1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Weihenstephaner Original - Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

Not Rated.
Weihenstephaner OriginalWeihenstephaner Original

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,741 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,741
Reviews: 789
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.81%
Wants: 110
Gots: 121 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan visit their website
Germany

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-30-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Weihenstephaner Original Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,741 | Reviews: 789 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Radome
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 500 ml bottle into a goblet.

A - Beer is a straw to light golden color and absolutely clear. The head is white and creamy. It fades to just a thin layer but leaves lacing on the glass. A very attractive beer.

S - The aroma is well balanced between sweet-smelling malt, pilsner grain and noble hops. It smells subtle but smooth.

T - The taste is more tilted toward the noble hops bitterness and flavor than the aroma was. I don't taste the malt roundness I was expecting from the smell. Still, it is exceptionally clean and easy to drink. There is a slightly sweet finish.

M - The body is light to medium with little carbonation feel. No alcohol burn. This is a smooth and easy-drinking beer.

O - This is a very clean and well-made Helles. It is not my favorite style, but this is clearly an excellent example.

Radome, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of Stockfan42
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden body with a chunky white head.

Smells a bit earthy and grassy. Dry hops and a nice malty untertone. Also a bit bready.

Taste also has an earthy and piney taste to it as well as some lemon peal, hints of grapefruit, bread, malt and a nice bitter bite from the hops.
Everything is well balanced and taste clean and crisp.

Mouthfeel is light bodied with some nice carbonation. Pretty easily drinkable.

Overall this is a great lager. Maybe even one of the best ive ever had. Have yet to be dissapointed by this brewery.

Stockfan42, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of karait95
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Straw color a very pale yellow but bright and clear, light body with good enough carbonation. Withe big head that leaves traces behind on the glass.

S: Classic malty aroma but also some hops can be sensed.

T: As with smell mainly malts are present but also hops are tasted.

M: Refreshing, easy to drink with a balanced flavor not too sweet not to bitter with a medium ending.

karait95, Oct 03, 2011
Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
4.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The body is a nice glowing golden yellow. The head is foamy with good bubbling. It retains well and clings to the side of the glass. This is simple and direct in appearance: The carbonation is just right.

Don't be fooled by the subtlety of this beer. It isn't boring at all, but if you are used to the hop riot of American craft beer nowadays you might dismiss this classic beer as just another lager. The malts are pleasant roasted malts. It has a basic grain character. It's all barley here. The hops are incredible. Try to pick up on the slight delicate aromas of fruit, banana, citrus, spice and clove.

The taste is the same as the aroma. The beer is crisp, dry and refreshing. The body is soft and delicate. The spicy floral hops finish neatly. This beer is very drinkable. This is one of the finest lagers I've ever had.

BerkeleyBeerMan, Oct 01, 2011
Photo of Burt
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tall Weizen Glass.

Golden yellow and clear, thick white head that dispersed quickly and left little lacing.

Sweet malt with a little citrus.

Slightly sweet up front, middle turns biscuit and malty, end is clean and crisp with a tiny bit of bitterness.

Great beer, lots of flavor. I could drown in a vat of this and die happy.

Burt, Sep 29, 2011
Photo of olimpia84
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served the 16.9oz bottle into a Pilsner glass to pair it up with my dinner.

A: pale golden body that is not entirely translucent as other lagers. Three finger glowing white foamy and spongy head that decorates the glass sublimely. Medium lacing present.

S: it has a combination of bitter hops that are typical of lagers along with some sweet notes.

T: this beer starts off a bit bitter with some lemony and citrus notes but they eventually give way to a sweeter malty finish. Nicely done.

M: light body with medium carbonation. Very drinkable, crisp and fresh.

O: I'm not the biggest lager fan but this beer gets the job done beautifully. This beer is light enough and very drinkable which is why it can be paired with a lot of foods and enjoyed at pretty much any time. Another quality product from Bayerische Weihenstephan.

olimpia84, Sep 27, 2011
Photo of RickS95
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I guess it looks like the style, but it also looks like any other mass-produced lager you can pick up in the States. Straw golden color and very clear. The one difference between this and what you see a hundred times a day on TV is the amazing white head. It's huge, bright, sticks around forever, and when it finally does give way, it's laces the glass nicely.

The smell is very pleasant, a combination of biscuit, pear, and pepper.

Very mild flavors, but everything in the smell comes through. There's kind of a grapey flavor as well.

The mouthfeel is exceptionally gentle and smooth. It's very easy to drink. Has a fruity (pear and grape) sweetness that follows the beer across the tongue. Only in the finish do you get even a hint of bitter from the hops.

I don't care much for the style, but I could probably be swayed if I drank more beers like this one.

RickS95, Sep 24, 2011
Photo of dansmcd
3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Big, 3 fingered head, white and porous. Body is very pale yellow, crystal clear, webby lacing.

S - Subdued lemon and banana. Vanilla icing.

T - Not big flavours. Very mild and clean. Slight acidity, banana malt finish.

M - Thin body, high carbonation. Clean.

O - Pretty basic, but it's a lager isn't it. Nothing big or bold about this, but very sessionable.

dansmcd, Sep 18, 2011
Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.6/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1 pint, 0.9oz bottle into a pint glass at low altitude.

A: Pours a crystal clear light yellow with a soapy white head that dissipates rather quickly. A fair amount of carbonation floats up toward the top of the glass.

S: Not a very strong smell by any means. Mostly malty with some subdued hop character in the background.

T: Although the flavors are a bit subdued, bright hop flavors give way to a malty finish. Quite pleasant overall.

M: Light-bodied with a clean mouthfeel and just the right amount of carbonation.

D: Easy to drink and quite tasty. The best lager I've tasted to date.

schlimenhaumer, Sep 11, 2011
Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Absolutely clear, golden body with very little carbonation and a super light lace.

S - Mounds of sweet, rich grains, and hearty home baked bread. Slight wafts of malt and citric yeasty notes. That typical lagered scent present.

T - Sweet wheat, very appeasing here. Very bread-like, and wholesome tasting. Light honey and crisp malt notes complimenting. Mildly bitter/spiced hops and a touch floral and yeasty.

M - Light bodied and softer flavors make this one highly drinkable. Soft and smooth, with a great balance of carbonation.

O - A true, well rounded, classic German drinking brew.

BeerForMuscle, Sep 04, 2011
Photo of JMad
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from a pint glass...

Pours a pale golden yellow color with a thick filmy white head that clung to the glass. I could smell lemon peel and grassy hops, it's kind of tart and sour. Tastes of hay and lemon with a nice malt flavor, with a mild metallic hint. The beer is very smooth and low in carbonation with a dry finish. This beer is really good and I could drink it all day.

JMad, Sep 04, 2011
Photo of GeoJ
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Golden clear appearance, one finger head that settles down quickly. If one drank with their eyes, they would think they were looking at a typical light beer, or American adjunct, and probably not be expecting much.

Aha! One would be wrong!

Aroma is fresh and inviting, citrus and hops, but the malt is present as it warms a bit. Pretty complex for such a light-looking brew.

Mouthfeel is superb - Fairly high carbonation, but not overpowering in the least bit. Roll around on the tongue and is produces a nice balance of crispness and surprising fullness.

Initial malt taste is quickly followed by a wonderful hit of hoppiness ... did I say crisp? This is one of the cleanest tasting and most refreshing brews I've ever had. Cleanses the pallet with no lingering aftertaste other than a bit the wonderful hops. Perfectly balanced, for my tastes.

I can easily see enjoying more than a few of these on a hot day, with some hearty 'Q or smoked meats.

As far as I'm concerned, the wonderful folks at Weihenstephaner can do no wrong. Bravo!

GeoJ, Sep 03, 2011
Photo of gc4hokies
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Awesome.

Pours a golden clear with a nice white head.
Aroma is bisquity goodness with hints of noble hops.
Taste is crisp, lemongrass, bisquit with a dry finish. excellent.

If you want a light, crisp golden beer that resembles the chock that is mass produces but has excellent flavor and drinkability...this is the one.

Very good beer. I could drink a lot of these and I'm an IPA guy. Respect!

gc4hokies, Sep 02, 2011
Photo of adam42381
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pilsner glass.

Pours a clear light golden color with a huge 3-4 finger fluffy snow white head. Nice head retention and excellent lacing.

Smell: Grainy aroma and malt compliment each other very nicely. Sweet pilsner-like aroma with a little bit more sweet malt.

Taste: Light grassy flavors up front followed by grainy malt in the middle ending with a touch of bitter grassy hops at the finish. Aftertaste is light and bittersweet.

Mouthfeel: Light-to-medium-bodied with a very low amount of carbonation. Felt a little too flat to me.

Drinkability: Decent drinkability. I could probably drink multiples, but the carbonation issues make me just want to have one.

Overall: Good beer overall. The aroma and flavor are up there with any pilsner I've had. Weihenstephaner never disappoints.

adam42381, Aug 28, 2011
Photo of DavidST
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a pint glass, coded date on the back 8131.

I love their hefe so I'm excited to try the lager (although not my favorite style). This pours a clear light yellow / straw color with a nice foamy white head. The smell is very clean and crisp, I get lots of floral hops, a little grain, not bad. Feel is medium with moderate carbonation. The taste is pretty good also very crisp and slightly dry, it has some grainy malts up front with a nice hop balance. Overall, this was pretty good, but I'll stick to the far superior and more flavorful hefe.

DavidST, Aug 27, 2011
Photo of rudzud
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle at Julio's.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a crystal clear yellowish straw with a foamy two finger head that fades to leave a nice quarter inch of foam.

S - Mild grains and hops. Fairly mild overall.

T - Pretty nice flavors. Somewhat basic, but done well. Good grains with light citrus hops. Its not really too bitter, its the hops without the bitterness.

M - Good carbonation. Nice and crisp on the finish.

O - Overall I enjoyed this beer alot. Weihenstephan really doesnt make a bad beer, everything is quality. Would buy again.

rudzud, Aug 21, 2011
Photo of chinchill
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - clear golden-yellow body, capped with a white head.

S - The mild aroma is primarily grains, with hints of citrus fruits, hay and hops.

T - Largely follows the aroma. Bready grains with hints of citrus and hops. More sweet than bitter. I'd like this better if it were stronger; as it is, it tastes like a world-class light lager.

M- Light body with a medium-high amount of carbonation. Slightly dry and crisp.

O: An excellent if delicately-flavored lager that is easy-drinking and refreshing. Too light and too close to ordinary to be very interesting.

chinchill, Aug 17, 2011
Photo of biboergosum
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle, a nice little find in Idaho Falls' decent downtown beer store.

This beer pours a clear, icy-looking pale yellow colour, with one fat finger of thin foamy white head, which leaves some ragged lace around the glass as it settles. It smells of crackery biscuit grain, and floral, somewhat spicy hops. The taste is sweet cereal malt, a bit of yeasty breadiness, and earthy, floral hops. The carbonation is average, the body a comfortingly solid medium weight, and quite smooth. It finishes still sweet and grainy, moving more towards a pastry bread nature, the floral hops trailing off.

A very flavourful lager - bright is indeed a good way to describe it. I could see putting back these easily - stein after stein.

biboergosum, Aug 01, 2011
Photo of aasher
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a light bodied vibrant gold in color with great clarity and a two finger bright white, sudsy head. The aromas consist of a light pilsner esque malt, light honey like sweetness, with a very light bitter hop finish. The flavors are spot on for a Munich blonde. It has nice pale malty sweetness with a touch of honey and an ever so slight, dry and hoppy finish. The finish is nice and smooth and overall refreshing. The flavor reminds me of fresh a Hofbrau Munich Helles from the Hofbrau House. This bottle drinks exceptionally fresh and crisp. This is a top notch beer for the style and a great beer for a hot day. If this were America's national style I doubt too many people would complain.

aasher, Aug 01, 2011
Photo of greenmonstah
2.85/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Light yellow in color with a finger of frothy white head.

S - Smells a little sweet, a little grainy. Maybe slightly off. Perhaps is is light struck.

T - Tastes a bit soapy, a bit grainy, and a little sweet. Not very good to my tongue

M - Light body, crisp, but with a soapy feeling. Something might be wrong with my bottle.

O - Overall I am not a fan. Big disappointment from such a brilliant brewery.

greenmonstah, Jul 28, 2011
Photo of woodychandler
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was at TJ's in Paoli yesterday for "The Scraps" and decided to have a look in the take-away cooler for some beers for New Beer Sunday. I want to get them in early as I have some adventurous types coming by later to drink SA Triple Bock with me.

My pour created almost two fingers of foamy, bone-white head with good retention. Color was a lemon-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a pleasant grassy, Saaz hops odor underlain by a biscuit maltiness. My mouth began to water in anticipation. Mouthfeel was medium with a clean, lightly grassy bitterness on the tongue. I really love drinking adjunct-free lager, especially after so many AALs on The CANQuest (TM). My FerMentor, Lew Bryson, has described lagers as the equvalent of frozen tundra with nothing to hide behind. That would sum up this beer. It was slightly dry on the finish, refreshing and very pleasant. Now, if they would just put it in a CAN ...

woodychandler, Jul 17, 2011
Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoyed Weihenstephaner’s Hefeweissbier; it’s my favorite hefeweizen. There’s something that can be said about tradition, and these guys definitely know a thing or two about that. And it doesn’t get any more traditional than this one: a beer called "Original." Plus, the German exchange student that’s living with us at the moment, Felix, is very familiar with the brand and says that it’s quite big in Germany; that makes it even more special. So here it is, straight from the “World’s Oldest Brewery:” my first Helles Lager. Let’s hope it gives me a good introduction to the style.

A: “I like German beer, especially because it always has a lot of gas,” as Felix says. He’s got that right. This one is a great example of that: the head is big and foamy, with white bubbles dancing for minutes on top. No lacing, though. I’d describe the color of the body as a straw-yellow, pale and slightly shiny. It’s relatively hazy, possibly due to a quick pour on my part. At any rate, it looks like a pretty standard German lager.

S: If the look couldn’t convince you that this one’s a lager, the nose definitely would. There’s an almost natural bright grain to it; a familiar character trait for German lagers. Wheats and yeasts mix to form banana and pear, as expected, and they extend to the nose’s end. Hoppy notes and a hint of fresh baked goods round it off, marking this one as memorably pleasing.

T: I’m not a huge fan of lagers; that I can say. This palate, though, has those clean, crisp characteristics which make me appreciative that this style is still being perfected. A strong taste of farm-freshness is the first and boldest of the palate, and that’s what I love. It’s perfectly balanced with some mild fruit effects, proving without a shadow of a doubt that the brewer took time to hone this palate. Seamless flavor transitions move into unexpected territory: some mild hop bitters and a slight funk that would make this a great accompaniment for a meaty German meal. On its own though, it's still excellent. Honestly, apart from some awesome Dopplebocks, this is one of the best palates I’ve experienced in a lager.

M: A great thickness in the feel, though it manages to stay light in the process. For such a bright beer, you never get a watery feeling. A guess it’s just the “gas” in it…

O: Well-balanced, complex, mature in its flavor profile, and easy-drinking, this is a beer that I’ll definitely have again; especially if I ever make it to Germany, where I can have it fresh. Two offerings this good make me want to go nuts and get every beer this brewery makes; so that’s what I’ll do! More Weihenstephaner reviews to come – these guys are just too good to be overlooked.

BarryMFBurton, Jul 16, 2011
Photo of seabass87
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from One Pint, 0.9 FL OZ bottle into pint glass.

A- Glowing, unfiltered light amber body. Aggressive pour yields 1 1/2 fingers of frothy, eggshell white head that disipates into a splotchy cap.

S- Barley, barnyard, and mild citrus fruits. A hint of bitter hops. Smells like a cross between a classic lager and a witbier.

T- Follows the nose. Tasty barley followed by lemon rind, a bit of orange, and a hint of fresh hops. Wheat and grains... it closes very soft and sweet, like a good witbier.

M- Light feel with a fair amount of carbonation up front. The feel lets the sip close without any lingering carb bite or stickiness. Slightly dry.

O- Interestingly enough, the label classifies this as a Malt Liquor. This is far and above the best malt liquor I've had! Haha.. No, but seriously, this a great, refreshing German lager that is a great beer for a hot summers day (117 degrees heat index today) or a good session.

seabass87, Jul 12, 2011
Photo of eric5bellies
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a slightly cloudy Gold colour with a nice frothy White head that retains well and laces.

S - Nice yeasty aromas with solid grains, soft but yet aromafull

T - The flaours are nice an balanced until the end. The sticky yeast give a rather un-pleasant aftertaste.

M - Medium body and low to medium carbonation.

O - No doubt about this being a German Lager

eric5bellies, Jul 08, 2011
Photo of mcallister
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Golden color showing good carbonation and a high white head a bit rocky yet thin bodies holds moderate retention and leaves a sticky lace behind.

Earthy, floral, and spicy hop notes, noble as can be really shine, with a light bready malt underneath.

Biscuity, bready malts. Like fresh baked bread, creamy mouthfeel, light ant refreshing zesty carbonation. Moderate bitterness dries out the sweetness of the malt on the finish. Some toffee hints, floral, and a bit spicey in the middle.

mcallister, Jul 04, 2011
Weihenstephaner Original from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
91 out of 100 based on 1,741 ratings.