Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - Frankenfest | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - FrankenfestHarpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - Frankenfest
40 Ratings
Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - FrankenfestHarpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - Frankenfest

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Frankenfest is brewed in the tradition of classic German Oktoberfest lagers. In order to replicate the complex malt character of the original, a blend of 8 different malts was used. The combination yields a slightly darker color and a toastier malt flavor. Frankenfest is judiciously hopped with three different varieties of hops that lend just enough bitterness to balance out the rich malt flavors. It has a dry finish compliments of an authentic German lager yeast and a longer rest in our conditioning tanks. The lingering malt complexity and dry finish make Frankenfest a wonderful match with many types of food. Enjoy.

26 IBU

Added by Jason on 10-09-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 40 |  Reviews: 38
Photo of ShippinUpToBoston
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of rab53
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of donkeyrunner
4.6/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

We had a homebrew gathering/Octoberfest party during which 3 fledgling homebrewers compared Maerzens. Then Mike Smith showed up with this. Bastard.

Amber with a 1 finger off-white head. Skim retention leaves lacey gasps.

Aroma is sweet and nutty with cinnamon and rum raisin. Prickly hops poking through here and there.

Dark maple sugar and oatmeal raisin cookie malt with a candy-like rum alcoholic warming. Damn tasty.

Arguably the best October I've had and it's not even fresh.

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Photo of mcallister
3.93/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clean polished amber color with a thick slightly off white head that contains great retention. Some sticky lacing hangs around for the party.

Bready malts sweet with toffee and caramel. Cereal grain and a hint of floral hop.

Nice flavors with a wonderful rustic mouth entrentching feel. Malt is full of sweet cereal flavors and big on the caramel. Good carbonation spritzy in the middle with a creamy finish. An overall big mouthfeel. I though this may be past but it is drinking quite fine indeed. A hint of hop bitterness on the finish rounds out the sweetness of the malt. Very tasty.

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Photo of NEhophead
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt 6 fl oz brown bottle; served in a tumbler.

Clean, pale auburn in color. Foamy, dense off-white head that retains well. A small area of the glass is decorated by somewhat weak, thin lacing.

Burnt, toasted biscuit with a lingering musty-astringency. Notes of rustic, floral hops. Semi-sweet caramel and mild hints of diacetyl.

Clean caramel and light toffee sweetness. Fruity esters of fig, plum, and red apple. Airy, toasted malt base; clean grains and notes of diacetyl. Clean, smooth finish with a semi-sweet, malty aftertaste.

Medium bodied; smooth and rather clean on the palate.

A true-to-style Marzen that is somewhat reserved regarding intensity of flavors; however, a decent session lager for the Autumn season.

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Photo of DrJay
3.72/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received as part of BC2. Thanks purplehops!
This one poured a deep amber with a bit of a reddish tint and a slight haze. It was capped by a thin white head that showed decent retention and spotty lacing. The aroma was really bready, more bread crust really, with a kiss of hops and a bit of malty, cracked grain. Medium bitterness with a malty, bready sweetness and hint of caramel. It also had just a slight alcohol warmth and a hoppy bitterness that lasted throught the finish. A bit less than medium bodied with noticeably low attenuation and carbonation on the low side for the style. Carbonation was very fine and there was a light dryness towards the finish. An easy drinking beer for sure. My only complaint is that the bitterness at the end became a bit harsh and acrid after a while. Other than that, quite nice!

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Photo of horshack7
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy orange copper color with about one finger head short head retention. Bubbles riseup fromthe bottom continously.

Aromas: Strong apple notes a bit like apple sauce. Light cinnamon notes and hints of dried fruits. The hop notes show through a little.

Taste: Spice notes such as cinnamon and very light corriender notes. Nice fruit notes apples. Very crisp mouthfeel only a little hoppy but quite tasty.

Notes: This one from Harpoon could very easily be enjoyed year round. Such a tasty brew Cheers.

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Photo of Viggo
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sent my way via BC2 by purplehops! Thanks!

Pours a hazy orange/red, thick almost tan head forms, settles to a thin layer, nice lacing, good retention. Smell is sweet, very bready, caramel, some citrus, kind of apply, some toast, bit of fruity alcohol, not bad! Taste is very bready, caramel, nice maltiness, bit of toast again, sugary sweetness, dry fruity finish. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, low carbonation, alcohol is nicely hidden in the flavour. A bit weak, but lots of enjoyable flavour. Thanks Stan!

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Photo of crayphish
3.37/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber the brew appears a slightly hazy dark amber. A decemt head quickly disappears. No lace. Smell is sweet fruity malt. Bread. Taste is sweet malt, and apples. Bread and butter. A little too sweet. Big chunky mouthfeel. Finished somewhat dry.

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Photo of WanderingFool
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Frankenfest pours a clear amber color with some small bubbles floating slowly up from the bottom of the glass. On top a fluffy white head grows quickly to a 2 finger width. The head slowly dissolves back to the beer leaving behind lots of nets and sheets of lace on the glass. The aroma is a bit faint and has pleasant notes of caramel malt, apple, peach and some grassy hops.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is somewhat chewy with a firm carbonated fizz on the tip of the tongue. The flavor is mainly malt. Caramel, toast and a hint of chocolate are present. In the middle there's some fruity notes of peach. It finishes with a hoppy taste of lemon citrus. Once gone a caramel malt taste lingers in the palate.

This is an easy drinking, tasty beer. It would definitely make a great seasonal.

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Photo of Imstillthegman
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear coppery-orange color with a nice and fluffy white head that leaves light lacing.

The aroma has some bready caramel malts mixing with a light, spicy, grassy hop note. Roasted malts are the main player in the aroma...but the smell could be stronger.

Nice biscuity roasted malt flavor with some sweet caramel throughout and a touch of citrus and grass hops near the finish. Smooth.

Medium body with average carbonation. Crisp and clean. I bought the last bottle of this when I was in Boston for the EBF. Wish they would have had some more.

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Photo of Dewey0603
3.38/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear orange/red with a large white foamy head. The smell is a little light with sweet malt,floral, and a toasted hop scent. The taste has a sweet malt,buttery,creamy toffee, some hops, and a bread yeast flavor. The m/f is light and the alcohol is hidden well,but the metalic aftertaste really hurts this beer. Really, this is just an average beer.Cheers.

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Photo of RedChrome
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Absolutly clear, light copper colored body. Two inch stark white head took minutes to shrink down. Slowly moving carbonation was of an average amount. Stick lace down side.

Light caramel aroma over a slight fruit base. Malt is clearly more dominant then hops. Floral fragrance is overall pleasing on the nose. Nice blend.

Taste is dominates by a buttery caramel flavor. The floral presence also conitues onto the tongue. Hops are crisp and sit lightly in background.

An average feel on the tongue tingles on the tip with a carbonation burst at the very end of a sip.

A very nice beer. Not quite the malt content I expected in the style, but well balanced. Would work with a plate of shnitzel. Worth the try for a one time release.

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Photo of Nipitato
4.6/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Purchased a bomber at Julio's in Westborough, MA.

A: Crystal clear medium amber hue with a nice fluffy white 1/2 inch thick head. Brilliant clarity. A good looking beer.

S: Slightly toasted malt aroma. Spot on aroma for an Octoberfest.

T: Great taste. Strong - not subtle at all - sweet toasted bready malty flavor. Semi dry finish. Very clean and crisp yet very flavorful.

MF: Medium, not light suitably filling mouthfeel. Creamy.

D: This is a great interpretation of the German classic. What I like about this beer is its emphasis on jacking up the malt rather than emphasizing the hops, which is usually the case when US brewers take this style on. An ideal session beer. I hope Harpoon starts brewing this seasonaly.

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Photo of ubermunkey
4.01/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

poured a nice cloudy amber from a 22oz bottle. a thin off white head dissapeared quickly leaving a thin lacing. the smell was nothing memorable for this style. the taste, on the other hand, was right up my alley. nice crusty bread taste, smooth, not too over the top. ended on a slight citrus hop that just stepped in and then exited quickly. i found this one mighty tasty, extreemly easy to drink. hopefully harpoon wises up and offers this as a seasonal brew.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. brown bottle, no date. #16 in the Harpoon 100 Barrel series.

Rich toasted amber. Crackling parchment head of small bubbles that falls rapidly to a smattering of dust with clumps are the edges. Minimal carbonation streams issue slow risers. Bright, sharp grass and pepper hop aromas mingle with some biscuity, bready malt. Smooth and medium bodied, nice biscuity malt sweetness up front before the grass and pepper hops come into full view. Finishing spicy and relatively clean while still retaining a touch of malt sweetness. Modestly spritzy carbonation lends a lightness to the otherwise firm body. Another solid lager from Harpoon. Easily drinkable and sessionable even at 6.9%.

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Photo of warmstorage
3.14/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle, pours a deep amber with light tan head, dissipates to nothing, leaves zero lacing. Pretty disappointing presentation.

Aroma is sweet malt, almost syrupy, and a little fruit.

Taste is fruity, malt sweet, minimal hops, though a little hop spice on the finish. Clean enough, but quite fruity in esters and malt sweetness.

Mouth is creamy and slightly thick.

A decent example of style, but pretty underwhelming overall. I probably wouldn't bother again.

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Photo of EPICAC
3.46/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've finally gotten over a cold, and can smell again so it's back to reviewing beers. I purchased this a month or so ago at Downtown Wine & Spirits. It's been sitting in my fridge since then. I let it warm to around 45º F and served it in my NERAX pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber with a thick, beige head that fades to a patchy film leaving no lace.

Smell: Pretty light overall, but it has caramel, fruitiness and a hint of hops.

Taste: Very malty upfront, with some toasty flavors and a nice caramel sweetness that lingers through to the finish where it's met with a leafy hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with low carbonation.

Drinkability: Tasty and flavorful, but fairly heavy.

Overall: Not a bad Oktoberfest. I've decided to calibrate my ratings to skew a bit lower. This is only the second beer to be rated under the 'new' system, so numerically it seems lower than it is based on the new system.

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Photo of littlebibs
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

like many reviewers noted I enjoy the malty sweetness and
the slightly hoppy kick. Harpoon has mixed in a nice fruity blend with the bready malts, I also think
this would make a great Oktoberfest for harpoon as well. Its
different enough and sure has a kick when it warms some and
I like the way the 6.9% alcohol level slowly creeps up on u. Its a delicious very drinkable homebrew fall 100 Barrel series lager I will seek out, hopefully when it comes back this way again next

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Photo of Billolick
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Typical Harpoon, 100 Barrel Series presentation, with the gold fold over the cap, no freshness indication. Pours crystal clear light amber, with a nice looking tiny bubble, near white head, that leaves plenty of fine scatered and nicely developed lacing. Nose is clean and of biscuity malts. Malt carries the weight on this lager. Bready malts then midway I did pick up sort of a rubbery dry note, and it reamins on the palate through the finish. As with many of these 100 barrrel offerings, something seems slightly off here.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

AP: Deep amber color with slightly red hues popping through. Frothy , off-white head dissipated slowly to a thick ring around the edge and a scattered cap.

Nose: Herbal and hearty malt scent with a subtle leafy hop underneath.

Taste: A hearty, bready and yeastie caramalized malt with an earthy and spicey hop with a really decent balance.

MF: Mildly crisp and clean feeling with a medium body for the style.

DA: The 6.9% ABV is hardly detectable in the taste but you begin to feel it once the bottle is finished. This brew has a very distinct "home brew" quality about it.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.2/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

i know, i know, a little late for an Marzen, but whatever

A - a transparent walnut brown, thin cream colored head, with very scant few bubbles of carbonation

S - yeasty and malty, with slight o-fest spiciness, like nutmeg, pumpkin-esque spiciness, and faint citrus quality

T - surprisingly bland and a bit watered down, some spice, otherwise a lack of flavor, the existing flavor is good, just needs more of it

M&D - eh, good, smooth, and very drinkable, but for me - needs a bit more flavor

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Photo of ridedammit
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle at Downtown in Davis Sq. I am trying to partake of as many of the 100 barrel series as possible, unfortunately i started late. I have had 5 and they are on 16. oh well. Anyway on to the review:

Pours a nice copper color with a strong head that disappears after a few minutes.
The smell is maltier than most lagers, and is quite nice. The taste is bolder and fuller than most lagers, not a crisp, but more ale-like. Mouthfeel is somewhat acidic, possibly due to high abv, overall is a good beer.

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Photo of SixpointJMH
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice crisp looking amber colour with a frothy to creamy off-white head that leaves a fair amount of residue on the glass.

The aroma is malty, a bit earthy and rubbery. Perhaps a touch of floral sweetness. Overall, the aroma is fairly basic and subdued.

Flavour hits on all aspects of the aroma but packs a bit more of a punch. Sweetness is certainly more apparent although the rubbery malt flavouring still dominates. There is perhaps a hint of caramel in the mix as well. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and a touch oily.

This one was pretty good overall. Not great, but solid. A bit maltier than expected but still well balanced. Worth a try at the least...

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Photo of Bierman9
4.33/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 22oz bottle purchased the other day from Harringtons. Label back seems to have a date on it, 100606. Best by, or some other code? Dunno....

Franken is a clear, medium-copper colored bier. Has the hue of what I feel a Märzen should, as opposed to some darker US versions and the sometimes lighter German offerings. Carbo within is barely evident. Head was light beige and creamy, starting at about 3/4" but settling back to about a 1/8" layer of fine bubbles. Lacing is solid from start to end. The Bier emits some toasty malt, as well as a smidge of caramel. Decent, overall. Body is quite acceptable, well within the medium range. As for its feel on the tongue, it is mostly smooth, with a light bit of foaminess bubbling over the palate.

Flavor comes at you with more toasty, caramel malt. Has a very well-measured amount of sweetness.... just right, imo. This malt lingers nicely while slowly segueing into a mild, floral hop epilogue. Dry, crisp and clean in the finish, I feel this is quite solid, overall. Yes, I rather like it. What would be nice to do is gather up Alewife or Artied2, get 3x of these (about 66oz) and pour them into 2 1-litre Maßkrugs and enjoy. Throw in some Bratwürst, and you're all set...

Would be real nice to have this come out every September. Far, far better than the brew they pass-off as a "harvest ale/OFest" every year.


overall: 4.35
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 4.5


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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #16 - Frankenfest from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Beer rating: 3.71 out of 5 with 40 ratings
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