Left Hand Oktoberfest | Left Hand Brewing Company

438 Reviews
Left Hand OktoberfestLeft Hand Oktoberfest

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is no festivus for the restivus, on the contrary, we start brewing in the spring and it takes a full two months to reach lagered perfection. Biscuity, malty goodness dominates upfront while the noble pedigree hops lend a properly spicy, dry finish.

Added by rowew on 08-22-2006

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Reviews: 438 | Ratings: 1,211
Photo of Dinglehacker
3.91/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into dimpled seidel. Fizz, no head. Bit of lace shaped like a comet. Bold amber color.

Nose is malt and caramel sweetness,

Taste is also malty sweet, some autumnal spice there too, mostly hop-inspired. Very bready.

Mouth is fine.

Typical darker American style Märzen. Although it doesn't distinguish itself much in the style, it does nothing wrong, drinks so smooth, and is very revisitable. Fans of doppelbock and scotch ale would enjoy this as well.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Deep amber color with gold hues within. Slightly low carbonation still manages to create a nice tan colored foam cap with average retention abilities.
A subtle malty sweet aroma, amber malt with grown sugar, herbal spice hop round out the nose.
The flavor is spot-on Marzen style. Sweet, biscuity malt, honey, and spice, the later from the hops. The hops provide a great balance from the dominant maltiness. The first sip is all malt, then finishing, dry but crisp, earthy and herbal. Nice transition from malt to hop experience. The feel is very light, but slick while finishing dry.
The lable reads "toasty malt flavors" which is very true. "Noble hops lead to a spicy and superbly clean lager finish" ....also very true.

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Photo of lastmango
3.37/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured a clear copper brown with no head and no lacing. Aroma was of biscuit and malt. Taste was the same on the front end with just a tad of hops on the end. Maltier than the Munich versions. Light moderate feel with almost no carbonation. I had the faint feeling of wateriness. While the beer is drinkable, I see nothing remarkable here.

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Photo of PhillyStyle
4.17/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Love this beer...and it pains me to say this, considering that I am over (and have been for a long while) the over-hopped beers, but I think that this beer is actually too malty, especially when compared to German brewer marzen's. Overall though, the beer looks great, feels great and I love that biscuit flavor. While this would not be my go to Marzen, I would/will continue to pick it up when available.

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Photo of utopify
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very carmely and robust Octoberfest. I think one of the more under-rated fall brews. It is one of the best lagers to capture what I believe is a true fall brew. However, my one complaint is that if I told you there were a dozen pennies at the bottom of every bottle, you'd taste it. There is a very metallic flavor that hits towards the end of the flavor spectrum. There is a nice carmel note that hits you first, followed by a nice nutty body....but there is an almost overwhelming metallic copper flavor that is distracting to the finish.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.71/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a crystal clear deep copper in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass and moderate amber + golden yellow + garnet red highlights. The beer has a finger tall foamy light tan head that slowly reduces to a large patch of thin film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of biscuit, caramel, and toasted malts with a light amount of light fruit (white grape + apple) yeast smells. There light to moderate aromas of spicy + earthy hops.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of biscuit, caramel, and toasted malts with a light to moderate amount of caramel sweetness. That is followed by light flavors of light fruit (white grape, apple, and pear) yeast and light to moderate flavors of spicy + earthy hops. There are light amounts of hoppy bitterness in the finish which fades pretty quickly leaving a very light lingering malty sweetness.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth with a hint of dryness in the finish.

O: Overall there is a pretty good balance between the malty sweetness and the hop bitterness in this beer while still showcasing the respective flavors. Enough complexity to keep me interested and easy to drink since the mouthfeel is just light enough.

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Photo of spoony
3.62/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From a 355 ml bottle (best by November 11, 2016) to a nonic glass.

A-The beer is a nice looking copper-amber color. Head is short and retention is short too. No lacing. I like the color, but I could use more foam.

S-The aroma is relatively earthy and subdued. It is malty with suggestions of barley, grain husk, biscuit, and just a little bit of honey sweetness. No hops to be found.

T-The taste is little sweeter than the smell would suggest. More honey and nut flavors to go with the aforementioned malted barley, husk, and biscuit. I taste a little tin on the finish.

M-The body is just heavier than average for the style. Carbonation is slightly low and semi-crisp. The beer drinks easily but it fills me up a bit and I'm not sure that I would want more than one or two.

O-This is a nice fall beer, but nothing stands out. The color is damn near perfect for the style, but everything else is merely average. I would not turn this away, but I would not seek it out, either.

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Photo of Holderness
3.91/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L -- Pours a medium amber with minimal head or lacing. No haziness whatsoever.
S -- Brown bread, pear, malt, almonds
T -- Malt with a slight hoppy aftertaste
F -- Remarkably similar in feel to an unfiltered ale, but with a dryer finish
O -- Boldness and high clarity of flavor make for a very sessionable beer

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Photo of SawDog505
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a 13 oz Weyerbacher tulip glass. Pours a very attractive deep amber with a 2 inch off white head that leaves behind spotty lace.

Smell is caramel, almonds, brown sugar, dates, and toffee.

Taste follows sweet caramel, dark fruit, brown sugar, and toffee.

Mouthfeel is probably medium, low carbonation, a little dry, and easy drinking.

Overall this is a very good beer, bold for the style, almost like a winter warmer.

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Photo of KevCan
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bought a 6-pack of 12-oz. cans at Whole Foods in Arlington, VA. Best by 11/30/16.

Look: Copper reddish in color, clear, with healthy off-white head.

Smell: Malty, a bit of hops, a slight metallic penny smell.

Taste: Heavily malty, just enough hops, very clean from start to finish, a slightly metallic aftertaste.

Feel: Medium-high body, medium carbonation.

Overall: Solid Oktoberfest beer. Not one of my favorite styles, but well-done nonetheless.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.76/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle. The Best By date was smudged but it looks like November 2016. Sampled on September 11, 2016. Serving around 40 degrees as they suggest.

The pour is an attractive looking mahogany amber but with only a small off-white head that fades fast.

Notable burnt caramel malt sweetness in the aroma. Low to no hop profile but this style does not require much in the way of hops.

Medium body.

Same very sweet caramel malt flavor with a kind of melted or burnt amber note in there. Quick mild bitter ending.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.32/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A day of Oktoberfests continues as I continue to winnow down the Bottle Backlog here at Chez Woody. I purchased this one at The Friendly Greek Bottle Shop (where I will be visiting tomorrow), but as with so many bottles, it fell into my abyss.

From the bottle: "Brewed on the banks of the mighty St. Vrain"; "Toasty malt flavors dominate up front and Noble hops lead to a spicy and superbly clean Lager finish,"; "Enjoy at 40-50 [Deg.] F in a 1Liter Mass or Pub Glass"; "Design by Moxie Sozo[;] Artist: Charles Bloom".

I really wanted to Pop! the cap on this one since their caps are so distinctive. I performed a gentle pour and then did a swirl, producing a finger of foamy, tawny head that quickly fell to wisps. Color was Deep Amber/Light Copper to Copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity and amber highlights. Nose was exactly like putting your snout into a hay bale! Man, I miss being on or near a farm in the summertime. Warming, I caught a bready-biscuitiness, but hay was prevalent. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was of freshly-baked bread and newly-mown hay and/or grass. My maternal grandparents had a house that directly abutted a working farm when I was a lad & this was evocative of late-Summer/early-Fall as the harvest was underway & I was in the kitchen with my grandmother, cooking, baking, learning. Finish was dry, but a bready dry. It reminded me of that first slice off of the loaf straight out of the oven. It needed a glass of iced tea, water or coffee, but I was not gasping for breath. A very pleasant example of the style.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.59/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear medium amber, with a modest white head, and small fine-beaded lacing.

Aroma: Toasted and caramel malt dominate the aroma.

Taste: Toasted malts dominate the taste from start to finish. Modest herbal hops offer some balance, but its all about the malt.

Mouth feel: Full and soft, pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: quite good, very drinkable.

Presentation: Packaged in a twelve-ounce brown glass long neck bottle with a pry-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

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Photo of monkeybeerbelly
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Very attractive beer but a little darker than I expected, maybe even to dark for a marzen. Nose is bready, toasty, malty, and even a little nutty. Slight Floral hop notes and a prominent lager yeast aroma. The taste follows the nose and is an excellent lager yeast flavor and nice malty flavors. The mouthfeel is what wins me over, slightly creamy and oh so easy to drink. Going down way to fast. Another major winner by left hand

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Photo of Cannibalgasm
3.07/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle.

A: Pours a clear golden amber color with one finger of off-white head. Head retains for a moment and leaves behind almost no lacing.

S: Some sweet malts, grains, and toasted nut aromas. Not much else to it, smells like an Oktoberfest but the aromas are very subtle.

T: Toasted nuts dominate the flavor palate, you also get some sweet malts, grain, caramel, and a very subtle note of earthy hops.

M: Light bodied, almost too little carbonation, goes down easy and is drinkable but not very refreshing.

O: A decent Oktoberfest but nothing to make it stand out against the rest.

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Photo of mothmanscott
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear deep amber producing 1.5 fingers of beige, frothy, variously bubbled, somewhat lasting head that diminishes to cap islands of chunky foam that leaves only minor lace. Aroma is toast, caramel malt, bread crust, hard candy, pound cake, lager yeast, with only a hint of floral hop essence in the background. Taste is very malty like the nose with toast, pound cake, caramel, nuts, hard candy, grain & lager yeast followed by a tiny hop bite in the finish that rolls over into, but rapidly diminishes in the aftertaste. The hop character becomes more intense as the brew warms. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, creamy, slick & juicy with a light peppery prickle.

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Photo of wisebier
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L: nice dark amber color, small head that didn't last long

S: not much going on. smell some malts and slight caramel. was expecting more

T: upfront was some malty toast caramel. I was expecting more flavor from this beer.

Not a bad beer at all. Just was basic. I was hoping for more flavor. but this is very drinkable and goes down easy. Id prefer their milk stout bc more flavor.

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Photo of jburris64
3.66/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Not my favorite Marzen. Did not have the flavor profile like some bigger breweries.
Still if this was the only Oktoberfest on the menu I wouldn't pass it over for an ale or lager.

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Photo of Raime
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Left Hand Oktoberfest.

Same story for this oktoberfest as the last one. Follow me and read my reviews if you'd like to understand the hijinks. Either way I don't give a shit. Picked this single up for $1 a bottle as the store was attempting to get rid of all the Fall beers to make shelf space for the winter beers that should be coming in shortly. Enough talk, let's drink.

Look - From the twelve ounce bottle into a lint glass since I don't feel like washing my mug yet again. This beer pours the clearest amber I have ever seen with a head that takes its sweet ass time forming. Waiting for head formation was a lot like standing behind some old ass woman at a grocery store taking her sweet ass time browsing exactly what you're there to buy and finally going away after five minutes of dementia. Carbonation appears to be surprisingly low for the style and only a few cloud formations remain after the head quickly dies. No lacing or stick is left after the beer is gone.

Smell - Alright alright alright. Now this is surely more Americanized. Getting some big nuttyness on the nasal passage here. Nice and toasted. Hell I'd warrant this beer to be fine in the Winter as well as the fall. Toasted pecans and almonds really dominate the nose along with a good dosage of sweet breadyness and just a touch of cherry. No hops to be noticed in this department.

Taste - The nuts in this beer are as lovable and Vinces nuts from the Shamwow commerical from a few years back. Big toasted nuttyness simply dominates the flavor profile. The breads are all there will a moderate level of caramel malts as the beer sits just a bit. This is almost like a hybrid between a traditional sweet German Oktoberfest met with a nutty, caranel infused American Oktoberfest. Doesn't have a huge flavor profile, but as I just stated it is a fine fusion of the bare minimums from both versions.

Feel - Despite the fact that the head is completely gone at this point, the beer has a very noticable amount of creamyness. The body is overall Medium to the lower level of full with a medium-high level of carbonation in the mouth. The nuts and sweetness along with the breads really dominate in this aspects. Beer swallow easy with a large dosage of lightly smoked almond in the back of your throat.

Overall - Not too shabby at all. A sweeter, nuttier take on the oktoberfest and the first brew out of Left Hand that I actually thought wasn't an over rated over hyped piece of shit. I would love to have this again next fall as part of a mix a six of Oktoberfests to see how they compare and contrast. Not the best Oktoberfest ever, but a good one for sure...

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Photo of Foyle
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: pours a 3" soapy off white head that leaves a ton of lacing. Color is rich copper with moderate streaming carbonation.
Aroma: toasted barley malt, earthy and citrus rind hops, toffee, raisin.
Mouthfeel: light to medium with a dry finish.
Flavor: bready malts dominate, with caramel sweetness and some moderate earthy and citrus hop balance.
Overall: quite enjoyable. I would buy this again.

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Photo of DuaneL
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

DL really likes this one -JK hasn't tried it yet. Well looks like the Beer Advocate Brothers gave it a stellar rating eight years ago!! Got it as part of the fall variety pack.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.72/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: [3.75] Really transparent mahogany colored beer. The color looks deep and inviting. It only forms a tiny 1/4 finger of head. The head is gone quickly leaving only a few bubbles clinging to the sides. The bottle lists the ABV (6.6%) and it has a born and best by date (11/26/15).

S: [3.50] Very weak nose. Some caramel. Brown bread.

T: [3.75] Brown bread. Elevated sweetness in the middle.

M: [4.00] Above average carbonation - kind of zippy on the tongue. The body is medium with some coating of the tongue.

O: [3.75] This is a good beer. It is hard to characterize specific flavors that I am getting in the nose and taste. It is like a sweetened brown bread. I keep saying that but that is what I am getting. It taste like a Brown Ale without any nuttiness. I would drink more of this.

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Photo of svenness
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Best by 12/12/15 on bottle

L: Brilliant amber-red, good head retention
S: Grainy, caramel, faint herbal
T: Bready, caramel malt, some sweetness
F: Medium body/carbonation, mild astringency
O: Beautiful looking beer, easy to drink

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Photo of ordybill
4.54/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass. Appearance, has a murky orange color with a small white head. The aroma is big on sweet wheat and hops. The flavor is full of malt with fruit and wheat filling in the gaps. The brew is medium bodied with moderate carbonation and has a creamy texture. A really fine version of an Oktoberfest beer.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a bronze color with a fingers worth of head that fades down to pretty much nothing

S: Solid maltiness and grain up front, along with some caramel notes. Moderate fruitiness in there as well

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with some moderate grainy notes and caramel sweetness followed by some apple tones and general fruitiness. Finishes with light fruity sweetness and lingering toasted grain notes

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: An easy drinking Oktoberfest with good balance. Definitely a safe American alternative to the German/European versions out there. Worth a shot

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Left Hand Oktoberfest from Left Hand Brewing Company
3.74 out of 5 based on 1,211 ratings.
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