Great Lakes Oktoberfest | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

very good
2,222 Ratings
Great Lakes OktoberfestGreat Lakes Oktoberfest

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by WVbeergeek on 11-04-2003

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Ratings: 2,222 |  Reviews: 623
Photo of becktone
4.7/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Eye: Very good appearance on this brew. Head is ivory in color, but not so creamy looking. Just a good solid head with good size and retention, good lacing too. Very clear brew that is dark copper in color with yellow-orange highlights.

Nose: The beer smells mostly of malt. Those aromas being toasty and rich. Hops give this beer a nicely balanced aroma with woody/earthy and spicy aromas. Definitely noble hop aromas.

Tongue: This brew is nicely balanced. Between the rich and toasty malt flavors and spciy and woody/earthy hop flavors this brew is right on the mark. I won't go as far as to say that the balance is even, it tends to lean more towards the malty well it should. There are also some dark fruit flavors I'm picking up. In my opinion this is one hell of a brew.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Carbonation and body are medium in this brew. There is just a bit of warmth as it goes down, suggestion of alcohol. Overall pretty sweet on the palate. The beer is easy to drink, this is one I could see myself drinking all night, especially if I had a large liter glass stein. This is a brew I'll definitely buy again, though probably not this season as I may be out to try other oktoberfest style brews.

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Photo of neenerzig
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. This beer pours a clear, deep amber copper like color. Head was about 1/4 of an inch when poured. head settles to a thin white ring lining the inside of the glass not long after being poured. Not much lacing at all here. The smell is of sweet malt with hints of some spices and not much else. The taste is pretty much like the smell, malty sweet with a bit of spice and rounded out with a slightly dry and bitter hop taste. Has a medium bodied and crisp mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink in the way good beers should be. A good beer, but I'd have expected a bit more from Great Lakes. I remember liking this a little better when I had it on tap at the brewery a few weeks ago.


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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The beer is crystal clear and the color of copper, with a thinnish white head (perhaps I poured too slowly). The aroma is nice, malty nice but about as neutral as you'd expect for the style. The flavor is sweet malts with a not-too-bitter dry aftertaste. Just a little bitter. Nicely chuggable as an oktoberfest should be.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.2/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a pale amber/ earthy color with a white head. Aromas that ore earthy and a European malt sweetness. In the taste, a lighter malt, and a nice sweetness. It is even a bit fruity. There is a small hop aftertaste and also leaving the mouth dry, but refreshed. A nice Oktoberfest from Great Lakes, nice flavor and not over bearring.

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Photo of goindownsouth
4.37/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Many thanks to BA nathan15 for helping make this one happen... 12 oz brown long neck bottle, best before date clearly marked.

Rich ad amber in appearance, clear through and through. Lace along the glass came from a fluffy white head. Aromas of malty goodness intertwined with caramel notes - undoubtedly good attributes from the Vienna malts. Nice yet subtle hop twinge. Smooth on the palate with uncloying caramel and malty flavor. Slight hop bitterness balances the Bier well. Good finish and a fantastic sessionable O'fest Bier... One of the best domestic offerings I have tried to date, ranking right up there with Brooklyn's Oktoberfest and Victory's Festbier.

Zum wohl!

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Photo of giblet
3.35/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

once again i admit that i am a huge Great Lakes fan. but, and a big butt, i am rather disappointed in this girl. look at my rating and you would wonder...i have much higher expectations of GLB. now this is Not my favorite style of beer so with that aside. it poured nice and had nice body, head, and orangish color. nice aroma and flavor...not great but nice.

i am going to let the other five sit in the fridge for a month or so and see if they improve.

suckem up and movem out!


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Photo of scott
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Completely clear, fairly carbonated (no head to mention), pale copper in color.
Subdued bready lager in nature, both in mouth & nose. Balanced, and maybe a bit too much as this finishes in a rather bland manner. There is a small, but mentionable spicy kick initially, though. Big & chewy at first, and ends with a dry finish that is light.
All in all, a nice offering. It easy to drink, and if I were a marzen fan, I would probably enjoy more of these. I see this pairing well with sausages and the like.

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Photo of Briarbush
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Applebee's in Cuyahoga Falls.

Appearance: Dark Amber with an orange hue that was suprising clear. 1/2" Head that had great retention.

Smell: Was malty and sweet, but not overpowering, with just enough hop for balance.

Taste: Was perfect. Not overpowering in malt and not overly bitte either.

Mouthfeel: Rich full bodied with a lingering sweet after-taste.

Drinkability: Easy drinking with an aftertaste that keeps you coming back.

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draught at the brewpub. Clear dark copper color with a medium thick white head with fair retention. Speckled lacing throughout the glass. Sweet malty aroma along with a touch of caramel and nuts. Medium-bodied and smooth with a strong malt presence, as well as caramel and a bit of hops to liven it up. The finish is mostly sweet malt with a light hop finish. Above average.

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Photo of cabsandking
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber color with very little head to speak of. Spicey, toasted grains, nutty aromas in the nose. Same notes in the taste as the nose and some citrus, orange flavors trail. As it warmed alcohol strength yeilds to sweeter malt characters of toffee and caramel, and peppery, coriander notes. Rock candy sweetness in the finish as well as fuller hop notes. Thin body and a pleasent mouth that is watery but leaves carbonated creaminess behind. Overall a nice crisp autumn like beer spices indicative for the style and a good benchmark.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
3.56/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer at D's in Swissvale,PA.this past Saturday.
The beer poured with a creamy slight off white,nice and thick about an inch.The color was medium copper,very clear.looked good.
The smell was buisquity,carmelly,very clean not a lot of aroma presence.
A medium body,tastey,finishes with a sharp,prickley feel on the tounge.
A very drinkable beer,nicely carbonated,clean and refreshing.Leaves a dry aftertaste in the mouth,making you want more.
A good Octoberfest.

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Photo of Osiris9588
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear copper with an orangey hue. The white head was not that thick, with little retention--this was the result of the time it took the server to get the pint from the bar to the table.

Aroma is very malty, has subtle hops, slight spice, and a touch of citrus. The flavor is domianted by malt, subtle spice--not overwrought like some beers of this ilk, and a little pumpkin. The mouth is good, bright on the front, malty and dry on the back. Very drinkable, as it is extremely well balanced. Another winner from GLBC.

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Photo of Illinick
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a delicious looking copper amber with a big, fluffy tan to light brown head that sticks around big time. Great lacing throughout as well. A bit of rising carbonation also.
S: A bit on the faint side, but take a good whiff and you'll pick up definate malt scents on the sweet side (sweet bread) and some autumn inspired spice scents. Some dark berry and spiced apple and nutty aromas peeking through faintly. Some crisp hop scents near the end.
T: Nice flavor profile that is well done and not overly done, like some Oktoberfests. Sweet bread with some dry, toastlike flavors. Dry, crisp hops finish off the sip. In between their is some interesting berry and apple flavors as well as a generic fruitiness. The malts are carried throughout and give way only shortly to these other flavors.
MF: Light at times, but medium light most of the time.
Overall: A nice interpretation with an interesting fruitiness to it. Pick some up as it's drinkability is perfect for an autumn afternoon!

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a pale orange, with crystal clarity and a creamy, off-white one 1/2 finger head. Decent retention and lots of spotty, sticky lacing. Toasted pale and munich malt in the nose, with faint hallertau notes. Rich munich flavor upfront, follwed by toasted amber malt and a well-placed hallertau flavor. Dextrins and noble hop bitterness make-up the slightly drying aftertaste, and I like that there is more hop flavor than bitterness, and more biscuity malt taste than sweetness. The lighter carbonation and moderate body allow a creamy mouthfeel that is a good medium of crisp to slick. The finish is a touch residual, with plenty of german hop character to match. This has a superb drinkability, and is balanced through and through.

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Photo of klewis
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap (via pitcher) 9/7/06 at Riverside Wine and Imports - Kent, Ohio

Poured a nice caramel color with a small frothy head with good sustain. A gentle malty smell set the tone for a big malt flavor, yet without the sometimes cloying sweetness that can result in brews like this. A subtle nutty flavor added some depth to the taste. The body was medium-light and creamy with moderate carbonation. A great offering from a consistently outstanding brewery. Go find some for yourself.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap and poured into my new and now beloved liter stein at the 2006 Great Lakes Oktoberfest. The place was packed (two and a half hour wait when we walked in at 9pm!), but we did manage grab a table in the pub for a few hours before heading across town for a late bite. Back to the beer, I was immediately struck by the color, clarity, and impressive head. Indeed this brew is quite the looker. Pours a crystal clear coppered, orange leaning, amber with minimal carbonation, and a thick, voluminous light brown head. Retention is top notch. Aroma is stylistically correct but a touch light to my preferences. Notes of caramel syrup, Vienna/German malts, and that very autumn, almost pumpkin like smell associated with Marzens were all present but on the faint side. Flavor was caramel and toast, very German and autumnal but again a bit light. Subtle amounts of raisins, a very light fruitiness, and a brushing of hops finishes off the job. Body is medium, lightly carbonated, and rich with out any muddling or lack of cleanliness. Drinability is through the roof. Very nice example of an Oktoberfest. Would drink again if given the opportunity.

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Photo of mcallister
4.77/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pale amber/mahogany, thick fluffy pearl head. Some trace sticky lace remains. Very brilliant crisp appearance.

Great nose, thick juicy layers of caramel and toffeed malts. Complex aromas flow from the glass. Also some floral hoppiness.

(I've always loved Oktoberfests beers and have had tasting parties in the past of this style of brew. The Great Lakes Oktoberfest has always intrigued me as they are one of my favorite breweries. Unfortunately you couldn't get this brew outside of the brewery until this year when it was released in draught only. Supposedly to be released in bottle next year all I can say is find youself a sixer when they do. Best O-fest I've had to date).

Big and full bodied creamy mouthfeel. Impeccably balanced and complex. Very uncanny for an O-fest. Enormous burst of caramel/toffee malt smacks you in the face and coats the palate with it's chewy oozing texture, the mid palate is still devoured in malt with hints of fig, and cashews, then finishes with a floral slightly piney hoppiness that rounds things out tremendously. One of the longest finishes I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing in a beer. Well over a minute of malty goodness.

When this one is released in bottles definitely buy some. If you're into this style a must try.

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Photo of Bones54
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draught at the brewpub. Poured a nice dark amber color. Took a whiff and could smell some sweetness but nothing to strong. Upon first sipp I was initially underwhelmed. I was expecting more. But wait. The after taste brought the hop taste about and this beer rounded out. I found myself enjoying this beer more and more with every sip. Give this beer a chance and you'll be happy you did.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured crystal clear medium amber with a white head which lasted well to lace the glass.

The aroma was malty with caramel and Vienna/Munich malts and a crisp hop character.

The flavor was malty with a crisp caramel flavor and Vienna malt. The hop bitterness balanced the maltiness and kept the malt in check. The Vienna and toasty flavors were very well done.

The finish was dry with a slight bittering component lasting long into the aftertaste. The body was medium and well done.

2L German Growler.

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Photo of raverjames
4.68/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was on tap at Gibbies Irish Pub. The first thing I notice was that the smell was sharp and unlike typical Oktoberfest contenders. It was served to me with a nice lacey head. First taste was sweet and malty with five times the flavor of Sam Adams version of this seasonal. This had a fruity finish and I didnt regret ordering another. Even my girl said this was the best Oktoberfest she had ever tried and she has half the experience I do. Thank you Great Lakes for releasing such a satisfying seasonal.

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Photo of GreenWBush
4.53/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good goddamn! I knew that Great Lakes was a fantastic brewery, but I had no idea how well they could clean up in this style ... At the local beer bar, the cronies and I ordered up every last Oktoberfest on-tap and compared them side-by-side. Amongst Spaten, Paulaner, Sam Adams, Goose Island, and Upland, Great Lakes was unquestionably the best.

This beer pours out a deeper-than-normal brownish-bronze with a fat head and astonishing lacing.

The nose is richly sweet, malty, twinged with a greater than normal IBU. We're not talking Imperial Oktoberfest here, but a presence much more impressive than any other examples.

The sweet nectar has a smooth, rich mouthfeel that coats but keeps getting better with every sip. I cannot describe this beer any further than to demand anyone who has any reasonable access to it to seek it out.

Mmmm ... down to the bar ...

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.51/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served up at Med Mex the Robinson location:

Appearance: Perfect, caramel orange tint nice foamy cream hued head, with rings evenly spread for the lace. Aroma: Rich toasted malts with a sryupy malt backbone bringing out the sweetness with the hops tip toeing onto the scene. Taste: Full malty and hoppier than most awesome Ofest the best spicy finish I have yet to taste from any of the Oktoberfests I've sampled, mildly hopped at 35 IBUs. Mouthfeel: Medium body slightly sticky in texture with smooth carbonation. Drinkabiltiy: All I can say is by the liter.

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Great Lakes Oktoberfest from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
3.99 out of 5 based on 2,222 ratings.
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