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St. Bernardus Witbier - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
St. Bernardus WitbierSt. Bernardus Witbier

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

626 Reviews
THE BROS
99
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 626
Hads: 1,392
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.39%
Wants: 279
Gots: 141 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Witbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 01-06-2003

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 626 | Hads: 1,392
Photo of Sammy
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Mild easy drinking krystal wheat with lots of little bubbles. Very popular with my mates. Beautiful white milkshake. Some complementary spices without being too banana. Bit astringent bitter. Lemony, peppery, quenching. Malts, smooth. Light-medium mouthfeel.

Was nice on tap 5 months later in Florida. More grapefruit and orange zest and corriander noticed. Great appearance. (378 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by 11/29/13.

Pours a murky butter yellow with a foamy off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks and dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, wheat, spices, yeast, and a perfume-like citrus aroma. Taste is much the same with a mild spice finish that lingers after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a great smell that is tasty and easy to drink. (498 characters)

Photo of GRG1313
4.27/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy basic yellow with a decent white head.

Nose is wonderfully perfumy and with assertive honey character. Lovely.

Mouthfeel is thin/medium but with a nice character; high quality "feeling" in the mouth. A bit thin but "clean;" very "consumer friendly."

Flavors of honey with a light fresh white bread yeast character and flavor. Pleasant, inviting and very drinkable.

Light bitter hop finish. (410 characters)

Photo of metter98
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It poured light pale yellow in color and is extremely cloudy in color. The head was bright white and one finger high; it quickly died down but a thin layer of bubbles continually covered the surface.
S: The smell is rather complex and has aromas of coriander, orange peels, wheat and yeast.
T: The taste is very similar to the aroma and also has some notes of apples in the flavors.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate, tart and very refreshing.
D: This is a perfect summer beer that's thirst quenching and also packs in a lot of interesting flavors. (556 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy light yellow with a nice white head. Decent amount of lacing. Smell is light wheat with a bit of sweetness. Some clove character and a bit of spice. Taste is similar, although nothing stands out too much. Somewhat bland compared with the nose. Much of the taste component is dominated by the mouthfeel, which is quite nice and refreshing. A very easy-drinking beverage. (382 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.91/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

maybe im missing something here BA, but this just doesnt blow my mind. it looks the part of a world class beer, huge foaming white head resting forever on top of a just slightly hazy very pale summery yellow body with lots of little bubbles rising eagerly to the surface. it also leaves beautiful patchy thick white lacing on the sides of my tulip as i drink this. its really pretty. the nose though does not match the looks, it smells faintly like lemon peel, but all i can really ascertain from the smell is a pretty standard belgian yeast, light and a little fruity. its a little stinky, like maybe mine isnt the freshest bottle, but still, it just doesnt smell all that great. the flavor is nice, its very very light. a nice wheat malt profile with some grassy notes plays against just a touch of bitter lemon and the doughy yeast. its in fine balance, but its not a very bold flavor, well made yes, but almost boring. the feel is fine, light in body, made heavier by the suds on top and the yeast sediment, and the carbonation is quite active and fizzy. overall a nice beer, but im not sure id score it quite as high as the masses have here. (1,146 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy straw color with a frothy head that retains and laces reasonably well

Smell: Peppery phenols with plenty of coriander and orange peel aromatics; banana esters, too

Taste: Starts out with a banana bread and coriander flavor that adds some clove, pepper and orange peel by mid-palate; after the swallow, the peppery spice flavor profile builds and blends through the finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied and creamy with a prickly carbonation

Drinkability: About as good as it gets for a wit; very nice (534 characters)

Photo of Knapp85
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

St. Bernardus really puts out some great beers. This one is probably one of the better Wit's on the market. This beer pours out as an opaque yellow color with a big white foamy head. The aroma is very lively, some big time citrus coming through on the nose. There is also a good amount of yeast there too. The taste of this beer is semi-sweet, citrusy upfront and fades to a bread like softness in the after taste. The mouthfeel is pretty smooth but it also has a few bubbles in there that like to dance on your taste buds. (523 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Of all the Belgian white ales that infiltrate the market, St. Bermardus ignores the popular overkill that the floral-heavy coriander and the highly fruity orange peel provides. Instead, this witbier oozes with authentic Belgian character with subtle hints of spice and fruit for effect, not distraction.

But as with most other witbiers, St. Bernardus' version portrays a heavy haze that darkens the straw hue, resulting in a goldenrod coloration in the end. A medium-thin yet dense sheet of stark white foam skirts the surface evenly and confidently. Its high rate of retention and intricate lacing patterns set it apart.

Compared to other witbiers, the aromas here seem less witbier-ish and more geared toward golden or blonde ales, but as the beer warms, a wonderful and wholesome floral presence emerges and captures with it the scent of dried orange peel, coriander, apple, and lemon. Spicy white pepper and acidic white wine weave into a sweeter scent of honeysuckle for an appetizing and inviting overall aroma.

But its the taste of dry wheat, and crackery pilsn malt that set up a creamy and crisp interplay- from which all the decorative spices come to life a begin to charm the taste buds. Soft candyish sweetness seems to ground the spices of freshly grated white pepper, cumin, curacao, and lemon peel. A middle palate of fruit and spice balance begins with tart green apples and dried lemons and end with the peppery dryness of champagne. Mild hopping of lemon pepper taste or sassafras-flavored hops lurk in the background and simply become another complex element to consider, and that doesn't over pronounce itself.

Light and zesty in body, the beer is lead by a highly carbonated spritziness of sparkling white wine. But it's the creamy malts that keeps the textures from absolute dryness. Light on residual sweetness, the dry fruit flavor delves into the peppery spice, alcoholic warmth, and sharp acidity to heighten the sense of dryness in finish.

Don't get me wrong, this witbier celebrates well the attributes of coriander and curacao orange peel, but the story of the beer isn't about the spices. It's about the quality of the beer underneath. (2,170 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a hazy white tinted golden ale with a small bubbly white head with just better then average retention. Aroma of coriander and wheat is quite dominant. Taste is also dominated by the wheat and coriander with an above average body. Very good for a style that often produce boring beers but definitely not the best from this brewery. (345 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A completely hazy and opaque straw-colored beer. Pours with a sticky 2-inch head that falls into a quarter-inch. Head retention is very good.

Smell: Sour and yeasty; grapefruit, lemon, a bit of citrus rind.

Taste: Begins with a hint of bready sweetness before becoming more tart and spicy. Lemon juice and rind flavors lead to a dry and tart finish.

Mouthfeel: Heavily carbonated and crisp on the tongue. Lies on the heavier side of light-bodied.

Notes: A good, solid wit. More tart than most with less banana and more citrus. (542 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle. The best before markings on the label were just a tad confusing - "2006 11". I was concerned until I figured this actually means June 20, 2011. Oh, those wacky European date formats!

This beer pours a damned-near opaque, cloudy yellow straw, um, 'hue', with three fingers of puffy, ebullient, and tightly foamy off-white head, which settles none too quickly, eventually leaving a nice paint job of layered bleeding webbed lace around the glass.

It smells of dry grainy wheat malt, black pepper, nutmeg and clove spice, earthy yeast, and soft lemon zest. The taste is quite in line with the aroma - semi-sweet wheat grain, mild lemon citrus notes, a touch of acidic apple core, middling yeast, and soft spice - mostly just subtle clove/coriander and aerosol black pepper.

The carbonation is a bit on the strong side, providing a tight, slightly fizzy frothiness throughout, the body medium-light in weight, weirdly smooth, and even a little chalky. It finishes clean, grainy, yeasty and mostly dry.

A complex, cheekily understated, and at the same time, solid example of the style. The old world leanings toward nuance over intensity practically leap out of the glass, but really don't, y'know? Easy to drink, and for the style, strangely compelling, in the sense of making me actually consider acquiring/opening/borrowing another. (1,350 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.37/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Small 11.2oz. bottle, says "serve at 36º-42º".

Hazy apricot pour, one finger of head that remains for awhile. Smells of delicate orange and garden aroma with some wheat. Taste follows the profile of the aroma, very light & dull orange blends with a smooth wheaty taste. Muted spice balances out the citrus, very well done. Wheat becomes more pronounced as it warms.

The smoothness is what stands out, making it a perfect session candidate. The subtlety of spicing in the flavor is unique as well. A benchmark Witbier, among the best.

Edit: My review for "Pierre Celis Signature" was apparently lost when the listings were merged. That bottle was extraordinarily bad, chalky vitamins and expired orange juice bad. That was around a 2.9, just for reference, not applied to score here. (788 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.62/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Foggy pastel lemon with a hint of orange. The crown looks great. It's bright white, a bit on the small side thanks to an uncharacteristically (for me) gentle pour and has a upper surface that looks like rough suede. Some lace shows up on the glass, although it isn't sticky enough to last.

The nose is tremendous and contains all of the requisite witbier scents: sunshine bright citrus zest, spicy coriander and wheat. The citrus smells at least as much like lemon as it does like orange. I especially enjoy the room-filling power of the aroma.

The flavor follows suit. This is one of the most aromatic and most fully-flavored witbiers that I've ever had. There's a beautiful balance between the untoasted wheat base (whose flavor contribution is as important as any of the other elements), the now more orangey fruitiness and the coriander. A Belgian yeast cloviness puts it into another flavor gear and, therefore, another league. Delicious.

The beer is noticeably sweeter than most other world-class witbiers, a characteristic that I actually prefer. There's isn't much of a hop presence, as the style dictates. Wits are all about the 'holy triumvirate' (wheat, fruit and spice). I'm glad the monks have paid attention to all three in equal measure.

The mouthfeel can only be described as fantastic. Never before have I tasted a wit with this much mouthfilling fluffiness. The beer expands beautifully in the mouth, a characteristic that I've found in only the very best beers (and wines). It's both full and buoyant, an intriguing sensory paradox that makes each mouthful an absolute treat.

St. Bernardus Witbier is my first Brouwerij St. Bernardus beer and it has impressed me to no end. It instantly jumps to the head of the class and is easily the equal, if not the superior, of Allagash's fine version. I love a good wit and I love the way this one excels in all the ways that matter most. Astoundingly good. (1,931 characters)

Photo of zeff80
4.39/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours out a cloudy, orange color with a small head that leaves a little lacing.

S - It smelled fruity and yeasty. It really smelled like apple.

T - It was quite sweet and the fruit flavor reminded me of apples and pears. It was also very yeasty and wheat-tasting.

M - It was cirsp and light-bodied.

D - I really love this beer. The different fruit flavors are really amazing. (391 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Got to crack open one of these gems tonight when I got home from Asheville(reviews on that trip forthcoming)

A - Poured a very hazy, whitish yellow, very pale and cloudy. Huge white head never fully faded and tons of clingy lace down the sides of the glass. Some visible carbonation.

S - very light, lots of yeast asnd some light fruit, little grain, and a touch of hops.

T - Lots of yeast and light fruits, some peach and pear. Very light taste, awesome hot summer day flavor.

M - rich and creamy, very nice consistency and feel. Great carbonation.

D - Could put down a ton, really easy drinker and a great belgian.

Overall I was really impressed by this, a totally classic beer and a great sumemr release. Will have to save one for the lawn mow tomorrow. (774 characters)

Photo of oberon
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy peachy yeallow with a nice two fingeredhead that settles nicely,aroma is on the spicey side of coriander even a touch of vanilla in there and some toned down citruisy notes.If its possible for a wit to have a creamy mouthfeel this one has it very smooth and easy to drink.Taste is a nice combination of citrius and coriander spice not tart but enough citruis flavor to make it refreshing.A top notch wit I would think world class my first ST Bernardus beer what have I been waiting for if the whole line is as good as this. (536 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best Before: 27 07 09.

Appearance: Pours an opaque, dull orange body with a thin, white head.

Smell: Aromatic nose smelling of lemony citrus and sugar-coated baked goods fresh out of the oven.

Taste: Bready malts with a sugary, honey-coated sweetness. Dash of freshly-grated lemon zest. Sip of grapefruit juice. Tangy wheat flavor near the end. Teaspoon of nutmeg. Slight pear fruitiness. Restrained hop bitterness. Tiny blip of sourness. Fruity, bready finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: It's nice. Certainly heavier and much fuller than I'd ever expected, but still overall nice. (622 characters)

Photo of nickfl
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - One and a half fingers of frothy, white foam on top of a hazy, yellow-orange body. As the head settles, it leaves a thick ring of foam clinging to the walls of the glass.

S - A yeasty, spicy aroma of coriander, lavender, black pepper, and wheat.

T - Spicy wheat up front, along with pepper and coriander. The spices linger into the finish along with some musty yeast notes and a hint of earthy hops.

M - Very high carbonation, medium body, and a dry finish.

D - Easily drinkable, this could be a great session beer if the carbonation was a bit lower. The flavors are well balanced and nice for the style, though not as bright and smooth as some other witbiers I have had. (680 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a St. Bernardus goblet.

Pours a hazy golden straw with a healthy but quickly-fading white head that leaves very little lacing behind. The smell is a subtle melange of wheat, coriander, lemongrass, and a bit of bread. The taste follows nicely, including the subtlety: a tasty collaberation of coriander, wheat, clove, lemon zest, and even a hint of spice in the back. The body is medium at best, has a good amount of effervescent carbonation, and does not malinger, all the makings of a highly drinkable wit. (518 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

St. Bernardus delivers the typical witbier appearance with a hazy yellow-orange body topped by a bright-white head of creamy foam. The head retention is excellent and it leaves some nice lace throughout the goblet. It's lightly floral nose is more delicate than many examples, but it still delivers all of the appropriate components including a soft note of coriander and a mildly zesty citrus peel that's both a little bit lemony and a little bit orange-ish. Somewhere in there, there's also an uncommon note of spruce that's really intriguing (but not strong enough to really garner attention). Some gently sweet malt also creeps its way into the nose as it warms. The body is light and it's very fine and gently effervescent carbonation tingles the tongue before warming to become lightly creamy. In the flavor, soft coriander appears up-front wrapped in a thin and silky veil of lightly sweet malt. It makes a suggestion of tartness but never really delivers it; and in this way it seems to fall into a middleground between the commonly sweeter versions and the more acidic interperetations. It finishes dry with a note of dull (chalky?) lemon, some gentle clove, and a lingering sweet note that's very mild but almost candyish in nature. Very refreshing; and quite interesting in it's subtle complexities. This is a must try for fans of the witbier style. Worth seeking out! (1,379 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap 8/26/07 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in an over-sized wine glass.

A: The beer is a light yellow color, with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of Belgian yeast, lemon and spices.

T: The taste is very well-balanced with flavors of lemon, coriander, light malts and strong Belgian yeast. There is a very mild hops presence but it is not necessarily missed. The after-taste is slightly bready and a little sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, light body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not filling at all, excellent representation of style and one of the best Witbiers that I have had, it is a nice beer to drink a lot of in an evening. (755 characters)

Photo of Jason
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

33 cl brown bottle with a freshness date on the label.

Appearance: A godly white lace with the usual cloudy beige colour.

Smell: Runnings of coriander and citric zest with a softness of malt and yeast.

Taste: Spicy clove right up front, ghost like pine or spruce … could be anise and an earthy mix from the yeast. Hopping is hidden for the most part. Dry malt and grain, tartness grows middle to end with a lemon meringue flavour. Chalky yeast and a stalled tartness give the finish.

Mouthfeel: Relentless crisp carbonation that has ending wakes of smoothness in the light to moderate body.

Drinkability & Notes: Overly quenching. Quite an exciting brew, top of the list for me … just what I have always wanted in a witbier.

Thanks to D & V International for the sample. http://www.specialtybeer.com/ (813 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy gold with a white head that doesn't stay around long at all. Nose is a touch of orange with that hearty witbier fragrance and some yeast thrown in the mix. Flavor is great and thick with a heavy citrus/orange flavor that has a strong touch of spice there as well. Feel is nice with a decent level of carbonation. Way too drinkable. I want to be able to sip and savor this one, but it is so smooth and easy to drink that it's easy to just go through one extremely quickly. (486 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed ina Hoegaarten wit tumbler.

Pours a hazed straw color with a finger of pearl colored head. average head retention & lacing

S: Cooked cereal, some grassyness

T: Lemons, tangerines & white grapes & coriander up front. White pepper & lemons & more grapes as this warms. Finishes a bit grainy, with some more cooked cereal, appleskins & white pepper

MF: Light/medium bodied with low carbonation

Drinks pretty easy, a nice summer time quencher, but give me the old Celis white from Texas any day! I took great care with this one so I don't think this suffered on my end, expected more (593 characters)

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St. Bernardus Witbier from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
92 out of 100 based on 626 ratings.