So, a little earlier, I learned that many beers I think of as hefes are actually witbiers. To my understanding, hefeweizens and witbiers are basically the same thing, except hefes (or weissbiers) are German and therefore must adhere to some very stringent standards, while witbiers are Belgian and typically have spices/other flavors (cloves, coriander, lemon) added.
Anyway, I found a couple of beers to try for this round. Check out Mariah’s post for some more details about hefeweizens.
Mission St. Hefeweizen
Okay, yeah, this is the Trader Joe’s brand. But apparently it’s brewed by Firestone-Walker in Paso Robles, which, while not my favorite brewery by far, is pretty legit. And at $2 for a bomber I couldn’t say no. Don’t hate.
Color/Appearance: Poured a nice, hazy gold with a thick cream head.
Aroma: Sweet and a little bready
Taste: No strong flavors really jumped out at me.
Overall: I feel like this is a very standard, by the book hef. I probably would’ve like this a lot more, say, six or seven years ago, before I acquired a taste for more hop-forward beers. Now it just seems kinda bland.
Firebird Smoked Hefeweizen
I figured after the blandness of Mission St. I could try something very different. Also, I really like the label.
Color/Appearance: Again, poured a hazy golden yellow with a thick cream head. There was a LOT of sediment in this one.
Aroma: Much more complex than the Mission St. I picked up a sweet, oaky smell and hints of fruit.
Taste: Holy smoky! I can still tell it’s a hef thanks to the hint of banana but wow, it’s like drinking wood chips from a campfire.
Overall: I really appreciated this was something different and interesting. My husband enjoyed it a lot more than I did, though.