Reserve Wheat Ale - Telegraph Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Reserve Wheat AleReserve Wheat Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

81 Reviews
THE BROS
86
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 81
Hads: 163
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 6.08%
Wants: 46
Gots: 23 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Telegraph Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Berliner Weissbier |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RidiculedDisplay on 02-22-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Reserve Wheat Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 81 | Hads: 163
Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled January 2009; Sampled April 2009
A fairly soft pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three finger thick, pale, just off-white colored head. The beer is a pale gold color that shows a lightly hazed, straw-gold color with a white sheen to it when held up to the light. The aroma smells of grassy grain up front, this is followed by a light tartness and the finish has a sweet, lemon verbena not that is soft but distinct. Crushed whole grain cracker notes form a solid wheat signature in the aroma, though I was expecting this to smell more sour and / or funky. The herbal character is nice with its lemon focused finish.

The beer is tart, though not aggressively so, but it is enough sourness to be quite refreshing. Pretty much bone dry, but there is a perception of lemon zest towards the finish that seems to add a suggestion of sweetness. The carbonation adds quite a bit of fizzy effervescence to this brew as it dances across the tongue and it also adds a pepper-like spiciness to the finish. The beer is also quite light bodied; it is really quite refreshing, even if a little gassy at times. The grain does not play as big a role in the flavor as it does in the aroma, but there are still some flavors of hay, some saltine cracker notes in the finish and a bit of an earthy grain note.

A bit more simplistic than I was expecting, the Brettanomyces character is really quite muted at this time; this would have been a welcome boost to the complexity of this brew and perhaps this will develop a bit more with time. If the yeast character was a bit more interesting I would almost call this a great example of a Saison (though it does lean a bit more towards a clean Berliner Weiss); it is light and refreshing and the lactic character adds a nice touch but is not overwhelming. (1,796 characters)

Photo of MiScusi
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750 into my Ommegang Witte tumbler.

A- light golden, almost pale, but still on the golden side. Tons of bubbles streaming up. Very airy wispy head settles there for a bit and then creates an ocean foam over the top.

S- first I notice you can actually smell the wheat, like a wit almost. Then you get that mild tartness as well. There might be the slightest hint of banana or something fruity in there.

T- surprisingly there's a bit of belgian yeast taste. Course there's a little acid giving it some tartness which is not puckering, and tastes of light lemon juice, but there's also some yeast phenols in there contributing quite a bit to the taste.

M- very light and effervescent.

D- I can drink a whole bottle of this easily and still want more. I have no idea what the ABV is on this beer but I would love to put this back all afternoon during a hot summer day. (883 characters)

Photo of hopdog
3.92/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle acquired in trade with WeeHeavySD (thanks!).

Bottle labled bottled on 1/12/09. Poured a medium and hazy yellow color with a smaller sized white head. Aromas of wheat, cereal, and lighter citrus. Tastes of citrus, wheatiness, cereal, and lighter spices. Lighter tart finish. (288 characters)

Photo of weazal
3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Sour, bready lemon.

T: Overriding sourness, but strangely slick with a complete lack of puckering - which I find impressive! Perhaps the easiest sour beer I've had yet. Sweet, tangy lemon from beginning though mid until a grassy-ness tries to fight through, only to be overpowered by the tang. Finishes clean with only slight lingering flavor. (348 characters)

Photo of djaeon
3/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours very light yellow with a highly carbonated head. Poured into a pint glass and about a quarter of it was head. It dissipates pretty quickly and leaves no lacing.

S: Smells pretty light with some mild floral notes. And a hint of sourness.

T: I didn't really pay to much attention to the label when I bought this. I saw "wheat ale" and was expecting more of a hef style. So it was a bit of a surprise when tasting it, but not really a bad surprise. There's definitely some sourness there, but not enough to make you pucker. I'm also tasting a little lemon/lime flavor, but not too much.

M: Feels decent in the mouth. Only slightly tart, and a lot of carbonation.

D: Easily drinkable. I usually take a little more time when drinking a beer, but I find myself taking bigger mouth-fulls of this one, so it's going down pretty easy and fast. (847 characters)

Photo of paytoplay
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Easy drinker. Light, not a lot of mid or finish. Ok nose with slight funk and very slight sour. Maybe a beer to intro people to this style. But ver light and not complex. Though with 3-6 months of bottle conditioning age I could see a bit more happening. There are others in this style I'd rather pick up. (305 characters)

Photo of popery
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Bright straw yellow with a dissipating head.

S: Sweet and sour wheat with some floral notes and a mild lactic bite.

T: It's a very well done Berliner Weissbier for my taste, but it's certainly on the mild end of the sour spectrum for this style. The tartness is restrained, which I really appreciate because it brings out more of the spicy wheat flavors. There are also notes of lemon and coriander.

M: Good, mild tartness. Admittedly, it probably goes downhill with age. So, drink it fresh.

D: Very drinkable, very refreshing. Compared to the German versions I've tried, this beer is more accessible. It's almost like they blended a small amount of an APA or another mild style into it. The Berliner Weissbier tang is there, but there was little actual pucker in my mouth. I hope that more American breweries take up this style if they can achieve results like this. Then again, I wonder how much my reaction is from just being able to have this beer very fresh, while the German beers suffer from the time lag of importing. In any event, I hope that people try this beer and realize that it's a style that has the potential for returning to popularity among American palates. (1,184 characters)

Photo of rallison
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from San Roque Liquor in Santa Barbara.

Cloudy pale golden pour with a fizzy white head that dissipates.

Lemon sourness in the aroma.

Soft, wheat character presents a distinctly citrusy sourness. Some lactic sourness. Pretty clean. Grassy (probably from the wheat). Minimal funkiness (with Brett added, this may develop later). Somewhat floral. Nice.

Low to medium carbonation with a nice, dry finish. Refreshing.

Drinkability is very good. Perfect for a hot day.

Recommended. Not as sour or as complex as some, but still very nice.

A couple comparisons:

If you want something more complex and floral, try the 1809. If you want something with way more lactic sourness, try the Bruery Hottenroth. (713 characters)

Photo of seaoflament
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the label:
"This intensely sour 'wild ale' recalls the earliest rustic beers crafted centuries ago before brewers had an understanding of controlled fermentation. Brewed with the addition of lemon verbena, as well as lactobacillus and brettonomyces, Telegraph Reserve Wheat is an all-together different beast from modern beer. Not for the faint of heart, this special brew is available in extremely limited quantities."

Picked up a bottle of this today at SouthBayDrugs.

Very pale yellow with an inch of egg shell white foam, good retention. Some lacing. Cloudiness with the yeast pour. Decent look for a Berliner weiss type beer.

Grassy, lemon, wheat, lacto, little brett. Pale malt sweetness in the background. Sour orange, and a bit of an herbal aroma. White pepper too. A little more funk and yeastiness with the yeast pour. Good aroma.

Light and tart with an herbal lemon flavor in the finish. Maybe a little tart nectarine and orange but very subtle. Not too complex but I'm sure some time in the bottle would be good for this beer.

Medium-high carbonation, slightly tart and refreshing. Excellent for a summer beer. (1,134 characters)

Photo of DuqTroops
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I came to this from Craig at City Beer in SF. I asked for a couple of his recommendations to send home to the East coast, and this was a great choice.

I have not heard of Telegraph, but they made a great brew! Tonight for dinner, I made a grilled chicken with spinach/lemon pesto. The wheat ale made a great pair for the dinner.

Appearance - hazy in color, looks "wheaty," yet appropriate.

Smell: lemony.

Taste: a little sour, then sweet. you can really taste the brets...

Mouthfeel: not too dry, but very good.

Drinkability: love it. If I could, would buy it again.

It was bottled on Jan 12, 2009 - I don't think it would make a good aged or cellared beer.

Cheers! (673 characters)

Photo of RidiculedDisplay
4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is, by far, my favorite Telegraph beer out of the ones I've tried. The style is basically consensus between all of us drinking it at Beachwood BBQ - Gabe in particular thinks it's a Berliner Weissbier, and I'm inclined to agree.

On tap at Beachwood. From notes:

Appearance: Very thin head, very spotty lacing that is fairly weak in staying power. The body is a hazy pear/peach color, appropriate for a wheat beer.

Smell: "Pear city," as my notes say. Lots of pear in the aroma, followed by cork wood, apricot, and belgian yeast. A hint of peach in there, too. Really a fairly fantastic smelling beer, if for no other reason the pears.

Taste: Apricot on the front end, followed by pears, straw, and sourness on the back end. Surprisingly drinkable, and surprisingly addicting. A bit cider-like.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, and juicy. Very slightly dry.

Drinkability: Intensely drinkable. A great beer. (924 characters)

Reserve Wheat Ale from Telegraph Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 81 ratings.