Okto Festival Ale | Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

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Okto Festival AleOkto Festival Ale
Okto Festival AleOkto Festival Ale

Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: German Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Classified as a German Altbier by the Widmer Brothers; brewed with an (ale) Alt yeast strain.

availability: early Aug. - late Oct.
bitterness : 28 IBU
original gravity: 13.5° PLATO

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User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 184 | Ratings: 500
Photo of flagmantho
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this beer in a pint glass on-tap at Indigo in Lynnwood, WA.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a clear body and a lazy effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy ivory foam. Seems a bit light for an altbier, but it's still pretty attractive.

Smell: light malty aroma with a light citrusy fruitiness. Nice, but a bit on the subtle side.

Taste: sweet malt with a light toasty character. There's a nice citrusy hop flavor which seems atypical for an altbier but I think it works well. Bitterness is relatively low; overall I like it.

Mouthfeel: medium light body with a low level of carbonation; there's a light but decent creaminess.

Overall: it's a bit unorthodox, but I like the idea of a citrusy altbier.

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Photo of ghengisflan
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Very appropriately for a fall/October beer, it's a bright fiery orange ale. Very clear. Pours with a tan 2 inch head which quickly dissipates.

S: Initially a pleasant spicy yeasty smell, which mellows out to a sweet, simple (and slightly less pleasant) beer smell.

T: Moderately strong forward sweet and malty taste. I'm not an Octoberfest expert, but it's good.

M: Round and smooth mouthfeel, pleasant all the way down.

O: A delightful beer to drink. It goes down easy but is still substantial.

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Photo of jak3676
3.3/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Widmer Brothers - Okto Festival Ale Bottled in Portland, Orago.

Not bad - Like so many others, I like it, but it seems uninspired. This one is a little more brown than red, but still a nice amber color. It was pretty clear color, but poured without any head.

5.3% ABV and a date of Aug 08 12 stamped on the side. I'm assuming that was the bottling date - I just got this a the last week of August and I haven't seen them in the store before then.

Another middle of the pack beer in my book - good enough that I'd go for more, but not enought that I'd seek it out again.

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Photo of Jason
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

LOOK: Clear orange amber hue, sticky suds all around

SMELL: Bready, toasted grain, clean, caramel, slightly grassy, hint of floral hop

TASTE: Crisp, medium body, very malty, toasty, faintly biscuity, balance hop bitterness, mild caramel, dried grass, nutty, kiss of alcohol, clean, malty semi-dry finish

Definitely the Altbier that they have talked about the past, some minor tweaks over the years and ends up being a solid brew. A good pick for a fall seasonal, happy to see this one back.

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Photo of Bung
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. Orangey gold pour, pretty standard. Small white head. Doesn't really stick a whole lot.

Aroma, kind of a musty carmelly malt. Some noble type hop aromas.

Taste, good caramel and grainy bread. A slight toasted note, a little leather. That hop presence is just barely here.

To the right of light bodied, enough carbonation. Abv under control, an easy drinker for me.
Nothing mind blowing, but a really solid example of the style.

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Photo of DannyHartman
3.23/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not a huge fan of the Widmer Weissbiers, but I must say that this seasonal isn't too bad.... As you fill a pint glass, a beautiful reddish/copper beer appears with a nice inch head that leaves a decent amount of trails as you drink it.... The smell is that of toffee, caramel, and a bit of toast.... The taste is also toasty with caramel notes, and slightly hoppy and nutty.... It has an average to full body that leaves a pleasant aftertaste.... Overall, a pretty good brew.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Red-copper. Head istwo finger off white. Great retention, just a wisp of lacing.
S- Aroma tends toward mild and sweet with toffee, caramel (though it's more like dark caramel, not caramel candies) and toast.
T- A bit of sweetness, toffee and brown sugar up front. Did not expect this, but they managed to get a nice hop level to it. Just a touch of bitter herbal flavor in the finish that is very nice.
M- Body is just a touch lighter than I'd like. Just a bit sticky though. Good carbonation on the whole.
O- This is a good beer. Nothing flashy or surprising, but well rounded with no glaring flaws.

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Photo of beerpadawan
3.49/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The ingredients listed on the website for the 2012 bottle do not match those above: hops include their "Alchemy" blend and Willamette. ABV is listed at 5.3% and IBUs at 28.

To mid-afternoon sunlight it has a clear, dark amber color and with a 1-finger head the color of the Dark Helmet's desert gear. It retains for a few minutes and then settles to a splotchy covering.

The crystal malt is apparent in the aroma, mild toffee or caramel; some toasted/sugary notes join dark bread and some faint fruit and floral hops.

The flavor is malt-forward, with toasted grain/bread and light caramel. It has mild bitterness and some estery fruit. Hop flavor is noticeable but takes a back seat; floral. Body is medium and somewhat sweet on finish, despite balancing bitterness that gains prominence as the beer approaches room temperature. I would probably pick it out as an amber ale if I weren't told anything about it.

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Photo of barczar
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Altbier and Oktoberfest are NOT similar enough to be substituted styles, but the label on my bottle says oktoberfest style, so that's the way I'm rating it.

Pours a clear copper brown color with a solid half inch cream head that slowly dissipates into a layer of foam, leaving spotty lacing.

Caramel malt, toasted bread, and floral hops comprise the initial aroma, with caramelized sugar and a hint of resiny hops adding complexity deeper in the scent.

Flavor reveals more of a bready backbone, with toasted crust lingering throughout. Light caramel notes are slightly sweet, and floral hops surface toward the finish, which is fairly dry and a touch bitter. There's a bit of a metallic aftertaste. Nuttiness emerges as it warms.

Body is moderate to slightly full, with moderate to low carbonation. There's a slight alcohol warmth.

Overall, a decent beer, but it lacks the malt complexity that is typical for the style. The caramel notes are too light, and melanoidin flavors are absent.

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Photo of MouthfulOfchris
3.41/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured out a dark copper color with a very thick off-white head with good retention and lacing.

S: The smell is very light. It is mostly light toasted malt and earthy bread with a hint of caramel.

T: The taste is mostly sweet malt with an ever so slight slight earthy hop bitter finish. The bitter finish is a nice balance to the sweetness. It also has notes of caramel and roasted/tea flavor.

M: A medium body mouth feel with a medium-low amount of smooth carbonation. It has a nice sticky texture that feels like it coats the tongue.

O: A solid Oktoberfest offering. Nothing stands out as spectacular but has a nice overall character. It definitely leans toward the sweet side but has just enough bitterness for balance which makes it interesting.

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Photo of wac9
4.06/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

what can i say i dont normally buy widmer but i like the color of the bottle wow very nice beer with a little hop to it but that ok all i can say it s a good tasting beer for a octerber fest so if your looking a beer that crisp with a hop this is a beer for , good color good taste little hop enjoy

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Photo of droomyster
3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper body with one inch of foam with decent retention. The aromas are reminscent of bread crust and baked biscuits. The front palate has a light earthy hoppiness, with breadier, more biscuity flavors dominating the middle. Medium to full bodied, finishes crisp. This is my first Oktoberfest of 2012, and I like it a lot.

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Photo of N3rdM3t4l
4.05/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown longneck from a 6pack "okto festival ale"

A: very enticing copper color, very clear, with 1 finger khaki colored head. Head fell to an average cap with a thick ring.

S: almost smells like pineapple, sweet malty profile and noble hops. Most of the smell is fruity though. Smells good but odd.

T: super malty and rich. A little toasty and bready. Quite sweet. A little hop character at the end that finishes well.

M: rich and chewy. very smooth. I really like this.

O: quite good, I am a fan of alts in general. I do not regret this 6 pack at all!

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Photo of Zorro
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear deep amber colored ale with a smallish tan colored head.

Smell is sweet and malty with a little Lemon in tea and grass in it. Toffee candy and a little toasted grain.

Starts out malty and mild. Sweet and malty with nuts and a little hop bite in the finish.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall not a bad beer. Probably won't buy again though.

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Photo of bump8628
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks like a fall beer, vibrant copper with a thin head of foam that drops some lace. Thick, steely caramel with warm toasted bread maltiness. Hops are clean and herbal. Balance is about even. Clean fermentation profile, lager-like even if it is technically an ale. Nothing spectacular, but another solid beer to have in the cooler during football season.

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Photo of iabeerbaron
2.36/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Surprising found this at Chameleon's in Mount Vernon, IA. "Pours a clear amber with a thin white head that disappears immediately. Smell of sweet malts, with just a hint of hops. A little watered down. Taste has malt, caramel, and some hops with just a tad of bitterness. I would say this would be a very average Octoberfest; nothing stands out.

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Photo of SickGnar
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Warm ambery copper with a slight orange hue. Clear with a few bubbles rising to a medium size off-white head. Settles fast, but okay retention and quite alright lace.

S: Bready malt with hints of crust & toasty grain. Ghost hint of hops. Very faint fruity esters. Light and clean aroma overall. Sweet & bready malts grow just a tad as the brew warms.

T: Quite a bit more forward on the minty & herbal hops – especially on the flavor more so than bitterness. Just a step behind is the malt backbone. More malty sweet than nose, a bit nutty too, but still bready with crust and toasty grain notes. Hops get a touch spicy in the middle and a bit of soapy resin comes out in the finish as the malts fade.

M: Medium body with balanced & finely textured carbonation. A small bit of chew & a balanced finish.

D: Looks the part & smells alright. A bit light on malts, and heavy on the hops. But hey, they are west coast brewers. And the hops do taste German. Okay for an O’fest / fall ale.

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Photo of kickapoodude
3.45/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Malty and nutty. Frankly, a little more complex that what I'm looking for in an Octoberfest. Can you truly call it an Octoberfest? Probably, this brewery has been at it for a while. The nuttiness is the most agressive characteristic. It's not a filbert taste, but similair. Over all, a great beer for the days just before the snao begins to fall. But I'd grab a 22 oz.er of something else to clear your pallet in between three packs.

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Photo of MsRif
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had on-tap at Capone's in Norristown, PA. Poured a copper color with a nice head that left considerable lacing. Had an aroma of sweet malts, light fruits and hops. Tasted like it smelled. Not too complex, but well-balanced.

Light-bodied with good carbonation. Goes down quite easy. Not a favorite of mine, but worth a try overall.

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Photo of aval89
3.38/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: dark amber with finger head.. clear body.

S: sweet caramel/toffee malts with touches
of hops to round out...

T: again big malt presence upfront.. finishes a bit earthy with a slight medicinal taste.. slightly bitter..

Mf: light-medium body with good carbonation

O: not bad.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.38/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Capone's, Norristown, PA

An interesting take on an Oktoberfest beer, as it's an altbier rather than a typical marzen. Poured a coppery orange with a creamy white head that left a nice bit of lacing. Caramel malts on the nose, light fruity tones, and some leafy hops. Similar taste: sweet malts, light indistinct fruits, and subdued hops make for a light, not overly flavorful or interesting, but well-balanced drink. Not quite medium-bodied. Sessionable.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 11/1/2011 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a large white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains fruit, caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with very sweet flavors of fruit, caramel and spices. Then some breadiness comes in from a hearty malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and creates a decent balance. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Flavorful but too sweet for the style, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, whether it’s a true O-fest or not there are better alternatives that are similar.

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Photo of zimm421
2.46/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard pint glass. Bottle dated September 07, 2011. Poured fairly aggressively. Has one finger of off-white head. The head is bubbly and doesn't stick around long. Appears a dark copper color. Fairly clear.

Nose is pretty muted, but has notes of sweet caramel and lots of bready malts. No balance here. All sweet from what little aroma there is. Taste is very bready as well. Some spiciness, but mostly sweet. A decen tbalance in the taste, but again pretty bland.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, average carbonation. The lack of taste and feel makes this go down so easiliy. Overall, a pretty boring beer. Not interesting or enticing at all, just something that goes down easy.

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.49/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Reviewed alongside Sudwerk Marzen.

A: Clear amber with two-finger, off-white, rocky head that lasted a while. Nice lacing.

S: Caramel malt and yeast. Mild.

T: Moderate sweetness and bitterness. More bitterness up front. Toasted finish.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Smooth.

O: Wonderful looking ale and the mouthfeel was solid. I think the nose and flavor was a bit off though. I liked the Sudwerk slightly better.

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Photo of kjyost
2.83/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Bottle BB Aug, 2011 sold in a mixed 12 that was packaged on June 26th, sold at Happy Harry's, 45th St Fargo. Poured ~4C into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

A: Rich amber body with a nice white tea that offers up some lacing. Good start.
S: Not too sure what to make of it here... Lots of malt, some fruity esters coming through. Caramel, sweet malts, but lots more esters than I expect for a fake Oktoberfest Lager.
T: Once again and odd beer. It comes off for a moment as a standard Oktoberfest, with sweet malts and a light body. Fruity esters then come through and finish with a weird sticky metallic bitterness on the front of the tongue that just won't go away.
M: Strong carbonation, weird bitterness. Unpleasant aftertaste of metallic nature...
O: Honestly, I think I'd rather have a Bud.

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Okto Festival Ale from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.44 out of 5 with 500 ratings