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Sunshine Wheat Beer - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Sunshine Wheat BeerSunshine Wheat Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

816 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 816
Reviews: 358
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 14.78%
Wants: 13
Gots: 38 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
IBU - 14
Hops - Target
Malts - Pale, Carapils, Wheat
OG - 13.4
Fruits/Spice - Orange Peel, Coriander

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 04-28-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 816 | Reviews: 358 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ericsdawson
3.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got this one for free from work. about 1 finger of bright white head on top of a crystal clear pale yellow colored brew. the head quickly deminishes to a thin layer of bubbles. smell is rather spicy. taste is clean with some fruitty spicyness. i am partial to the texture and body of wheat beers. something about them just seems to go down quite nice.

ericsdawson, Jun 27, 2005
Photo of OStrungT
2.7/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer pours a very light golden yellow. The head is white, but is nearly non existant. I see absolutely no laces. The beer looks like apple juice in a glass. Not cloudy like you would expect from a wheat beer. It smells fruity. I detect bananas, and lemon. Maybe a little honey also. It tastes like honey. It has a slight citrus taste to it also. The flavor is so mild that it is almost non existant. It is crisp, and refreshing. It leaves a slight honey taste on the palate. It goes down smooth. It is carbonated well. This beer would make a good session beer if you dont like beer. It has so little flavor, that it is boring. You could drink a case by your self with no problem. This one is not worth your time or money. I will probably never drink this beer again.

OStrungT, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of ElGordo
3.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden/straw color with a small, creamy white head. Nice nose of wheat, ale yeast, and notes of lemon and honey. Palate is well-balanced, with light floral hops complementing the subtle malt character. A touch of spiciness on the finish, with additional notes of citrus. Medium-bodied, slightly creamy mouthfeel. Great on a cool spring evening.

ElGordo, May 18, 2005
Photo of bashiba
3.08/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a light pale yellow color, very clear with a very small thin white head and no lacing.

Smells slightly lemony and grassy.

Taste is very mild with some citrus notes and a touch of pepper. Finishes with a mild wheatyness.

Mouthfeel starts out slick and wet and finishes dry, probably the most appealing aspect of the beer.

The beer is drinkable and has no real faults, just sort of lacking in the flavor department.

bashiba, May 01, 2005
Photo of notoriousdav
3.68/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A decent wheat beer. It's not exactly like a Euro Heffe, but it's pretty close. Reminds me of summer in the mountains. New Belgium recommends serving it with an orange instead of a lemon and I think they're probably right, because it already has quite a bit of lemon in it. Has a nice straw color, but could use a little more carbonation.

notoriousdav, Apr 13, 2005
Photo of imblane
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Hints of corriander and orange peel in the smell, but very clear and crisp in appearance. I think a previous reviewer's opinion of apple juice in appearance was very accurate. I would be very interested to try this offerring in its un-filtered state (hint, hint) Refreshing, crisp and clean, very suited to a hot weather beer. I am big fan of Hoegaarden, and I would rate this as a close second to that. A worthy offerring from NB.

imblane, Apr 11, 2005
Photo of henrysunset
4.03/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

clear beige/yellow with frothy white head.

smell is nice, citrussy and biscutty.

taste is tangy and has a refreshing taste. Very pleasent, although i'm not a huge fan of the citrussy notes in wheat beers. thicher and more apparent taste then i expected makes this quite good.

i would love to have a handful of these on a sunny day. This would be a great replacement for the stereotypical beach beer: corona... because this is actually tasty.

henrysunset, Apr 11, 2005
Photo of ghurux86
3.15/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

pours a PALE clear yellow. not too far off from natural light in paleness and probably the worst appearance of any wheat i've had. little head the dissapates quickly and doesn't lace at all.
smell is absolutely average, citrus notes are noticeable along with a grainy somewhat offensive scent, but overall not a bad scent.
taste is citrus, hops, and wheat, at least i think that grainy taste is wheat.
mouthfeel is only average as well, thin to medium bodied (more thin) with a rather high level of carbonation. not bad just not special.
drinkability is rather good though due to the low abv and decent taste and mouthfeel. i could easily drink quite a few of these.
this beer is worth a try but not a very good example of the style. there are a lot better beers out there in this style.

ghurux86, Mar 24, 2005
Photo of neonbrown82
4.4/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is probably my favorite wheat beer of any kind. The appearance is quite unimpressive, though it is kind of hard to say the opposite for any wheat beer. Nonetheless, by the looks alone you can tell how quaffable of a beverage this will be. The smell is kind of hay-ish from the wheat malt, but also quite sweet and candy-ish.

The taste reminds me quite a bit of Blue Moon, but I like it better, and not just because of the macro factor. It has a coriander and orange peel taste on top of the malty wheat base. The mouthfeel is very light, only the slightest bit dry. Very highly drinkable. If you are a wheat beer fan, check it out.

neonbrown82, Mar 18, 2005
Photo of mschofield
3.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear medium gold, topped with a one finger puffy white head, leaves thin rings of lacing.
Light lemon aroma, and a wheat base than comes out with warming.
Lemony taste, grain, very light and a little tart. There is a little wheat, but mostly lemon and fruit until it warms and the wheat comes out.
Light bodied and crisp.

mschofield, Mar 15, 2005
Photo of kosmoraios
2.53/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First of all, let me say that I am rarely impressed by New Belgium.

This ale pours a clear light yellow with almost no head to speak of, even on an extremely agressive pour. Looks and smells like a macro pilsner with a bit of orange.

Taste is very bland. Again, coors with a hint of orange and coriander. A preponderance of wheat and some fruitiness. Almost nothing else. Water?

Mouthfeel is flat and watery with not much carbonation and almost no body. Drinkability is great if you don't want to taste your ale. If you're in to this kind of thing, save your money: buy Natural Light and squeeze a bit of orange into it. Maybe a dash of coriander if you're feeling rich.

kosmoraios, Mar 14, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
2.85/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is an interesting beer review for me. I had this beer on tap at the Pier Market on San Francisco's Pier 39. I knew the name sounded familiar but I didn't realize that I had already tasted this beer in a bottle. On tap and blind I was not much of a fan of this beer.

Appearance: Clear yellow color with a pilsner look and a thin white head.

Smell: Thin malty smell with a minimal fruit smell. This smells very much like a poorly done pilsner.

Taste: Some citrus, maybe lemon, and a wheaty malt backbone with a light pilsner malt type flavor. Sadly, it doesn't taste like a good wheat beer to me. There is some wateriness and astringency to the beer too. Perhaps that is the fault of the restaurant that served it and not the brewery. There is more flavor than the color lets on, but it is still a bit plain.

Mouthfeel: Pretty thin and unimpressive on the palate.

Drinkability: Drinkable but I really wouldn't order another one on tap.

BrewMaster, Mar 04, 2005
Photo of Trentonator
2.98/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I never thought I would ever say anything negative about New Belgium, but this is my least favorite of their offerings. It reminds me of <gasp> a BUD LIGHT!! No head, no aroma, no character to speak of. It was even kind of flat, with no lacing and very little carbonation. Pale, straw yellow, with little taste (despite the label's proclamations of coriander and orange, I taste nothing of the ilk). A comparison to other wheat beers is a mismatch. Boulevard Wheat blows it away. This is just a plain beer. Not bad, but not something I would seek out regularly. Now Abbey Ale, on the other hand, that is simply heavenly . . . .

Trentonator, Feb 08, 2005
Photo of CVC
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Came in a 12 oz. bottle; served in a pint glass.

Pours a clear, pale yellow with a minimal pure white head that dissipates quickly. Leaves very little lace. Smells of wheat, orange, and coriander. Tastes just like it smells, and is pretty carbonated. Has a thin mouthfeel, and goes down easy.

This beer almost reminds of the Hoegaarden White. Except not as good. It certainly smells nice, but the taste is too watery. Doesn't really have an appealing appearance either. It's not a terrible beer by any means, but I'd rather have Hoegaarden.

CVC, Jan 21, 2005
Photo of aquatonex
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

APA is definitely what this is...

Pours very light pale wheat colored. A little head, medium carbonation. Smell is almost nonexistent. Taste is quite light, nice wheat notes but very light. Mouthfeel is pretty good. I'd drink this if I didn't really want a beer, it's a bit too light for me.

aquatonex, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of BeerBob
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

New Belgium Sunshine Wheat Beer pours a light clear amber from a dark brown 12oz glass bottle with a freshness date of “Best Before: 18 jan05”. Head went to over two fingers and when settling, laces the sides of the glass quite well with a rather large ring of foam. The top of the beer is covered with a broken blanket of fine foam bubbles.

Nose is a refreshing coriander and the palate is a delicious up front coriander with a nice toasted wheat coupled with a drying citrus note. The carbonation level is right on the money, delivering its bite just at the right time. New Belgium Sunshine Wheat Beer reminders me of a Belgian White, with out the “White” color.

All in all, this New Belgium Sunshine Wheat beer is a good offering from the people at New Belgium and I will be back for more.

BeerBob, Jan 13, 2005
Photo of allengarvin
3.98/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very pale gold color, no wheat haze, with a large head and many streaming bubbles.

Aroma: Cheerios (tm) cereal! Nice slightly sweet, very wheety aroma, with a touch of coriander twang.

Flavor: Lot of wheat flavor, with small vanilla notes, and slight coriander coming through. Fruity, honey-like character also, though still fairly light. Finish is fairly clean, with a little tartness.

Body: Medium-light, with very creamy mouthfeel.

Very refreshing beer. Considered as a Belgian wit, it has the some of the requisite flavors but in small amounts. As an American wheat (as it's listed here), however, it makes an excellent, much more interesting beer than many US wheat beers. I'd like some more yeast character, but that's a quibble.

allengarvin, Jan 07, 2005
Photo of brewQ
3.58/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clear straw pale gold brew with a wispy white head that settles early. The aroma had some citrus but I could not pick up the coriander promised on the label.

The flavor had a hint of sweetness and was quite refreshing.
After tasting some Belgian witbiers this American Wheat was not a standout- while it may have been in sync with style.

I have enjoyed all of the other New Belgium offerings but won't go out of my way for this one.

brewQ, Dec 31, 2004
Photo of Southernbrew
2.85/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, pale yellow with no head, not exactly impressive.

Medium aroma filled with mostly lemon and spice, a bit lacking.

Taste is sub-par, I was looking for something along the lines of a hefeweizen or witbier and neither truly emerged. No real hop presence, ditto for the malt. It started with a bit of orange and coriander but never really went anywhere.

Somewhat disappointing, with limited New Belgium experience, I was hoping for a bit more. This would be a good beer if you just finished mowing the yard, but not for much else.

Southernbrew, Dec 28, 2004
Photo of rajendra82
2.68/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This 12 oz. bottle was provide in person by Southernbrew. The beer poured pale macro yellow with a small ring of fizzy bubbles (I’d not even call it a head), that disappeared rapidly. The aroma was totally unlike the attributes the label suggested. All I could detect was graininess and faint sweetish malts. There was no hint of banana, orange peel, or coriander on the nose. The taste was clean, and dull. There was no wheat beer fruity edge. Instead this was basically a purified and cleaned up macro. There was a lemony twang in the finish with a hint of spiciness, and the mouthfeel was a few notches above most macros. There was nothing really wrong with the beer except for the allusion of getting a Belgian style wheat beer on the label. I am sorry, but this is not even close to that.

rajendra82, Dec 27, 2004
Photo of Juggernaut
3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a gold/yellow color with a nice white head. The aroma was of the wheat and malt with a very nice citrus smell mixed in.

The taste greatly resembled the smell, with a good base of wheat and malt, with a nice citrus tartness off setting it. This is a very refreshing and pleasent beer, that is great to drink anytime, and especially during the summer.

Juggernaut, Dec 13, 2004
Photo of Mitchster
3.7/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours out to a sparkingly clear straw blonde, forming a modest rocky white head with average retention and some lacing. The aroma is soft with coriander and distant orange peel, and grainy wheat. Carbonation is moderate. The mouthfeel is lively with a light body and crisp finish. Taste starts with a touch of soapy, perfumy coriander, a sensation of macro-brew corn (I dunno what's doing that in this beer), very distant orange towards the middle with a light grainy sweetness and a very crisp, clean, lightly dry finish with mild bitterness, and a touch of soapiness from the coriander in the aftertaste. No perceptable off-flavors other than the abbreviated macro-twang in the beginning.

A decent wit...I prefer mine with more substance, yeast, and orange oomph, but this would make a satisfying thirst-quencher on a hot summer-day.

Mitchster, Nov 24, 2004
Photo of Beaver13
2.17/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

The Sunshine pours a clear light golden. It has a fizzy white head that quickly disappears.

Its aroma is yeasty and floral with slight hints of bready grain and citrus.

The flavor is very mild and somewhat bland...sweet malts, some yeast, a little orange and coriander with a slightly acidic crisp finish. It seems a little thin and watery.

Overall, this is not a very good wit. I have had better samples in the past, but even those are pretty mediocre.

Beaver13, Nov 11, 2004
Photo of Rio
3.58/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes from Barley's Brewhaus (Overland Park, KS) on 11/04/04.

Poured a bright gold/yellow color, a bit hazy, with a pretty decent head that faded to a fine lacing. The solid sweetness of the grainy, wheat aroma of the malts is supplemented by a bit of a citrus smell, as well.

Much like the taste, the grain/wheat taste of the malts is the solid base here, while the citrus tastes provide more of a highlight to this brew. Very clean and a bit of an acidic sharpness in the feel.

All in all, a pretty good wheat by a company that I believe has a pretty good line-up over all. Very drinkable, and very refreshing. I'm not a fan of tossing a lemon into a beer, but the citrusy taste that this one brings with it is a very good addition.

Rio, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of clvand0
2.35/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours a very pale color - reminds me of bud light. Way too light - needs some cloudyness. The aroma was very much orange citrus and not much else. The body wasn't there. The taste was very much citrus as well. I was very disappointed with this beer. It isn't what I call a witbier. Uninteresting.

clvand0, Oct 15, 2004
Sunshine Wheat Beer from New Belgium Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 816 ratings.