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White Oak - The Bruery

Not Rated.
White OakWhite Oak

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

1,046 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,046
Reviews: 253
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 12.4%
Wants: 97
Gots: 265 | FT: 30
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Wheatwine |  11.50% ABV

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.

(Beer added by: OlieIPA on 07-12-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,046 | Reviews: 253 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ibbjamin
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 750ml bottle from The Bruery. Split this with my fiancee and poured into a chalice.

Bottlecap opens with a pleasant pop and fizz. Beer pours with a light fizzy white head of about 3/4 inch in height which settles down to a more dense nice layer of retention. Very cloudy and straw orange in color. Pretty good lacing.

Tons of great oak aroma balanced with vanilla, bourbon, nutmeg, biscuity malts and a complex fruit bouquet of white grape, plum, pear and green apple. Wheat and Belgian yeast strains faintly present in the nose as well. All in all, very pleasant and complex.

Taste brings forth tons of brown sugar, perhaps a bit overboard in this department. The oak is still evident with the bourbon. Not quite hot, but the bourbon certainly is quite warming nodding at the 11.5% ABV. Reminds me a bit of Christmas with the gingerbread cookies noted. Many of the aforementioned fruits are not detectible in the taste.

Medium full body. Pretty thick going down and quite smooth with a lasting oaky bourbon finish. Well carbonated and goes down pretty easily.

I'd recommend this one around the holiday, but on a warm spring day, it didn't hit the spot for me. There are so many other great beers from this brewery that I will likely not seek this out again, but I commend them for producing this one.

ibbjamin, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of WorldWideStout
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought on the site that shall not be named for far too much money back in my young and naive beer drinking days. Consumed right before Woodcut No. 2, the other BSPA I had in the cellar.

A: Body is a murky, dark yellow, perhaps goldenrod, and not terribly appealing. There is a delightfully pillowy, bone-white head that eventually recedes to one-finger.

S: Yowza. Bourbon pummels my nostrils as soon as I pry open the cap, and my friends sitting several feet away can smell it as well. Eventually, I am able to pick up some sour grapes and vanilla, but raw bourbon still dominates.

T: Thankfully the bourbon is a bit more restrained here. Sour white (muscat?) grapes are often detectable in the middle of the sip. Vanilla makes an occasional appearance, and I also get some spiciness from the wood. Bourbon is present throughout, and makes up most of the aftertaste, which lingers for a few seconds. I didn't really get any fusels or hotness, just the strong bourbon.

M: Fairly strong carbonation keeps this fairly light. I think this goes well with the sour grape flavors.

O: I don't think I've had this particular combination of flavors before. I liked it, but the flavors were a bit disjointed, and I think another six months may help them to meld together more.

WorldWideStout, Mar 30, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Another tick from my old notes. I was clearly not as diligent about transcribing my notes in my ticking infancy. Bottle opened shortly after Black Tuesday 2009.

A: The beer pours a cloudy golden orange color with a tall head, white in color.

S: Fairly phenolic with a lot of pepper notes and a fair bit of alcohol. Sweet light fruits such as pears, apples, and bananas. Sugar, honey, and pale malts provide what amounts to a substantial sweetness. Some vanilla, but not all that much of the bourbon.

T: The flavor is perhaps a bit too intense for me. Strong alcohol notes, though not much of the bourbon barrel. Honey and sugar sweetness along with some more of the light fruit notes. White pepper provides a bit more bite/heat.

M: Medium to full in body with a moderate carbonation.

O: A bit too strong in the booze department for me. Interesting beer, but not something I'd care to drink a lot of.

womencantsail, Mar 20, 2011
Photo of corby112
1.83/5  rDev -52.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Pours a very dark and hazy burnt orange color with golden yellowish orange hues when held to a light source and a frothy, pillowy two finger white foam head. Excellent retention, only slowly fading into a lasting cap that leaves chunks of soapy lacing behind.

Earthy aroma with a prominent honey presence as well as a very strong barrel character. Lots of ashy charred wood with a heavy dose of boozy bourbon and some subtle vanilla. Plenty of alcohol sweetness and earthy spice in the nose along with light fruit notes. Smells slightly damp and funky and just a weird combination of scents.

Medium bodied with very tight carbonation up front that is immediately countered by a blast of bourbon and burnt wood that overpower almost everything and lingers throughout into a very hot, burning finish. The barrel character is way too strong in this beer creating an overly hot, boozy, astringent mess. Lots of earthy oak and hot bourbon flavor with a decent bit of vanilla flavor that surprisingly doesn't mellow things out much at all. Underneath all of the heat there is a slightly creamy presence with hints of crisp light fruit and zesty, peppery spice. This beer is not very well balanced and is kind of an abrasive assault on the palate. It doesn't taste very good and is tough to choke down. It improves a bit as it warms but it is still a one dimensional failure.

corby112, Feb 23, 2011
Photo of Gobzilla
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good lookin out joe for hooking me up a bottle

A: poured a vibrant golden orange in color with pale yellow highlights and had a half finger of bubbly leaving some good lacing sticking to the glass.

S: nice vanilla aroma upfront with good bourbon character, some caramel, toffee, and various grain notes but had nuttiness. It did have hints of booze as well.

T: the nuttiness and vanilla flavors blended quite well in the taste with bourbon, oaky, boozy,toffee, caramel accents and a touch of coconut.

M: the brew was medium to full in body with a good amount of carbonation which had a sweet, oaky, mild boozy, nutty, and a sticky finish.

D: definitely a sipper due to the ABV but was really tasty and was digging the variation of flavors going on. Glad I got to grab another bottle of this brew.

Gobzilla, Feb 20, 2011
Photo of drabmuh
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is light amber with a thin white head that leaves little lacing on the glass. Beer is mostly clear and carbonation is low to moderate.

Aroma is yeasty with mild esters and some fruits. Smells good.

Beer is medium in body and relatively easy to drink. Its mildly dry on the back end and the forward is a little sweet. The midpalate region is mostly estery and bready. Its a pretty drinkable and decent beer.

drabmuh, Nov 02, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Thanks to Max for bringing this bottle back from California.

Pours a light caramel color with a nice, light off white head and a bit of lacing on the way down. The nose really brings nice notes forward and I really like the oak characteristics. Some light bread notes as well. The taste and mouthfeel combine quite well, bringing down some really nice, creamy oak as well as light caramel and bread. Really digging the mouthfeel. Drinks quite well overall and was a nice treat.

Thorpe429, Oct 23, 2010
Photo of Brent
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A unique and complex flavor profile going on here. Oaky tannic notes and white grape are prominent up front, then some spicy, Belgian yeast and candy sugar move forward. The 11.5% abv is present in some sharp black pepper notes, but no boozyness. Prickly carbonation throughout.

Brent, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of TheJollyHop
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Jebus13 for cracking this one!

Extremely large head from a gentle pour; like Duvel. Some faintly tart and musty scents. Golden straw body and the large, expansive head settles to a small finger rather quickly.

Scents of bourbon come through right off the bat, with some earthy grapes, and a touch of vanilla.

On the taste, boozy and spicy bourbon assault the palate yet not exhibiting fusel alcohol harshness; quite a plus. Angel food cake and marshmallow middle. Essentially after the dominating aspect of the bourbon is looked past, the malt body is quite mellow and lightly sweet. Finish is a touch hot but more on the pleasant warming side with a very enjoyable tongue coating texture. Additionally it ends a touch dry and tart. Robust with respect to the bourbon quality and yet drinkable; solid.

TheJollyHop, Sep 11, 2010
Photo of billshmeinke
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared this bottle with a cmorton and a friend at Blue Palms last night. Review from notes.

Pale golden color. Half finger of white head. Nice lacing. 4.5

Smells of sour apple and white grapes. Kind of tart. Very champagne like in the nose. Also, vanilla/butterscotch fudge. 4.5

Tastes of apple juice. Sweet toffee. Vanilla fudge. Slightly tart green apples and champagne ish white grapes. Smoky oak and a dash of bourbon. 4.5

Rich, but surprisingly light. Well carbonated, and slightly dry. 4.5

Surprisingly drinkable. Alcohol is barely noticeable. 4.5

billshmeinke, Aug 17, 2010
Photo of FLBeerGuy
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden color with a fluffy white head that quickly dissipates leaving some nice lacing.

Nose is subtle, oak stands out with some fruit and yeast

Taste is a complex blend of vanilla, oak, caramel, pepper, some Belgian yeast sweetness and a dry warming alcohol ending, finishes nice an clean. This is one tasty beer!

Mouthfeel features some nice carbonation.

This is a great beer, well done Bruery. This one is dangerously drinkable with a high ABV. Don't pass up the chance to drink this one.

FLBeerGuy, Jun 25, 2010
Photo of ffejherb
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to HopDerek for sharing this 750ml bottle on 5/13/10.

A - Poured a cloudy golden/orange liquid with a finger's width of bubbly off-white froth that transformed into a bit of foamy lace around the glass.

S - White Oak's subtly complex nose reveals hints of vanilla, orange, slight woody notes, lightly toasted coconut and milky lactic notes. Interesting... can't wait to taste it!

T - The citrus, coconut and vanilla aspects work extremely well together, producing an ice cream-esque flavor with a hint of oaky, woody notes. Mild traces of alcohol emerge as the liquid warmed up, but remain fairly subdued throughout.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Finishes on the sweet side with light woody and hoppy notes on the palate.

D - Easily my favorite Bruery beer to date. White Oak incorporates sweet, woody and hoppy elements to create a complex and flavorful ale that is pretty damn drinkable for an 11% Strong Ale.

ffejherb, May 18, 2010
Photo of akorsak
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to HopDerek, I think, for bringing this to the Brass Rail.

A: The ale pours like a witbier, delicate with a sizeable head. It's autumn hue, think the brown-yellow of Central PA deciduous trees, is hazy to the point of opacity. It's thick head, still on first pour, is slow to dissapate.

S: The oak really stands out, drowning out any Belgian yeast by-products, good or bad. The wod is firm, imparting some coconut and vanilla.

T: Ahh, I see what the excessive head was there for! The first sip is quite spritzy, well-carbonated to the point of over-carbonated. The bubbly sensation is lively. It doesn't mask the barrel aspects, more vanilla and coconut, that are quite dry. Spices, again like a witbier, try to peak through but generally are no match for the barrel. This is the best bottled Bruery offering I've had.

M: The ample carbonation is cleansing. Unfortunately that detracts from the wood, as it whisks some of the flavor away. The oak aging is nicely done though.

D: I really enjoyed White Oak, from the first vanilla notes to the last of the bubbles.

akorsak, May 14, 2010
Photo of JoeySchlitz
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a straw yellow with a healthy two-three inches of a dense foam head. Seems a bit suspect with all of that carbonation.... but otherwise appears to be a typical belgian pale.

S: A faint coconut, pina colada aroma is mixed in with a strong, bready yeast aroma. There's also some funkiness, almost a sour tinge in the background, but is overtaken by some bourbon-vanilla notes. It is not overly aromatic but subdued.

T: Alcohol bites the tongue first, but leaves behind a buttery, bourbon, slightly acidic taste. There's a bit of a bitter aftertaste and is dry and crisp. Very tasty but a bit too much heat for a style that is on the lighter side.

M: Medium to light bodied with ample carbonation.

O: This is pretty tasty. Given the high alcohol, one would think that it would be a chore to go through a bottle, but I've gone through two glasses and am looking forward to a third.

JoeySchlitz, May 01, 2010
Photo of emmasdad
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hugely carbonated, pouring this one into a snifter results in a good 3-4 fingers of rocky white foam, floating upon the dark straw colored brew. Nosing the beer, I get apricots, tropical fruits, wheat, vanilla and oak. Upon tasting the beer for the first time, I get a very complex blend of vanilla, oak, caramel, white pepper and soothing, warming alcohol. An outstanding blend and a great beer. Probably my favorite from the Bruery so far.

emmasdad, Apr 28, 2010
Photo of grub
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

sampled april 10/2010 as part of our giant bruery tasting. Viggo and ritzkiss provided the brews, so thanks to eric and eric!

750ml bottle.

pours slightly hazy golden yellow with a big white head. the head drops fairly fast but leaves lots of lace behind as it falls.

aroma is good. light spice. coriander and cardamom. light funk. white bread and cracker. touch of biscuit. light alcohol.

taste is good. vanilla and caramel. lightly warming alcohol. touch of spice. white bread. cracker. medium-low bitterness level. touch of fruit. nice peppery spice.

mouthfeel is good. medium body with a fairly dry finish. just over medium carbonation level.

drinkability is great. well balanced and fairly light. it hides its alcohol pretty well. tasty and delicious.

grub, Apr 22, 2010
Photo of WeeObese
4.28/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a rinsed tulip glass. The beer has a large volume of carbonation, but the white head does not persist for very long, it actually disappears very quickly. The beer is a nice cloudy deep golden color.

The smell is very nice with barrel elements coming through the strongest. It smells sweet, oaky, some dry fruit, slight bourbon, and coconut.

The taste is very similar to the smell except that you get some of that wheat tanginess. You get coconut, sweet pastry, and the barrel elements which come thru much stronger in the taste, but they do not overpower the beer. Very tasty.

I am not very familiar with this style but it seems like it should be much less carbonated, it is almost too prickly and distracts from the flavor. The drinkability is pretty good considering the heftiness of the beer, it finishes dry. Maybe the carbonation makes it more drinkable.

Overall, a very good beer and a style I would like to see more of and become more familiar with.

WeeObese, Apr 20, 2010
Photo of rye726
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting beer. Pours a hazy, golden straw with a silky white head.

Nose has bourbon, oak, vanilla, tropical fruits, candy malts and peppery yeast.

Taste has sweet and tart tropical fruits, caramel, whiskey, vanilla, wood, herbal hops and spicy Belgian yeast.

Medium body has ample carbonation. Drinks a bit thick, but still quite quaffable for 11 percent.

Quite a unique beer. I really like what the Bruery. They not only make good beer, but also continue to push what beer can be.

rye726, Apr 19, 2010
Photo of Viggo
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, big thanks to ritzkiss for sharing this one. Part of the epic Bruery tasting.

Pours a light hazed golden, some light amber highlights, medium sized white head forms, settles to a very thick ring and layer around the glass, a few spots stick..

Smell is neat, wheat, some fruity, apricots and citrus, caramel, alcohol, some floral, grapefruit, vanilla, oak, toast, nice malty base, smells pretty good.

Taste is similar, sweet and caramelized up front, vanilla and bourbon, oak, very malty, apricots, citrus, some light grapefruit, coconut, wheat, a bit of spice, alcohol is well hidden, real nice barrel character, solid bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, a bit of warmth but goes down pretty easy for its weight. Thanks Eric!

Viggo, Apr 12, 2010
Photo of bartle
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to one of the Erics.

Pours a creamy, cloudy golden, great thick white head. This looks beautiful.

The aroma begins with a nice spicy, clove forward snap, followed by some pepper, lemon zest, some apples, the earthy character of bosc pears, then it blows up into the characters of the barrel aging, some caramel sweetness, bourbon and fruity banana esters.

There is a fair amount of alcohol on the tongue. Sweetness up front of caramel, vanilla, bourbon, and honey, followed by some apples and raisins, some light cloves and pepper on the back of the tongue. It has a lot of fruity esters bouncing on the tongue with a sharp wheat character. This is pretty complex and makes the tongue look for something familiar.

Very high carbonation, good body with it's great crispness. Pretty drinkable, though nothing to get too excited about.

bartle, Apr 12, 2010
Photo of ritzkiss
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml sent my way by the generous fishbowled, had at our mega Bruery tasting.

Pours a cloudy fresh squeezed apple juice color with about 2 plus fingers of foamy head.

Nose is the most superior aspect of this beer, nice and fruity pear, apple, white grapes, touch of graininess, esters, honey. Fresh yet big and sweet.

Body doesn't seem as integrated, bourbon coming through and not really jiving with the rest of it IMO. Honey sweetness, coconut, vanilla, pear and apple, orange, grains, alcohol shows in the finish too much, pretty hot. Heavy carb which seemed slightly overdone.

Not really bad (in fact, still pretty good) but with all the Bruery beer we had this one was kinda "meh" for me, a bit of a mess that perhaps would integrate better with some time.

ritzkiss, Apr 12, 2010
Photo of bobsy
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to whichever Eric sprang this one.

Hazy light golden pour with a large white head that left sheets of lace. Spicy, wheat beer aroma on steroids. Lots of grain, brown sugar, coconut and honey. Tasted like some sort of crazy imperial wit, and drinks like a beer half its weight. Very spicy with a nice sweetness. Good caramel, vanilla, bourbon and coconut notes compliment a wheat backbone. The body was medium-light and surprisingly refreshing considering the ABV.

Pretty tasty!

bobsy, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of JohnGalt1
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ditmier busted this out at a tasting at his house a couple weeks ago... Awesome Eric!!

Foamy 2 finger head.. slightly hazed golden brew.. good lacing and a very firm cap.

Nose is a complex (yet sorta a mess) of spicy and fruity notes... slammed with some barrel presence.

apricot and white peach dominate mid palate and are enhanced by some spicy elements... pale malts are there and seem a bit biscuity.. an odd honey element on the finish... alot of vanilla.. too sweet... pretty hot.

This one seemed all over the place.. nothing really stuck out except some fruity esters... but nothing ever fell into place... I enjoyed the overall product, but I think it needs to really be dialed in.


Thanks again Eric... I would buy a few of these if we got them into town.. but I doubt I would open one for at least a year.

JohnGalt1, Apr 08, 2010
Photo of kbutler1
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was lucky enough to try this at a recent tasting night some BA's and myself held.
Poured into a tulip glass a nice pale straw yellow with a nice big fluffy head.
Smells of caramel, coconut, and some other sweet notes.
The flavor is extremely smooth with flavors of sweet malt and cocnut. Not sure why I pick up so much coconut but it's tasty nonetheless. Alcohol is well hidden.
Mouthfeel is light/medium.
A good beer that is very drinkable for the abv.

kbutler1, Apr 04, 2010
Photo of Xul
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden, capped by a somewhat rocky three finger white head with very good retention

S: Almost experienced sensory overload after taking a few extended whiffs. Starts out with a subtle, spicy mix of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg before opening up into a melange of aromas. Ripe bananas, berries, vanilla, oaky notes, sweet bread, some green apple. Various combinations of these aromas hit at different times, creating composite aromas of apple pie, berry cobbler, or a banana heavy smoothie.

T: A bit of a booze hit up front before going into a similar mixture of flavors as the nose. Spices come in a bit stronger up front with heavier clove and cinnamon, while the vanilla takes a back fruit. From there it transitions into fruit again with the banana, spices and the wheaty base combining to form a sort of banana bread character. Finishes sweet with the vanilla coming back into the picture along with a bit oak.

M: Medium bodied with low, but sufficient, carbonation. Feels very sticky as it moves over the tongue and even in the finish.

D: Takes a hit from the noticeable alcohol, but still pretty drinkable for an 11.5% beer.

Xul, Apr 01, 2010
White Oak from The Bruery
87 out of 100 based on 1,046 ratings.