Serve in Dimpled mug, Stein


on tap

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RATINGS: 314   WEIGHTED AVG: 2.78   EST. CALORIES: 162   ABV: 5.4%
Saranac Octoberfest is a rich flavorful lager. We use imported two-row and crystal malt and balance it with the pleasant bitterness of Saaz and Tettang hops.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1439) - Albany, New York, USA - OCT 29, 2012
I’m so lazy that I’m tempted to copy and paste my 2009 review of Saranac Octoberfest, change a word or two, and call it my 2012 review of this beer. I’ve been re-reviewing a lot of Marzen-style brews over the last month and my opinion on all of them has changed by at least a grade or two, but this is the only beer that will score exactly the same all these years later.

I poured a 12oz bottle into an official Saranac shaker glass.

Appearance: Perfectly copper colored body, clear with small, slow carbonation visible. Forms an average size, off-white, frothy head which mostly dissipates, but does leave plenty of lacing on the glass.

Smell: A lager without the generic smell and certainly nothing off-putting. A slightly sweet aroma of dark cereal grain and slight earthy, autumn scents. Otherwise mild.

Taste: Most Oktoberfestbiers, German or American, tend to be sweet, but Saranac Octoberfest is bit different. While there are subtle flavors of toffee and caramel, the most prominent feature of the palate is a nuttiness. It’s slightly dry, bitter and rustic - akin to a peanut shell rather than the nut itself. There’s a distinct hop component to this brew you don’t get in most of the style. It’s a mild spicy sensation from the German noble hops which pepper the palate.

There’s a continual sweet flavor as well, reminiscent of hard candy and other confectionery flavors, plus a hint of toasted wheat bread. Caramel emerges strongly on the finish, which is a refreshing change and makes for a well-balanced palate. It’s flavorful and tasty to be sure, but still nothing absolutely amazing. This is what makes for a good American Oktoberfest-themed beer.

Drinkability: Though technically a lager, Saranac Octoberfest drinks like an ale. The body is calm, the mouthfeel is comfortable, and the finish is smooth and clean. Flavorful enough to pair with autumn festival meals like brats, baked beans, potatoes, etc, but mild enough to be refreshing. The 5.4% ABV weight is perfect for this beer as it’s definitely something you can drink two of in a row.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
jkwood04 (4805) - Connecticut, USA - OCT 27, 2012
12oz bottle in a lager glass. Pours amber with an off-white head. Aroma of pale and lightly toasted malts, hints of toffee, and some floral hops. Flavor like a standard German beer. Average texture. Not the best beer but a good American version of this style.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 8/20
vipinvelp (2881) - Velp, NETHERLANDS - OCT 22, 2012
Clear orange yellow with small white foam head. Aroma is mucho sweet malty. Taste is watery malty, quite bubbly, not too great. Aftertaste is like a watered down. (Montreal 201210)

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Stampion (188) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - OCT 7, 2012
Not a great beer. I was hoping for something darker and with more malts. This has a bit of gingery hops and finishes mildly bitter. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
LetsGoState (685) - Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 30, 2012
Appearance is medium white head with a clear amber. Aroma is a sweet malt. Taste is a bready malt and very crisp. Overall a nice oktoberfest.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
kramer (5393) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 13, 2012
Bottle. Pours a clear orange body with a small fizzy white head that retained as a thin film. The nose is a bit too husky and grainy for the style, it just doesn’t smell clean and smooth like a nice lager. The flavor is much the same, it lacks the clean smoothness and a bit of body to give it a full depth. There’s no chewy sweet maltiness or even much in the way of hops to make it stand out. Light bodied and fizzy with a short finish. Pretty blah, even for Saranac.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Onenote81 (1002) - Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA - APR 26, 2012
Originally reviewed: 10/18/10. 12oz bottle, part of a autumn-themed mixed sixer. Poured into a conical pint glass. This pours a crystal clear dark amber-orange with a thin white head on top. Dissipated to a thin collar on the edges. Lightest of lace left behind. The smell is basic, with some faint caramel and light fruit. The malts profile is fairly basic. Not the most complex beer out there. Light sweetness noted, but the aftertaste is bitter and reminds me of veggies. I’ve had better balanced festbiers for sure. Mouthfeel is a little on the spritzy side. Smooth this one out a bit more. It’s not bad for the price, but probably the least enjoyable of the style I’ve had this year.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 1/5   OVERALL 9/20
BcOneSeven (46) - Newville, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 5, 2012
Bottle. Typical of this style, it is a bit heavy. I found the carbonation to be lacking. Not refreshing. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
cblack85 (36) - Fort Mill, South Carolina, USA - DEC 15, 2011
Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass This beer pours a clear light copper/amber-orange color with a nice off white head (about two fingers worth). Very little in the way of head retention, and not much in the way of lacing either. Caramel and bready malts are the main attraction, very clean and aromatic. Just a slight hint of floral and spicy hops provides a bit of balance to keep the aroma from being too sweet. Bready malts (slightly toasted) provide the backbone of the beer; with bits of caramel sweetness, spicy & floral hops, and earthy undertones to round it out. Medium/light bodied and moderately carbonated. This beer is very clean and crisp, and finishes slightly dry. Not overly sweet, this beer is easy to drink, and light enough to be able to drink several of during a sitting. A little lighter than I am used to with this style, but very nice over all. Not terribly complex, but nicely done.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Svesse (6967) - Hässelby, SWEDEN - OCT 25, 2011
(Bottle, Oliver Twist, Stockholm) Amber colour with frothy, off-white head. Malty nose with toast, crisp-bread, orange peel and treacle toffee. Malty taste with notes of dark bread, toast, orange peel, treacle, crisp-bread and a mild spicy bitterness. Medium body, with some malt sweetness. Quite decent.

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