1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Penn Weizen - Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Penn WeizenPenn Weizen

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

341 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 341
Reviews: 232
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 12.66%
Wants: 18
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pennsylvania Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Hefeweizen |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Authentic wheat beer, brewed in the Southern German tradition, won the Silver Medal in 1997 and the Gold Medal at the 2000 in Denver, Colorado. Penn Weizen is top-fermented, cask-conditioned, and very effervescent with a slight hint of tangy clove flavor.

(Beer added by: SheepNutz on 03-06-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Penn Weizen Alström Bros
Ratings: 341 | Reviews: 232 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bright sunflower gold that is crystal clear... until the final two fingers of liquid are poured into the glass. At that point, a dense cloud of yeastiness diffuses downward, making the beer as opaque as any stout. The eggshell colored cap is loose and foamy rather than dense, creamy and sticky. It persists acceptably enough, but doesn't leave much lace.

The nose is classic for the style, with a decent amount of banana and clove. The grains (wheat and pale malt) are appreciated, as is a brisk shot of lemon juiciness.

While Weizen is pretty good beer, it isn't the stunner that was expected after I enjoyed the hell out of St. Nicholaus Bock and Penn Pilsner (and after seeing all the accolades proudly displayed on the brewery's website). It's still tasty and drinkable, however.

Untoasted grains are still the focal point. A little more malt sweetness would be welcome since there's no shortage of Hallertau hop bitterness. Clove is slightly more prominent than banana... which results in a hefeweizen banan-o-meter score of 2.0/4.0. I like a little more monkey fruit. The finish is peppery and approaches dry, but isn't crisp.

The mouthfeel is a bit light and is slightly too fizzy. Neither is enough to be considered a negative, but the next highest score is not a temptation. More malt sugars would help here as well.

Penn Weizen is an okay effort that isn't destined to be remembered once the pint glass has drip dried. If the notches on the rear label were decipherable, I could determine if this is a fresh bottle or one that has seen better days. I hope it's the latter because these guys are capable of better.

BuckeyeNation, Jun 29, 2008
Photo of JayQue
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A fairly good hefeweizen. The appearance and smell are classic hefe - cloudy straw color, big bubbly head and great smell of wheat, citrus pepper and bubblegum.

First taste is a great follow-up to the smell. Smooth, astringent and very satisfying. The taste fades quickly into a mild wheat and slightly malty brew. Each sip is the same thing, the hefe flavors start impressively but don't last.

Overall mouthfeel is average. The loss of big flavor affects the overall feel. This beer has fairly good drinkability but it could have been a lot better. This one is close to being a really good hefe.

JayQue, Jun 29, 2008
Photo of BEERchitect
3.1/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Glad to have the opportunity to sample a beer from the brewery. The beer has a viscous, thick appearance, but light and fluffy according to the head formation / retention. Golden to straw in color and very hazy. Aromas are strong of malt, wheat, esters, and especially the phenolics. Bready flavors hit up-front with a solid dose of malt sweetness, banannas, lemons, cookie dough, clove, pineapples and apples. However, a plastic-ey, spicy note may be the deterant. Quite heavy and thick for the style, although it made for creaminess, hurt the drinkability a bit. Spicy and peppery to the palate. Finishes with a long, lingering estery / phenolic flavor that increased the plastic flavors to the point of being difficult to overlook. Too bad too, because this beer really has promise.

Notes taken from '08 NHC.

BEERchitect, Jun 23, 2008
Photo of hopsleeroy
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of Csmiley-Thanks!

A-Cloudy deep yellow almost orange look, minimal wite head
S-Banana, clove, and other spice. Good aroma excatly what you'd expect a hefe to smell like
T-Same tastes as smell but muted and slightly watery. A little surprised by the taste after the smell. As it warms started tasting better
M-Well carbonated with thin mouth feel
D-Very drinkable, but the thinner taste may have me reaching for something else.

hopsleeroy, Jun 23, 2008
Photo of bob5958
4.6/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I live in Pittsburgh but travel to Germany quite often and have had the opportunity to compare Penn Brewery's Weizen Beer with some of the great German and Belgium Wheat Beers.
Penn Brewery's Weizen is as good as some of the best German Wheat Beers, and better than many others.
I enjoy the slight taste of fruit and spice in wheat beer but it can easily become overpowering. They seem to have got it just right.
It's also one of the few beers that taste nearly as good from the bottle as from the tap.

bob5958, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of atsprings
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy pale orange with a nice head that diminishes to a thin layer. Aroma is some sweet fuits and hint of bubble-gum. The taste is a nice balance of fruit both from the malts and citrus hops, but an odd sourness lingers in the finish. The beer is light and crisp with heavy carbonation. This is a somewhat ejoyable summer beer.

atsprings, Jun 20, 2008
Photo of donteatpoop
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A foggy amber color with bits of something dark floating around inside. There was a nice finger of dimpled head resting at the top, great retention and plenty of lacing.

Smells of wheat and grain.

Tasted sweet and almost citrus-like, the yeast taking on a citrus/banana taste.

Very heavy in the mouth but smooth to take down, the carbonation level seemed a little low.

Very drinkable, a solid wheat beer and another great product from Penn.

donteatpoop, Jun 11, 2008
Photo of pinotboy007
3.4/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours light golden yellow with minimal head and no lacing to speak of.

Smell: Light banana and citrus (lemon?).

Taste: Just like it smells. Tastes of some banana and citrus. Good but not exciting.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and light; medium bodied.

Drinkability: Nice easy drink.

pinotboy007, Jun 10, 2008
Photo of stewart124
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a yellowish orange with a little haze and a fizzy white head.

Slight clove and banana esters in the nose. Earthy aromas with bits of spice.

Lots of spice and a tangy bite. Cloves and bits of banana are present but not overwhelming. There is a slight citrus feel that is refreshing on a hot day like today. Hops are barely present but add a nice noble spice to the already spicy character of this hefe. More esters start to come alive as the beer warms a bit and as my tastebuds get used to this funky yeast strain.

Soothing on the tongue and a medium mouthfeel. Body is smooth and medium. The intial taste and aftertaste are earthy and almost straw-like.

Very drinkable beer that I love on a humid summer day. I could drink a bunch of these with a smile on my face.

stewart124, Jun 06, 2008
Photo of tastybeer
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer glows in my glass as a somewhat olive-brown golden orange haze topped by an initially towering head which turns fairly immediately to an 1/8 inch layer. Little bits of spotty lace are left around the rim. Nose is fresh, brisk and rather pleasant. Aromas include lemon zest, pepper among other spice, wild farm-like flowers, cream, fresh doughy bread, and of course bananas. Flavors include a semi-surprising but welcome amount of chewy Germany malts, spice, banana, tropical-like other fruits, and some almost syrupy lemon. Texture if very nice probably especially if you drink it at a good pace and don't let the carbonation flat out (which should certainly not be a problem). The texture is comprised of fine carbonation bubbles, smooth + creamy, and is somewhat frothy. Very drinkable as well.

A solid and pleasantly sniffable hefe and not to mention, a good option when you're looking for this style.

tastybeer, Jun 02, 2008
Photo of nsmartell
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I enjoyed this beer while enjoying the nice spring weather. From the bottle I received from the micro of the month club to a weizen glass.

Appearance: Pours a nice hazy golden yellow with minimal head.

Smell: Light banana and citrus.

Taste: Just what the smell suggests. Tastes of banana with some citrus. Good, but not exciting.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and light to medium bodied.

Drinkability: Nice easy drink. Based upon some of the other reviewers perhaps mine wasn't as fresh as it could be and would definitely try again.

nsmartell, May 31, 2008
Photo of Georgiabeer
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours fairly clear golden with a slight head. Some haziness from swirling and dumping the yeast in the bottom, but the head could be a bit better. Some banana and clove, but relatively light in the aroma department. Taste is a bit more striking with clear notes of the banana and clove, fresh wheat, and some bready notes as well. The mouthfeel is slightly soft, but primarily crisp and spicy. Nice clean example of the style.

Georgiabeer, May 21, 2008
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewery, served in Penn Weizen glass.

Cloudy yellow body with about two fingers of white head. Not a lot of lacing, but decent retention.

Smell's of bannana basically.

A tasty heffe weizen, one of the better examples I've had for sure. Bananna and notes of clove with a wheat bite.
Served with alemon wedge, and although I'm not a fan of fruit in my beer, I have tried it in the pas with the lemon also, and it was actually tasty. Medium mouthfeel, good carbonation.

Great drinkability, nice beer for a warm day.

Hojaminbag, May 16, 2008
Photo of scoobybrew
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This was poured from the bottle into a weizen glass.

A - cloudy golden color with initially a thick head that settles quickly into a thin collar, leaves a very modest lacing

S - strong wheaty malt with strong banana and clove accents

T - as with aroma, wheat malt is right out there with yeast character accents, some slight hop on the finish

M - creamy, medium-light body with moderate to high carbonation

D - This is a really good hefeweizen. The only thing that really keeps this from being a fantastic beer is the appearance. However, I do consider this minor in the overall impression. Nicely done, I wouldn't mind having regular access to this in the summer if I was closer to a distribution point.

scoobybrew, May 13, 2008
Photo of therica
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Probably the first truly authentic unfiltered heffe-weissen I've seen in the USA.

A= chunky logs of yeast floating through hazy-cloudy pale-yellow; little head, no lacing.

S= very nice but a bit mild; standard unfiltered heffe, no vinegar or chemical burn, just a mild dusty wheat with hints of spring florals.

T= very straight-on target for an authentic unfiltered heffe-weissen. Nice yeast, pleasant hints of flowery hops, tiny traits of what seems like cinnamon in the background but probably cloves; very light lemon in the aftertaste.

M= slight lemon aftertaste, slightly tart but not stale or sour at all.

D= if you're a mega-fan of this style I'm sure you could drink it all night, although I think many consumers would find a limit due to the chunky yeast.

therica, May 11, 2008
Photo of Rootdog316
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy yellow, a plop of yeast that came out of the bottom of the bottle caused it to be very cloudy. Thin white head that lasted a while. Taste is medium banana sweet up front, turning wheat and clove mid-body, before finishing clove/light lemon tart. Light body, fairly crisp, with moderately high carbonation. Good hefe.

Rootdog316, May 08, 2008
Photo of MarkSCCOT
4.75/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was able to sample this brew at the Charleston BA Meeting May 2008. I am a huge fan of this style and have tried literally hundreds of Hefes. I have yet to try an outstanding American take until now.

A. Hazy (hefe of course) yellow brew with a nice lacy white head.

S. Outstanding. This is a definite classic. Clove, banana and fruity overtones.

T. As good as it smells. Very strong banana clove taste. If you ever want to demonstrate a Hefe to a newbie, this is a bold example.

M. Somewhat creamy and well carbonated.

D. This is a great session beer if you can get it!

MarkSCCOT, May 07, 2008
Photo of wedge
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a properly clouded deep golden color with a fluffy white head that briefly fills up the glass before shrinking to a clumpy cap. It's got that nice, authentic hefe smell: balanced banana and clove, medium sweetness, slight tangy wheat, citrus, and vanilla. Bold weizen flavor. Solid sweetness, bubblegum, and banana finishing with some clove and citrus. Medium-light body, refreshing, some dryness...solid all around.

Good stuff. An American Hefeweizen that is really true to style.

wedge, May 06, 2008
Photo of IronCitySteve
4.8/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Was still enjoying the Pens game at this time and sampling an assorment of Wheats.

A: A cloudy golden/yellow color. A minimal amount of foam. Can see the carbonation.

S: Lots of clove smell, bananas and some other tropical fruit and citrus.

T: A good combination of spicy flavor and bananas. Also some hints of citrus. The wheat, spice and bananas are blended well from beginning till end.

M: A very refreshinging, light, and very creamy feel in the mouth. Maybe a tad too creamy for my liking.

D: A good beer to drink while enjoying the minimal Pittsburgh sunshine. One of my favorite beers of all-time.

IronCitySteve, May 05, 2008
Photo of jasonjlewis
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a decent 1 finger head that quickly dissipates and leaves little retention behind. Nice cloudy yellow color.

Smell is of banana phenol with a grassy/citrusy twang. The citrusy wheatinessa and banana phenol are very enticing.

Taste is of a citrusy wheaty twang with a banana phenol overtone. A nice stab at the hefeweizen style. Glad to see that it's not another pale wheat ale in disguise.

Mouthfeel is refreshing. It's crisp and super clean.

A very easy to drink hefeweizen that I will try again on hot days during the summer.

jasonjlewis, May 02, 2008
Photo of arizcards
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Received in early April as part of the March MicroBeerClub shipment.

Beer poured a cloudy dark yellow with a nice head initially. Nose has hints of bananas and cloves. Taste is of bananas and wheat with a light hopping to finish nicely. Moutfeel is medium bodied, nothing special while going across the palate. Overall drinkability is perfect. This is a very nice representation of the style and at a 4.0 abv this is the perfect beer to enjoy with friends all night long!

arizcards, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of soupyman10
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque yellow with a nice finger of white head on top; mediocre lacing, but a nice looking brew. Nose is nice and strong: lots of citrus fruit, spices, and wheat. Really a good nice. Taste is likewise. Gotta say, this one was a lot better than I expected; just a nice, pure, down-home kind of hefeweizen flavor. Got all the required: lots of fruit, spiciness, and wheat. Very sweet beer. Totally lacking in all the crappy grain that seems to dominate a lot of these American versions. Body is medium, good for the style. Not gonna blow your mind like a Weihenstephaner, but still a very tasty summer brew.

soupyman10, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of tsewong
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall, I'm very impressed by my fellow Pennsylvania brewers and I place Pennyslvania Brewing Company among my favorites. Leading the pack of fine beers that I've tasted so far from Pennsylvania Brewing Company is their Penn Weizen. This is a classic hefeweizen true to style and tradition sporting everything you expect from a finely crafted hefe. I found this glass of Penn Weizen, and subsequent glasses, difficult to put down because after each swallow, I was too impatient to wait for the next taste.

Cloudy as it should be and the yeast characters are just in there injecting the fruity esters and tangy bite to support the crisp, refreshing maltiness. Lovely, sweet complexity throughout the glass.

I've had this beer both on tap and poured from a bottle and the tap experience is noticeably better. However, I'm a fan of this beer regardless of the packaging.

tsewong, Apr 06, 2008
Photo of erosier
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky golden yellow color with a medium sized but thin white head that settles fairly fast and leaves some lacing down the glass. It has a very strong aroma of sweet wheat, cloves, banana, and some orange. The taste was OK for this kind of beer. It had a very nice sweet wheat base that was followed with a big hit of cloves and bananas. A slightly citrisy hoppy bitterness followed but the beer finished with a very sweet and pungeant aftertaste. The mouthfeel was very light but very watery. It was strange but it was a little watery feeling. The drinkability was good for a hefeweizen and worth a try.

erosier, Apr 01, 2008
Photo of nasty15108
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.
I aquired this beer in a trade with Hyland24.

A - Looked like a glass of murky swamp water. It was a cloudy light yellow color with a finger or two of off-white head. Not much light getting through at all.

S - Very yeasty, like country bread. I also got hints of ripe fruit (banana)and some citrus.

T - Lots of yeast up front, followed by a sweet almost banana-lke flavor. It wasn't like real bananna though, it was more like banana candy, like bananna Now & Laters, or Laffy Taffy. I also detected a tiny bit of citric bitterness in the finish.

MF&D - The sweetness was good, but not overpowering and the flavor coated my mouth well. This beer came to me very highly touted, I would have to say it lived up to its billing. My only regreat is having only 1 bottle to sample, I think this one would have gotten even better after a few more.

nasty15108, Mar 31, 2008
Penn Weizen from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 341 ratings.