Oktoberfest | Capital Brewery

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Brewed by:
Capital Brewery
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
2014 GABF Gold Medal (German-Style Marzen)

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-26-2001

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Reviews: 140 | Ratings: 327
Photo of wheatyweiss
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint.

Appearance is golden straw with nice two finger head that leaves a nice lace.

Aroma is caramel grains and honey, small hop smell.

Taste is honey, grain and light floral hops. Slight huskiness on the finish. The roast of the grain lends a nice caramel sweetness that isn't cloying at all. Hops are not over done and actually lend a nice body and crispness.

A solid offering, I enjoyed it.

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Photo of alexgash
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden copper with a thick, light-khaki head.
Smells of sweet cookie dough, caramel, spicy hops. Not overly aromatic.
Taste starts off with sweet bread and caramel malts. Light nutty toastiness follows through the palate and then the spicy hops come in. Finish is mildly bitter with lingering doughy sweetness. Medium-bodied, coats mouth nicely. One of the better Oktoberfests I’ve had this fall (but I like Autumnal Fire heaps more).

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Photo of dirtylou
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz single bought at Woodman's in Madison

appearance: pours a thick copper with a rather thick layer of bubbly white head...zero lacing

smell: rather fruity, almost like apple cider (the real stuff not the woodchuck shit). very sweet malts, very autumnal aroma

taste: fruity sweet malts, heavy on the apple, light caramel (lighter than normal), a sweet bready taste is also dominant

mouthfeel: thin body, dry finish

drinkability: i wish i had bought more than 1, good thing this stuff is abundant

all in all, this oktoberfest pushes the boundaries, definately a bit more fruit dominated than some others. I enjoyed it and will probably grab some more in the coming weeks

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Photo of kmpitz2
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. This one is deep copper in color with a light island of head and a full ring around the top. Clarity is fantastic and there are just a small number of bubbles in the beer. This is a solid looker. The aroma is toasty with a dough sweetness that is accented with honey sweetness. I could use a little less of the sweetnes and more boldness in the toasted and dough character. The first sip brings mild toast with some caramel sweetness. This fades to a very mild spicy hop finish that just hints at bitter on the side of my tongue. The brew is moderate with a moderate carbonation. It has good body and more carbonation than I expected from the weak head off the pour. Overall impressions of this one are positive. This is a brew I could easily sit and consume all night. Very solid.

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Photo of Skidz
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

(old review, replaced)

I had a chance to visit Capital Brewery and was invited to try out the Octoberfest, only 3 weeks old in the fermenter. I went back to try it again after the first time, a very unique experience and a very unique tasting beer this early on. Kirby was a great guide and invited many others later on to take a taste of the beer straight out of the lagering tanks.

Coming out into the glass, quite quickly (100+ barrel tanks), it pours out a light orange-yellow and sits a hazy amber brown in the glass. It's still quite young, so it hasn't quite cleared up yet and there is some yeast suspended in the beer.

Smell is quite malty, I wouldn't expect much less, and yeast is very evident. Fruity esters emerge, apples and pears, along with a light spicy aroma. Very interesting, I will definately compare this to the final product.

Taste is still malty. Bitterness comes on quite quickly, shorty after the initial maltly sweetness. Dry and yeasty on the finish still carrying on the spiciness from the hops. Brown sugar and caramel flavors also seem present.

Very smooth in the mouth, and creamy. Carbonation is light, but still coming in. Obviously this was drunk as zwickel, so it would be difficult to drink much of it, although I had my fair share. Easily consumed, and enjoyably consumed at that. A unique experience not soon to be forgotten. I will make it a point to review this year's Oktoberfest just to see how it compares to this tasting.

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Photo of shadow1961
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Capital Brewery Oktoberfest pours a finger of foam over a clear honey
colored brew. Carbonation is moderate and steady, and the nose is
toasty malt, lager yeast, and a bit of spicy hops. The flavor reflects the
nose- sweetish malt balanced by a peppery, herbal hop- I'm thinking it
might be Saatz. Mouthfeel is crisp and medium bodied, finishing semi-
dry due to the hops. There's a bit of grassyness and earthyness in the
aftertaste. Altogether, very nice. I like that Capitol hopped it just a touch
more than a lot of Ofests I've tried- it doesn't make it any less easy-drinking,
but it does make it a little more assertive. Good- get some if you can.

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Photo of zeff80
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a very bubbly/fizzy, orange/amber color with a foamy, tan, small head. It left no lace.

S - It had smelled grassy and of biscuity roasted malt.

T - It tasted burnt maltiness with some subtle spices. Nice smooth caramel flavors increased as it continued to warm.

M - It was sharp and crisp. A light to medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a pretty solid Oktoberfest. Very easy drinking and sessionable.

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Photo of TenEighty
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: It is a nice copper color, not cloudy at all, very little head or retention.

S: It has a nice spice smell to it, it reminds me of autumn.

T: The beer is good example of an Octoberfest/Marzen beer, nice hints of spice, as well as a nice hoppy touch.

M: This beer seems a tad more bitter than other Octoberfest/Marzen beers I have tried, a testament to its hop character. It seems to leave a sucrose feeling in my mouth.

D: I like this beer, it is a nice example of a delicious autumn beer, however, there are others in this category which exceed this beer in different categoiries.

This is my first beer report, I love this site, and I will continue to contribute my opinions on many great beers.

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Photo of stoutman
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber-brown color with a small off-white foamy head that fades with a speckled lace. Smell is a roasty sweet malt with a touch of earthy hops. Taste is a mild roasted malt with some sweetness and slight hop showing up near the finish along with a nice balance of sweetness. Pretty tasty and a good quaffer.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Off-white head, gone quickly. Amber/caramel color. Aroma:vegetal, herbal,spicy, earthy, pumpkins. Rich maltiness, nice sweet overtones, some tingly hops. A satisfactory Oktoberfest, very smooth and easy-drinking.

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Photo of cokes
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber colored, leaning towards orange. Crystal clear with steady moderate carbonation. Thin white head recedes to virtually nothing.
Toasty and sweet malt aromas. Hops are noticed, but just faintly.
Toasted malts make themselves known off the bat, then begin to mingle with sweet, fruity malt tones. Good amount of toffee. A swift kick of spicy hops pollishes this one off.
A firm medium bodied brew. Gets a little sticky and syrupy at times, but generally full and crisp.
A pretty solid Oktoberfest all around.

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Photo of vette2006c5r
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oktoberfest pours a dark brown clear color with hints of orange. There is a profound malty backbone aroma, that had hints of a brown sugar. The taste was well carbonated, and had a strong malty taste. Easy to drink, liked the carbonation, would grab another. Overall I found this a very good Marzen, full taste and very enjoyable.

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Photo of jayhass
3.99/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a rustic ruby red color that is clear with a white head that fades fast.
Smell is of a nice caramel malt with some dark fruit and some nuttiness I would guess from using Ayinger Lager yeast. Bready malt with some grassy earthy hop.
Taste- Sweet malt with a bite of earthy spicy hops to balance it out. A light nuttiness with a good amount of bread and cracker. Finishes dry with a light spice and earthy note.

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bready aromas with a little hops. Pours brilliant orange gold under a very finely bubbled 1” white foam cap. Bread and malt seasoned with kettle sugars and traces of malt spice season the palate. Medium body and medium carbonation.

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Photo of MattyG85
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a deep amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid finger of off white head which settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A toasty and bready malt forward aroma with a scent of biscuit, grains, and caramel. Upfront scent of toasted barley malt with hints of grains, biscuit, caramel, cracker, and yeast. Subtle hints of grassy hops. A decent malty aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a bready and toasty malt forward aroma with notes of biscuit, grains, and caramel. Bready malt notes of biscuit, grains, cracker, caramel, and yeast. Backing notes of grassy hops. A decent malt driven taste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp, clean, and smooth.

Overall: A decent take on an Oktoberfest. Solid biscuit malt flavor.

 836 characters

Photo of ADR
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear bright orange color, good creamy head of 1/4 inch. Toasty aroma, a little brown sugar. Nice match for style, nice dominant caramel malt flavor with a hoppy clove bite peppered in. Good elements of toast. A little better mouthfeel than some. Very drinkable, open a couple and pour 'em in a big ass stein and quaff in honor of the harvest. A good kick off for Fest season for me (I'm not counting the bomber of Lagunitas)...

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Photo of SMark
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up on a trip through Wisconsin about a month ago. Poured a good head of about 2 fingers. Lasted over 2 minutes. Clear amber coloring. Very slight lacing.

Slight malt and hop aroma.

Hops seemed to come through more than the toasted malt. Worked very well together.

Good mouthfeel as the taste was not prolonged but did last comfortably enough.

Would welcome the opportunity to drink these at a 'fest' activity but sadly not available in our area.

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Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear amber with a creamy white head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of caramel, grain and a hint of earthy hops.

The taste is of caramelized grain, nutty malt - sweet, but with a hint of noble hops in the finish.

It has a smooth, medium body.

A true-to-style O-fest. I will get more of this next fall!

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Photo of steveh
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 2011 update for Cap's Oktoberfest.

A -- Clear, deep amber-orange with a creamy, light tan head the settles slowly to a good cap.

S -- Spicy hops up front, yeasty, sweet breadiness in the follow through.

T -- Sweet breadiness up front that folds into a good grainy-biscuit character. A mild spicy bitterness in the aftertaste that balances well. Malt luscious and very easy-drinking.

M -- Mouthfeel is very soft and smooth with a light-medium body.

O -- A very clean and flavorful, well-constructed lager from the Midwest King of Lagers. As with most Ami-Oktos, I just wish there was more of a big toasted bread character as a fresh Bavarian Okto will have. What makes this a winner is that brewmaster Kirby doesn't try to overcompensate with a big roasted character as do many U.S. micros.

Previous review:
2009 bottling, just in at the local -- surprised I've never reviewed this in the past. My favorite all time micro -- but I can be objective when it comes to beer... especially my fave style.

A -- Bright, clear, amber-orange color with a thick, off-white head that settles slowly.

S -- I can smell "beeriness" at arm's length from the pour; aroma is pretty thin and mild spicy hops with a bready backbone come out with a swirl.

T -- Mildly sweet, nutty maltiness up front with some bready maltiness in the middle and a dry, spicy hop finish. Toasty breadiness in the aftertaste. Great balance all around. A little edit here -- there's some vague diacetyl in the background as the beer warms. Not distracting, but unexpected.

M -- Mouthfeel is soft and smooth with a light medium body.

D -- Finally! A very nice Okto this year. It seems like this could be the first American / German style crossover. There's some nice nuttiness, as in an Ami, with some good breadiness, as in a German -- not much of that rich maltiness from German Amber Märzens, but there's a great malt character that makes up for any loss.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 08-31-2009 18:06:54

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Photo of bsp77
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Clear amber-orange with some frothy head at first but falls back too quickly.

Smell: Toast, caramel, cherry and metallic hops.

Taste: Nice complex malts with biscuit, caramel and cherry interwoven together. Has a nice spicy hoppiness as counterbalance, which continues long after each sip.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation, medium body, crisp and dry finish. Great feel for a Marzen.

Drinkability: One of the better Marzens out there, although style wise it leans a little closer to a bitter Vienna. More than solid Autumn brew.

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Photo of nickynick
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Capital Oktoberfest poured a light amber, very orange looking color. Small head. Smell was strong of hops, and bit of malt. Taste was sweet caramel and malt upfront followed by a mild hop bite. It became sweeter as it warmed. Mouthfeel was ok, bit light for what I like in a O-fest. Drinkability is very good, easy to drink a few. Overall a pretty good O-fest from a great brewery.

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Photo of wardough
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a beautiful Madison day!
A: Nice light copper color. Light lacing.
S: Light caramel flavors with a slight hop aroma giving some slight citrus flavor.
T: Bready, malty.
M: This beer is perfectly carbonated making it just slide through the mouth. Awesome.
D: This is a great fall time beer and worthy of the Octoberfest title.
A great session beer!

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Photo of EwaldEichstaett
4.05/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Golden orange brown color, a little lighter than some of the other Oktoberfests I've tried this year. decent head, mild lacing.

S: caramel sweet roasted toasty smell, a bit floral and sour as well. perhaps a bit adjunctish... not sure.

T: Toasty and warm, caramel malts up front and a bit of hops on the back end. There are some hints of fruit here, perhaps plum. Good flavor.

M: There is a good amount of carbonation, but it feels very gentle. Good body

D: This beer is very drinkable, I think it is a nice example of the style, best Oktoberfest I have had this year.

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Photo of BeerCheese
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear amber in color with average off white head that didn't last long. Nice citrusy aroma. Flavor was more malty than hoppy with a slight alcohol warming as it went down. Great tasting beer. Medium/heavy body with average carbonation. Very drinkable.

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Photo of botham
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz poured into an imperial nonic glass. pours a crystal clear, brilliant amber color with a finger of off-white frothy head that dissiaptes slowly and throughout consumption.

smells malty (caramel), with a subtle hop aroma, among a few spices, notably pumpkin and a dash of coriander. a good mix for an oktoberfest.

tastes malty up front, with a notable amount of CO2. bready yeast is apparent as well, lending more to a mild abbey tripel than an oktoberfest. alcohol presence is distant, but noticable. finishes on a dry hop note. there is a good balance of flavors and aromas here, somewhat unique for the style.

aftertaste semi-dry, and of lingering malt flavor. very pleasant.

mouthfeel is medium-bodied, and very smooth in character. the CO2 here adds a bit of bite, but doesn't deter from the rest of the brew.

drinkability is great. oktoberfests can be filling and rich, but this one sneaks in under the radar with bold flavors and a rather simple profile to allow for high drinkability and loads of character. cheers!

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Oktoberfest from Capital Brewery
3.62 out of 5 based on 327 ratings.
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