Review: Weihenstephaner Festbier

Review of Weihenstephaner Festbier from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan in Freising, Germany.

Beer Type: Oktoberfest/Marzen  ABV: 5.8%  Tried on draught.

Their Description: “A full rich bodied, hoppy, seasonal lager. Especially brewed for the Festbier season. This beer truly represents the Bavarian way of celebrating. Deep gold color, great mouth-feel and lots of flavor. Prost!”

The Reality: This beer starts with a tangy malt scent and is the deep gold color they describe. It has a creamy mild malt flavor with background hints of tropical fruit. It has a super-smooth mouth-feel (also as described) and is very drinkable. It has a clean finish and the aftertaste has a malty subtle nuttiness.

Final Verdict: I can see why this beer is a “festbier”, because when you want to partake heavily at an all-day festival, you probably don’t want to be slinging back smoked stouts. This is not a “light” beer by any means, as it is full of flavor and 5.8% ABV, but it goes down so smooth and easy that it feels that way and without the “just-licked-a-battery” aftertaste found in many American light beers. I have to say that it also didn’t fill me up, although that could just be because I’m used to drinking a lot of beer. This beer also reminds me that most seasonal “oktoberfest” offerings from American breweries are lousy and that there is no substitute for the real thing. Why can’t an American brewery make a solid beer like this one? Someone probably does, but I have yet to taste it. It’s just like how people keep telling me that Nickelback has a few good songs, but I have yet to hear any of them.