1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

St. Bernardus Witbier - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
St. Bernardus WitbierSt. Bernardus Witbier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,187 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,187
Reviews: 601
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.77%
Wants: 216
Gots: 61 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Witbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jason on 01-06-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of St. Bernardus Witbier Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,187 | Reviews: 601 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of weeare138
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a golden haze with a fizzy head that quickly dies. No lacing is left behind in the glass.
Smell is of tons of orange peel and tropical fruit atop a bed of crisp wheat with perhaps a touch of clove in the background.
Taste is of a delicate blend of tropical fruit and orange peel, along with ripe pears, perhaps nearing a tripel style. Maybe conditioned with the tripel yeast?
Mouthfeel is delicately smooth, slightly sweet, and there's an even level amount of carbonation lending to a mild bitterness at the end.
Drinkability is very nice and a peculiar renditioin of a wit. I know that Pierre Celis helped to formulate this but it was a definite turn from the Hoegaarden and Celis White. This was like a cross between a Wit and a Tripel, which made for an interesting but tasty brew.

weeare138, Aug 25, 2005
Photo of petrochile
2.78/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

When I went to Three Floyds I was able to drop in the Liquor Stop and saw a 4 pack of this brew, which I was excited to see. I have not seen it at Sam's or Binny's in Chicago.

A: I poured my in a pint glass where the top half is almost twice the size in diameter in the base. The beer has a pale tan tone that is very murky, with the yeast sediment drowning at the bottom. Kind of a light wooden color that would be found on a hull of an antiquated ship.

S: A light wheat yeast smell emits from this witbier, and slightly sweet. My first reaction to the smell reminds me of a cheese danish from Starbucks, but not as overwhelming.

T: There was no real taste in this beer, I am not sure if I just had a bad bottle or not. The wheat taste I am common to was very subtle and shy, and I could barely taste it. Very bland and dull

M: Nothing special here, my tongue and my mouth were only interested in trying to find the flavor I thought this beer had.

D: Since mine was lacking taste, I could not see myself having more.

I am definitely disappointed in this beer, as it never asserted itself to me.

petrochile, Aug 25, 2005
Photo of andjusticeforale
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I bought an 11.2oz for $3.99 and was really excited to chill this and try it. The date on the bottle was 2004.

I carefully poured this beer into a tulip, and actually managed to keep the yeast sediment in the bottle. The look of this beer is a pale ginger ale sort of yellow. There was a decent head and low to moderate carbonation.

The smell was a mixed bag; there were no typical wheat or spice smells; there was a funky brandy-esque smell of hard, cloyingly sweet liquor. The taste was similar here. There was a phenomenal mouth feel which was perfectly smooth, and the brandy taste did accentuate those qualities. There was a touch of spice and a huge smell and taste of clove. If you could get past the giant nose of Brandy and clove, there was a little hint of orange peel in there that was nice. Where was the wheat? All fermented and whisky-like.

Overall this was intriguing and complex; but this was not what I expected, and will probably not drink this again, despite my personal taste, I am skeptical about the drinkability here. It was fantastically complex, but somewhat cloying.

andjusticeforale, Aug 17, 2005
Photo of cubedbee
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very hazy straw color with a thin white head that disappates pretty fast. Smell is very pleasant and decently assertive, with a strong coriander and lemon over a nice soft yeasty smell. Taste is an excellent smooth and light wheat malt with a peppery bite upfront and a delicate lemon/orange/pineapple finish and a slighty yeasty/earthy aftertaste. Body is medium/thick for a witbier with a high carbonation level and a nice dry finish. This is a really great witbier, probably the tastiest I've ever tried, and only the $2.50 per bottle price tag keeps me from quaffing these all summer.

cubedbee, Aug 15, 2005
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle a cloudy dirty peach color with a light frothy half inch head of bubbles. Aromas of sweet light grains touched with citrus. A big coriander spiciness melds with hints of cracked pepper. Slight cooked veggies and medicinal notes along with yeast.

The first sip brings effervescent light grainy malts along with coriander spiciness and hints of white pepper and clove. Wheat husks seem to lend a bit of astringent dryness to the brew. Lemon and citrus...apple skins. A refreshing, tasty brew overall.

Mouthfeel is fairly light with a good amount of carbonation and a bit of dryness overall. I could drink a good deal of this one without a problem. Clean, tasty and satisfying! Thanks to blitheringidiot for the sample.

orbitalr0x, Aug 14, 2005
Photo of cracgor
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Straw pale yellow, almost brown and hazy. White creamy head, that has decent retention and leaves okay lace but not the clumped to the glass kind.

Smell: spicy and a little fruity like orange or lemon zest. Very appetizing.

Taste: A rich complex beer. Spicy up front with an orange zest finish and a fruity/earthy after taste. Would prefer more fruitiness/orange zest upfront.

Drinkability: A well put together witbier. Maybe not up to my expectations from other advocates, but definitely drinkable. Balanced well except I could see more fruitiness in the initial taste...not bad, I could just imagine a better beer.

cracgor, Aug 07, 2005
Photo of ElGordo
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the 330ml bottle a cloudy, hazy dull golden color with just a whisp of a white creamy head. Very appealing aroma of allspice, lemon, orange peel, Belgian yeast, and light hops. Palate is light and airy up front, a mixture of lemon and ale yeast. Light hops and coriander emerge later on, ending on a slightly malty note. Body is light and and creamy, although slightly foamy, but proper for the style. A super refreshing beer on a record hot day. I'd drink a lot more if it weren't $3+ per bottle.

ElGordo, Jul 28, 2005
Photo of neonbrown82
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is by far the best witbier that has ever graced my lips. Thanks to GCBrewingCo for providing the one beer in the St. Bernardus line that is not available locally.

The appearance is pretty standard. The beer pours very cloudy with a white haze as the liquid enters its new vessel. As the liquid fills, it grows to a more deep and murky golden color that appears just barely off-white when held to the light. The head is minimal and subsides rather quickly leaving no lacing.

The smell is ripe with coriander and unmalted wheat. Smells delicious, but it seems to be quite weak. The taste on the other hand is quite impressive. The spicing is very subtle unlike many examples of the style, making for a VERY refreshing beer. Has a very mild tangy citrus note from the coriander and orange peel along with a noticable bite from the wheat. The ultra-refreshing finish beckons the imbiber back for another tip of the glass, leaving but a small specimen with which to finish the review.

The body is very full, creamy, and smooth. As one might have guessed, this is a very highly drinkable brew. If you can get it, try it. It's one of the best summer beers I've had the pleasure of opening. Hopefully it will be available here in the future.

neonbrown82, Jul 20, 2005
Photo of bceaglejoe
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: Poured a cloudy orange-yellow color into a traditional pint glass. As it settled, it appeared to be more of a dark yellow. A two-finger thick head formed, showing off lots of carbonation. Retention was pretty good as I drank this beer. A pungent citric aroma dominated the nose, featuring lemon and slight coriander peel hints. It had a more pronounced aroma than other Witbiers that I have tried.

Tasting: It had a lemon-y taste with a strong wheat presence as well. Malt flavors came across in the aftertaste. There was no hop bitterness in this beer at all. It was a medium-bodied beer that rolled across the tongue very nicely. Its smoothness masked the alcohol and the carbonation of the beer. It went down with a slight tang on the end of the tongue. Pouring the remaining yeast sediment into the glass gave this beer even more character and made it tastier. This was perhaps the most drinkable beer that I had ever come across. It was approachable, but it had more than enough character to stand up by itself.

$3.99 for a single bottle was a little steep. If this beer were cheaper, then I'd buy more of it. But for the one bottle that I had, this was wonderful. Truly an excellent Witbier, one that ranks up there with the best of them in my book. It was another great Belgian product from St. Bernardus.

bceaglejoe, Jul 19, 2005
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: absolutely hazed, faint yellow, slim white head.

Aroma: spice hits first, then soft fruit, pear and citrus, orange, pineapple?, lemon...

Taste: exceptionally smooth, exquisitely soft, a definite joy in the mouth. Coriander taste is consistent throughout and dominates the more delicately played fruit component. Light and utterly downable, yet with significan yeast in the texture to secure it as medium bodied, and so flavorful, it causes one to pause and luxuriate in it's splendor.
A brilliant summertime brew, and would be a great dinner beer, as well...you could toss back a pitcher of it, washing down hot, hearty food!
An exceptional wit!

feloniousmonk, Jul 10, 2005
Photo of TPSReports
3/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This mild looking and tasting beer pours a cloudypale straw color with a tight white, rapidly dissipating head. After only 30 seconds or so, only a slight white film remains over the surface of the brew.

Smells are light and citrusy.

Taste is simpleand mildly citrusy. There is a slight funk or stale tate in the finish. I opened this beer after working in the heat this evening looking for something cool and refreshing to quench my thirst. This beer was not it.

That being said, there is no hint of alcocol -- it would be easy to pound several of these puppies if you didn't think about the aftertaste.

TPSReports, Jul 06, 2005
Photo of assurbanipaul
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy lemon yellow with a fizzy white head that disspates quickly. Aroma is sweet, light citrus with a bit of honey.

Flavor is semi-sweet with light blonde malt, faint yeastiness, gently citrus without being too dominant. White pepper, lemon rind, some slight breadiness.

Mouthfeel is light and clean, body has more heft than a typical wit. I could see sipping a great number of these outside on a hot summer day.

assurbanipaul, Jun 24, 2005
Photo of gbontrag
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Carbonation dissipates before doing anything memorable. Thickish goldenrod. Smells like spicy yellow-apple sauce.
Ummh. That's refreshing! A little french chardonnay. Overripe, old-fashioned yellow dessert apple. Yummy clove, allspice, vanilla. Husky aftertaste that says, "Yeah, I'm a pale wheat beer with 'subtlety, and sublime,' but I'm still made out of grain, dammit!" Just damn good.

gbontrag, Jun 23, 2005
Photo of UncleFlip
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice golden colour with a hint of orange. Rather hazy. Head is nice, thick white, mainly tight bubbles- but interspersed with some large loose ones.

Smell is light and a bit spicy, with strong fruity notes. Lots of banana, citrus, and mango.

As you take a sip, the fruityness and spiciness hit right away. The fruitiness has almost a Wrigley's Juicy Fruit quality for a bit, then seems to rotate into banana then orange.

Body is a bit fizzy- first on the front of the tongue, then in the top of the troat. Consistency is medium but not syrupy- just about exactly where it feels right.

This is a nicely drinkable beer which I enjoy immensely. There's just about nothing in it that I don't like.

Be well
-UF

UncleFlip, Jun 22, 2005
Photo of connecticutpoet
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a cloudy, yellow beer with a one finger, fast-dissipating fizzy head.
Nothing stood out in the appearance.

Aroma was yeasty, bready, with a little lemon buried underneath, mingling with some spiciness. Pretty good, for a style I am not sold on.

Taste was yeasty and bready, following the aroma. There was a little citrus (not totally a lemon taste) hovering below, almost out of reach. Not bad.

Mouthfeel was good as well... it was well carbonated, but had the body to stand up to it. The finish was somewhat dry.

A quite drinkable witbier, IMHO.

connecticutpoet, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of tomthumbsblues
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This bottle of beer made a 3500 mile journey from Brussels wrapped in a styrofoam web tucked away in my suitcase and so it was with great solemnity that I set to reviewing it. The appearance was an opaque lemon color with a foamy head that disappeared quickly. Aromas of banana accented by a light sourness. Taste was very light and unassuming in the beginning, but comes in with a strong wheatiness. In some ways the taste reminded me of watery pineapple juice. This was a light and refreshing beer. Carbonation was almost non-existant. Not a horrible beer, but I do not think it's the best of the St. Bernadus line. Definitely worth the trip, though.

tomthumbsblues, Jun 14, 2005
Photo of HogHill
4.85/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a single 33cl bottle with freshness dating.

Appearance: a pale yellow liquid which is translucent, a small half inch head rapidly faded to lace around the glass.

Smell: Outstanding aroma here, lots of citrus and corriander notes. Fresh!

Taste: A well balanced citrus flavor along with a bready taste from the wheat. The spices round this one out to make each sip an outstandingly consistent witbier.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with a good deal of carbonation.

Drinkability: an awesome beer that can be drank in session especially due to it's moderate ABV.

Overall: this is my favorite witbier, beating out Hoegaarden and Allagash White.

HogHill, Jun 08, 2005
Photo of granger10
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This quite expensive wit poured a hazy golden color with a medium off white head. Solid lacing. Aroma is more yeasty than anything else but there's also some lemon and spice in the mix. Taste is quiet balanced. Nothing jumps out at me. More of a lemony fruit flavor with some sweet at the onset then tartness afterwards. A clove/banana combo I normally get in hefe's is noticeable here. There's a nice little spicyness which only compliments the beer but I don't get much of it after the first few sips. Solid St. Bernardus yeast holds the beer together and makes this wit better than most. Pretty good and balanced, in the middle of being either too tart or too wheaty, which is what I like. You really have to love wits though to buy too many of these.

granger10, Jun 05, 2005
Photo of NiceGuyMike
3.43/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark yellow to pale golden color. Not much of a head, but some lacing present. Smells of typical Belgian yeasts with some fruitiness. Initial taste of yeasts and slight citrus. Citrus flavor melds into medium bitterness. Medium body with a bit of fizz.

Overall not a bad white but not great either. It is expensive. I may purchase it for my wife to try since she enjoys whites (specifically Hoegaarden).

NiceGuyMike, Jun 04, 2005
Photo of Luigi
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy light orange with a nice white lace for a head. Smells zesty with hints of coriander and yeast. The citrus zest hits the tounge first. A dry bready malt and hints of cloves. A yeasty finish with a citrus tartness. Refeshing light-meduim body with great carbonation. I must say this is one of the best witbier's I have ever tasted.

Luigi, May 02, 2005
Photo of OldSock
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance – Honey yellow and cloudy. Big white head that falls to a thin covering for the remainder of the drink. Lacing is spectacular, a full coat over several of the sides of the glass. Good rapid carbonation coming up.

Smell – Yeasty fruitiness up from with lemon and coriander in the back, very nice. It smells like a bakery.

Taste – Lots going on here, much of it is the same as the nose, but with the addition of more malty/grainy tastes. The sour citrus hits at the front, followed by a nice balance and a dry finish. Hops are essentially absent. This is what every white beer strives to be, Hoegaarden can hold nothing on this. Very refreshing, great beer.

Mouthfeel - Pretty light body with nice carbonation, complements the flavor nicely.

Drinkability – This is the best white beer I have had. Truly delicious, this is a beer for anyone who loves beer and even most people who do not.

OldSock, Apr 29, 2005
Photo of GClarkage
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

04/21/05- On tap at the Toronado during Belgian Beer Month

Presentation- Via the tap into a tulip glass.

Appearance- Cloudy yellow pour with a small head and nice lacing.

Smell- Not a huge scented beer. Had to really sniff at this one to get at it. Mostly the norm of spices and corriander. Maybe a bit of another fruity scent.

Taste- Nice and sweet, flavors or corriander. pepper and other spices. Maybe a bit of orange flavoring. Very thirst quenching.

Mouthfeel- Moderate carbonation leaving a nice sweet taste in the mouth.

Drinkability- This is right up there with Hoegaarden, if not better. Wish it was summer and it was hot outside because I could drink this bad boy all day. Top notch!

GClarkage, Apr 22, 2005
Photo of silver0rlead
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours into my glass with a thick 3 finger pure white head and has a cloudy yellow hue with carbonation rushing to the top constantly. The smell is classic witbier...corrainder and orange peel all the way with zingy belgian yeast background. The taste is corriander, citrusy (both lemon and orange) along with a strong clove accent, and a slightly bitter but sweet lemony finish. Probably my favorite wit, all around more flavorful than hoegaarden and more balanced than allagash white. A real thirst quenching brew thats perfect for those long, hot and humid southern summers. A winner in my book

silver0rlead, Apr 17, 2005
Photo of GeoffRizzo
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A hazy, cloudy off-yellow hue, with a bubbly, carbonated head. A decent sniffing of coriander, pepper and bread dough; warming also brings some yeast-like scents. Up front, spicy, fresh-cracked black pepper; cloves, wheat crackers and bananas noted during the initial sips. Those sips turn to nice gulps, chalky and sweet, medium bodied, yeasty body, carbonation is perfect, palate is felt clean and refreshed, a classic wit, rock solid and nearly addicting.

GeoffRizzo, Mar 31, 2005
Photo of santoslhalper
3.33/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearence: Poured into my Lindeman's flute, it's a wonderfully creamy hazy light orange with a white head.

Smell: The smell is an odd orange and oak mix, with a strong spicy hint.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The taste kinda has that smooth creamy good witbier start, followed by a poor sunscreen taste. The initial taste is brilliant - the end, rough as hell. So I guess it's middle of the road at 3. THe mouthfeel is nice though, being rich and creamy.

Drinkability and Overall: I love St. Bernardus's other brews, but this one isn't that great. It looks, smells, and feels good, but the taste is not that great. Dissapointing. Oh well I got plenty of others to try today. Blanche De Chambly is much better.

santoslhalper, Mar 07, 2005
St. Bernardus Witbier from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,187 ratings.