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Posts Tagged ‘wheat beer’

Guinness Irish Wheat

January 16, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.5

My thirteenth review of a beer from Guinness now, this one is a beer that they first released at the start of 2017 with most of the initial online reviews coming from people based in the US but it now appears to be more readily available in the UK now and I was able to grab a bottle in an off license in the north of Ireland over the Christmas holidays. The beer will be my first new one from Guinness since I reviewed and thoroughly enjoyed their Antwerpen Stout back in September when I was last in Ireland. Falling somewhere between a wheat ale and a hefeweizen, this was a bottle that I picked up solely because it was a Guinness offering that I’d not seen back in Scotland, although I assume it’s only a matter of time before it starts appearing in supermarket shelves here as well.

Appearance (4/5): Medium amber in colour with a hazy body and a half centimetre tall head that is creamy but a little smaller than anticipated for the style of the beer; retention was great though and the head covered the surface well throughout.
Aroma (6/10): Slightly subdued on the nose with some banana and clove opening things up with some touches of citrus coming through in the early going as well. Around the middle there was some biscuit malt showing with a hint of bread and then some sweet touches near the end with a little lemon peel and coriander to see things out.
Taste (6/10): Opening with some biscuit malts and bread, the beer didn’t seem as fresh on the nose but there was some citrus and lemon coming through towards the middle. I again got some clove and banana coming through and with them a little sweetness before a few pale malts started to show themselves. It was quite a basic tasting beer but fell short of being a bad one thankfully, with some spices and touches of wheat seeing things out.
Palate (4/5): Falling just shy of medium bodied, the beer was strongly carbonated and fresh on the nose at least. There was a subtle tang from the citrus at times and it seemed crisp at points too with a subtle sweetness from the banana as well. It was quite an easy beer to drink with a good balance but it definitely bordered on basic.

Overall (14/20): This one was an interesting beer in that it’s nothing like Guinness normal make and it was an enjoyable beer despite it being a little basic at times. There was some nice banana and cloves coming through on the nose and with the taste with some subtle touches of citrus at times too whilst the balance was good enough to make it an easy one to drink. It was a well carbonated offering that was definitely sessionable and the hints of sweetness on top of the light malts and biscuit rounded things of well; it’s not a great beer but it’s certainly well worth trying if you stumble across it.

Brewed In: Dublin, Ireland
Brewery: St. James’s Gate Brewery
First Brewed: 2017
Type: Wheat Ale
Abv: 5.3%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Winemart (Enniskillen)
Price: £2.39

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Two Beers Evo IPA

January 15, 2018 1 comment

Rating: 3.6

This one is amazingly only my second ever beer from Washington state in the United States and follows one from the bottle of Pyramid Hefeweizen that I tried way back in May of 2013 as the only other beer from the state that I’ll have reviewed here and I was very much hoping that this one would be an improved on the first one from Washington that I tried. Using a variety of hops, including some from the Yakima Valley, this one should be quite a bitter offering and is one that I’m very much looking forward to trying so hopefully it does not disappoint.

Appearance (4/5): Very strongly carbonated and overflowing when I opened the can, this one was a fairly dark looking caramel amber when it was poured and managed to form a relatively small, quarter centimetre head that was foamy looking and a light tan colour but it sat towards one end of the surface of the beer; the body of the drink was a hazy one and it looked quite thick into the bargain.
Aroma (8/10): Quite fresh on the nose with some citrus hops and the odd tropical fruit kicking things off before quite a sweet nose started to develop thanks to some caramel malts and touches of biscuit. The beer seemed more like an American pale ale on the nose with some sweet malts and touches of biscuit although there was a hop bitterness sitting in the background along with faint spices, orange notes and a couple of grassy hops; very interesting stuff.
Taste (7/10): Still quite a sweet beer that was more pale ale than IPA but it was toned down slightly from the nose thanks to the tropical fruits taking more of a front seat; a combination of citrus and pine being more pronounced. There was a lot of biscuit and sweet malts coming through as well though, I got some earthy hops further on with some orange and touches of grapefruit towards the end.
Palate (3/5): Smooth with a medium body and far more sweet than expected thanks to the caramel malts and biscuit flavours, there was some nice tropical fruits adding to this as well. The beer was dry nearer the end and easy on the way down, mainly due to the smoothness I mentioned previously with a subtle hop bitterness seeing things out.

Overall (14/20): An interesting beer in that it came through as more of an American pale ale than an IPA at times but it was still quite a fresh offering with a subtle hop bitterness and some nice citrus with a few touches of pine further on. It was pleasant and balanced, going down easily without grabbing your attention as it did so but it was one that I’m glad I got to try despite it not being one that I’d rush back to.

Brewed In: Seattle, Washington, United States of America
Brewery: Two Beers Brewing Co.
First Brewed: 2010
Type: American IPA
Abv: 6.2%
Serving: Can (355ml)
Purchased: Wee Beer Shop (Glasgow)
Price: £2.00

Heidi-Weisse

December 8, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.75

A new beer for 2017 from West, this one seemingly introduced earlier in the year to replace the since retired West Hefeweizen that I’ve tried on a number of occasions over the years and usually enjoyed. This is a rarity among West beers in that it is widely available in bottles around Scotland with their St. Mungo being the only other in that regard but it’s also a beer that I’ve tried previously on-tap at the brewery and thought it was a decent enough beer so it’ll be good to give it a proper review this time. This one will be my seventh review of a beer from the brewery and despite it being so close to me, this one will be my first new review of a West beer since trying their West Berlin for the first time back in July 2014 making this one long overdue.

Appearance (4/5): Cloudy and quite dark with the body an almost murky golden colour that is topped with a three-centimetre tall, foamy head that is white and holds well initially with a few bubbles rising to the surface as well.
Aroma (7/10): Light on the nose with some wheat and cloves in the early going, there was some nice banana notes too. Around the middle some coriander started to make itself known with a little citrus and some bread malts in there as well.
Taste (7/10): Wheat and some cloves kick things off with the taste, there was some lemon and faint spice a little further on before the bread malts from the nose made an appearance, coming through a lot earlier this time around. Towards the end the beer was a relatively sweet one with some background fruits and nice banana flavours seeing things out.
Palate (4/5): Quiet a lively beer with a sharp feel that was well carbonated and quite crisp as well. It was a fresh, easy beer to drink and the balance wasn’t too bad either with no one flavour overpowering.

Overall (15/20): Pleasant stuff from West, this one was quite a fresh and lively beer that seemed balanced and easy-going with some nice banana and wheat flavours throughout. Definitely a beer that I can see myself having again, it’s not a classic wheat beer but it was still a slight improvement on the West Hefeweizen that it seems to have replaced and that can only be a good thing.

Brewed In: Glasgow, Scotland
Brewery: West Brewing Company
First Brewed: 2017
Type: Hefeweizen
Abv: 5.2%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Aldi (Scotland)
Price: Gift

Grand Kirin White Ale

November 8, 2017 1 comment

Rating: 3.2

One of two craft style offerings from the Kirin brewery that I managed to try over the course of my last few days in Japan last month now, this one a witbier offering from the brewery that I finally picked up in a Tokyo Family Mart store after seeing it a few times over the course of my holiday. Along with their Grand Kirin IPA that I’ve still to review here, this one appears to be a new offering from the brewery for 2017 and was released sometime around March, probably to get in on the craft beer market since it’s was one of the few craft style beers that wasn’t from the Yo-Ho Brewing Company that was fairly easy to find in convenience stores in the country, although this one obviously has a head start given it’s brewed by one of Japan’s largest breweries.

Appearance (3/5): Pouring with quite a clear body, this one is a light amber colour that is topped with a centimetre tall, foamy white head that has a little more build-up around the sides and left some lacing there as I started drinking the beer.
Aroma (7/10): Opening with a little wheat and some lemon, the main aroma is a citrus one that has some oranges in there too but seemed relatively basic. There was some grapes and faint pine a little further on with touches of earthy malt towards the end too.
Taste (6/10):
Opening with more pine than the nose hinted at, there was a few floral hops and a zesty bitterness to this one towards the middle with it seeming closer to an IPA in style than a witbier. Some earthy hops featured further on with a few burst of citrus and grassy hops with some hay and background fruits seeing things out.
Palate (3/5):
Medium bodied and quite zesty with a well carbonated feel that came through with plenty citrus to add a nice tang to proceedings. The beer hinted at being a dry one towards the end and there was a faint sweetness throughout that helped the balance some too, although it was a relatively basic beer throughout.

Overall (14/20): This one was actually quite an enjoyable offering from Kirin and one of the better from the brewery that I’ve tried, although it wasn’t quite a classic or one that I’d run back to on a regular basis. It started with a solid wheat beer nose that had plenty of citrus and wheat coming through but the taste was closer to an American IPA at times with more grassy hops and bitterness than usual for a wheat beer. It was quite a drinkable offering that had a pleasantly zesty feel, although it was definitely basic for the most part.

Brewed In: Tokyo, Japan
Brewery: Kirin Brewery Company
First Brewed: 2017
Type: Witbier
Abv: 5.5%
Serving: Can (350ml)
Purchased: Family Mart (Sin-Okubo, Tokyo)
Price: ¥297 (£1.97 approx.)

Minoh Weizen

October 30, 2017 1 comment

Rating: 3.6

A third beer from the Osaka based Minoh brewery now and my second in quick succession after reviewing their Pilsner here last. Not to be confused with the brewery’s Momo Weizen that I reviewed recently as well, this one is the second hefeweizen from the brewery that I’ll have tried and another that I picked up from the Yamaya Nagahoribashi supermarket in Osaka during my time in the city. Like their Pilsner before it, this is one of Minoh’s year round offerings and beer that I was quite excited to try upon picking it up despite the fact that I’d tried countless Japanese brewed hefeweizens in the week leading up to this one and the majority had been fairly average offerings; my hopes were that this one would be different.

Appearance (4/5): Golden amber and quite cloudy with a half centimetre head that is white and foamy looking, with the odd bubble showing through it. There was good retention in the early going here with minimal reduction in the size of the head over the opening few minutes and the beer generally looked like a good one upon pouring it.
Aroma (6/10): This one started off with aroma that wasn’t much like a hefeweizen and one that consisted of corn and basic malts but thankfully there was some banana and clove showing nearer the middle of proceedings to turn things around. I got some wheat and the odd adjuncts at this point too before some citrus and biscuit malts came through but it definitely wasn’t the most complex of the style out there.
Taste (7/10): The beer opened with the wheat and clove from the nose, although both came through a little earlier this time around and as a result the beer seemed like a hefeweizen from the start. There was some pale malts and citrus following soon behind as well as some banana and a little coriander towards the middle, although this was quite light in truth. The beer had some touches of spice showing and seemed fresher than the nose with some zesty flavours and a faint touch of bubblegum towards the end; a definite improvement on the nose.
Palate (4/5): A medium bodied beer with a good balance and a semi-sweet feel coming through alongside a citrus tang that featured around the middle. The beer was a touch weak on the nose but that was put right by the taste thankfully and the beer was a well carbonated offering that went down easily enough despite being somewhat basic at times.

Overall (14/20): Not a bad hefeweizen on the whole despite starting poorly on the nose with some corn and basic malts kicking things off, thankfully the traditional wheat beer flavours weren’t too far behind though and it turned out to be a pleasant and drinkable beer with some nice banana, clove and wheat flavours alongside some faint bubblegum towards the end. Whilst not the best of the style I tried in Japan, the beer was enjoyable enough to make it worth trying but I’m not sure if it’s one that I’d go back to again.

Brewed In: Osaka, Japan
Brewery: Minoh Beer
First Brewed: circa. 2004
Type: Hefeweizen
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Yamaya Nagahoribashi (Osaka)
Price: ¥410 (£2.72 approx.)

Minoh Pilsner

October 30, 2017 2 comments

Rating: 3.65

The second of six Minoh beers that I managed to try on a recent trip to Japan, this being the first of five bottles from the brewery that I managed to pick up at the Yamaya Nagahoribashi store in Osaka after discovering they has one of the better beer selections in the city. The beer follows on from the keg serving of the brewery’s Momo Weizen that I managed to try at the Two Dogs Taproom in Tokyo early on into my trip and being a brewery that I’d read a little about before my trip, I was eager to pick up a few more of their beers if I could.

Appearance (4/5): Golden straw in colour with a semi-clear body and a centimetre tall, foamy white head that had a little more lacing built up around the sides too and managed to hold well over the opening few minutes.
Aroma (6/10): Quite a fresh beer on the nose with citrus and lemon notes opening things up alongside a few biscuit malts and background fruits but for the most part the nose is quite a light one. There was some cereal and grassy hops further on with a little hay in there too that made for a pleasant aroma, although one that could have used being a touch stronger at times but it certainly wasn’t weak either.
Taste (7/10): Opening with biscuit malts and some sweeter ones too, the beer was relatively fresh with some lemon and background fruits coming through; mainly apples with a faint peach taste as well. There was a few grassy hops and hay with a little corn and citrus at the end too which all seemed to come through slightly stronger than it had with the nose.
Palate (4/5): Quite a fresh offering with a medium body and a fairly smooth, balanced feel to proceedings. The beer was sweet for the most part with a subtle tang and quite a dry feel towards the end but one that remained easy to drink throughout.

Overall (15/20): Quite an enjoyable beer from Minoh and probably one that was on par with their Momo Weizen that I reviewed here previously, this being despite the fact that I had expected this to be one of the poorer beers from the brewery that I picked up. The beer was a well-balanced and easy to drink offering that was quite fresh and sessionable, the nose was perhaps a little weaker than I’d have liked but it was a minor complaint with the rest of the beer seeming quite lively.

Brewed In: Osaka, Japan
Brewery: Minoh Beer
First Brewed: Brewery since 1997
Type: Pilsner
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Yamaya Nagahoribashi (Osaka)
Price: ¥410 (£2.72 approx.)

Doppo White Beer for Oyster

October 26, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.5

Probably the most random beer that I tried when travelling around Japan recently, this one is an oddly named hefeweizen brewed by a sake company and one that I only spotted on Miyajima Island in Japan despite the fact that the beer isn’t brewed anywhere near the island. I picked this one up based solely on the name and thought it might end up being an oyster stout or at least a darker beer only to find yet another Japanese hefeweizen upon opening it, although luckily it wasn’t a bad one in the end.

Appearance (4/5): Light with a cloudy amber body and a half centimetre head that had good retention, covering the surface well and left some touches of lacing on the sides too.
Aroma (6/10): Quite a light nose with corn and lager style malts before some wheat and banana started to come through and give it more of a hefeweizen aroma. There wasn’t anything overly strong showing but some citrus and background adjuncts rounded things off.
Taste (6/10): Opening with a combination of banana, wheat and clove, the beer has a standard hefeweizen taste but the odd lager malt still sneaks in at times. There was some subtle grassy hops with a sweetness from the banana but it was a little fresher than the nose and featured some background fruits and citrus too before a little funk showed at the end to round things off.
Palate (4/5):Light-medium bodied and quite sweet with a fairly good balance with some lager malts and wheat beer sweetness working well together with moderate carbonation levels.

Overall (14/20): This one was a beer I went into not having a clue what it would be, even the style was unknown until I cracked the bottle open to be greeted by a wheat beer that started with some lager malts that initially had me slightly confused. As things progressed the banana and clove flavours came to the front alongside some citrus and the beer was definitely a hefeweizen. A pleasant offering that went down quite easily, although I’m not sure how well it would pair with oysters really.

Brewed In: Okayama, Japan
Brewery: Miyashita Shuzo
Type: Hefeweizen
First Brewed: Doppo range since 1995
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Miyajima Island, Japan
Price:‎ ¥600 (£3.97 approx.)