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Josephs Brau Dunkelweizen - Trader Joe's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Josephs Brau DunkelweizenJosephs Brau Dunkelweizen

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

327 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 327
Reviews: 173
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 15.14%
Wants: 9
Gots: 21 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style | ABV
Dunkelweizen |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2007

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (20) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 327 | Reviews: 173
Reviews by djeucalyptus:
Photo of djeucalyptus
3.59/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a dark caramel-amber hue, murky, with a decent one-finger solid head that fades quickly and leaves no lace.

aroma is pungently banana and clove, with emphasis on the banana. a bit of pepper, spice, cinnamon.

taste follows, with banana, clove, earthy wheat. hints of dark fruits. prunes, raisins, and cherries.

moderate body with some hefty carbonation, almost a bit hot with fervent, almost sharp bubbles.

all in all, drinkable, but not the best example of the style. but for the price, certainly not bad. I'd consider picking up a pack again, but not exactly one I'd seek out.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Billolick
3.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, purchased a six pack at the local Trader Joe's.

Pours darker clouded and muddy looking amber, moderate head and leaves a thin collar and minor lace.

Caramel nose, with some lite bananas.

More caramel, more banana notes. Malty but quite dry in the finish. Meh, not really as flavorful and complex as the heavy hitters of the style. Easy drinking enough and fairly priced. Worth a try, but nothing special.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.95/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Caramel-dipped pumpkin that is opaque in the center and murky at the margins. A wonderfully dirty look. The khaki colored cap barely reached one finger on the pour, but isn't in a hurry to melt. Little lace sticks.

Even though the aroma could be more powerful, it features the essential elements of the style. Caramel malt is appreciated on the bottom end, while bruised banana makes up the top notes. Smells like some sort of sticky toffee-banana pudding dessert.

Dunkelweizen takes a small step backward when the taste buds get into the act. It's still delicious beer and is slightly better (than my taste memory of) TJ's Hefeweizen. Each mouthful is more impressive than the last... and it just might earn the 4.0 after all.

The (hefeweizen) banan-o-meter score is 3.5/5.0. You want banana bready beer? You got it right here. Clove, while somewhat less prominent, is easily noted as well. Neither sweetness nor bitterness seizes the reins, which results in an easy drinking balance.

The mouthfeel is fine from a size standpoint, with a lightly creamy clinginess on the finish, but the bubbles are slightly too fizzy throughout the life of the bottle... which is proving to be an extremely short life.

My expectations were that Dunkelweizen Amber Unfiltered Wheat Beer would be a darker (but otherwise similar) version of Hefeweizen, though that didn't turn out to be the case. This is a lovely version that packs a lot of flavor punch in a $1 single. A several bottle purchase on all future trips to Trader Joe's is a no-brainer.

Photo of MattyG85
4.3/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: A dark cloudy brownish orange with a big tan head that quickly fades into a patchy layer. Decent lacing. Looks a lot like apple juice.

Smell: Aroma of banana, cloves, and apple are mixed with sweet caramel malts. Also some hints of dark fruits.

Taste: Big sweet burst of banana and apple is followed by roasted caramel malts. Sweetness is pleasant and not overbearing. Light hints of grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and carbonation. Slightly chewy and smooth.

Overall: A very solid dunkel and one of the best values you can find for the price.

Photo of chinchill
3.69/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle with a BB date stamp of 17 April 2015.

The body is dark reddish-brown, slightly hazy, with a durable and creamy tan head. There's some lacing.

Aroma: banana, clove, caramel and baked dark bread.

Flavor: parallels the aroma but with less obvious banana and more prominent medium malts. Moderate complexity.

O: very impressive and inexpensive version of this German style.

Photo of richkrull
3.88/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice orange-amber-brownish color with some beige head on it. Sweet malt aroma with some fruit coming through. Great tasting beer. I really enjoyed it. Not too heavy, hint of smokiness. Medium bodied mouthfeel. Pretty drinkable beer. I could definitely see myself having a handful of these no problem.

Photo of tastybeer
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer is murky red-woody brown topped by a medium-small basically white head. Smell is full of banana soaked malts, sugar, creamy liquor/syrup, bread, cookies and tangy sour berries. Great to smell for awhile. Taste is good in similar ways but is almost too syrupy for me. Nice and thick malt soaked berries otherwise. Feels thick, creamy, and syrupy in texture. Easy to drink if your in the mood for this kind of beer. Maybe not if your looking for something lighter.

Not bad + well worth the price we paid.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.78/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a hazy, rustic orange with an off-white 2 finger head. Fair retention, resulting in a thin layer of suds running across the surface. fair lacing with decent stick.

Smell - Sweet caramel, bread and fair yeasty banana notes. Faint clove.

Taste - Follows the nose for the most part. Caramelized sugar upfront, with touches of bread, fair banana and a very light clove character. Finishes a touch sweet, but drinkable all the same.

Mouthfeel - Maybe the best aspect of this beer. On the heavier side of light-bodied with nice, lively carbonation. Goes down smooth and easy.

Overall - Maybe not a perfect dunkelweizen, but a darn good one, and one of the better (if only because one of the only?) stabs at the style that I've had from an American brewery. Gordon Biersch sure know their german styles, eh? At $5.99 a sixer, it's a steal. Maybe my go-to beer this summer. We'll see.

Photo of asabreed
4.1/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: I love the dirty-looking beers, and this one's dark, hazy, and has a dense mocha-colored head sitting on top of it, looking pretty nice in the glass throughout.

Smell: Banana and hints of clove, along with some vanilla and dark malts. Sweet but not overly so, with a good balance in the nose.

Taste: The banana and clove notes come through pretty well, along with the yeast and darker malt flavors and mild bubblegum rounding out the fairly long finish.

Mouthfeel: More medium-bodied and creamy with good carbonation. Nothing to complain about.

Drinkability: Along with the Hefeweizen, for a buck you can't go wrong with this beer if you want to pick up a pretty good version of the style as far as a domestic goes. Lots to admire here from right out of the fridge until room temperature and beyond, at least as far as I'm concerned.

Photo of IndigoMacaw
1.26/5  rDev -64%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.25

I can't tell if this was a bad batch or what. Tastes and smells like a sponge that's been sitting in the sink for three weeks. Real metallic bitterness, like if you bit the inside of your cheek and tasted blood tainted by some Amazonian mosquito transferred disease.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.06/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pour > Swirl > Pour produces a wonderfully cloudy caramel color, like a liquified Slo-poke (remember those?). Sports a thin head relative to many Germany-brewed dunkelweizens, but it retains for several solid minutes before thinning. Never totally disappears.

Aroma is watery banana, caramel, fresh-baked bread. A bit lightweight all the way around.

While those wonderful characteristics of a good dunkelweizen try to shine through in the flavor (banana, caramel/chocolate, bread), there's a combination metallic/plastic taste sneaking in and spoiling things. Texture is fluffy, pretty much par for the style, but there's a crispness in the finish that feels alien, considering the style. Plastic character sticks around in the finish.

It's not bland or flavorless...but is that the best I can say about this dunkelweizen? It just can't compete with so many of the German-brewed classics. Killed by stiff competition, basically. Still amazes me that the vast majority of U.S. brewers can't seem to master the hefe-weizen style...dunkel or otherwise.

Photo of augustgarage
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fairly fresh I assume, but I can't decipher their batch date. Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Ayinger weissbier glass.

Copper liquid with gold highlights and a small beige head with sandy lacing and good retention.

Rich melanoidins in the nose - carmelized and roasted malt (malted wheat actually), a bit of butterscotch, grain, and banana as well. Not much spice, but maybe a little bubblegum.

Roasty, bready, and sweet on the palate. Wheat, root-beer, and unripe bananas come next. The finish is fairly dry and has a tiny bit of white pepper to it.

Medium-light bodied with almost prickly carbonation...

Very refreshing and interesting, but not quite on par with their "Bavarian Hefeweizen" (also brewed by Gordon Biersch I believe). Still, a good value and a tasty summer beer...

Photo of pmcadamis
4.06/5  rDev +16%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Diarrhea brown and completely opaque. This looks like the nastiest beer shit on the worst morning of your life. It does, however, have a nice small cap of brown foam. This is almost purple when held to the light.

S - Deep notes of super-ripe (brown and black) sweet bananas, brown sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, and dates.

T - Banana bread, banana muffins, ... you get the idea. Hearty grains and sweet ripe bananas.

M - Full bodied with a dusty-dry finish with lingering notes of cinnamon and cloves.

D - Good stuff! I'd buy this again in a heartbeat. Good beer at a very reasonable price. Trader Joe's offers some really good stuff for less than $6 per six pack!

Photo of secondtooth
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A thick, dense head on this malty Bavarian-style unfiltered hefe, with a nice scent of caramel, clove, and banana. The taste is bold and roasty with hints of buttery biscuit and clove - spicy and tangy. Not bad, but I found this one somewhat lacking in balance, with perhaps a tad too much of the spiced element.

Photo of tjsdomer2
3.77/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy brown with ok foam and lacing.

Smell: Smells like your traditional hefeweizen, but definitely more sweetness and sourness. Not as strong on the banana and clove notes. A nice change of pace.

Taste: Tastes the same as the smell. Mouthfeel is kind of thin though.

Drinkability: Good balance makes for a pretty enjoyable beer.

Overall: As I mentioned before, this beer is a nice change of pace in the wheat category.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.89/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Josephsbrau Dunkelweizen
12 oz. brown glass bottle, BEST CONSUMED BEFORE: 05/24/15 09:39"
$1.17 @ Trader Joe's #766, Tampa, FL

I was quite surprised by this beer. It's got the traditional appearance, although the head retention and lacing don't live up to the finest Bavarian examples. The body and mouthfeel are what you'd expect as well, although slightly on the thin side. The flavor and aroma are where it stands out: I was expecting a standard dunkelweizen which generally displays less fermentation character than their hefewiezen brethren, but this one's loaded with dark fruit, spicy clove/bubblegum, and banana. It's gently caramelish with a light dollop of honey as well, and it's balanced by a combination of mild bitterness, herbal hops, and its softly spicy and mildly tart yeast. It's certainly not the best expression of the style available, but at the same time given the price it's hard to ignore.

Photo of lawlerj
3.77/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A - pours a deep amberish brown with a tan head; not much head retention, not much in the way of lacing.

S - bananas and cloves, and some yeast underlying all of that. I like the strong fruitiness to the aroma.

T - banana up front followed by yeast - some malt in there as well, caramel maybe?

M - medium bodied, very smooth. Doesn't seem to be carbonated hardly at all.

O - overall, a decent dunkelweizen. Especially for the price, an outstanding value, but I liked the beer less as I got to the end of it - the flatness didn't really help here.

Photo of HalfFull
3.6/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky brown with some orange highlights into a pilsner glass with a thick foamy head. Head recedes quickly but maintains a thin cover on the beer yielding some nice lacing.

Sweet ripe banana and clove on the nose with a distinctive lemon malty scent. Taste is slightly malty rich and has decent depth, more body than expected. A spicy carbonated finish yields a bit of cinnamon and clove. Carbonation is about right given the structure of the beer and offers decent drinkability though the sweetness may become a bit too much after a few. Tastes like a nice accompaniment to Thanksgiving dinner.

Photo of beveritt
2.92/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a small weizen glass. Label is simple, with an oval surrounding a drawing of the side of two well decorated city homes. No clear freshness date.

Appearance: Pours with 3 fingers of tan, big bubbled, soda like head. This settles quickly to nothing more than a ring around the glass. The beer itself is brown and murky, like muddy water, with hint of orange around the edge. Lots of sediment in the bottle, even after lots obviously came out in the pour.

Smell: Smells very strongly of bananas, in that way that only a wheat beer can. Sweet with the distinctive wheat twang.

Taste: What was a great fruity banana smell does not translate so well into taste. Thin, weak malt, with a layer of sickly sweet, over-ripe banana on top.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is a little above average, as expected for a weizen. Body is okay.

Drinkability: Despite an initially promising beginning based upon a great smell, this beer failed to perform. Once again, like so many Trader Joe's stuff, not a drain pour, but nothing that exciting.

Photo of BigIrishman
3.42/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown/ruby with a bit of off white head.

Smell: If you want to know what wheat makes a beer smell like pick this up. It's a concentrated wheaty spicy aroma with hints of a bready background.

Taste: Big spicy wheat character with hints of an un-hide-able fusel undertone. The sweet malt comes in after and it finishes with a slight bitterness. Not bad, but definitely not hiding it's faults. I'd expect a little more banana/clove and maybe there's some there but it's very faint and subdued.

Mouthfeel: Fairly light bodied with a low viscosity.

Drinkability: This style is a toughie to hide faults in, so I'm not surprised a get a bit of them in the final product. However it's not all that bad and if you're a malt hound this one will fit the bill. For $5.99 it's not all that bad.

Photo of Troyone
4.03/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy light brown/tan color with a tan hue, thick biege head, and can't see the action.

Has a sweet toasted wheat aroma with a hint of banana.

A delicious toasted wheat taste with a banana background and with a mild esters finish.

Light/medium bodied, watery/resin feel, with lively comfortable carbonation.

This is right on par with the other GB Dunkelweizen, so close I'm going to drink the other right now. What a bargain price and it's OK to mix and match at TJs.

Photo of scootny
3.94/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A surprisingly good dunkel for not a lot of cash. Appearance is a cloudy brown with orangey highlights. Nice tan head that fades to a light covering that stays. A touch of lace here and there. Active carbonation is working all the way down. Smell is where starts to impress. It is full of overripe banana and clove. There is some nice malted wheat that cuts through and a lovely yeast ester that works a little bit of alcohol and pepper. Taste is again a really solid effort. All the flavors you want and previewed in the nose wrapped in a banana bread with raisins. Wheat malt gives a solid core. Finish is mild as it should be, slightly tart apples creep in with a darn near perfect balance that leaves more banana and clove and a mild floral hop bitterness. Feel is light and crisp with a lightly tingly carbonation. Light creaminess. Super drinkable and my new winter session brew. At $6.50 a six this is a stupendous value. If you like dunkel and you are feeling the tight economy buy a six of this and put your cares aside for a while.

Photo of KYGunner
3.7/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

I find this to be strangely alluring and complex. I get a lot of Belgian yeast aromas and flavors of peppercorn, anise and clove. There are some wheat tones, molasses, bubblegum-like sweetness and barley malt. It feels a bit cheap but I like the flavors and diversity of this beer.

Photo of funkyspunk87
3.47/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Josephs Brau Dunkelweizen
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
Style: Dunkelweizen
ABV: 5.20 %

Straight out of the bottle

Alright beer, but not really the standout I was looking for from Trader Joe's. Prefer the Bavarian.

The Dunk was dark, as well as more rich than the Bavarian, but it did not match the complexity of flavors at all.

Photo of Boneheadmx
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out to a hazy brown with a creamy, off-white head.

The smell is of bread and muffins. Very pleasant.

The taste is of banana bread or something similar. Sweet flavors, but the hops is really lost in this except for a bit of a skunky aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is pretty good, with a decent amount of creaminess. I would think that this is too carbonated based on the head that was left by the pour, but I think the thickness counteracts it and just makes it sit really well.

Drinkability is OK, but it does sit a bit on the heavy side.

All in all, a very good beer, and for the price, an excellent deal. Just wished it were a tab bit fresher.

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Josephs Brau Dunkelweizen from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 327 ratings.