Braudog (5354) - Hampton, Virginia, USA - NOV 17, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Nice, meaty lager. Ruddy orange-amber, slightly hazy. Firm but thin head. Definitely full of clean, earthy malt, this also has a nice creamy finish and a rich, earthy, overall feel. (#5335, 11/17/2013)
nearbeer (3283) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - JUN 2, 2010
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bomber. Orange-amber with a small lasting head. Nose is spicy orange marmalade, apple and light grain. Flavor is orange zest, earthy tea leaf, caramel, light resin and spicy wood. A nice, bittersweet apple-cherry wood aftertaste. Light-medium body is smooth and balanced.
Reid (1719) - Salem,Oregon, Oregon, USA - NOV 27, 2010
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
22 oz from Roth’s Sunnyside Market, Salem. $5.49
Slightly hazy dark golden/light amber beer, with a very nice thick ,frothy off white head. Have to give it "4" I am a sucker for a nice head!
Aroma, is pretty subdued for a Rogue beer..mostly malty, bready, doughy smells.
Taste is pretty nicely malty..same as the aroma with a touch of hop showing..i must say very buscuity very "German"
Nice palte to this one..feels very nice and not too thin.
Overall i found this very drinkable and even authentic which is saying something for this brewer.
wlajwl (3324) - Quad Cities, Iowa, USA - FEB 7, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Another rather unique brew from Rogue. Not really a traditional Octoberfest, an ale fruitiness seeps in, still pretty good and close to the original style.
Sregnar35 (933) - Rotterdam, New York, USA - DEC 16, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap at Mahars. A good kick to this oktoberfest. Aroma was strong and sweet, and the flavor had a great tart sweetness.
502F (999) - Time Out, Washington DC, USA - SEP 12, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bomber into pint glass. Rich golden body with small off-white head that doesn’t hold too well. Smells sweet, nutty and fruity. Flavor is the same with a bit of hop flavor in there too. Simple, but very balanced and smooth. Medium body with low carbonation. Overall: nothing special, but a very solid brew.
Dogbrick (6824) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - OCT 6, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks to Rogueone for sharing a bottle at Septoberfest III. The beer pours a dark golden-orange color with a thin and lasting white head. Stringy lacing on the glass. Aroma of toasted malt, mildly spiced hops and some bread. Light, crisp body with flavors of pale malt, citrus and a bit of hops. The finish is sweet malt and yeast with a fruity aftertaste. An interesting beer overall, easy to drink with a few different flavors happening at once.
TheBeerGod (4907) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - JAN 24, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Pours a slightly hazed orange-amber with a white head. Nose is sweet malts, caramel, grass, and honey. As it warms, I get a very strong buttered-biscuit-with-honey-on-it aroma. Taste is sweet malt, honey, grassy hops, light lemon, honey, light caramel, and light floral notes. Body is light-medium with a very soft carbonation. Ends with more big honey, lemon, grassy hops, sweet malts, and floral hops. More buttered biscuit here as well. Nice stuff!
Chad9976 (1018) - Albany, New York, USA - MAY 21, 2010
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUN 16, 2010 Rogue Ales out of Newport, Oregon is one of the most popular American craft breweries as they are known for making extremely robust beers of various styles. However, almost everything they make is an ale and many of them are known for their hop levels, so how would a beer that’s not only a lager but a MALTY lager turn out? Maierfest Lager is Rogue’s version of an Oktoberfest bier and it’s quite possibly the best American brew of the style I’ve ever had.
APPEARANCE AND AROMA
I poured a 22oz bomber into a 1-liter mug. Right away this beer has the appearance of a high-quality lager. It’s not yellow, it’s orange/copper with little effervescence. It generates a large frothy white head which never completely dissipates and leaves some lacing on the glass.
Marzens tend to be rather mild in the nose, and this beer is too. There’s some candy-like sweetness and a general maltiness, but these scents don’t jump out at you. It definitely doesn’t smell like a typical lager, and that’s quite impressive.
According to Rogue’s website, brewmaster John Maier says this beer was brewed in response to a trend of Oktoberfest biers losing their character to the point of being more like a helles than a marzen. While I’ve never been a big fan of Oktoberfest biers (German, American or otherwise), it was so refreshing for me to drink a beer of the style and genuinely feel impressed.
For a lager, this is a hefty brew. It’s only medium-bodied, but it’s got a lot of weight to throw around. The front end is has prominent notes of caramel and toffee sweetness. It’s akin to the flavors some of the higher-end German marzens have, but doesn’t have a crisp body like many American brews of the style. The finish is equally sweet with a confectionary taste leaving a pleasant, but brief, aftertaste.
My only beef with this beer is that it’s a little too mild. I really enjoyed those caramel and toffee notes, but they were entirely too suppressed. I noticed the beer actually seemed to become more mild as I drank on with an ever-so-slight sour aftertaste. I suppose I can give it the benefit of the doubt since beers of the Oktoberfest style aren’t intended to be an explosion of flavor.
Even though the taste is a bit dialed-down compared to other beers from this brewery, I found Maierfest Lager to be extremely drinkable. The mouthfeel is soft, thick, and a tad bit sticky. It goes down extremely smooth, making it a very drinker-friendly beer.
As much I love Rogue’s beers, it’s rare I would describe anything they make as sessionable. And while Maierfest Lager has a rather mild palate, the fact remains it’s still a hefty brew. Rogue never publishes their alcohol content but several beer websites estimate it’s 5.6% ABV (although I think it might be a touch higher). After drinking one bomber of this beer I could feel the weight bearing down on me, although the alcohol itself was easily tolerable. This beer would pair well with brats or other Oktoberfest-type foods, but I doubt many drinkers would want to drink more than one bomber of it at a time (it’s only available in 22oz bombers).
While not the greatest beer in the world, Rogue Maierfest Lager is one of those impressive beers you have to admire for what it does under the conditions. I’ll bet Rogue could actually make this beer even more robust like many of the great beers in their lineup, but I’ll be happy to settle for a beer that’s just plain good and notable.
NOTE: Watch the video version of this review at:
troopie (2293) - Munchen an der Willamette, Oregon, USA - AUG 29, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Draught. Poured red-honey gold with thick white head. Much lacing. Maltish aroma with a nice hoppy edge. Full bodied flavour, Malt and honey malt. Hop finish. Well worth a second look