leaf bitterness.

m: its a medium moth feel. on the lower side of medium carbonation

o: it is what it is. i know people seem to polarize around this beer, but its an easy drinker that is loaded with malts. its not too complex, and it may not be the truest to the style, but its a nice drinker after a day of work when you don't want to think too much about what you're drinking

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Photo of patre_tim
4/5  rDev +9.3%

A: Clear filtered orange colour with lots of bubbles. Huge 6 finger orange cream coloured head with large and small bubbles.

S: Apple juice, lager yeasts, this style is the gamey scent and taste of lagers, a stronger more rustic scent than your average German lager. This version captures that.

T: Light sweetness with the same gamey strong lager taste combined with lager yeasts, dough like bready quality, fusel like as well. A great job.

M: Medium thick bready body, little carbonation. Slightly syrupy.

O: An excellent version of this brew. Got it in Kalamazoo at Tiffany’s, drinking it in Port Huron.

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Photo of PA-hunter
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%

Poured bottle into glass. 5.3%abv

Appearance- A lively, vibrant burnt orange, ironically the same hue as the Fall foliage. A thick two finger head with good retention and carbonation.

Smell- Smells of a fresh bready malt with sweet caramel notes in the background. A bit of peppery spice as well.

Taste- Sweet malty flavor with caramel and a bit of sugar prominent. Some dryness in the back end with a touch of corn as well which tells you this is still a lager if you weren't already aware octoberfest are. Finishes smooth with the ever so slightest detection of hops.

Mouthfeel- Nice carbonation. The beer is thin but has enough taste that it is not watery. Easy drinking.

Overall- A fine example of the style that highlights the Fall Season. Full of flavor with an outstanding malt flavor. Great Marzen.

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Photo of TheVenerableMead
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

12oz bottle into a pilsner

A - Beautiful clarion amber with a short, light tan head that leaves a passable amount of lace.

S - Lots of sweet malt and very noticeable hops.

T - Pilsner and lots of crystal malt. Very apparent of hop bitterness.

M - Carbonation is good for the style. Fullness is spot on. It's a bit dry and leaves behind an astringency.

O - Not bad, really. This one got knocks more for the astringent aftertaste than anything else. Also, the crystal wasn't balanced very well. Still pretty drinkable, though. The colder, the better.

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Photo of Tuck_leepulin
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

12oz Brown Bottle with pry-off cap enjoy by month of "Jan" poured into a Becker Glass

Appearance: Pours a clear, deep amber with 1/2 finger of head

Smell: Caramel malt and breadiness

Taste: I find a that a noble hop bitter comes right at the tip of your tongue then there is a rich caramel malt in the middle with a slightly sweet finish

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation but has a lighter mouthfeel than I expected

Overall: There's a nice amount of caramel flavor with a slight noble hop bitterness to help balance it out. I personally would prefer a little more depth in the mouthfeel.

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Samuel Adams Octoberfest from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
83 out of 100 based on 2,099 ratings.
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