Weihenstephaner Original - Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

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Weihenstephaner OriginalWeihenstephaner Original

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1,976 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,976
Reviews: 835
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 12.53%
Wants: 147
Gots: 228 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan visit their website

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-30-2000

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,976 | Reviews: 835
Reviews by ThePaintedGrey:
Photo of ThePaintedGrey
3.92/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass.

A: Pale, gold colored with crisp clarity. Constant stream of tiny bubbles that rise to the top, maintaining the 1/2 inch creamy head that leaves very respectable lacing all down the glass.

S: A little bit of sweet malt. A touch of hops, grass, and a little citrus. Most likely lemon. A little underwhelmed with the nose, honestly.

T: Well, this makes up for the nose! A nice sweet malt throughout, with tiny hints of citrus and hop bitterness that meld together perfectly to create a clean and pleasant balance. It finishes with a dash of alcohol spiciness and warmth and lingering yeast. Overall very clean and crisp flavors.

M: Light, to medium body with a delicate carbonation that packs just enough of a punch. This lager wields astonishing drinkability.

O: Man, this is the lager of lagers. It's usually not really my style of choice, but I could see myself ordering this again on a rare occasion. Crisp, clean flavors mixed with an exceptionally smooth feel make this one of the most pleasant lagers to be had.

More User Reviews:
Photo of gregb13
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

The quintessential German lager. Had several times but felt compelled to praise it tonight in review form, after I'd sampled it out on the patio after a long day.

Aroma - grassy, a little pungent, very inviting.

Taste/feel - so clean, lightly sweet, a little bitterness, goes down so so smooth.

If it gets any better than this, I've not found it.

Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: clear pale gold and a couple of fingers of ivory head; sparse lace left behind

S: grassy, grainy, flowery fields; some bread and yeast...

T: crisp and clean drinking pale grains; hints at grasses and hay; something citric, maybe lemony; something herbal and rustic, too

M: lean and tight, crisp and clean-drinking, moderate bitterness, smooth and light-bodied

O: what I presume to be exemplary of the style, rounded off by my lack of familiarity thereof, presents as an easy-drinkin' beer, session-able and light, with a stable of core flavor elements

Photo of Nickholland
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is what a lager should taste/look like. Yeasty/bready flavor/smell with a hint of lavender? and a light hop balance. Almost the inverse of a pale ale where the hops dominate. Delicate, creamy and goes down easy. One of my top 3 lager/pilsners and I've had many, er, tried many different, you get the idea.

Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I rate this as my favorite lager in the world,incredible fruity aroma and taste.Not a wimpy beer by any stretch,the house yeast imparts a great floral-fruity aroma,love this beer in any form but am crazy about it on tapT.Weihenstaphan is one of the great breweries in the world for a reason.

Photo of RoyalT
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Light and clear yellow in color with a decent head.

Smell – This is a nice, quality grain aroma with a touch of spicing.

Taste – This spicing comes out much more at the taste. It’s difficult to pick them out, but they seem to be light yet sharp. There’s a touch of medicine to this one as well, but the strong and flavorful grain covers things up nicely. The finish is a sweet sucrose-type of flavor that works nicely.

Mouthfeel – There’s some very light carbonation to this refreshing light to medium-bodied lager.

Drinkability – This is an excellent session beer and a wonderful example of the style.

Comments – This has the same flavor profile of an American macro: grain and man-made sugar. But here it is done with class using quality ingredients and the expertise of the oldest brewery in the world.

Update – I first reviewed this in 2004 with a 2003 vintage so thought that I would re-review it with a 2005 bottle. I’m glad that I did. I got a much better head than the original review so raised the Appearance from 3 to 4.

Photo of tectactoe
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Haven't went wrong with a Weihenstephan before; it's funny how I've had many of their other brews before the "original", so I guess I finally owe it to myself to try it. It pours a straw and banana tinted yellow color with exception clarity - not quite Kristallweissbier clear, but pretty damn close. It showcases some slight volatility, producing a big, bubbly, bone-white head that maintains its slow decent into a skin and leaves some great lacing behind. This one's a beauty!

The aroma contains a bunch of maltiness, right off the bat; soft and light, yet dominant and recognizable all at once. Raw biscuits, crackers, and previous Bavarian yeast cloud my nostrils, followed up by a brief interruption of faint Noble hops; slightly leafy and musty are the hops, and while noticeable, they certainly play secondary to the extraordinarily well-crafted malt bill. Some light lemon zest and a spritz of citrus finishes things off. This beer smells very pure, fresh, and honest. I like that.

A slightly metallic toned abundance of pale malts engulf my palate after taking a gulp. Not a sip, but a gulp - this beer is about as easy-drinking as they come. The flavor is slightly more "toasted" than the aroma showed, giving off baked bread and toasty crackers as opposed to their lighter, raw counterparts. Once the stronger barley and grain flavors subside a bit, the Noble hops jump in again with their signature musk and leaf flavor, injecting a subtle dryness and a mellow, yet commanding bitterness that lasts well into the aftertaste.

Extremely well balanced is this lager, with a seemingly perfect mix of hops and malts, both sides waging war for dominance in the flavor profile while the sum of them remains controlled enough to let the drinkability of this beer shine like a star. The aftertaste is a pretty rewarding concoction of Noble hop bitterness, briefly toasted and bready malt, and crisp, clean, lager yeast. It's got a smooth yet sharp mouth feel from the high amount of carbonation. Light bodied, as most helles lagers should be.

No kidding, Weihenstephan does it again. I'm beginning to think that they can do no wrong, as there isn't a beer by them that I've tried and haven't liked. I'm starting to grow more fond of the Helles Lager style, and this is a good place to start for anyone who is venturing in that direction, as well. Can't say I like this one as much as Schlenkerla's helles lager (it's that smoke, baby), but it's still damn good and oh so insanely drinkable.

Photo of MadScientist
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Medium yellow with excellent clarity. A bright white head of compact bubbles that is dissipates fairly quickly leaving a thick ring of foam around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate grainy and somewhat sweet with a low hops aromas that are flowery and spicy. Faint DMS, no diacetyl, no esters
T: Grainy and very slightly sweet, a nice balance of low hops bitterness
M: A nice softness on the palate probably from the pils malt with a medium body and medium carbonation.
O: It take a lot to impress me with a lager and this one certainly does. Not only excellent for style but just a plain excellent beer.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #26:

Very pale golden yellow with a stunning clarity; sizable, spritzy head holds together well. Smells of freshly cut grass, pale honey, doughy biscuit, faint grape skin, and it's a little peppery from the hops. Impeccably smooth with a very delicate, light to medium body. Clean maltiness throughout, not all the way dry as some sweetness sneaks in at first sip. Bitterness is clean with a peppery bite and herbal backing. The graininess is just enough to pique the palate's interest, yet doesn't cloud drinkability. Finishes dry with a very clean aftertaste of pale malt and grassy hops.

What a lovely yet delicate lager, an underrated as well as overlooked beer, as the spotlight usually shines on its wheat beer brother. No frills and fits with the style. An ease to quaff back a half liter (or a full liter, for the more ardent lager lover).

Photo of Todd
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Called "Weinenstephan Helles exportbier" in Germany. Served in a branded 0.5l glass. Presented as a clear, bright, pale yellow/gold beer with a thin white sticky foam head -- good retention. Musty, light grain, clean aroma.

Smooth mouthfeel with a thin, soft rind hop bitterness. Notes of metallic flavours edge around a light malt sweetness with grain notes. Bitterness is a bit limey and snappy, with a grassy and herbal finish. Soft banana. Faint clove. Dry overall finish.

Had this at the "Ranke 2" in Berlin. Wonderful beer. Paired nicely with my bean and sausage soup.

Photo of Jpinoniemi
5/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I love this beer and glad it is readily available in the Cleveland area. I have a good friend who was skeptical, but is now a believer as well. As member Ohiolager said - "move over Hofbrau". Hofbraus is good too, but this beer is my pick at the moment.

Photo of muffguy4beer
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: vibrant yellow in color, clear with ample head due to vigorous pour action.

Smell: I pick up the malty goodness, dash of lemon.

Taste: very balanced brew, has a nice sweet front with a slightly tart back end.

Mouthfeel: medium body with crisp carbonation.

Drinkability: easy drinking beer most definitely for the summer time, a style that I am more and more appreciating and trying to replicate in my homebrewing.

Photo of generallee
4.59/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1pt. 0.9oz bottle into a Pilsener glass. The bottle has the abv marked at 5.1% and there is no freshness date.

Appearance: The body is a bright and has a light yellow gold color and inside there were lots of little yeast floaters as well as some visible carbonation too. Its head is made of a light, loose, bright white foam which builds up tall, then quickly settles down to just a thin film covering. Lacing is slick and minimal.

Smell: There is a mild pale and biscuity malt character in the aroma with some light straw like and noble hope notes.

Taste/Palate: Its flavor is very clean and refreshing. There is a nice bready/biscuity malty base with some mild sweetness. It also has some earthy/bready yeast notes as well. This is then balanced by a pleasant mix of classic German hops that add some herbal spice, some bitterness, a very light touch of citrus and a good crisp dry finish. The palate is light to medium with lively balanced carbonation.

Notes: This is an outstanding easy drinking lager. The only big negative was the odd yeast floaters that filled the glass after I poured the beer. Anyway it didn't take anything at all away from the flavor.

Photo of Todler
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought a six at HY-Vee in CF last week. This one's a good 'all purpose' drinker. Pours nice, not a lot of foaming. Some lacing. Taste was smooth with a very mild sour yeast flavor with good hop and malt balance. They must use some of their hefeweizen yeast in this because it had a similar tartness, just scaled down. I enjoyed this one and I'd buy it again. I can't say it will change your life, but definately worth trying.

Photo of Jason
4.86/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 12 oz sleek euro brown bottle with the boasting words “Oldest Brewery in the World” on the label, freshness date is on the back label.

Appearance: Very hazy from the yeast with a pale yellow hue, varied bubbled white lace that holds a great retention and stays until he beer is gone.

Smell: Very mild lemon astringent aroma and a light cookie like malt sweetness with a trace of hops also in the nose.

Taste: Well structured and rounded carbonation cradles the delicate light to medium body, the clean hop bitterness is evident with a soft lemon like twang. Malt flavour is similar to a lightly baked biscuit from fresh milled malted grain. Both hops and malt meld together to form a perfect blend, yeast complements by adding a touch of nuttiness. Light feel of alcohol towards the end with the lingering effects of the malt, yeast and a long drawn out faded hops finish.

Notes: A lager in the raw, in its authentic natural form. This is the quintessential lager in the world. Bow down to the true lager and you will be one with beer. This is the best of the best hands down.

Photo of Billolick
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle, with no freshness information. poured light amber/straw. Amost an olive oil like greenish hue. White soft creamy head, leaving lacing. Nose is bready,yeasty, also some pepper detected. Medium bodied, clean malt notes, not much hoppyness, but it does finish dry. Would go great with any summery foods. Fine session brew.

Photo of Weizenmensch
3.44/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer may be classified as a Munich Helles Lager, but it tasted extremely similar to a Breznak I had recently. Same floral hop aroma, same average head retention, and possibly the same effects of not being quite fresh enough. This last point may have led to the comparison - I can't remember what it's like to have fresher than the one I just had, but in any case, this and Breznak are in the same beer category in my book. In fact, I bought this thinking it was the Hefeweißbier (which I really felt like) but didn't read the label properly and realised upon the first sip (and spurious clarity) that it wasn't a Weissbier at all. And to think, I broke one of my good Weizen glasses while getting it out, and I wasn't even having a Weissbier after all! In any case, a good beer, better consumed fresh, but doesn't satisfy when you're after a real Weizen. Good thing I'm following it up with a Weihenstephaner Dunkel...

Photo of tigg924
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: 1/2 inch head, clear, super light yellow, high carbonation, great lacing

Smell: honey and toasted malt

Taste: honey, toasted malt, and a small grass hops presence

Mouthfeel: light body, slightly bitter, and crisp, high carbonation

Drinkability: A very good, super light, and super sessionable lager. Very clean. I could have several.

Photo of DoShek
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - poured into a footed pilsner glass with two fingers of white head that dissipates quickly, light straw color, very clear, leaves almost no lacing on the glass

Aroma - light maltiness, grassy and floral hop aroma

Taste - very light almost honey-like sweetness, grassy hops at the end, dry finish, slight metallic twang

Mouthfeel - smooth and light, lively carbonation on the palate, crisp

Drinkability - wish I had more, a great example of why Germany is known for lagers

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear yellow with a medium-sized white head. The aroma is biscuity/bready malts with a little bit of hops. The flavor is malty with hop bitterness at the end. You also get a little bit of toasted/caramel malt in the flavor. Very tasty. Thin mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of PsychoJedi
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! Will you smell that! So much what a good German beer should smell like! Traditional golden look, but maybe a tat on the lighter side. The head is something else foaming up nice a thick and high that makes you say, "yum!" Taste is a little lacking from my usual German brand. Grading apples to apples, German beer should have a little more flavor. But it goes down extra smooth. You can chug this beer, but should a German beer be like that? Notably, it's the world's oldest brewery, though that is likely misleading since it is likely not made the same way as in the year 1040. It's more likely a marketing ploy. The beer seems to be like it's competing with American Lagers instead of German Lagers.

Photo of Cavanaghty
4.21/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wanted to try this in Germany, but it will be a while before I am able to go there, so i had to settle for an imported bottle in the mean time.

Poured from bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Beautiful Crisp Golden Amber color. Head overflowed from the glass and was white with great lacing on the glass. The head lasted a long time, most likely due to the good carbonation I noticed.

Smell: Light hops and only hops.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Light bodied and well balanced. All I could taste was hops with a light pine like and hops after taste.

Overall: Excellent brew as expected. I cannot wait to try it a bit fresher in Germany when I get a chance.

Photo of magictrokini
2.76/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Going to be tough to get 250+ on this one, because there's really not much to it. Pours clear gold with a bubbly white head. Faint flowery aroma with malt and light hops. Taste is a lager with good maltiness and no bitter metal in the finish. Good, nothing special.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into an 8oz sampling glass.

Pours a nice light golden yellow with a small bright white head. Nose light and malty, not much for hops or frutiness, just a bit of driness.

Taste is crisp and smooth with a really quick finish and a light amount of carbonation. It's got a light sweetness and sharp very light hop bite. Very easy drinking.

Photo of BadBadger
4.37/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Yum. An amazing and delightful refreshment: nice and crisp. Picked a growler of this up at Half Time beer store. It pours a light golden color, with a foamy white head. Smells faintly sweet. The taste is very understated and pleasant, simple yet delightful. A near perfect lager. And a definite session beer for a hot sweaty night. Search out and enjoy.

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Weihenstephaner Original from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
91 out of 100 based on 1,976 ratings.