The Love - Starr Hill Brewery

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The LoveThe Love

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404 Ratings
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Ratings: 404
Reviews: 134
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 15.58%
Wants: 14
Gots: 48 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Starr Hill Brewery visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Hefeweizen |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mentor on 01-12-2008

The Love is an unfiltered wheat beer, also known as a hefeweizen. It is distinguished by its extremely light body and flavored with hints of banana and clove. A slice of lemon can complement this refreshing brew.

Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 404 | Reviews: 134
Photo of AgentMunky
4.28/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 2L growler into a pilsner glass. Filled today at the Starr Hill brewery. Freshly tapped. This is the third time I've typed this review (the site crashed, then logged me out), so expect a brief review.

A: Two and a half fingers of wispy head. Gorgeously unfiltered; cloudy, translucent, and completely opaque. Yellow edges, honey-brown core. Good lacing. Great looking beer.

S: Banana, tart yeast, lemon zest, and maybe a hint of spice. The distinctive yeast is the best part about it.

T: Yum. Lemon peel to start, smooth sweet spice on the maintaste, and slightly dry on the aftertaste. True to the traditional style, but expertly made.

M: Less carbonated than from the bottle, but still with enough pizazz and spice to keep it interesting. A bit puckery.

O: Fabulous beer. Criminally underrated. Highly drinkable and immensely pleasant. One of the best hefewiezens I've come across and one of my favourite beers from Virginia. Will drink whenever I see it. Definitely recommended.

Photo of DaveBlack
2.7/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The requisite wheat beer from the taster pack. I have come to never expect great things from these, but...

A: Hazy golden with absolutely no head at all, not even a coating on the surface of the beer. There is no lacing at all, which is not surprising given the lack of head.

S: Banana and wheat, not getting much beyond that.

T: Taste falls totally flat for me. A little bit of wheat, some light citrus-y flavors which adds tartness, followed by sweetness, but I could be drinking a watered-down, carbonated juice. The tart and sweet balance nicely, but I have to fight to even taste those. I know it's a light summer beer, but I don't think that means it shouldn't have any flavor.

M: Light, with more carbonation than I would expect from the look of it. Refreshing.

O: Mediocre at best. Hardly any flavor, and what flavor there is isn't that great. Totally unexceptional, which is, as I said, about what I have come to expect from these taster-pack wheats.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Hazy orange/yellow pour, white head. No lace.

Plenty of banana and clove and spice aromas, but there's an acidity there that is slightly unusual from my experience with the style.

Citrus, clove, light banana, and tart citrus. I'm not saying it's bad, but I just prefer light fruity sweetness as apposed to this more tart and citrus approach.

Light bodied, crisp, and slick.

Not my style of hefeweizen, but I can see this as something that a sour fan could find some joy in.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.63/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Murky, golden with a single finger width head which dissipates somewhat quickly.

S: Definitly fruity. Not catching the cloves I read about.

T: Again, fruity, bananas, question something sharper like citrus (pineapple?)

M: Moderate carbonation, typical hefeweizen feel.

O: Easy to drink. I like the banana notes with the typical hefeweizen taste.

Photo of mocktm
3.72/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into Starr Hill pint glass...

Pours a hazy dark golden yellow with about a finger's worth of head. Not a lot of retention or lacing as it dies down. Looks pretty traditional for a hefe style, just not as much carbonation as I like to normally see.

Nose is full of typical aromas: banana, clove, bubblegum and lemon. A lot more acidic tartness then usual for the style though.

Tastes just as predicted. A lot of lemon sourness that seems to overwhelm the other flavors, especially the wheat. Wish it was a bit breadier, and less mouth puckering bubblegum. Not bad, but not great either.

Mouth feel is little thin, light to medium bodied. Again, not as much carbonation and creaminess as I had hoped.

Overall, this beer is pretty good. Since its local, my gf and I seem to drink a decent amount of it on hot summer days. However, there are much better American Hefes out there.

Photo of metter98
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: The beer is cloudy dark yellow in color. It poured with a thin off white head that slowly died down and eventually faded away completely.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of bananas and cloves in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and the banana and clove flavors stand out in front of those from the wheat.
M: It feels light bodied on the palate and has a light to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is easy to drink and has some refreshing properties.

Photo of BeerMarshall
3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the brewery on tap.

A: Properly clouded, pleasant golden color

S: Clove/Banana overload boardering on bubblegum.

T: Same as aroma. High on flavor, but probably a bit too high on esters and phenols.

M: no real strong feelings

O: Decent wheat, but a overboard on the phenolics and banana esters. Would probably improve with some time for mellowing.

Photo of Hopfenpeter
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a mug instead of a Weizenglass, because I had this beer in a restaurant.
The color is a medium golden blond. A white head builds, but dissipates fast and leaves little lacing.
The smell hints fruity notes like peach, banana and citrus.
Tasting the beer the bouquet is fruity up front, peach and banana dominating. In the middle some of the yeast is kicking in in combination with some wheat flavors. At the end the citrus notes finish the beer. Very drinkable balanced summer beer.

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

The Love pours a hazy pale yellow with some peach highlights and a foamy white head that falls quickly leaving arcs of oily lacing.

The aroma has hints of coriander, clove and a light fruity banana scent.

The flavor has tart lemon, mild banana, a touch of clove and coriander and a grainy wheat bitterness. The flavors aren't overpowering and aren't as well integrated as I might like.

Mouthfeel is a bit thinner than I prefer (but not watery) and a touch over carbonated.

Overall not a bad beer, not something to write home about and not something to turn your nose up at either. As the weather turns to our usual Summer "incinerate" temperatures I can see putting a few of these back.

Photo of jsprain1
4.04/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Hazy golden yellow. Head is minimal and leaves virtually no lacing.
S- Grainy, lemon, banana, a bit of clove to it.
T- Starts with a lemon and wheat taste. The strong banana and clove flavors don't kick in until near the finish, but when it does it is strong. Good flavors and multi-dimensional.
M- Relatively full bodied for an American-made hefe. Problem here is the carbonation is way way too sharp.
D- A sound hefe. Tone down the carbonation and it could be one of the best American made hefeweizens out there. A definite improvement over their marzen.

Photo of WeezyBoPeep
4.33/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice hazy tan, looks alive, cloudy as hell, can't see through it easily. Excellent head retention and nice lacing all the way down the glass.

S: Ultra-fruit. Lemon, orange, bananas, apples...light floral hop notes and a big blast of fresh baked bread.

T: A lightly refeshing hefe. Lemony and pleasant. A nice wave of ripe bananas shines through, with a peanut buttery finish. Very nice. Creamy mouthfeel.

D: Session beer.

Value: Very good for a beer of this quality. I got it for around 8 bucks a sixer. Excited to see more from this brewery.

Photo of sholland119
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Blind BIF Round 4. Beer #1 from Thorpe429.

A-Pours a cloudy, pale gold with a frothy white head. Nice retention and a bit of stickiness.

S-A blast of bubble gum hit me when I opened the bottle. Some underlying spiciness as well. Very nice.

T-Very flavorful. Bready on the front with a bit of a lemony tang, followed by bubble gum and a hint of clove.

M-Lighter side of medium bodied, nice silkiness from the suspended yeast, medium carbonation.

D-This will be gone in a heartbeat. An easy drinker, long on taste.


Photo of CuriousMonk
3/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a lightly hazy yellow golden color with one finger white head that settles quickly. Aroma is sweet and floral with notes of banana, clove, spice, honey, light caramel, floral esters. Flavor is sweet and floral with similar notes of honey, spice, clove, banana, light caramel, floral esters. Light to medium body with a pleasing malty finish. Easy drinker and not bad.

Photo of bubseymour
3.74/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - one of the clearer-to-see-through wheat beers out there. No head at all. Carbonation is quite fizzy.

Smell - Pleasant and European straw scented with hint of strawberry fruitiness.

Taste - Very mild, refreshing with hints of strawberry. No hop bitterness of note.

Mouthfeel - watery

Drinkability - this is a quite easy drinker.

Overall - Another decent brew from Starr Hill. Light and refreshing with fruity hints.

Photo of BatDaddy
3.45/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a cloudy yellow orange that's typical of the style. Off white head that settles to a nice fluffy layer on top. Good retention.

S - Lots of fragrance here, and strong too, I can smell it before I even bring my nose to it. Citrus, banana, clove, bit of yeast. Smells quite enticing.

T & M - Hmmm... seems a bit of a letdown after getting such good aromas. All the flavors are there, but the taste is very subdued. Lots more lemon than expected from the nose. Some banana, clove, and yeast, but mostly citrusy lemon. Not terrible, but a bit weak. Mouthfeel is not bad. Smooth and bubbly but not harsh with carbonation. Pretty standard for the style.

D - Not bad. Certainly an easy drinker, but there's better beers and better hefeweizens out there.

Had this on tap several months ago and really enjoyed it. Maybe it was a fresher sample or it paired well with the beer I had drank previously. Whatever it was, I was a little disappointed in this from the bottle.

Photo of shand
3.94/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don't know why I though this was a raspberry wheat beer. Oh well, carrying on! Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a weizen glass.

A hazy straw colour with three fingers of head that retains and laces poorly. Very carbonated. Below average for what's usually a great looking style. The smell is just about normal, bananas, lemons, clove, and wheat. The clove isn't overpowering, thankfully. The taste is actually quite good! It goes down about normal for a hefeweizen, with the bananas, esters, and wheat. Then, instead of the clove strike I'm expecting, in comes mister Lemon to keep things interesting. This is a strong lemon/lime bite here for sure in the middle of the taste! Just a touch of fruits and berries shines through at the end, leaving the aftertaste a wholly fruity affair. Very interesting.

The mouthfeel is very light and carbonated, which is good for the flavors. And the drinkability is very high, this is a smooth drinker without that wretched clove that tends to haunt this style. A beer that took me by surprise, for sure. Recommended.

Photo of smakawhat
2.48/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a wheat glass from the bottle.

So this is my first so called "US Hefe" huh? Got big shoes to fill here since I've only had ones from Europe so here goes.

Cloudy dark lemon yellow body kind of dull, with a soapy one finger white head. Big carbonation bubbles from the bottom. No sticking for lacing either. The head bubbles are a good pin sized for the most. Out of the bottle it doesn't gush or foam very much. There is some yeast on the bottom of the bottle.

Smell is ok, nothing fancy slightly better than average. Faint lemon which is good but it smells like fake processed lemon juice or there is some other chemical or off that makes the lemon come out tasting like the typical fake lemon dish/soap detergent lemon juice. No grain to speak of either. An off putting sour too borderline not good.

Taste is real weak. This beer is incredibly watery. Lemon or grain taste does not come through either on the palate. Fizzy finish but one that luckily doesn't stay for too long. That fizz tastes like watered down high carbonated Sprite. In fact there is no grain on this beer either in taste or smell anywhere.

I am going to have to give this a pass on drinkability scale, there's much better out there for this style.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A 12 oz. bottle with a twist-cap, no notch found on the 'purchase before month' strip up the side of the label ~ but received pretty recently from Metalmonk, so I trust its freshness. Poured to a Hoegaarden tumbler, thinking this was a witbier; consumed half by itself, half with a bowl of sausage/chicken gumbo soup.

A: Milky butterscotch-orange pour; I twirled the last couple ounces in the bottle, but it was already plenty cloudy after the first 10... Good head, creamy and near-white, holds well before dwindling to a patchy/clumpy skim. Lace clings in loose, sagging drapes.

S: Fairly strong grass/wheat and careful spice (clove), then notable lemon peel and lemon candy/bubblegum. What a proper hefeweizen should smell like...

T: Fairly simple flavor profile: big chewy wheat, kinda doughy and sweet, followed by mildly tangy lemon-orange. Once its warmed a while, each sip starts with a squeeze of citrus, then devolves to a yeasty/bready mouthful with mild berry notes before ending with a sprinkling of spice. It works rather well, even it's not spot-on.

M: Carbonation is more modest than the look led on, rather than bright and crisp, there a smoother creaminess here. Aptly light-medium body, but a fade to thinness and a lack of much lingering, other than lip-grabbing stickiness, makes this a little blasé.

D: A pretty good version of the style, though lacking a little of the oomph in flavor/aroma/feel that the best exhibit. None of that deters from drinkability; modest strength and good balance, plus refreshing-ness, make this a fine choice. Only my second from Starr Hill (much better than Festie!), but I'd like more. Thanks again, Jeff...

On a side note, it's good to see Starr Hill gain a little publicity on one of my favorite TV shows, 'Top Chef'...

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.15/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle tried 17 Aug 2010. Served in the Sierra Nevada shaker pint.

Large off white head quickly dissipates. Medium carbonation. Cloudy golden yellow/peachy color. Aroma is wheaty and clovey with a melony citrus fruitiness. Flavor is mostly lightly wheat and citrus. Becomes a little bit tart towards the finish. Thirst quenching. Medium body. Minimal ethanol.

Seems somewhat watered down or muted.

Photo of lespaulrocker
3.87/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Brixx.

A: Typical hefe appearance, pale and cloudy with a white hair and medium lacing.

S: Wheat, banana, citrus, hints of wheat. Inviting.

T: Great taste. A lot of yeast, some banana and citrus, a sweeter beer but not too sweet. A great hefe.

M: Not too much carbonation, just right. A little heavy but good nonetheless.

D: Very drinkable.

This was a great offering, one I'd seek out again.

Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Listed here as a hefeweizen - if so, it is the clearest hefe I've come across. Poured a bright golden with a nominal head, despite a vigorous pour. A bit spicy in the nose. Bright, clean flavor - not a lot of wheat malt, but a distinctive lemony, slightly citric acidity predominates. Some muted yeast flavors, with a touch of banana at first that is soon overtaken by the lemon. Overall, very refreshing, but the citric nature did get a little tart by the end.

Photo of TheKingofWichita
3.37/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful orange copper color with a thick yellowish head and tons of lacing. Smells of dirty dish water with lemons in it. Taste is much different. Tastes of wheat, citrus (lemon and orange), coriander, and buscuity yeast. Mouthfeel is a little thin but is backed up with heavy carbonation. Drinkability is high.

Photo of Meerkey
3.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy pale yellow gold. Straw. Some persistent white head.

S: Wheat, a little bitterness, some citrus and banana.

T: Yeast, some sourness pervades -citrus, banana, a bit sweet.

M: Nice carbonation, stickiness is a little heavy on the tongue, but only at first.

D: Quite. Not much to say. You can enjoy the taste without noticing the alcohol.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.77/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a hazy light golden straw with a white head and a tad bit of lacing. The nose brings some light lemon flavors as well as some clove spice and a bit of banana. Tart lemon along with some banana and clove are there in the flavor. A little bit of light wheat adds some flavor and makes for a nice body. Drinks well and is a nice semi-local beer.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a snow-white head over an inch thick, and it sticks around a long while. The color is a muddy yellow, like pulpy pear/pineapple juice, cloudy from the swirled yeast. Looks just as it should, and when a hefeweizen looks good, it looks really good. Maybe it's not a true German hefe, but this looks really good, indeed.

Aroma is mostly tropical fruit, lots of banana especially, with some pear as well. Sweetness is like cream-and-sugar, and I'm thinking this is something I'd want mixed into my oatmeal. A very welcoming, comforting sort of aroma.

At first it's a wonderful flavor: banana, pear, lemon, tangerine, cream, fresh-baked white bread, herbal tea, pineapple soda. Certainly puts it's own stamp on the American Wheat Beer category. The only thing stopping this from getting a "4" grade is the mineral/metallic character that, while not terribly intense, seems to cut off these sweet, bready, delicate flavors that impress at the very front of the sip. There's almost no real finish to this beer, except for a green apple tartness that pushes through.

A softness of texture is held back by a too-carbonated tingle. Too bad, as there's a wonderfully velvety thing happening here, but it's dominated by something more aggressive, and it brought the enjoyment factor down just a little bit for me.

Wow, just the fact that this qualifies as "pretty darn good" is a lot more than I've been able to say for most Starr Hill stuff (who have only struck me as "ho-hum" so far, and that's not being a snob, just being honest to my own impressions). Glad I bought this, and it worked really, really well in a pizza dough recipe I have that calls for wheat beer. The Love? Maybe not totally, but I'd be happy to call it The Like.

The Love from Starr Hill Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 404 ratings.