Gumballhead - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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5,152 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,152
Reviews: 1,504
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.21%
Wants: 889
Gots: 937 | FT: 35
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cretemixer on 04-17-2003

An American wheat beer with a refreshing, crisp citrus finish. This delicious session beer is brewed with boatloads of Amarillo hops.

35 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,152 | Reviews: 1,504
Reviews by cadenwhitaker:
Photo of cadenwhitaker
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

For me this beer falls somewhere between a 2 hearted and a hopslam. There is much more grapefruit in the smell then in 2 hearted, but less then a hopslam

Taste wise I'm getting lots of hops, but a bit of wheat that serves as a good buffer/enhancement for the citrus.

Great beer, glad to have tried it.

More User Reviews:
Photo of weatherdog
4.19/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a Three Floyds tulip shaped pint glass.

It pours a slightly hazy gold or honey with a disappointing 1 finger head that dies pretty quickly and doesn't leave much lace. Barely a cluster of bubbles remain on the beer surface.

The nose is an instant a reminder as anything of the power an beauty of the Amarillo hop. It's just bursting with juicy grapefruit hop goodness but still manages not to be too resiny or heavy. The only thing holding me back from a 5 is a tiny solvent smell at the back end.

The flavor start off with a moderate grapefruit hoppiness. It isn't nearly as strong as the nose would suggest. I'm also getting just a hint of peach as well. The flavor does seem to kind of drop off in the middle of the sip and ends with a void. It's kind of weird.

the bodi is light to medium with an aggressive carbonation level to make it seem lighter. The mouthfeel also has a texture of what I associate with a decent percentage of wheat malt used. It's kind of creamy and slick but not in a bad way, it's just what have recognized as a common trait in most beers with wheat. It's highly drinkable though and I can surely understand why there is such demand for this beer. Overall a really nice everyday beer.

Photo of oberon
4.49/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy peach with a thinner head than expected that was gone pretty quickly,oh man the aromas!Loads of Amarrilo hops give it a big piney aroma intermingled with some citrus and clove like wheatiness,man what a combination.The different refreshing flavors of this beer are just awesome, definent hop profile of grapefruit and pine along with a wheat beer -lemon and spice make this a one of a kind.Damn now I see why this beer is so highly regarded and Amarillo hops are a big favorite of mine.

Photo of RoyalT
4.09/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – The body is a hazy yellow in color that’s kind of dirty and tinged with a slightly orangish hue. The head came up well enough after I worked the pour. It settles nicely though leaving some cool lava pits on top of the liquid.

Smell – Yeow! That is one sharp, hoppy nose. I wasn’t expecting that. The huge Amarillo and pine sap caught me completely off guard. I almost dropped my glass on the floor. I’m sure there’s some wheat in there that I’ll find at the taste, I just can’t get there from here.

Taste – Ah, there is a bit of bubblegum to this after all. The wheat flavor is light, but it manages to avoid getting stomped by the hops. The hops come out much smoother on the tongue. Nicely done.

Mouthfeel – I can’t believe how smooth this is after getting my first whiff. I thought this was going to be brutal, but they have expertly blended the flavors here. There’s some nice, light carbonation, a good dryness at the finish, and a fluffy character that keeps one entertained.

Drinkability – This is a class act. The style is kind of new to me, and it certainly is no German weizen, but this was a very refreshing offering by Three Floyds that left me wanting more.

Comments – Big thanks to feloniousmonk for sending this one all the way to Seattle. I’ve found a new standard.

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brassy pale orange under a thin white froth. Big Amarillo piney aroma, bits of yeast, and loads of citrus but no wheat. Tastes almost rye like, very spicy but perfectly balanced with grapefruit and other citrus. Drinkable in huge quantities. Wonderful mouthfeel has all the best qualities of an APA and a wheat beer. Does this fit the style? Does this fit any style? I don’t know but I do know that this is damn fine stuff. If it wasn’t so pricy I drink it by the barrel. As it is, I can’t justify drinking this more than once.

Photo of tjk135
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

My epiphany beer. Without this beer who knows what swill I'd be drinking.

Photo of TCHopCraver
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to TCGoalie for the bottle. Reviewed from notes crafted on 11/17/10.

Gumballhead pours a bronzed-gold with a light khaki head into a sniffer. An ominous swirl of misty foam remains on top of the attractive brew as medium-sized carbonation bubbles rush to the surface. The lacing clings to the sides of the glass in the shape of small dots and streaks.

The Amarillo hops are the first noticed and biggest presence in the smell. Those combine with a slightly spicy wheat aroma and result in a very tangy citrus aroma of lemon, tangerine, and lime. There is a sourdough bread and biscuit scent supporting the hop and wheat aromas.

The wheat and hops marry so well in my mouth that I cannot separate the two flavors. The grainy, spicy wheat and the lemon-lime citrus hops arrive on my palate simultaneously and play all over my mouth. The finish is distinct hop bitterness and is a fitting palate cleanser. The lemon- lime flavor of the hops sticks with me as the bittering hops pucker the sides of my palate.

A combination of a medium- bodied creaminess and a zesty pucker constitute the mouthfeel. This is a fine and intriguing combo and makes my mouth quite happy. The carbonation is just right for this brew and rounds off a delightful mouthfeel.

Certainly one of the most interesting American wheat beers that I've had, Gumballhead is a beverage that I will certainly look for again. Maybe it's just because I like hops so much, but I'd say it's my favorite wheat beer that I've tried so far. Yet another winner from 3 Floyds.

Photo of brewdogmrb
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A: Golden, clear, and lightly carbonated.

S: A lot of hops, a lot of yeast, beautiful all around.

T: Hoppy wheat heaven! Belgium meets Germany in the USA -- what else could be better?

M: Nice carbonation, very drinkably light body.

D: One of the most drinkable beers ever and one of my all time favorite session beers without a doubt!

Photo of blackearth
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Discount Liquors in Milwaukee, WI. Pours a hazy, golden body with a thin white head. Aroma is of spicy citrus hops. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a spicy high carbonation level. The hop flavors dominate and really cover up the wheat flavors for me. Very good, but a not very balanced. I'd have this one again though.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.92/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Fresh bomber of Gumballhead is always a refreshing sight in my fridge. Pours a brilliant golden orange color with a creamy arid two finger head on top that leaves sticky lacing on my pint glass. Aroma is a blast of lovely tropical Amarillo hop goodness. Fresh cut, juicy pineapple slices, oranges, mangoes....herbal, oily, resinous. Underneath is a crisp, fresh wheaty lemony body. Still the most lush, aromatic American wheat beer that has ever graced my nostrils. Yum.

First sip brings a rush of vine ripened lovely hoppiness. Sublimely fruity with notes of pineapple, orange, lemon, and just a hint of herbal pine resin as well. A nicely creamy wheat grain background...sweet with a hint of astrigent husk on the back of the palate. Mellow bitterness throughout makes this the ultimate summer quencher. The best American wheat beer hands down...brilliantly hopped and just so damn tasty.

Mouthfeel is creamy and full. Rolls over the palate smoothly...being light enough to still be refreshing. This is probably my all time favorite summer brew as I could drink it by the case no problem. I wouldn't mind seeing this in six it would be a bit more convenient. All in all...this is a great wheat beer.

Photo of MaybeSoMaybeNot
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Perfect head retention hence 5 stars for look.

Photo of sponberg
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber bottle with Gumballhead himself on the labe. Strange, I always pictured him as a Schlitz old-school sort of cat. Be that as it may. Pours bright gold, slightly cloudy, chance of evening showers, white clouds on the horizon of the beer which turn cirrus quickly. Aroma of lemon/grapefruit/tangerine citrus hops and clover honey, with underlying wheat grain aromas coming through.

VERY similar in character to Southern Tier Hop Sun, but bigger in flavor. Starts with a perfectly balanced wheat/hop/sweet malt attack - citrus with a firm bitterness, that particularly Amarillo hop bite on the sides of the tongue, a tea-with-honey maltiness in the middle... nice. Finishes with a refeshing lemony-honey cleanness. Medium, appropriate mouthfeel, and VERY drinkable.

Thanks to BA NucularGeorge for the bottle. Once again, f'n george!!!

Photo of marvin213
4.02/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It looks like a wheat beer--a nice blend of yellow and brown--with a paradoxical type of muddy clarity. A nice, thin film retains itself impressively for the head on a wheat beer. Nothing pourous and bubbly like an obnoxiously carbonated beverage, but a thin, respectable head with a retentive quality. Swirling the beer in my glass provides for impressive lacing. This strikes me as uniquely bold-looking wheat beer.

Wow--the smell is surprisingly pleasant and pleasantly poignant. I smell hops in this here wheat beer. It's also appealing like the smell of a fruit. Can I really smell peaches and cherries? Strawberries? I often scoff at ridiculously detailed aroma descriptions that indicate the presence of an ingredient cornucopia; I feel like the smell on this one, however, is overloaded. I don't know how it could smell more alluring. It smells like a friggin' orchard!

My initial taste is more a carbonation sensation than anything else. I can't believe I don't taste more than this. It's a stark contrast to what I felt was only a feeble attempt to smell all the flavor; instead, I find myself struggling to detect something distinctive. I taste maybe some lemon, and maybe some of the strawberry I earlier detected. The taste is okay, but after that smell, I can't help but be disappointed. It's astonishingly neutral like a (gasp!) Butt Light. It's better than that, but where is everything that makes this one smell like bubble gum? I've never experienced such a contrast. I guess it's better-than-average, but my main reaction to the taste is a letdown relative to my initial judgment.

As I continue trying to figure out what all was in that smell, I'm tasting grapefruit. This contributes to a mouthfeel of acidic carbonation. Unfortunately, it's reminiscent of soda. My very first Three Floyds beer, and I feel like I'm skydiving or something--I've jumped off a cliff. I'm more certain about the grapefruit, but less certain about the beer.

It's crazy drinkable. I've downed it pretty quick trying to understand it. It's a very neat beer and, as I come to terms with what this beer is, I'm very pleased with this Three Floyds selection. Many thanks to mynie for providing this selection. It's a really unique wheat beer. I may have gotten a little ahead of myself embracing the look and the smell, but it's undoubtedly an enjoyable beer.

Photo of babyhobbes
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice amber color with a small white head...subsided to lust a bit of lacing.

Smells all pine hopness. I mean, you could use this beer as an example of the hop problem.

Tastes like hops...strongly of hops. However, unlike most hoppy beers this has zero bitterness. I've never had anything quite like it. Very tasty and refreshing.

This was an enjoyable brew through the entire pint and a nice change of pace from the typical wheat ale.

You should try it.

Photo of shapudding
4.69/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Been waiting to try this, what with all the hub-bub and all.... finally had some sitting at the Drafting Room, and Steve was nice enough to chuck this on ice so we could finally have at it!

Clear, golden honeyed. The head came and went quick... after only a minute there was just a bit of creamy white froth in a ring at the edges and a slight dusting left in the center. Sharp hoppy and sweetness float from the glass... Juicyfruit gum and grapefruit as an aroma... hmmmm.... Such an interesting taste... Honey taste and honey feeling. Sweet and wheaty, yet hoppy. Lemon hard candy in the background, -not the good LemonHead ones, the crappy ones you find in the doctor office candydishes (my Dad is a Psychologist, I know them oh-too-well) Fills your mouth with a medium bodied, almost smooth but not really creamy texture. I'm not seeing the carbination but I can feel it a bit on my tongue. I'm really liking this one, great session. Such good flavors, and like I said, interesting. The body makes it an easy drinker. Nothing is too overpowering to make it annoying, just nice and yummy.

Photo of Doomcifer
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Disclaimer: I usually despise wheat beers.

Then I tried Gumballhead, due to people constantly complimenting it. Poured a golden, light orange bubbly brew. Decent head that goes away pretty quickly with very light lacing to be left behind. A tad cloudy due to the yeast conditioning. Smelled of lemony citrus and hops. Very pleasing aroma. This is a very unique wheat beer and has much depth; something severely lacking in many wheats imo. When the beer is still very cold, you would swear you were drinking an IPA. Hop bitterness, grassiness, smacking you all over the place. When it warms up a bit, the wheat presence shows it's face and the hops bitterness becomes a little more sweet and citrusy. Mouthfeel is light, slippery, and crisp. Great beer for these hot summer days. I am highly impressed with this offering from FFF, who never fail to impress me. They pulled off the unthinkable, they turned me onto a wheat beer!!

Photo of Duster72
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a weizen glass a bright gold color that is relatively clear with little head (maybe this isn't the freshest bottle, but with no date code, I can't tell). Minimal lacing. Smell is very mild -- some citrus, some hops, some wheat. Taste is outstanding. Great mix of fruit, wheat, and hops. More refreshing than most wheats. Hops give a very nice finish. Not as cloying as some wheats. Exceptional drinkability -- the 22oz bomber left me wanting another, and if I had one on hand, I would have had another.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.84/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a highball shaker.

A - Pours a pale lemon yellow with a two-finger head of fluffy, almost sudsy eggshell-white foam that slowly collapses, leaving a thick, Swiss-cheese-like ring around the glass and a thin layer of foam across the surface. Held to a full-spectrum light, the beer is a muted lemon-lime color and somewhat cloudy.

S - Ruby red grapefruit with some citrus zest follow by juicy fruit notes like mango, peach, and pineapple. As it warms, there's marmalade on light toast in the background. Nose is on the subtle side, but luscious.

T - Lightly toasted wheat bread to start quickly followed by citrus hops featuring rind bitterness. That's followed first by some soft floral notes and then by peach in the finish that ends cleanly with hints of grapefruit - these start to linger toward the end of the glass. The wheat foundation has a pleasantly surprising presence and provides nice backing for the featured hops; there's just enough candy sugars in the profile to balance the hops without it being sweet.

M - Rather fizzy with medium carbonation. Body is somewhat light and moderately thin. Well-integrated, high-quality components. Crisp on the swallow with a short finish that's neutral-to-dry. Over time, the hop bitterness accumulates on the tongue, prolonging the finish.

O - A pretty taste-forward take on the American wheat style that provides enough foundation to balance the hops but still keep the beer on the lighter, refreshing side. A good summer beer for when flavor is most important rather than just quenching a thirst.

Photo of Hoppity1
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

One of the more flavorful wheat beers that I've had.

Photo of Jason
3.7/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Beerguy for the sample ...

A- Shimmering weathered golden hue, thick foamy head sticks like a champ.

S- Beautiful aromatics from the hops. Powdered aspirin, mandarin orange and lemon zest?

T- Big on hops, lots of that aspirin like bitterness from the Amarillo hops. Oily yet very sharp. Malt sweetness struggles to break through the hop barrier, enough comes by to keep things somewhat balanced. The crisp character of the wheat actually intensifies the sharpness of the bitterness which becomes a tad bothersome IMO.

M- A bit more body than I thought there was going to be, lining of crispness in the middle.

D- I could see having a pint or two if I needed a quick hop fix.

Photo of tjthresh
3.44/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Enjoyed on tap at the brewery.
Outstanding amarillo aroma. Straw yellow served with no head. It was hard to get a good look at it becasue 3F serves their beer in a plastic cup. I love the flavor of amarillo hops. Very bitter for the style. I thought it was kind of harsh to drink. Overall, I wouldn’t expect any less that this from these guys.

Photo of merlin48
3.83/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rereview after almost three years. I'm still not a big fan of highly hopped wheats or American pale wheats, but here goes. From one of the new 12 oz bottles, this pours a hazy canary yellow body with over an inch of creamy white head. Good retention and extravagant lacing make for an excellent appearance. Bold aroma of pine cones, grapefruit, and a hint of yeast. Medium to light medium body with strong carbonation. Taste is aggressively hopped. Pine cone and citrus rind run amok. Black pepper and lemon hints underneath. Granted, the hops elevate this above its mundane style but the hop bitterness seems somehow out of place. Still, a good summer thirst quencher.

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

A pleasant draft selection and an unusual one for this east coaster, at the Map Room in Chicago. It arrived clear orangy amber, with a medium tan head, that showed so so retention and leaves a thick, bold ring of foam as well as spotty lacing. Coriander, anise, pepper and flowers in the nose, fresh and tasty stuff. On the tongue, I get notes of more coriander, peppery spice, loads of fresh fruits as well as plenty of yeasty/wheaty malt goodness.
Thoroughly enjoyable and refreshing brew. A nice treat to find this so many miles from home on draft.

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

Big thanks to weeare138 for this extra bonus...quite generous.
Pours a light copper color...a touch cloudy w/ a half finger of bright white head.
Smells somewhat sweet...lemons and oranges mostly, but very subtle...very enjoyable.
Taste is nice...a decent dose of hops but my no means overbearing. Wheat beers are not my first choice for beers, but I can definitely get used to this style during the warmer months.
Medium bodied w/ a bit too much carbonation for me. Fairly bitter in the finish w/ some lingering effects.
Drinkability is average...finishing this bomber is no sweat, but I would work my way to something else if given the chance.
Glad to be trying one more beer from Three many great offerings.

Photo of codysjb
4.06/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Three Floyds Gumballhead
A: Pours a beautiful cloudy orange with little head.
S: Funk, like yeast and some farmhouse smells.
T: Not much just a nice balanced wheat flavor.
M: Some sour zest. Interesting with some minor hop notes on the end.
O: Good. Kinda reminds me of what a “table” beer should be, lots of balance.

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Gumballhead from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,152 ratings.