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Redback Beer - Matilda Bay Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Redback BeerRedback Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.

41 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 56
Avg: 3.37
pDev: 18.99%
Wants: 1
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matilda Bay Brewing Co. visit their website

Style | ABV
Kristalweizen |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-28-2002

Styled on the traditional German wheat beer or weizen style of beer. Redback has a fruity/clove aroma, a generous creamy mouth feel and refreshing hop finish.

18 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 41 | Hads: 56
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.92/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hmm. Somehow, I've managed to go this long without reviewing this beer, probably one of the more ubiquitous Aussie pseudo-craft brews. It pours a suitable clear pale golden colour, with a very fine if largely non-retentive head of white. Nice lacing, fine body. It's a shame the beer doesn't have a big, frothy German-style head, but otherwise, it looks pretty decent.

Nose is good. Genuinely good for a Kristalweizen: clear, clean banana and bubblegum characters, along with just a hint of spice, but certainly along the smoother and sweeter ends. There's a hint of acidity to it, but not the thinness you often get from a sub-par wheat beer. Really quite good.

Taste is similar, and genuinely good, stylistically. Smooth, clean wheat characters along the length, with finishing touches of bubblegum, and the ever-present banana ester aromatics. It's quite light, but there are few if any flaws to it.

Overall, this is pretty decent. To be fair, it's very light on, but the style in general is pretty light on as well, and this does a decent job of capturing the same aromatics and flavours.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.45/5  rDev +32%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

345ml bottle, silkscreen differs from the BA pic in that it has "Redback" on the top of the oval, and "Original" across the bottom. This bottle was hoofed back from AUS myself back on my first visit back in 1992. So this bottle is ancient, and has been fridged continuously since then. Probably wouldn't review it, due to the style most likely not aging well, but since this recipe predates the corporate changes that some mention in their reviews, I thought it would be a curiosity. So here goes...

Opens with a hearty pfft, as I would have expected fresh, so that's a start. Poured into an imperial pint glass, forms a 1" frothy bright white head over the clear golden brew. Active carbonation swirls bubbles about. Head hangs on while I was off rinsing the bottle and such, only losing half its height in 5 minutes or so.

Aroma is of spicy wheat, as expected. Taste is light wheat character, with sedate spices moted here and there. Mouthfeel and drinkability are superb. Small bubbles over the tongue enhance the smoothness, and knocking this back swallow by swallow is the epitome of ease.

This brew is all that I remember it to be, and I am shocked that a 13 year old kristalweizen could withstand the age. These facts only make the heart heavier with the apparent news that this brew is no longer what it used to be. I guess I'll just have to savor this last bottle, and at least we'll always <sniff> have the memories...

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Photo of CrazyDavros
2.96/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a tiny fading head.
Nose shows typical doughy wheat, some light phenols along with a hint of lemon.
Similar flavours but with the addition of a lot of sweet, characterless and unchallenged malt.
Very high carbonation and watery body.

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Photo of ADZA
3.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another beer that i havnt had for ages and am reviewing,it pours a pale see thru straw colour with nice carbonation that leaves a one finger head and subtle lacing,the aromas are bananna and wheat,it has a nice mouthfeel for the style which starts out medium bodied then finishes light,dry and crisp with hints of bananna,wheat and pale malts the dominant taste,this is one of those beers that could easliy drink alot of on a nice hot summers day and would go very nicely with Seafood.

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.55/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had this beer on a trip to Australia at the Redback Hotel.
The beer is served in a wheat flute with a lemon wedge before I can ask for no lemon. The beer arrives a bright gold color with several streams of bubbles rising from the bottom. A thin bleached white head fades to an edge layer rather quickly. Aroma is lemony citrus, but could be due to now removed lemon. I also get grainy malt and some very mild biscuity yeast. First sip reveals a crisp lite body and average fizzy carbonation. The flavor is sweet and citrusy with some sugar as well. Very lite flavor makes the beer quickly drinkable and it is good on this warm spring day in Melbourne. The beer is not brewed on premise and is contracted out to Matilda Bay.
Not a bad beer for a warm day.

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Photo of rastaman
3/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Just and average German style kristal wheat, sadly i think it has lost a lot of character since carlton and United took over, still nice to down every now and then, hints of cloves and banana, but not overly so.

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Photo of soju6
3.3/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a golden color with a decent head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Aroma is fairly mild with banana, wheat and a bit of spice.

T: Nice taste of wheat with a mild bit of banana and fruit. Mild bitterness and a clean finish.

F: Light body, mild crispness, smooth and refreshing.

O: Nice beer, doesn’t have a heavy feel goes well with meals or the Aussie weather.

 379 characters

Photo of heygeebee
3.21/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Been a while since I arrived 'off the boat' and this was new and exciting, challenging Reschs for market share...

How does it stack up 20 years later?

Looks the part, good initial pour, but fades quickly, some lace.

Aromas of yeast, almost some citrus (!) not quite to type, but after that the flavour gets a bit metallic / macro-ish if that's possible in a wheat beer.

Never mind, the industry has moved on - can Matilda Bay? It's not bad, mind you, just not good. I think this has only just fallen out of the BA Top 100 - a good indicator.

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Photo of brendan13
3.27/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear, light straw colour with a couple of centimetres of white head.
S - Big waft of lemon citrus at first backed up by some light banana & spice.
T - Slighty sweet malt with some tartiness.
M - Medium mouthfeel with a pretty high carbonation level.
D - Drinkable but a bit lifeless. Many better aussie micro wheat beers out there.
On a side note they are now doing printing directly onto the bottle which is a cool effect. However maybe spending the money on more exciting beers would be more worth while.

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Photo of tai4ji2x
3.65/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from notes, tasted mid to late june 2009, kro's nest, beijing, china

importer label indicates bottling date of 9 months before the best by date of 16 nov 09.

poured into mug.

clear golden honey straw. 1.5 finger head fades to wispy layer and ring. splotchy lacing is pretty sparse.

aroma: mild banana and clove. detectable bready and yeasty character. trace euro hopping. very faint phenols in back w/ more spice. hints of tea?

taste: bready malt and yeast, but a touch watery. banana, clove and pears, but again, a touch watered down. mild to moderate bitterness from mild notes of grassy noble hopping. cloves mix w/ phenols and esters into the finish.

light and crisp, slightly watery, but with moments of creaminess. prickly carbonation isn't TOO fizzy. faint resins and phenols.

not horrible. actually a pleasant surprise, considering my low expectations.

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Photo of SmashPants
3.23/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Format: a standard 345mL brown bottle with a decent semi-craft Matilda Bay label.

Appearance: a clear amber-gold with a half-finger of white head that drops to a thick cap and ring. Plenty of carbonation across the profile.

Aroma: not much on the nose - just a light aroma of doughy grain and wheat without much backing it up. I really don't like kristals.

Taste: picks up a bit here - some of those banana and cloves that are expected in a wheat beer with some spice and sweet sugar.

Aftertaste: more the sugar and some kind of sweet malt that I can't put my finger on.

Mouth feel: moderate in feel with a medium carbonation. Brings the falvours through nicely, with a slight sweetness. Nice.

Overall: this is definitely one of the better kristalweizens I have had to date - the aroma and the look are still disappointing, but the flavour is pretty good. I really do prefer a good old fashioned wheat beer rather than the filtered version. Still, not bad at AU$56 for a case of 24.

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Photo of joecast
4.03/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

updating my four year old review. actually, just deleted it and entering a new one.
345ml bottle. best before 8/9/08 4.7%abv

looks fantastic in the glass. deep golden color. high carbonation and a full pillowy white head. mmm.

aroma seems to fill the room. mainly clove but some softer banana and bubblegum. big yeast presence as well which surprises me considering its a fairly clear beer.

flavor tends towards the sweet side, but the high carbonation keeps it lively. really well balanced with some sharpness at first, then it smooths out with that sweetness making it easy to keep lifting the glass.

very enjoyable. wonder if this is brewed down the road at cascade?? bottle doesnt mention anything like that, but this certainly seems fresh.

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Photo of doktorhops
2.87/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Here comes a "modern-classic" (seems like a contradictory term there) brew from the boys (and girls, let's be PC) at Matilda Bay, one of the better brewers in Australia. Now the big question is: Can an Aussie brewer make a decent Wheat beer? Usually the territory of those lovely Lederhosen wearing chaps from Bavaria. Well 'ave at it then!

Poured from a 345ml bottle into a 500ml stein.

A: Looks alright... paler and less cloudy than the norm but otherwise quite suitable; light orange body, 1cm white head, but full o' action in the fizz department.

S: Musky and clovey (it's a word), with a hint of alcohol grains permeate the senses... still not bad although some banana aroma is missed in my opinion.

T: And now reality bites! This beer is boring in the flavour department. It's like someone took the atypical flavours of a wheat beer; cloves, banana, bubblegum, sourdough, and turned it all down a notch (way down...). Pity as this brew coulda been a contender *in my best Marlon Brando voice*.

M: None of the thick creamy characters you normally find in a wheat beer. This brew is lacking the things I enjoy most from the style; flavour content and a nice chewy mouthfeel.

D: When it comes down to it the things that make a beer sessionable are here, but the things that make a beer classic and also ripping awesome are not. In the case of Redback they seem to be mutually exclusive, which is the greatest shame as Australia could be a really fantastic producer of Wheat beer (we've certainly got enough wheat here!), but instead I relegate this brew to the "tried but not really interested" section of my beer tasting catalogue.

Food match: Would I recommend German fare for an Aussie beer? Maybe, but not this one as it's far too bland to take on the mighty flavours of German cuisine. Instead I think this brew is better suited to your usual Aussie BBQ suspects; sausages, steak, shish-kebab and something else that starts with "s"... salad!

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Photo of Andrewharemza
3.33/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A traditional German style wheat beer this provides a fruity aroma with a creamy mouth feel. Ideal with grilled meats this well rounded beer suits all occasions.

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Photo of jamie2dope
3.53/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I really enjoy this brewery, they seem to be on the ball with all of the beers i've had so far. This one poured a decent enough looking orange color with a small white lacing. Smell was of cereal grain, some sugars here and there, not much else. Taste was pretty good, very hoppy with some biscuit notes. Mouthfeel was probably the highlight of this beer, as it was very crisp and refreshing. Although this beer would be great for a hot summer day, I don't know if I would get it again. It wasn't a bad beer but perhaps a bit boring. Happy Trails.

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Photo of vancurly
4.09/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My first ever wheat beer... consumed in the mid 80s or somesuch. Probably at the London Hotel in Balmain, who always were a step ahead of the rest.
Even then, it was sold over the bar with a slice of lemon aka Corona & lime. But I think Redback is iconic, and doesn't need the fruit.
Golden yellow, whipped white head, very attractive looking beer. No haze. The head fades quickly, unlike the distant German cousins. Mixed aromas & flavours of lemon, wheat malt, some subtle hop flavours yet little bitterness.
As for matching style, there are far better examples. Yet to be honest, I can't objectively review this; it's a part of my formative years, and I love it.

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Photo of diablo14
2.06/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

this was once a classic aussie micro beer that was one of the few wheat beers anywhere i actually enjoyed. now it is a mere shadow of its former self.

this beer used to be in the same vein as hoegaarden. sweet, spicy, fruity, and incredibly cloudy, with very dry hops, and was just a little bit more robust than the usually kristall style. now, a little like the naked ale, its just sweet and overall bland, with none of the complexity it once displayed.

it comes in the still classic looking bottle, but the beer within is nothing like the glory days. this brew has really taken a tumble down the rankings over the years. prefer others.

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Photo of LittleCreature
3.6/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - 3.5
Poured a fluffy 3 fingers of off-white head, which reduced in patches. Looks highly carbonated, the colour is a pale gold.

Smell - 3.5
There was some skunk upon opening, but this disappeared quickly. A moderately scented wheat beer, no banana, but some bubblegum and citrus sweetness.

Taste - 3.5
Really refreshing like a wheat beer should be. Crisp with a relatively high level of sweetness, tastes of white bread, citrus and a little clove, and very little bitterness in the finish. Aftertaste is pleasant and fresh.

Mouthfeel - 3.5
Carbonation is relatively high, but this reduced considerably as the beer warmed. Feels light in the mouth with lots of small bubbles.

Drinkability - 4.0
Very drinkable, as most wheat beers are. I would definitely consider buying this as a session beer.

OVERALL - 3.55
I have heard bad things about this beer in the past, but after drinking, I don't believe them (and think they probably came from lager swillers who were scared by something different). As far as I can tell, this is a solid, highly drinkable wheat beer. Price is decent, as is the quality. There are tastier, more interesting what beers out there, but not as readily available or for this price in WA.

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Photo of jarmby1711
3.75/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall I thought this was a very meelow demonstration of a Kristal weizen.
It has enough wheaty sharpness with the hints of citrus and cloves but softens off in the after palate to be quite sweet and smooth.
It pors well looks and smells ok .
It seems to be a good "introduction " to the style.
A great option on a very hot day and well chilled.
I had this with Lemon grass and chicken and went well

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Photo of Macca
3.89/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a clear light straw colour without much of head although it seems to a heavish carbonation.

Fantastic nose of bananas and wheat. Some spice in there as well and a bit of sweetness. I love it.

Very malty on the palate. A little bit of the banana persists.

Quite a high carbonation. A belchy beer for sure.

This isn't going to change the world but I think I could do a session of it quite easily. All the better when I got the 6-pack just for subscribing to a magazine.

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Photo of Hoppsbabo
3.5/5  rDev +3.9%

A: Looks more like a Kristalweizen with it's fine shoots of champagne bubbles and lager-like appearance.

S: A bit of banana and grain.

T: Hmm, banana, and has some interesting stuff going on like marzipan, blackberry and peach – more akin to Belgian esters like with Coopers Pale Ale. There's some nail varnish. Supporting these less than subtle notes is a tart but bland core. It's slightly sweet.

O: Interesting but not great.

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Photo of Kulrak
2.8/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a nice golden color with absolutely no head. Smells slightly of yeast and esters and not much else. The taste is estery and a very sweet. Pretty much par for the wheat beer course. The mouthfeel is very creamy and heavy, very nice. It's fairly drinkable, it's sweet, with just enough bitterness to balance it out. I don't mind it, but I probably won't be buying it again anytime soon.

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Photo of basica
3.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is Australian's attempt at a typical wheat beer style brew. I got the Redback together with my bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale from Beercellar. I was a little curious about this one as I am a fan of wheat beers, be it Belgian or German. The Redback pours out a little surprisingly; it was a typical bright golden pilsner color that is "see through" as opposed to the cloudy and murky hefeweizens. The head was a little more bubbly than the usual Hefeweizen or Witbier heads and mild retention on that one. The smell was wheat malts and yeast; taste was also somewhat along those lines but significantly stronger on the malts with some spices and there was also a bananna tone peeking out towards the finish. The slightly dry finish move into the after taste which was initially dominated by banannas then apples and finally the familiar grapes. The malt backing was present all the while and the after taste was fairly strong and lasting. The mouthfeel was between thin and medium for the body with an apt amount of carbonation and the smoothness was the water smoothness rather than creamy smoothness that many of the european witbiers exhibit. This one's not bad but in view of more readily available German Hefes and Belgian Wits, I will pick those.

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Photo of BeerNutta
3.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The redback spider in australia is known as the deadliest spider in australia. However, recently it has been found that no one has actually died from the redbacks bite since the late 70's.

Like the spider, i have heard great things about this beer but the truth is a little sad.

Appearance: Light pale colour. Foam lingers for a long while.

Smell: Sweet aroma, but very faint.

Taste: Citrisy in taste with a hint of clove. Clean finish.

Mouthfeel: Not exciting, not offensive.

Drinkability: Its an OK beer. Not the greatest, the the worst. Its average i guess. For an Australian Beer, i guess it would be categorised as good, but if you take it out of the Australian setting then its nothing special. I find Little Creatures Pale Ale, better.

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Photo of foles
3.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The most famous of the Matilda bay swag of beers.

Not a favourite style of mine, but a solid wheat beer. Good presence of banana, citris, and weetbix dryness.

Usually consumed from the bottle with a lemon (sigh). A do confess to drinking it from the bottle though! A lot better than the Beez kneez which appears to be a watered down version of this.

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Redback Beer from Matilda Bay Brewing Co.
78 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.