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White Oak | The Bruery

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White OakWhite Oak

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

Style: Wheatwine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
White Oak is a blended beer-- 50% wheatwine aged in Bourbon barrels (we call it "White Oak Sap"), and 50% Mischief (our Golden Strong Ale). Vivid caramel, coconut and vanilla flavors blanketed in a crisp yet robust wheat ale, White Oak is an exercise of balance.

Added by OlieIPA on 07-12-2009

User Reviews
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Reviews: 281 | Ratings: 1,233
Photo of Dean_Tadlock
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Lucky enough to enjoy it on draft

Deep gold in color.
Smells heavily of sweet barley and bourbon.
Taste is very rich with strong notes of vanilla caramel and bourbon barrel. Subtle notes of coconut. You can definitely tell it's a 12%.
Mouthfeel is warming and body is full.
Defiantly recommended for those who enjoy a strong ale or bourbon barrel aged beer.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Type: 750-ml. bottle (25.4 oz.)
Glass: 8-oz. (I think) hotel shaker glass
From: Kelly’s Liquors in San Jose, Calif.
Price: $14.85
Purchased: April 14, 2016
Consumed: April 15, 2016
Misc.: Bottled on Jan. 21, 2016 at 8:52 a.m. PT

Had a taster of this on Feb. 12, 2016 and gave it a 3.75 on Untappd. Did not stop me from buying this at a random liquor store in San Jose, Calif. Bottled reads “50% wheatwine-style ale aged in bourbon barrels 50% ale.” Looking forward to a patient full review of this while stuck in a hotel. Poured this a bit too cold.

Poured a honey, pale, clear color with two fingers of off-white, fizzy head. Lots of bubble streams coming up from the bottom of the glass. Below average spotty lacing on the sides of the glass. Below average retention on the top. (Sight - 3.50)

Smelled caramel, vanilla and smooth bourbon in order to start. Also honey, toffee, somewhat boozy, coconut sunscreen, apple, pear, green grapes, hints of apricot and oak. (Smell - 4.00)

Taste kind of followed the nose. Getting smooth vanilla, bourbon, apple, pear, green grapes, honey wheat, coconut, rather boozy, still getting slight apricot and oaky vanilla beans. (Taste - 3.75)

Medium body. Creamy-to-sticky texture. Average carbonation. Long, smooth finish. (Feel - 4.00)

Was hoping this would be better than the taster from February, but came about what to I originally had it. Still liked it though. (Overall - 3.75)

3.82 | 86 | B+

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Photo of zonker17
3.94/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft pour to snifter. No head to speak of, some lacing, hazy amber. Barnyard, lemon on the nose. Bourbon and wood come through on the taste with some tartness, more citrus, and so e bitter. Rather flat and medium body.

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Photo of Tele
4.29/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type: Bottle (Dated 1.21.16)
Consumed: 4.9.16

A: 4.5 Pours a clear, orange-gold with a one-inch, very light tan head. Good retention a little lace left in the glass.

S: 4.25 Very interesting aroms. Lots of sweet wheat, vanilla, rye-like spice, Riesling grapes, oak, and very mild roast. The bourbon is mild, seeming to add to the sweetness and some of the spice, but the wheat really takes over.

T: 4.25 Pretty similar to the nose with balanced sweetness, vanilla, and more bourbon and oak. The spice is dialed up here as well, balancing out some of the sweeter wheat and interesting white wine qualities. Berries linger on the finish.

M: 4.5 Body and carbonation are both nice. There’s something very light and easy-drinking about this beer that’s really nice.

O: 4.25 This is are really interesting beer with some nice flavors and aromas. The combination of white wine flavors and an almost rye spiciness seems strange, but it’s well integrated.

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Photo of TBoneJones
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Cider color, hazy, creamy white head with nice lacing.
Nose is some funk and sweet vanilla/ bourbon notes.
This is delicious. It's sour at first, and then creamy sweet with plenty of light caramel and vanilla. Some coconut lingers on the back end, along with some barrel flavor.
Feels perfectly rich and creamy. Some stickiness.
I haven't had many "wheatwine" style beers, if any, but this is very tasty.
I would certainly have it again.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

look: clear, light-Golden/Copper. Swath of foamy white head on the pour that mostly goes away but leaves messy lacing.
smell: Slightly sweet, rich bourbon, fruity with just a hint of funk.
taste: Full, rich, a little sweet. Fruity. As expected from the blend, tastes like a nice mix of wheaten and a Belgian. Alcohol is in the boubony taste but no heat. Very nice.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Orange color, substantial 1" white head. Aroma was a little bit oak (shock) and coconut, honey, and bourbon.

Warm, but the wheat and coconut allow for a tropical feel, like its easy going, you're enjoying a monster beer in summertime vibe. Vanilla comes in later. One of my favorite summertime evening big beers. Light body, caramel.

Underappreciated beer, my favorite wheatwine, I really should have more of this in the cellar.

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Photo of Patinthebronx
4.68/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2013 Version. Poured out of the bottle into a tulip glass. Strong head leading to a beautiful golden-Amber beer, however not translucent. It has almost no nose, probably due to the three years of collaring. Taste of honey and earthly sweetness in front ending with a mellowed boozy earthiness. This is a phenomenal beer.

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Photo of BWood
4.26/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L: great color golden ale with large white head

S: bourbon and crisp wheat

T: I really enjoyed this beer. Great combination or barrel and wheat brew.

F: smooth with a crisp finish. Almost a Belgian Tripel with barrel smoothness

O: sad I only have 1. I think this is a hidden gem.

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Photo of spoony
3.61/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From a 750 ml bottle (2013 vintage) to a tulip.

A-The beer slowly gushes upon opening and it pours with a huge, soapy white head of more than three fingers. There is a lot of carbonation visible in the clear, light-golden liquid. Those bubbles support the foam and retention is pretty good with a few chunks of lace remaining on the glass.

S-The aroma is heavy on the white grape notes. To me it suggests cheap, buttery white wine. The alcohol is slightly herbal, clean, and a bit spicy. This beer makes no effort to hide it, either. I do detect some coconut as advertised on the bottle and a little bit of toasted bread flavors. Sweetness is moderate.

T-The taste is similar to the smell, i.e., a high dose of vinous flavor and clean, spicy alcohol notes. I pick up more cider flavors like apple and pear, as well as hints of caramel/bourbon sweetness. There is a bit of white grape sourness here too.

M-The beer is pretty heavy on the carbonation with a slightly slick and sticky finish. Medium to lighter on the palate.

O-I had a hard time getting into this beer. It reminded me a lot of cheap wine mixed with malt liquor. Maybe I just was not in the mood, because it does have some complex layers of flavor, but they didn't fit well together. One glass was enough.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy light amber. Outstanding head volume, lacing and retention.

Outstanding complex nose of light bourbon, hints of oak, soft fruit (pear) that is also a bit tart (orange), and a solid background sweetness (biscuit with very subtle caramel). As it warms, grain alcohol notes are present.

Heavy medium body that is quite smooth. Superb carbonation with an effervescent middle and prickly finish.

While similar to the nose, the flavor profile is less bourbon and oak is merely a hint. Sweetness is well balanced. Spicy notes appear in the middle over a rising wheat influence, as does a bit grain alcohol astringency and associated burn. The finish is a slow fade of the middle with alcohol influences gaining strength.

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Photo of gopens44
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Looks nice, huge unforced white frothy head atop this hazy pale gold beer. Little bit of sticky lacing drools lazily as well.

Nose jumps out with tons of wine straight away. Not a wine expert but I am pretty sure it's real similar to Chardonnay. Beyond the wine is something floral that bleeds off into a dark fruit exiting aroma, sort of like faint plum. All of that is blanketed by a nose tingling hint of heat.

Taste is far more mellow than the nose as yep, that's Chardonnay. Even the dry oakey finish makes me feel like I am actually drinking wine. A little more discernable on the next few swigs is a bit of balancing malt that brings just a bit of grain, but not anything that overwhelms. That job is really left to the wine taste. Exits with a lot of alcohol.

Body is of medium weight with lots of carbonation and an aftertaste of nearly overpowering astringency.

I appreciate this one but finishing the entire bottle is going to turn tedious I fear.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.46/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage bottle dated from 03/2013 sered in a wine glass cold.

Appearance: light orange with a nice foamy had and some unusually dark and grainy sediment. Kinda like black sand.

Nose: orange, vanilla, Woody, oak, caramel, coconut, nice malty backbone and a touch of wheat.

Taste: spicy and complex, oaky, caramel, coconut, tons of Barrel character, boozy orange candy

Overall: this bottle aged nicely and all has some significant hop character. I really enjoyed this beer and want some more. I just need to get the full visited White Chocolate.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.58/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: 4.0 Nice foamy-whitehead, one finger with good retention but not much lacing. Color is a hazy marigold, shiny, liquid gold.

Smell: 5.0 Honey, clover, spice, sweet wine. Some major aroma going. But it’s like going into a flower shop, can’t really identify one single smell. Lemongrass, nice citrusness. Riesling, OJ+Vodka.

Taste: Here I get first of all a waffle-like food sweetness, with butterscotch and caramel. Brown butter sauce, “refined sweetness”. Honeycomb, champagne. Light and delicious, a great brunch beer.

Mouthfeel: Deliciously carbonated, with a tad of tingly hops and a pleasant dryness at the end. Again, this reminds me more of a refined wine or spirit than a beer. Medium body, full flavor, great carbonation.

Overall: Exceptional. I thought I wouldn’t like it but it is so drinkable and tasty. “Ethereal”.

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Photo of beersnobraven
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

The first thing I should say is this beer is dangerously drinkable. Tastes like it's in the 4-6% ABV range, not anywhere close to the 11.5 that it really is. Having said that, it looks beautiful, tastes great (like a traditional wheat ale but with added sweetness from the bourbon and vanilla added), and has a great fluffy mouthfeel. My only (slight) complaint about this beer is the smell. It still smells pretty awesome, but I do detect a bit of a macro-lagery wet cardboard aroma. But that's only nitpicking. Everything else, from the taste to the buzz from the 11.5% ABV, was phenomenal. Another great offering from The Bruery.

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Photo of Domvan
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This blend was a nice twist to a wheat wine, a very sneaky and smooth beer. The sweetness of the wheat wine went well with the belgian golden strong ale, haven't had white oak sap, but have had Mischief and can definitely see that end, but curious to try white oak sap alone.

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Photo of Jeffwise
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very very very unique brew... Can definitely Smell and taste the bourbon but it's accompanied by a great mix of fruit and caramel. Overall a very good beer... If suggest trying it just for the sake of you're not going to find a taste quite like this out of any beer

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Photo of matt_duthie
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 Edition. Pours a 2-finger white fluffy head, crystal clear golden-hue with very lively streams of carbonation. Pretty. Smells tart, of apples or pears at first; then the bourbon, light vanilla, and sugary caramel start to come through. Bourbon is not overpowering, very good, with the bottle-suggested flavors of vanilla and coconut making a presence. Sweet caramel, but with enough of the tart fruits and wheat to really balance it out well. Man is this sticking to the glass as the level slowly goes down. Medium mouthfeel, but very smooth and almost no heat for the abv. Really a very good beer. Will be enjoying this one for a another hour (or two), and I'll surely not grow sick of it.

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Photo of vince321
3.61/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours unfiltered with a slightly foamy head. Alcohol shows at the front, barrel on the finish. White wine throughout. Refreshing for a high abv beer. I would order again.

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Photo of VashonGuy
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 bottle aged for about two years.

Appearance: apricot color, cloudy, big foamy head.
Aroma: The aroma is prominent, but I'm not good at picking out all the components. But it's got a bigger nose than most beers.
Taste: Vanilla, a bit of bourbon (in moderation), mild sweetness (caramel), a little yeasty, some fruit (apple? pear?). In short it's a complex mixture of good flavors, all in harmony.
Mouthfeel: smooth, creamy, ABV is well hidden.

Overall: This is really an unusual beer, in all the best ways. It's not quite like anything else. I could almost call this a bourbon aged tripel, but that's not quite right either. It's a very interesting beer. I'll be looking for a couple more bottles to age for another year or two.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Caramel, coconut, vanilla, alcohol on the nose. Pours hazy orangeamber under a 2" moussey pure snow white head that produces excellent lace. Wonderful rich malt on the palate joined by caramel, fruit, banana, vanilla, coconut - the vanilla coconut banana thing is extreme and nicely done. Very nice texture and body, medium to medium full with fine soft carbonation.

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Photo of orangebison
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Broke out a 2013 bottle for an epic bottleshare Friday evening. A confoundingly pleasant surprise! Light on the palate yet very complex, lots of bourbon aroma without overwhelming other elements, smooth despite its strength. This was one of the first BBA beers I tried (~6 years ago) and I didn't like it very much. Age, as well as change in my own palate, have served this one well.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25


Frothy bright white head it poured a pretty apricot body. The nose is deceptive for what this is. I catch a lot of Apple, like applesauce, some pear, and notes of a sour. It's a tad minerally, some balsamic character with a light pear and coconut.

This drinks with a mellow bourbon tone, coconut cream pie, light citrus fruit, lemon sour, caramel malt, toffee and a subtle wheat malt. Not much heat for 11.5% and it's a bit spritzy. Very good one here, but that's what I expect from Bruery.

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Photo of JebBeerFish
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

My first Bruery beer. 2013 vintage. One of the top five beers that I have had in the last calendar year. I have some difficulty ascribing the flavors; mild vanilla darkened a bit by light bourbon in the background, apples(?), mild sweetness yet a very mild tartness, a little caramel maybe? This is a very, very good beer. A sipper to be enjoyed slowly with a good friend.

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Photo of mick303
3.94/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2013 edition, at nearly 2 years old. From the bottle into a tulip, served slightly chilled. Poured a clear bright golden colour with a good initial head and really good retention and lace. Lots of visible carbonation a very attractive appearance.

S - some sweet notes of caramel toffee and honey sugar, vanilla bean, some coconut as well as per the bottle notes, also pear and a bright lemony floral character, some creaminess to it along with a lactic tartness. Sugary wheat notes, candied, with a hit of lemon curd as well and vanilla.

T - caramel, with a coconut and lemon character, definite vanilla notes and a full bodied sweet alcohol to it, very sweet/candied. Some of the bourbon character comes through, there is some oakiness and the vanilla, also a pleasing lemony tartness that acts as a good balance. Nearly maple syrupy at the beginning before getting more floral and fruity with pears and honeycomb, with some lingering coconut and toffee character on the finish. The bourbon barrel comes out a bit more noticeably on the finish, it is masked during most of the taste, but adds a nice dimension.

M - quite big and very sweet, moderate carbonation, alcohol strength is apparent, but masked by the sweetness and the fruity tartness. It drinks appetizingly well, but you are very cognizant of the coating sugary feel to it. And that is my main critique.

As described, a rich and interesting beer. I'm not sure how I'll get through this bottle though, a lot of complexity and depth but I find the sweetness and alcohol on the high side. Not to say it isnt a very tasty and inspired beer, which it is, a lot of interesting things going on, but I think they are lessened by the strength and sweetness of this. Nevertheless, age has been good to this and it showed a good performance all around, a good balance struck between the two ales.

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White Oak from The Bruery
88 out of 100 based on 281 ratings.