Tag Archive: Hefeweizen

Weihenstephaner: Hefe weissbier (Germany: German Hefeweizen: 5.4% ABV)

Visual: Hazy lemon. Many small bubbles froth up. Massive slightly yellow white bubbled head that comes up into creamy froth.

Nose: Orange peel. Cloves. Coriander. Dry wheat. Lemon.

Body: Honey. Lemon sherbet. Light wheat and bitterness. Nutmeg. Lemon curd more than sherbet as the beer warms. Banana and cloves. Vanilla.

Finish: Honey and cream. Slightly oily sheen. Nutmeg again. Light ground peanuts. Bitterness and banana slices.

Conclusion: Frankly, for me, this is weissbier. I’ve had many of the style over the years but none have ever toppled this old favourite.

Despite the very obvious bubbles in the main body and obvious wheat influence of the style it feels smooth in texture. There’s also enough thickness to carry the fresh banana influenced flavour and matching honey sweetness .There’s a lightly spice aroma and body and the spice mid body keeps it refreshing rather than sickly sweet. It’s that balance that makes it easy to drink and delicious.

It’s a beer that catches you from the first glance. Like all the best weissbiers it looks great, especially in a weiss glass. The play of light through the hazy liquid at different thickness’ is always appreciated.

The beer keeps an understated hop bitterness that plays nice with the wheat, setting off the sweet flavours.  Thankfully the beer also avoids the flaw of a lot of similar beers in the style that make the carbonate too heavily and roughly. An element that makes them hard to taste over the texture. This looks bubbly as hell but feels smooth and lets the flavour flow.

I must admit this may seem less like a review and more like a joyous return to an old friend, but I would be lying if I claimed it was anything other than one of my favourite beers and easily best in the style for me.

As a summer refresher its great and very citrus styled. As a beer in itself it’s wonderful and flavoursome.  The fact it is so easy to pick up these days is a thing of joy.

Background: Hefe weissbier pretty much was the style that got me interested in beers. I was in my late teens and I’d heard a reference to this strange cloudy German beer and one day I saw it in a pub. So I ordered a glass.  Most of the rest of the nights drinking was based around questions from mates on this strange beer in an equally strange glass.   That started an interest in German beers that later branched into Belgium beers which branched into craft beers, which branched into the beer nut I am today. So you may say I have a  fondness for the style. Weihenstephaner is one I have tried many a time and never tasting noted, possibly because it is quite easy to get, so I always think I’ll review it the next time. I finally got off my arse after seeing a review of the dunkel over at “It’s just the booze dancing” which reminded me how much I love this beer, and that I really should share the joy.

Wurzburger Hofbrau: Julius Echter: Hefe Weissbier Hell (Germany: German Hefeweizen:5.3% ABV)

Visual: Nicely cloudy honeyed lemon haze. Good inch of dense packed bubbles that are just off white.

Nose:  Wheat. Jiff lemon. Possibly a touch of cinnamon and coriander.  Fresh and slightly meringue like. Lemon curd as it heats.

Body: Lemon. Honey. Light crisp wheat. Light bitterness.  Touch of raw carrot. Ice cream floats.

Finish: Slick honey. A slightly warm syrup. Light bitter and a popcorn touch. Still lemon. Malt drinks. Touch of cloves.

Conclusion: It’s all in the texture for a weissbier. This is more evident when you are having the beer on tap than from a bottle. I’ve had the same beer, with just slight difference in the gas used for carbonation, and it ranged from a super smooth beer to fizzy piss.

Bottles, as mentioned, don’t have the same variety, but it’s just as important to get the carbonation and thus the texture right. This beer gets it right so damn well.

It’s very smooth, but with still that wheat grip. The main body has just enough flavour, the finish however soars.  Depending on the moment the remaining flavour after a sip could be distinct honey, lemon or a slight chocolate malt touch hanging around.

Now I’m not saying that the main body’s a slouch. With the smooth hell character and subtle carbonation it is refreshing yet thick and gives you a nice moment before the finish, which quite frankly, is where it is at.

Frankly an impressive beer. Unlike say the Mikkeller “Not Just Another Wit” (Which yes I know is a Belgium wit, but it does for the comparison I need here) it is not pushing the style to the extreme. That means however that it can be enjoyed as a casual drink as well as a one to savour.

I would consider this one of the mainstays of any good summer beer stable.

Background: I’ve been a big fan of the various weissbiers. They were the first slightly unusual beers I tried, and are a big part in starting me on the road to investigating the world of beer.  Wurzburger has been a damn solid brewery from Germany so far.  I always like a chance to break out the weiss glasses as they always seem to make the beers in them look so amazing with how they interact with the light.

Fujizakura Kougen Weizen (Japan: Hefeweizen: 5.5% ABV)

Visual: Hazy yellow with virtually no head.

Nose: Light wheat, barley. Yogurt and vanilla. Hay fields and flowers. Lemon curd.

Body: Light wheat, very smooth. Yogurt. Banana syrup and lemony touches.

Finish: Banana. Grain. Yogurt again. Strawberry at the end. Sharp and slight syrup sweet.

Conclusion: A very smooth and easy drinking weizen. Surprisingly sweet with the wheat and citrus flavours intertwined. Very slight, much lighter than what I would expect from the equivalent German representation of the style.

This takes away some of the body, but does enhance its flavour over repeated drinks. This is especially noticeable in the finish, which is pleasant but not sickly, unlike many of the less qualified examples of the style.

Not challenging the Germans for supremacy, but delightful and enjoyable.

Erdinger Schneeweisse Winterbeer (Germany: Hefeweisen: 5.6% ABV)

Visual: Huge bubbly frothy white head with a just slightly cloudy citrus yellow to orange body: Many carbonated bubbles.

Nose: Light crushed orange peel and wheat. Hint of coriander, a very light nose.

Body: Lemon and sherbet; slight spicy zing. Smooth, marshmallow. Whipped froth and wheat. Fruit, citrus sweetness (orange?) Sugar cane and candy floss.

Finish: Dry wheat and cream. White bread.

Conclusion: A very easy going weisse, smooth and light fresh flavours. More marshmallow and cream than wheat and citrus.

Defies the Christmas expectation by going lighter and smoother rather than darker and heavier. A very fluffy beer, very fresh and slightly sweet. Doesn’t get sickly quickly unlike some other wheat beers. Its simpler flavours are refreshing and make for a good session of drinking.

Its name is apt, as is the snow imagery. It’s like the centre of a Tunnocks snowball. A beer of light joy.

Carlsberg Hvede (Denmark: Hefeweizen: 5.8% ABV)

Visual: mix of light red amber gold and a light frothy head

Nose: cane sugar, light hops

Body: Apricot, sugar cane, bitter undercurrents, sour berries

Finish: hops, dark bitter cherries

Conclusion: Carlsberg have done good: this is a premium drink, sweet and rich but with a nice mix of fruit sugary sweetness and surprising slight sourness. A beer to go with ripe fruit and white meat. Well worth it

BONUS EXTRA TASTING! Carlsberg Standard – Live From Denmark!

Visual: Light but not overly fizzy

Nose: You have to dip it so far in its wet before you notice anything

Body: Water. Though occasionally you may notice the slightest hops trying to swim its way out of this watery prison

Finish: It does yes

Conclusion: Carlsberg do also do a range of bottled water in Denmark, I presume it’s the same as this but with the artificial colouring taken out.

Konig Ludwig Weissbier (Germany: Hefeweizen: 5.5% ABV)

(Note: According to ratebeer this is an alias of Prinzregent Luitpold Weissbier Hell)

Visual: Orange brown, light and cloudy. Thin light orange head

Nose: Fresh fruit, citrus, orange and grapefruit

Body: Sweetness, wheat, orange and bananas

Finish: Slight sour lime, refreshing crisp and very slightly tart. Orange peel

Conclusion: light and refreshing, a lovely range of fruit flavours. Finish stays slightly too long after a pint but apart from that an excellent summer drink

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