Home > Wheat Ale, Wheat Beer > O’Hara’s Freebird White IPA

O’Hara’s Freebird White IPA

Rating: 3.7

Yet another new beer from the Carlow Brewing Company, this time a fairly recent release that was only introduced in late May/early June this year and follows on from recent reviews of their O’Hara’s Notorious Red IPA and ‘OPsession beers that I’ve reviewed here quite recently. As you’ve probably already guessed, this is another bottle that I stumbled across whilst in the north of Ireland in July this year and quickly grabbed given how good several of O’Hara’s beers  have been in the past and also because they are rarely available anywhere outside of Ireland, with the exception of one or two of their more well-known beers. This particular bottle is labelled as a White IPA but in truth it probably falls somewhere closer to a wheat ale in style but regardless, I went into it with an open mind and here’s what I thought of it.

O'Hara's Freebird White IPA

Appearance (5/5): Light amber with a few golden touches, this one has a cloudy body and a is topped with a half centimetre, bubbly white head that just about covers the surface of the beer. After a couple of minutes things start to fade very slightly as the head turns to a creamy lacing that still manages to cover the surface of the beer; excellent stuff.
Aroma (7/10): This one opens up with quite a zesty, almost citrus nose that’s fresh and quite lively in the early going with some touches of clove and coriander sneaking through, perhaps even a touch of wheat too. The beer is almost like a witbier on the nose with some lemon and a few bread malts coming through with some touches of biscuit and a hint of banana seeing things out. Not quite what I was expecting from this one going in but it was a pleasant surprise at least and one that I enjoyed the aroma of.
Taste (7/10): Opening up with a lot of biscuit malts and some earthy touches, the taste is a moderately bitter one that features some lemon and citrus flavours before a bread taste makes itself known. I could detect some background fruits that included some banana from the nose which was also the most noticeable. It was definitely a fresh tasting beer with some wheat and cloves pushing through as well and this was followed by touches of Belgian yeast and spice towards the end.
Palate (3/5): A light-medium bodied beer that was quite fresh and zesty with a solid citrus tang to proceedings and lively carbonation. There was a dryness throughout this one, helped no doubt by the citrus, and a faint sweetness started to come through nearer the end of the beer. Overall the balance was a good one with the beer proving to be an enjoyable and easy to drink offering.

Overall (14/20): Quite an enjoyable beer from O’Hara’s and one that was about on par with their Notorious Red IPA that I reviewed previously. This one was definitely a lot more like a witbier than I’d been expecting, particularly with the nose and the touches of citrus that featured throughout. It was a fresh and quite lively beer that touched on some sweetness nearer the end and featured some classic wheat beer elements with a little banana and some cloves appearing at times. An interesting beer from the Carlow based brewery and one that I enjoyed a little more than I thought I would going in which is always nice.

Brewed In: Muine Bheag, County Carlow, Ireland
Brewery: Carlow Brewing Company
First Brewed: 2016
Type: Wheat Ale
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Reilly’s (Lisnaskea)
Price: £2.29

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