Summit Oktoberfest (Märzen Style) | Summit Brewing Company

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Summit Oktoberfest (Märzen Style)Summit Oktoberfest (Märzen Style)

Brewed by:
Summit Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-18-2001

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Reviews: 287 | Ratings: 665
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.85/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnt orange with sparkling brass at the margins. The beige colored cap is tidy, but firm, with a heavily pitted look that I like. What appears to be an acceptable amount of lace is beginning to form on the upper few inches of the glass. This looks like a standard Marzen; perhaps a little lighter than most.

The nose, as well, is standard issue for the style. Malt leads the way (natch) with faint caramel and earthy Munich notes. Since there isn't a great deal of power, a more detailed description isn't possible.

I feel odd drinking an Oktoberfest during late winter, so from now on I'll call this beer a Februarfest. Okay, bad idea. The flavor is enjoyable if you like the style. I can appreciate lightly toasted, earthy, whole grain bread; tea-like notes and a minimal spicy hoppiness. There's actually quite a bit going on.

The hop lineup isn't anything overly original (Northern Brewer, Tettnang and Saaz), but then tradition is tradition for a reason. Simcoe or Amarillo would turn this beer into something else entirely; good maybe, but not really an Oktoberfest. Sweet and bitter are present in roughly equal measure and the beer is the better for it.

Despite the rather lofty 7.7% ABV, I don't really notice alcohol; a tribute to the brewers' skill. The mouthfeel falls within the wide range of medium and is firm rather than smooth or silky. Again, classic for the style. A (tending toward) bitter, drying finish enhances drinkability.

Summit Oktoberfest Marzen and Millstream Oktoberfest are two of the better domestic versions that I've run across. Maybe it has something to do with the high concentration of German immigrants in the Midwest. In any case, this is a beer that I can easily recommend. While it didn't impress the lederhosen off me, it's a definite keeper.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" beige head over the dark orangey amber brew. Head hangs at about half height, with average lacing. Aroma is sweet somewhat wet grain, with a tinge of alcohol. Flavor is upfront brash fruity malts, with closing bitterness, relatively balanced overall. Mouthfeel and drinkability are about average, although the perceived alcohol in the taste seems high for the style.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.65/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - short-lived off-white head melts quickly to a sparse cover. This copper-hued beer looks good!

Aroma - moderate malt and spice, very pleasant.

Taste - sweet, malty, but not as spicy as the aroma. An early breath of alcohol fades. Sweetness follows the swallow, followed by some nearly Belgian-like malty sweetness. Nice malty style, not real distinctive though.

Mouthfeel - average carbonation and weight, nicely done.

Drinkability - tasty and easy to drink, kinda average though.

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Photo of hanco005
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a 6 of these because they were on sale (I guess they wanted to get rid of them before they expire). I'm not a big Oktoberfest lover of any brand, but really enjoyed this one.

Appearance: Reddish Bronze with a little head

Smell: Very light sweet, caramel scent

Taste: Similar to the smell, but very strong and sweet. I honesty think it tastes similar to caramel corn.

Mouthfeel: Not as heavy as I expected...almost a little flat.

Drinkability: Easy to drink a two but I think the sweetness of it would prohibit drinking more than two in one sitting.

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
2.85/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a copper orange hue, with a semi-hazed clarity. The head is dense, but under one finger and retains poorly. Decent lacing though. Crystal malt aroma, with a pinch of floral hops and ester. The flavor is rich with vienna malt sweetness and bavarian hops, but still too thin to hide an obviuos cider flavor. The hops flavor is lacking, and the ester aftertaste ruins the mouthfeel. Slow, even carbonation and medium body are fairly smooth, but the finish winds up too sweet and expels any chance for a resepctable drinkability.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
2.93/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The Summit Oktoberfest pours from the bottle a bright clear amber red with streaks of peach. A small bubbly white head develops and falls to a ring around the brew. There's a best by date lasered onto the bottle..but the only way to read it is to hold the bottle up to a light!! Aromas of roasty caramel maltiness along with a touch of nuttiness and some herbal hops in the background. A bit fruity even....but overall a tad underwhelming.

First sip brings a roasty caramel maltiness with some nutiness. A bit bready in the middle with the classic Munich malt flavors. Some fruitiness sneaks through along with a subtle herbal hoppiness on the way down. This brew just doesn't really do it for seems a bit out of whack with a slight astringent quality throughout.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with quite aggressive stingy carbonation that makes it a bit hard to drink. Alcohol is well hidden in the flavor. With all the Oktoberfests that are out there I doubt I'll be coming back to this one, but I'm still glad I had the chance to sample it.

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Photo of neonbrown82
3.72/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is not one of the most accurate representations of the style I've seen. Much too strong. Gives those same sweet ethanol flavors as if one were to hold a full shot of bourbon in the mouth without the intense burning.

The appearance is a crystal clear coppery color with a tiny white head and a very active carbonation. Leaves no lacing. Looks alright but for the utter lack of head.

The smell is quite sweet and malty with some bready yeasty notes. I can smell the alcohol.

The taste is very sweet for on Oktoberfest. If this could be toned down (and consequently the alcohol with it), this would make a fine Oktoberfest, but this is almost ridiculous. Is this supposed to be an "Imperial O'fest" or something? Gets better as you warm up to it, letting some of the malty and spicy flavors out, along with a tiny hint of hops (which could be better utilzed to fight the sweetness as well).

The mouthfeel is quite full-bodied. Has lots of residuals and a powerful burn appropriate for the fall season. This was an alright Oktoberfest, but I think it overshot the mark whether it was intended or not.

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Photo of CortexBomb
3.02/5  rDev -17%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out completely transparent orangish amber with almost no head at all...I was not impressed. The smell is fairly undistinct, malty, but that's really it.

Flavour starts out sweet and then settles into a malty, yeasty flavour with some mild hop presence. The finish is very dry. I would rate the taste average.

The mouth is also average, not a lot of hop action, and not a lot of body. Generic beer. Drinkability is good, as should be expected for a lighter beer like this.

A quaffer, but nothing worth looking around for.

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Photo of bruachan
3.57/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

from the hudson acme

good carbonation leads to a creamy head early on, supported by bubble ascendence. it wanes but not past a respectable quilt

a little stronger than i anticipated, but a good beer for when the mornings (er...nights) start to get a little crisp. there's a little spiciness to it. munich and caramel according to the website; delicious. i get a nutty, toasty aroma

i'm not a huge oktoberfest fan, but this is decent. it's interesting to see that this style get generally lower ratings than others. only a tiny portion of the beers in the style (which is a long list) have ratings of 4 or above

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Photo of jamesdergen
3.86/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a nice amber, maple syrup hue with a nice foamy head and leaves some decent lacing.

Smell: Some sweet grains, caramel malty scents and some alcohol, but not very aromatic.

Taste: Follows the nose with the malty caramel flavors and well-balanced hop bite. The alcohol sneaks in at the end in a pleasant and not overbearing manner. The malt taste is somewhat reminiscent of some Belgian ales I've had.

Mouthfeel: Very nice and light and doesn't leave the mouth dry.

Drinkability: This is a highly drinkable brew. It is very flavorful, complex and (best of all) inexpensive! I could easily have another, but this is my last one! The 7.7% ABV is well-hidden, I had no idea it was that high.

This is a very impressive beer from Summit. For the price, I don't know what else I would pick over Oktoberfest. If you live in the area, pick up a sixer while they're still available!

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Photo of merlin48
3.8/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours a clear and radiant copper body with a small, beige head. Retention is minimal and sparse spotty lacing is left on the glass. Aroma is malty, with caramel and a note of molasses. Fruity floral notes lurk in the background. Mouthfeel is light medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Taste is on the malty side, with lots of caramel notes. Spicy, hop bitterness is well executed, and equally assertive. Very nicely balanced. Alcohol is very well concealed, especially if this one is actually 7.7% abv. A very well done American Marzen with very good drinkability.

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Photo of amstelcat
3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice, beautiful dark orange color as poured into the glass. Half inch of head that dissipated fairly quickly and left a minimal amount of lacing on the glass as the beer quickly down into my belly. Nose seems to be a typical Marzen; balance of malt and soft hops, nothing to write home about. Flavor was balanced as well. Maybe Saaz hops used for bittering? Mouthfeel more tight than expected, kind of like a sharp cheddar.

Overall, a very drinkable beer, like most Oktoberfests. I could see myself downing quantities of this at a sitting.

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.23/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very nice golden amber color. Small head that is gone rather quickly. Low aroma-somewhat toasted malt but theres a metallic wang going on in there. A tad sweet on the flavor side. Malty with a somewhat sulfury finish. Not all together unpleasant. Body is ok though almost too full for the style. An enjoyable enough beer though a bit heavy on the body and abv for a maerzen for me. Worth trying for your own opinion. Thanks to deejaydan for the Great Pumpkin sample.

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Photo of beveragecaptain
3.71/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. This beer pours out a clear, copper color with a small head. Toasted malt aroma with some spicy hops. The flavor is malty, with some lemon, which is strange. Just a bit of hop flavor in the finish, but the emphasis is towards the malt. Mouthfeel is light to medium. Good drinkability. Alcohol is well hidden. I didn't detect anything close to the 7.7% abv listed on the bottle. A well above average Oktoberfest.

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Photo of UncleFlip
3.78/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Hits the glass amber to brown,wit a just-off-white head.

The smell is of spicy hops, with a bit of malt under.

Flavour is tangy- earthy with a bit of clove and banana. It's earthy and spicy at the end.

Carbonation is high and tight, with thin liquid underneath.

It has a good character. I think I'd have more than one.

Be well

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
2.57/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a copper-amber color with very minimal head retention, after 15 secs, none at all.

Smell: Malty with an intriguing hop presence in the background. Nearly smells like a nice pale ale. Probably not real true to style, but nice nevertheless.

Taste: The taste is mild at first, but after you swallow, it unleashes a raging blow of sweet, really sweet, tangy, tart, syrupy blast. Overkill. That aftertaste really isnt doing me any favors.

Mouthfeel: Syrupy. Not heavy-bodied, but syrupy or maybe a little oily.

Drinikability: A little hard to choke down at a quick pace.

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Photo of Knuckles
3.6/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Apparently, this is my week for boring marzens. I picked up some of the Summit Oktoberfest when I was in Cleveland, just for the hell of it. I was trying to pick some beers that would appeal to a broad range of tastes, and that was the lager I grabbed. Not a particularly scientific sampling, but I did what I could.

Understand, I don't expect marzens to be mind-blowing. It would be nice, however, if I could find one that ranges beyond the pedestrian. So far I've only found two that do, but am in no position to review them.

Appearance: This beer is gorgeous, but awfully damn light. Thing's orange like a double IPA. I expect my marzens to be a bit darker, and with more brown to it. It was pretty, just too damn light.

Smell: Not particularly mind bending. Lots of yeast, wee hint of malt chasing it around my voluminous nostrils. The yeast won.

Taste: Again, unremarkable. Pleasant malt front, the typical yeasty finish, not much in between. I could pound litres of this stuff and never know it.

Mouthfeel: A bit better than the Hooker I had the day before. This has a slightly more solid presence in the mouth, but not breathtakingly so.

Drinkability: Oh yes, you could drink the shit out of this. It goes down easily, and is never unpleasant. It's just not going to change your life. Unless you drink an assload of it, go home and knock up your girlfriend, get married, get a job at the glue factory and spend your days sawing the hooves off of horse corpses before you throw them into the glue pot so the hooves can be sent off to the Jell-O Brand Gelatin factory so we all can continue to enjoy our fruity gelatinous desserts until the end of time because I know we all just LOVE to watch it jiggle. If that happens, then I guess you could say that it DID change your life. But it seems like a bit of a longshot.

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Photo of slyke
4.08/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another Summit seasonal offering!!! I like them all.

This is a good looking beer. It pours copper-orange with thin white head that fades quickly (the fading head cost it a higher score from me).

Smell is pretty good, malty with a little graininess.

Taste is just what you look for in an Oktoberfest. Bold and malty. Just hoppy enough to finish clean. Mouthfeel is good. A "substantial" feeling beer, just like I expect in a marzen style.

Drinkability is good. This is a tasty, tasty beer, but at 7.7% abv, it is a bit heavy as a session brew. It is great one or two at a time, though. I'll buy it again next year.

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Photo of kdog630
3.17/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Amber color but not much head. It was gone pretty quickly. Mild carbonation with a malty aroma and flavor. Not very impressed though compared to other Summit brews I've enjoyed. I'd say it stays pretty true to the style as far as color and flavor go, but could use a tad more bubbles for my tastes. Maybe I'll get a chance to sample a draft in the near future.

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Photo of DrPond
3.98/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My brother and I bought a keg so I have this on tap at home. Oh yeah!

The beer pours a clear bright copper color with a large rocky head typical of the all-malt German marzens. Smell is malty and sweet but loses points for a slightly metallic twinge in the aroma. Taste is soft and malty. The sweet malty taste really raps around the toungue and mouth, but the finish is clean with an identifible hop presence. For me the first sip was almost cloyingly sweet, but after another few sips the beer's tremendous balance really shone through. Mouthfeel is good and the drinkablility is devastating. This stuff is 7.7% and goes down smooth enough to be considered dangerous. I quaffed a few litres the other night without a problem but it definately caught up with me as the evening progressed.

I think this is one of the better Oktoberfests around --- German or American.

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Photo of deejaydan
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice orange hue, minimal head and lacing. Aroma is floral hops with bready notes. Taste is bready, biscuit like. I'd like more sweet malt flavors upfront, but it's not bad. Mouthfeel is a touch thin, but if this is 7.7%, it's masked well. Very quaffable.

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Photo of malty
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before Dec. 28 '05

Brilliantly clear copper orange with racing tiny bubbles forming an off-white fluffy 1/2" steady head. Good lacing.

Fresh cereal grains with a sweet maltiness in the nose. A touch of sugary fruit (candied figs?) in there also.

Quite toasty flavors indeed. Grainy cereal malt flavor with a nice faint hop dryness towards the finish. All the flavors are very clean.

Mouthfeel is good. Light-Med. bodied with a nice amount of fine carbonation.

Drinkability is great. A very quaffable brew to say the least. A perfect match for many different foods.

Overall a sturdy and honest Oktoberfest. A beer that tastes and feels good, requiring no deep thought - just drink and enjoy. I'm impressed.

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Photo of putnam
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Radiant bronze. Thrilling to look at. Dark for the "style." Soft aromas of nuts, toast, caramel and cream. Big and sweet in the mouth. Baked fruit and caramel flavors. Hempy bitterness. The texture is broad and a bit sticky with volumes of tender mousse. Spiced lemon cuts it and drives rear aromas of steeped tea and herbs. A pure finish; don't scrutinize it. Tangy, toasted kernels of acidity provide an efficient tempo throughout.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.35/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear red color with a small white head that recedes quickly. The aroma is clean with some grassy and floral tones. The taste is as clean as the aroma. The sip has lots of floral notes, while the aftertaste is rather sweet. The mouthfeel is medium boded with ample carbonation. Overall, this is another solid brew from Summit.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.25/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Tom Reid's: Dull rusty color with a small, densely firm cap of dark ivory sits slim. Lace sticks in big strings and globs.

Aroma is sweet and malty with a lovely caramel breading and candied melon granola bar coating.

Taste is sweet with a moderately low set tang of bready dough that has a bit of brown sugar base and light cinnamon touch to it. Unravels across the palate quite nicely with its sweetness. Quite big with long lasting bready and caramel coated goodness. Very slight tint of roasted/toasted grain and light hop notes adding a bit of low grassy spice.

Feel is big, sweet, bready, smooth, and rich with a fairly heavy set tone and body. Malts do there thing here in a solid fashion of balanced sweetness and sticky bread doughy smack.

A big O-fest thats taken a turn for the better over the last couple of years. Thank goodness. Its a keeper to have around. And watch out, its a sneaker, it warms ya up pretty fast too.

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Summit Oktoberfest (Märzen Style) from Summit Brewing Company
3.64 out of 5 based on 665 ratings.
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