White Oak - The Bruery

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White OakWhite Oak

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very good

264 Reviews
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Reviews: 264
Hads: 1,154
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.2%
Wants: 96
Gots: 279 | FT: 27
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Wheatwine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: OlieIPA on 07-12-2009

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 264 | Hads: 1,154
Photo of cnbrown313
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought this on a day where it was 100 degrees and humid, so I wasn't sure if an 11.5% Wheatwine would be the best choice, but I was glad that I went with it!

A - The beer pours a murky orange color with a giant off white head that recedes a little and leaves some nice lacing.

S - It smelled pretty sweet and a little bready too. The smell reminded me of caramel.

T - At first you get a very nice caramel sweetness upfront, but there is also some kind of spice at the end too. Clove maybe? And also a little bit of citrus too. This beer is surprisingly easy to drink for an 11.5% beer. You can definitely taste the barrel aging, but it isn't overpowering at all.

M - I loved the giant head upon pouring and the fine carbonation. Very nice mouth feel.

O - This bottle wasn't cheap, so I don't know how many more I will pick up, but I was very happy to have tried one! (873 characters)

Photo of korguy123
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle into snifter.

Crystal clear gold pour with some copper hues. Creamy finger and a half off white head. Lacing is spotty.

Definitely getting the bourbon and the oak. It's warming up front. The Mischief is bright and bold. Slight peppery spice and vanilla.

Peppery spice, some lemon rind, big amount of vanilla and brown sugar and than a good solid bourbon presence. The oak and bourbon warm up your stomach and just smooth out the beer to make this an all round great experience.

Medium body with prickly carbonation. (527 characters)

Photo of alcstradamus
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Careful pour into a tulip still yields a monstrous, effervescent two fingers of head that seem to want to camp out for quite a while. Dull amber color, lots of little bubbles racing to the top.

Smell is white grapes, belgian yeast, clove, orange peel, wood. Fairly bold considering the style.

The taste is even bigger...holy cow. Caught me off guard actually. First sip is an invasion of the sinuses by huge wood and booze. This one definitely picked up more wood than bourbon from its barrel treatment, with the bourbon mainly contributing alcohol heat rather than complexities. Still though, some complexities are present underneath. Coconut and vanilla are the primary flavors that rest on top of the regular Belgian pale ale flavor profile. This is a good beer, and if it were an imperial stout or barleywine or something similar I would say the alcohol heat was fairly low, but for this style it may be a tad too boozy. A year or two in the cellar would probably do this one some justice.

Mouthfeel is on the full side of medium with huge amounts of carbonation. A bit too much maybe, but still in line with how the style should feel.

Drinkability is a bit shaky....just too high of an ABV and too much booziness to really make me want more than 8-12 oz. at a time. The 750 ml bottle really should be split 3 ways. Bottom line is this beer has some potential for improvement through maturity, but is a bit rough at this point. (1,435 characters)

Photo of weonfire
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - Dark Golden, Big 2 finger white thick head, dissipates slowly, patchy lacing, hazy, opaque

S - white grape, wheat, carmel, bourbon

T - Carmel, coconut, vanilla, wheat, light bourbon, spices, and slightly boozy

M - carbonation is high, fully body, froth is medium, booze does linger a bit

O - really enjoyed. Bourbon doesn't dominate. wheat/vanilla/coconut is balanced out really well. yes, finish is a bit boozy in the finish but real smooth. wish it was a bit more frothy. do recommend. (495 characters)

Photo of CloudStrife
3.97/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 Edition.

A: Pours a very hazy golden amber with a dense two finger white head. Leaves some real nice lacing on the sides of the glass. Tough to see any visible carbonation with the opacity.

S: Light fruitiness and yeastiness come to the forefront. Banana, citrus and pale malts. A good amount of sweetness, from the candied sugar. Can tell there is some booze along with the bourbon notes.

T: Balanced yet strong beer. Can notice the wheatwine, bourbon barrel, belgian yeast and candied sugar. I like the combination they got going on here, it is unique. Alcohol asserts itself on the tail end. Aftertaste lingers with the wheat flavors and bourbon as it warms.

M: Medium to full body with a very creamy mouthfeel. For the flavor of the alcohol there really isnt much of a harshness, perhaps smoothed out by the wheat. Finish is clean considering the sweetness.

Overall my introduction to The Bruery and its a tasty one. Havent had a blend like this and welcome the style with open arms. Wheat really makes this creamy and smooth allowing it to pack a lot of punch. (1,116 characters)

Photo of cvm4
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy/hazy orange that slants towards amber. An eggshell white head billows to a two finger head and sticks around for the duration of the drink.

S - Tropical fruit & bourbon collide. Mango, wheat, bready malts, caramel and bourbon are noticeable.

T - Same as the smell. Tropical fruits surround the bourbon. Sweet, vanilla, oak, bourbon characteristics and tropical fruits.

M - Very carbonated... Wet, thick body but not cloying at all.

O - Interesting combo that some thought went into. (506 characters)

Photo of SHODriver
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

bottle from 2011

A: poured into an oversize wine glass to a light orange with a rocky two finger head that is slow to fade to a large collar around the glass
S: smells of fruity esters, some spicy yeast, a bit of vanilla and sweetness and some alcohol
T: tastes of vanilla, some fruitiness, spices, a bit of oak, some sweetness from the malt. swallow brings more vanilla, some alcohol and more yeastyness
M: medium in the mouth with slightly prickly carbonation. slightly drying on the finish
O: a solid beer. I'm not exactly a fan of it but it has some good flavors. It's a bit too sweet in my opinion (603 characters)

Photo of Jonada
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2013 release. Served in a Teku glass

Appearance: Golden, light orange in color with hints of amber. Pours with almost 3 fingers of a creamy white head. Body is hazy with medium/high levels of carbonation streaming up the sides of the glass. Really great looking beer.

Smell: Belgian yeast, sweet tropical fruits, vanilla, banana, spicy wheat character, wood

Taste: Mango, apricot, spicy yeast, oaky vanilla, bourbon. Alcohol presence helps taper some of the malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, viscous mouthfeel, but doesn't quite reach syrupy. Carbonation is relatively high, but is appropriate for this beer. Somewhat boozy but not overly hot.

Overall: This was my first wheatwine, so I wasn't sure what to expect, but this was really tasty. The bourbon barrel aging added nice additional complexity and really took this from a good beer to a really good beer. I would definitely get this again. (907 characters)

Photo of Beerenauslese
4.38/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber with a rich head that stays, leaving ample lacing on the glass. Very fine bubbles that never seem to stop being produced.

Smells of citrus, banana, bread dough, bourbon, brown sugar.

First taste sensation was of lightly toasted bread, then cantalope, ginger and brown sugar, with bourbon and wood coming on in the finish.

Silky mouthfeel, with sumptuous carbonation, delivers the flavors nicely.

This is an excellent brew, with complex flavors that evolve, making one sip invite another. A great beer to curl up with for an evening or to share as an after dinner drink. (598 characters)

Photo of andrewinski1
3.62/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a wine taster. The color is light orange; kind of straw. There is a nice white head that leaves some nice lacing.

The aroma has a bit of toffee and caramel, with a slight hint of peach.

The taste starts out with some light caramel sweetness. There is a great fruity finish that hits the sides of the tongue. There is a bit of a spicyness to this beer as well.

This is medium to full bodied, with a full mouthfeel. This is a slow sipper. This one isn't bad, but the barrel flavors seem compromised, and the wheatwine flavors are a bit harsh at times; keeping this from being really great. (602 characters)

Photo of billshmeinke
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
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 (558 characters)

Photo of KFBR392
3.61/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours with a very thick head which settled at about a finger. Active carbonation in glass while drinking. Burnt orange color and a murky body.

Smell: The bright yeast golden ale aroma comes through on the front of this beer. Cinnamon, coriander, and pepper are present. There is a medium bodied wheat presence with a slight bourbon finish. Interesting but there is a lot going on here, some of it in a conflicting way.

Taste: The front is a bright carbonated champaign feeling. A honey like sweetness warms up on the palate. Earthy, straw, and yeast body dominates this beer. Some wheat dryness, barrel presence is light and gets lost in everything else going on here. Oaky funk finish.

Mouthfeel: Creamy sweet start and finishes with some wheat and oak dryness.

Overall: An interesting blended beer with a lot going on. Some of it gets lost and other areas dominate a little more then others. A ride for the palate though, glad I got to try it. (963 characters)

Photo of JustinMatthew
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Recently hit shelves on the east coast, very excited to try this one. Split with Jessica, poured into Russian River Belgo glasses.

Big white head sits atop a slightly opaque orange body. Smell is sweet.. Hints of coconut and spice. The taste is really well balanced.. Citrus, noticeable wheat, spice and yeast. The oak yields some coconut and vanilla, very nice fit. This is a great blend of beers here, if you've had mischief in the past you'll notice that as well. Glad I grabbed 2 of these.. Looking to save the other for cooler weather. (541 characters)

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

Thanks to Mothman for breaking this out at the recent tasting.

I had never heard of this before, but as soon as it was described to me I knew I would like it.

Pours a cloudy and murky golden-orange color, with about two fingers of white fluffly head. Retention is good and leaves some nice lacing.

The nose is fantastic. Smells like a Wit on 'roids. I get apples and pears, spices and wood. The characters picked up from the barrel aren't as prevelent, but they add just enough to make this extremely enticing.

The taste is fruity and spicey, with light bourbon, oak and vanilla notes. This is a great tasting beer. I had a feeling I would like it, but was totally blown away.

Appropriately high, but fine carbonation along with a medium body make for a great feel. It tingles in the mouth to excentuate the flavors. Drinkability is awesome, I didn't pick up any of the ABV. 11%, you gotta be kidding me!

This is a great beer, as the light barrel notes make this one unique and very enjoyable. Thanks Ben for breaking this one out. (1,037 characters)

Photo of Khazadum
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Great head production, amazing sticky lacing, not the fullest of power with completeness, orange hazy body, decent carbonation. Good start to this beer.

Nice generic carmale background, oranges, bits of tropical fruit, faint wheat malt character. The vanilla is muddled for sure. Tangerines and a light bitterness.

bursts of malty sweetness, caramels, oranges, tangerines, a light tropical fruityness. Some light bourbon sweetness, a faint oak chracter, and the vanilla rounds out the backend. Coconut my ass. If you call that coconut, marshmellows have a word with you..

Too crisp on the body, thick enough for me, fluid enough for me, sticky enough for me... in fact the flavors are perfect in intensity. It really benefits it on the flavor part to offset the intense crispness of carbonation.

This beer is tasty... very tasty... just want less carbonation is all. (871 characters)

Photo of GregSVT
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml capped bottle into a snifter - 2012 Vintage

A: Pours a hazy dark yellow with a huge white head that stays a good finger tall for a long time and leaves a lot of sticky lacing on the glass.

S: The nose is slightly funky and sweet with some spicy and earthy yeast and sweet bready malt. There's a touch of vanilla and grape in the background.

T: The taste is much like a Saison with some nice citrus and estery yeast flavors along with a bit of vanilla and earthy hops. This definitely tastes like a slightly barrel aged Imperial Saison.

M: The feel is between medium and light bodied with a great creaminess. It's close to being overcarbonated.

O: I was hoping this would be something awesome like Nemesis 2009 but apparently blending this with Mischief has turned this into a belgian farmhouse beer instead of a wheatwine. I would love to try the pure barrel aged version of White Sap as I feel it could be more of what I am looking for. (949 characters)

Photo of zaphodchak
4.29/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Straw to gold body. Some trace of head.

Yeasty and rich, pungent and nice.

Very tripel like, with plenty of yeast, a bit of spice. Not too much oak character, but mellow and well rounded, maybe a trace of coconut.

Pretty light and bright, actually. A bit too much so, but no complaints.

Complex and mellow, may or may not be worth the price. (345 characters)

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.47/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle poured into a Gouden Carolus chalice. Thanks Cheesemoose! White, frothy head, high retention on a hazy golden body. Soapy, sudsy lacing, sticky. Aroma includes sweet fruits, banana, percimmon, a pleasant tartness and a hint of vanilla. Taste includes candi sugar, slight tartness, slight alcohol, some coconut as advertised. All the flavored work well together and the beer is delicious and highly drinkable for a high abv. (437 characters)

Photo of BigPlay1824
3.91/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a snifter

A: pours a murky golden color with a slight amount of yeast sediment which snuck its way into the glass with two fingers of pure white fluffy head which lingers nicely before dissipating and leaving behind a very nice amount of lacing
S: a very nice sharp scent which is reminiscent of white grape juice as i often find is the case with this style, its interesting to note that i also find a slight coconut note which im note sure is actually from my nose or is just from me reading it on the bottle
T: very nice bright and sharp taste, grape notes and a nice bready undertone which lingers long afterwards
M: medium carbonation tingle, leaves the mouth feeling distinctly dry
O: this is a very nice representation of the style, nice taste notes and depth, really drinks incredibly well for an 11.5% number on it, quite happy with this offering from the bruery (883 characters)

Photo of Ineedabeerhere
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to James and/or Andrew for the bottles. From notes.

Pours a hazy orange color with some golden highlights. Small whitish head with not too much lacing. A ring around the glass lasts throughout the session.

Wow, this smells awesome. Definitely a lot going on here. Belgian Fruity yeast esters combine with toasted nuts from the oak and caramel vanilla sweetness. Very nutty with some wheat twang hiding behind the yeast character. Marzipan and coconut. It would be a 5 if the alcohol weren't so apparent.

Taste follows the aroma. The alcohol is definitely apparent, but not necessarily intrusive. At first, I thought it was over carbonated (despite the appearance), but as time went on I realized how much the carbonation of this beer helps lift some of the 'heaviness' of the barrel character and alcohol. A very robust beer with a lot going on, but a 7oz serving or so was plenty satisfying. Looking forward to seeing how this one ages. (949 characters)

Photo of waltonc
4.37/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Stopped by the Bruery yesterday to pick up some BA Autumn Maple and tried a glass of the White Oak while I was there. I liked it so much I had to buy a growler to fly back on the plane with me to Denver today.

Pours a hazy honey color with a centimeter of white head. Smells of toffee, honey, oak age (yes, I'm using "oak age" as a noun here), coconut, and a medley of other tropical fruits. Tastes of these qualities as well. Maybe a hint of bourbon here, but it's quite subtle. Also a tad of butterscotch. In short, this is precisely the kind of beer I love.

Mouthfeel is quite good too. Fairly thick-bodied, verging on syrupy; but it is well balanced by ample carbonation. Sweet, syrupy body and high ABV limit drinkability, but overall I think this is a great brew. I was told this will be bottled in a couple months. I sure hope it is, and that the bottles find their way to Denver. (890 characters)

Photo of seand
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a light amber color with a fair amount of white bubbly head. A thin layer retains, leaving a fair amount of lacing.

S: Strong fuit notes with a background of bourbon, malt, and wheat. There's a touch of sweet burning campfire wood.

T: Bright fruit, sweet bready grain, leading into a malty and relatively dry finish, with a touch of citrus.

M: Full body, medium carbonation.

Overall, this is quite good, though quite strong. (437 characters)

Photo of tviz33
3.99/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1 pint 9.4 oz bottle, served in a snifter.

A- Pours a murky yellow-orange body with a short white head that settles to a thin cap pretty quickly.

S- Very much like a sweet white wine. Spicy yeast and berries for sure. Slightly oakey, but not what I was expecting. The oak and bourbon/ alcohol come through as it warms.

T- Just like the bottle says, "crisp yet robust." Less wine-like than the nose would have you believe. Slightly boozy, but it contributes positively overall. Flavors are very oakey and there's a lot of dark fruit flavor as well. Pretty solid.

M- Full and well-carbonated. Creamy and warm.

O- Nothing to seek out, but certainly worth a try if you can find it. I think the fullness of the feel is the best part. (748 characters)

Photo of ludachris
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I've read a lot about the Bruery but I've never had a sip of any of their beers, mostly due to living in Ontario. Thank you again Premier Gourmet in Buffalo and Premier Wines and Spirits in Halifax!

A loud hiss from prying off the crown is instantly followed by beer quickly making its way up the neck and almost out of the bottle. Its big, thick, foamy white head is generated by a gentle pour. I'm surprised at how well it retains itself and how the lace coats all sides of the glass. The carbonation is very active, looking almost like champagne. The body is a hazy golden amber hue. This looks like a bubba of a Belgian.

I'm getting more of the Belgian characteristics of their Mischief than the bourbon aged quality of its other half. Quite spritzy with lemon peel and a touch of tartness, maybe vinegar. Banana comes through as well but it isn't as sweet as the pear drop it's mixed with. The bourbon quality is infused into the center of this beer. It's sweet and syrupy but soft and unobtrusive, much unlike other bourbon barrel aged beers I've had. If it were more pronounced however, I think it would have clashed with the delicate Belgian characters that are so prominent in the nose. The barrels themselves imbue a pleasant coconut and caramel sweetness.

A big and sweet boozy kick to the back of the palate starts things off. It intensifies the fruity esters of banana and pear that are part of the first impression. The sweet bourbon qualities come in slowly and gradually become more pronounced. Vanilla, and coconut, and caramel all swirl along the middle of the tongue. These qualities, similar to the aroma, are soft and silky. They're integrated into the rest of the beer rather than shouting out over the rest. A bit of lemon peel in the finish comes with the last tingle of carbonation.

The body is full with the majority of its weight coming from the booziness that is present throughout. It is so effervescent however, with its tingly and lively carbonation, that it doesn't make it a task to take sips of this massive beer.

It's still hard to justify its $30 price tag but I'm glad I can come out of this saying I thoroughly enjoyed my first beer from the Bruery. On paper, an 11.5% ABV wheatwine with half of it aged in bourbon barrels sounds like a defeating task to drink. Boozy with the sweetness from all of the malt needed to establish its alcohol content only added on to by the bourbon barrels. But that isn't the case. The high level of carbonation and Belgian forward characteristics help to make this not only enjoyable but drinkable as well. They did a fantastic job at making a potentially intense, very pronounced, boozy mother of a beer into one that is well rounded, soft, and delicate and I commend them for that. Sour in the Rye is next and I can't wait! (2,804 characters)

Photo of Thickfreakness
4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Bruery tulip as it should be.

Perfect mid-day sun yellow with bright white head made of the biggest bubbles of foam I've ever seen. Cloudy with touches of orange and Arizona sunrise. The head fades away leaving little to no traces of lacing. Just a thin foam of brilliant white resides.
Sweet Banana bread, orange peel, homemade caramel, slightly toasted oak, vanilla beans, tart/sour fermented wheat, touches of bourbon, caramelized onion, cloves, star anise, all spice. This is very unique!!! Wheatwines are one of my least favorite styles, but something about this one keeps me dipping my nose into the glass. It must be the mix of banana, bourbon/vanilla, sour apple and citrus.
Sour banana, vanilla/oak, tart citrus, and notes of dead flowers, cloves, onions, chinese 5-spice, bourbon and fermented wheat grass. For the style itself, it's fantastic... but for the taste... it's not my bag at all!!! I gotta rate it for what it is and not for what I like. What it is, is damn near perfect for the style.
Sour, bitter, sweet, vanilla, toasted wood, tropical, green apples, nutty, and full of spice. All over the place as are most Wheatwines. The best I've EVER had of this style which is how I rate. Rotted banana, citrus peel, toasted bourbon oak barrel and slightly sweet and tangy wheat... but I somehow like it!
Every time I have a Wheatwine my mouth says WTF? Lots of flavors that don't mesh nor go away! LOL!!! This one is even more over the top and if this is wrong to my tongue, I don't wanna be right! Certainly not something I would or could drink daily. This may get better and smooth out with age. I'll grab another bottle and let you know in a few years. (1,689 characters)

White Oak from The Bruery
88 out of 100 based on 264 ratings.