Weihenstephan Festbier is underrated on BA scale

Discussion in 'BeerAdvocate Talk' started by sberg3, Oct 12, 2020.

  1. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,359) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
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    I've enjoyed 10 of their beers and I am inclined to agree with you.
     
  2. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,555) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
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    Wow that a pretty high score for the style, I’m shocked.
     
  3. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,359) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
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    Holy Scheiß. I need to find that Austrian wonder.
     
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  4. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Fly to Munich, drive the scenic route to Salzburg (or take the Zug), turn left, enjoy. :slight_smile:
     
  5. rgordon

    rgordon Meyvn (1,087) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    They are the vaunted "influencers" trying to influence.
     
  6. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Ach - SO! :wink:
     
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  7. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,616) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
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    If you're expecting an Oktoberfest (pale or amber) you might be surprised...
     
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  8. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,359) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
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    No worries, I'm not going to find it.
     
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  9. DCH

    DCH Aspirant (251) Jun 12, 2013 New York

    Given that, in just a few years time, almost every local brewery went from never thinking about lagers in general to now deciding to roll out their own version of an Oktoberfest... I would tend to agree with this statement.
     
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  10. jzeilinger

    jzeilinger Poo-Bah (7,613) Dec 4, 2004 Pennsylvania
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    Just to annoy you. :wink:
     
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  11. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Nah. I recognize the real world on my side of the LCD screen. :slight_smile:
     
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  12. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,332) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota
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    I know I am a little late to this party, but I had Weihenstephaner Festbier for the first time this year, and my first thought was that this site is off with this beer. I loved it, my 2nd favorite Festbier, and probably my 5th favorite of all Oktoberfests, including Marzens, Festbiers and those odd examples that nestle in between and elsewhere. And I think I have had about 40 different Oktoberfests.

    But maybe the issue is simply that people don't appreciate the Festbier style enough. Another thought is that maybe the scores have averaged higher the last couple years, as Festbiers have become more known and understood here vs years ago when Americans mostly only knew about Marzens.
     
  13. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    That beer is an Austrian-style Märzen. It's 12.0°. I saw a craft beer website state: "There’s no better to start any discussion of Oktoberfest beers [...] Augustiner Bräu Märzen Bier is 4.6% lager that’s pretty close to Oktoberfest perfection." Um... their English isn't even good. @steveh

    It's totally the opposite. Festbiers are becoming less understood here. Every Oktoberfestbier is a Festbier. Every Weihnachtsfestbier is a Festbier too.
     
  14. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Fill in your own blanks. :wink:

    You know, at least they got their umlauts in the right spots! :laughing:
     
    #94 steveh, Oct 22, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2020
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  15. officerbill

    officerbill Zealot (572) Feb 9, 2019 New York
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    Which one, the Export, Oktoberfest, or Vienna? :smiley:
    [​IMG]
     
  16. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,938) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
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    I am not misinformed as to what is served in the beer tents, but the festbier substyle (@zid :wink:) is not what I am looking for in an Octoberfest seasonal. I can't help what the Germans prefer! :grin:

    It is an excellent helles, though. (Let's see... where's that "Stir the Pot" meme?...) :stuck_out_tongue:
     
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  17. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    You are right. Weihenstephaner Festbier is an excellent Helles Märzen.
     
  18. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    All of the ones with less than two ratings are Festbiers... even the amber ones. :slight_smile:
     
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  19. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Somebody, somewhere else in a parallel thread mentioned that the listings are most often additions by the public. They're only as good as the knowledge of those adding the beers -- or those that suggest corrections. You know? :wink:
     
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  20. officerbill

    officerbill Zealot (572) Feb 9, 2019 New York
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    :+1: the person who entered the first one into the system as a Dortmunder Export even says ”Decent Festbier” in his review.
     
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  21. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Hah. Oy. :rolling_eyes:
     
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  22. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,938) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
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    Dortmunder / Oktober... I can see how that could happen! :wink:
     
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  23. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Funny, I don't even see a Weihnachtsbier at that brewery's web site. Makes you wonder what detail isn't correct.
     
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  24. officerbill

    officerbill Zealot (572) Feb 9, 2019 New York
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    I just did a search for Weihnachtsbier (https://www.beeradvocate.com/search/?start=10&q=Weihnachtsbier+&type=beer), leaving out the fest part, and it returns 29 Weihnachtsbiers.
    Styles are still messed up though; ranging from Helles, Dunkel, and Schwarzbier to Herb & Spice, Bock, and Altbier (there's even a Kolsch thrown in for good measure) :slight_smile:
     
  25. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    [​IMG]

    It's not on the brewer's site but on their Instagram - they put it out last Christmas. It's a beer. It's a Festbier. Color has nothing to do with it. Oktoberfest has nothing to do with it. I have no issue with how folks categorized such things on BA when they entered them. That's just a product of the overall approach. This one was a 5.7% golden lager so they went with "export." No biggie. If it was put it in the "Oktoberfest / Märzen" BA category people here wouldn't accept it any better (or even necessarily be any more accurate). Categorization can be funky - so where the beers end up on BA doesn't really bother me... it's the treatment of such placements on BA as gospel that's bizarre (as I mentioned today to you in a different thread about Heady Topper). This picture is making me seriously thirsty. :slight_smile:
     
    #105 zid, Oct 23, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2020
  26. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Sorry -- who mentioned color?

    Anyway, I just wanted to see what the brewery called the beer to see where it might rightly be placed.
     
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  27. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,938) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
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    If it's a Christmas beer, then it must be either a spiced Winter Warmer or a Quad, right? :wink:
     
  28. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    I'm sorry man. Tone is hard to convey. I didn't mean that as anything contrary to your posts. I'm just shooting the $#*@. If my words seem forceful, they're just supposed to be casual instead.

    As soon as I wrote, "where the beers end up on BA doesn't really bother me," I knew someone would show up with a good one. Not that it actually bothers me, but unless there's a good reason for it, Kölsch just pushes it too far. That's Allgäuer's "Winterfestbier." No idea why they listed it as a Kölsch here, but the reviews (plenty of which reference the style classification) are amusing. Someone said it's not a Kölsch but a spiced winter lager. I gotta assume that that's just as wrong and is a bit of the ol' Celebration-syndrome ( @MNAle :wink:). It looks like it's probably just an amber Märzen Festbier. Just to be clear, one reason why the various classifications here don't bother or surprise me is because I don't think it makes much sense to pin down Festbier so narrowly. That's why I'm not a fan of this trend towards defining it as a golden Oktoberfest.
     
  29. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    Mulled. :grin:
     
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  30. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (2,776) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
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    No biggie, was just confused.

    As said, I go by what the Brewery calls it before anyone.

    A few years ago HB's Winter beer was an outright Festbier of the "golden" variety -- a quite nice one at that. I wish they still offered it instead of the Doppelbock they're exporting now -- probably confused Ami drinkers.
     
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  31. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,616) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
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    I’ve always used the phrases “pale Oktoberfest” and “amber Oktoberfest”.

    I don’t think that’s technically wrong, and no one is confused by what I’m saying.
     
  32. ifnkovhg

    ifnkovhg Initiate (192) Aug 12, 2008 California

    I agree! I think when some people drink the Wiesn style like Weihenstephaner or Paulaner, they say to themselves, "This doesn't look or taste like a Marzen at all!" I wish one or both would offer it year round.
     
  33. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,938) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
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    I always use the phrases "festbier substyle" and "märzen substyle" and I don't think anyone is confused by that either (although the terminology does result in "discussions"). :wink:
     
  34. gyorgymarlowe

    gyorgymarlowe Initiate (90) Aug 24, 2019 Colorado
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    I drank four or five six packs this year. I am a big fan of Weihenstephaner Festbier. It deserves some love.
     
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  35. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,222) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    I don't do that and I wonder how many people I'm confusing or turning off.
     
  36. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,938) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
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    IDK about others, but I'm neither confused nor turned off by the discussions.

    There is a different terminology as applied to the market in the USA compared with Germany. Even many of the German brewers acknowledge this by the way they label their beers intended for export to the USA.

    When I see a beer here labeled "Märzen", I don't equate that as a synonym for "strong", and I suspect that is true of most American beer consumers. I also don't expect it to be a strong helles-like beer, either, as those tend to be labeled as "Festbier." (Now, your suggested label of Helles Märzen, however accurately it used the German terms, might be confusing to American beer consumers! )

    What may be confusing to the consumer is that not all brewers, even in this country, apply this terminology consistently.
     
    #116 MNAle, Oct 23, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2020
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  37. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,616) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
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    That doesn’t confuse me either, and I doubt it confuses many Beeradvocate’s.

    I wonder how Germans view those terms?

    @Snowcrash000
     
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  38. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,696) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    I have been doing this for the past few years. IMO this is the 'best' way to detail these two varying substyles.

    Cheers!
     
  39. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,696) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    In a past NBS thread I discussed the ‘concept’ of German Helles Exportbier for detailing a Pale Oktoberfest beer and conducted a side-by-side tasting of Weihenstephaner Festbier and Augustiner Edelstoff:

    [​IMG]

    https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/threads/new-beer-sunday-week-709.588887/#post-6187913

    A ‘conclusion’ I posted:

    “These two beers are indeed quite similar. It seems to me that describing a Pale Oktoberfest as a more heavy duty Helles (i.e., a German Helles Exportbier) is a fair statement.”

    Cheers!
     
  40. officerbill

    officerbill Zealot (572) Feb 9, 2019 New York
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    For the overwhelming majority of American beer drinkers the word “Märzen” refers to the color of the beer, not the strength (most probably aren't even aware of that meaning).

    Much of the confusion would be eliminated by simply having two separate style listings
    1. Märzen/Oktoberfest (amberish Oktoberfests or labeled as märzen)
    2. Festbier (encompassing palish beers for any fest)