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Gumballhead - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub


Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,775 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3775
Reviews: 1384
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.19%

Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
An American Wheat Ale, Gumballhead is named in honor of the underground comic book cat created by Rob Syers. Initially a seasonal summer beer, now brewed year round due to demand. This beer helped redefine American Wheat Beers. Brewed with Amarillo Hops and a generous portion of American red wheat, Gumballhead has a complex hop aroma with notes of grapefruit, lemon zest, marmalade and peach. These flavors combined with low bitterness make Gumballhead a refreshing American Wheat Beer that doesn’t suck.

35 IBU

(Beer added by: cretemixer on 04-17-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 3,775 | Reviews: 1,384 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of kpclemens


4.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured on tap at the brewpub.

A - a hazy gold den color. a little clearer than most wheat beers. about a finger and a half sized bright white head.

S - what a great smell for a wheat beer; a little bit of your expected citrus but mostly hops. Hoppier than any other wheat beer I've smelt, like a mild IPA.

T - First thing I taste is hops right up front. Then in the back of the mouth there's grapefruit and some other citrus flavors. Some people say they taste bubblegum in the end but I think that's all mental with a name like Gumballhead. No alcohol taste as expected.

M - The mouth feel of this beer is fantastic. Its creamy and smooth and you just want to keep drinking it. There's nothing quite like having a beer on tap at the actual brewpub.

O - This is in my top 3 favorite beers. Wheat beer helped me get into craft beer and this a perfect breakaway. You get the wheat beer name I used to love plus the hops and flavors lacking in a lot of wheat beers. Its more like a Wheat IPA. If you can find this I definitely recommend getting a case of it. You wont regret it.

Serving type: on-tap

10-16-2012 14:55:57 | More by kpclemens
Photo of kylehay2004


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at the brewery.

A: Single finger head with nice retention and lacing on a clear golden body.

S: musty wheat, pale malts and breads. Subtle spiciness.

T: very nice combination a wheat and maltiness. The hops are really nicely added to this one providing citrus and slightly floral notes.

M: light body and moderate to high carbonation. Crisp and refreshIng.

Overall: very flavorful almost like a sessionabke pale ale. Very unique for the style. Certainly a memorable brew.

Serving type: on-tap

08-10-2012 21:29:09 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of GJ40

North Carolina

4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been brewing an American wheat beer with Amarillo hops for a while now so I was anxious to try this one. Sampled on tap at the brewery.

Yellow and clear. A huge citrusy, tropical fruit hop aroma that smacks you before every sip. The flavor is so hop-centric. The wheat is there but this is so much more about the hops. The consistency is thin with a crisp feel and a moderate carbonation.

This is a fantastic beer. The hop flavor is enormous yet it's so refreshing and drinkable. It definitely gave me something to work on.

Serving type: on-tap

07-02-2012 00:57:46 | More by GJ40
Photo of Reaper16


4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served on-tap at Big Star, Chicago, IL, into a pilsner glass

Pours a light yellow color. Some haze here, though I expected more given that this is A.) a wheat beer and B.) a hoppy beer. The head is very white, though not voluminous. Solid stuff.

Gumbalhead does a good job of being hop-forward without letting its malt character become dominated. There are aromas and flavors of sweet orange, lemon, and pine all over the place. But you never lose track of the essential wheat malt flavors here, nor do you lose track of the bubblegum yeast esters. This is a mostly sweet beer; I could have used some additional hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel is pretty light and the carbonation is aggressive. It works very well with food, especially mildly spicy food. Overall, this is one of the best American Pale Wheat Ales out there. I don't think it is as good of a hoppy wheat as the forthcoming Boulevard 80-Acre is, but this is a beer that deserves the loyal following it has.

Serving type: on-tap

06-24-2012 04:42:23 | More by Reaper16
Photo of NuclearDolphin


4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-Tap at Jak's Tap

Appearance - Hazy Golden Straw color with a good amount of lacing on the sides. Little bubbles of carbonation creeping up the sides of the glass

Smell - Piney hops, grapefruits, wheat, yeasts and malts. Very rich smelling!

Taste - Piney Hops, Wheats, Malts, yeasts and a slight lemon zesty feel. The flavor is very rich and it tastes alot better than it smells. Also doesn't have that grassy flavor that I've seen in wheat beers.

Mouthfeel - Light bodied with a moderate carbonated kick that gives it a crisp and refreshing feel. It's not smooth but all things considered, it works out quite well.

Overall - I loved this! Three Floyds continues to impress me with their line-up, and in the process of doing so, have given me my new favorite wheat beer!

Serving type: on-tap

06-23-2012 00:36:37 | More by NuclearDolphin
Photo of MelissaAnnFlo

4.95/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love this beer!! SO deliscious, I get it everytime I am in the Indiana Area. Just a great beer all around. I highly suggest you try it, it's much better on tap but I would never ever turn down a bottle! I suppose I have to make this review a bit longer. Let's see 3 Floyds is an awesome place to check out. One of my favorite breweries to visit. The only downside of it is their menu, not much to eat there

Serving type: on-tap

06-21-2012 21:29:39 | More by MelissaAnnFlo
Photo of TSJ4000


5/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Got get my Gumballhead. Simply incredible and if you are reading this wondering if you should buy it the answer is Yes, especially since it isn't distributed much. It's basically an IPA with wheat. The wheat (small amount detected) isn't prounounced and there isn't a wheat beer yeast character at all. I'm guessing the yeast is an IPA yeast or ale yeast and not a wheat ale yeast or hefe yeast. All the better. An elevation and transformation of styles. This beer is a classic.

Serving type: on-tap

06-19-2012 23:09:30 | More by TSJ4000
Photo of DocJitsu


3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear, very light golden color with a quickly dissipating white head. The bouquet is characterized by a clean grapefruit perfume and lemon hard candy. They've changed the recipe since last I had it. And not for the better. The mouthfeel is still slick and moist, but the lovely Amarillo hops are quickly overcome by a peat flavor. It's not unpleasant, but to a man who spent a lot of time hunched over pints of Gumballhead in the recent past, disappointing.

Serving type: on-tap

05-24-2012 15:57:23 | More by DocJitsu
Photo of thydarkprevails


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh bottle poured aggressively in a duvel tulip. Clean golden yellow with a 2 inch white head that shrinks to a half inch with awesome lacing. Aroma is Amarillo hops, grapefruit, flowers, caramel, and bread. Flavor is orange, grapefruit, biscuit, lemon. Very smooth with a light and somewhat sticky mouthfeel. I don't drink many wheat beers and this is awesome. I buy it when I can.

Serving type: on-tap

04-16-2012 04:52:08 | More by thydarkprevails
Photo of TwelveOunces


4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a plain o' pint glass.

This beer pours a hazy yellow and a nice white head, typical wheat beer. This beer has an amazing aroma, its very citrus dominant as well as some skunky hops, the aroma of the hops is lightly backed up by a wheat caramel smell. This is an easy drinker for sure. This beer has a light character and a very pleasant hop presence but its far from strong. Im the kind of person that can take down a dreadnought bomber with ease so this beer is rather lackluster in taste and feel. Having said that, it is a grade A example of what this beer is trying to be.

Serving type: on-tap

03-12-2012 07:58:32 | More by TwelveOunces
Photo of Brenden


4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I really only want to note the differences between bottle and draft. With FFF distributing to Ohio now, it's nice to be able to have some great beers in both forms when we couldn't get it either way before now. I got to try Gumballhead on tap at The Attic last night.
It looks the same, very clouded but bright almost sort of apricot color I'd call it now. It sustains the dense and creamy one finger tall off-white head, which in turn leaves patchy lacing.
The aroma is strong and intense for the style, plenty hoppy with complexity. No real changes here.
The flavor presses me to believe it's only 28 IBUs. I don't know how they increase the pithy and citrus rind bitterness besides hop it heavily or decrease detracting contributors. What I do understand drinking this on tap is what I've seen people call an aspirin-like bitterness. I would relate it to raw dandelion leaf; what's being imparted in the bitterness is a little harsh, almost dry and chalky, like pith gone wild. It's not extreme here, but it detracts.
The feel, however, benefits from draught. It's perfectly crisp, somewhere between light and medium in body with plenty of heft and depth but still not too heavy for the style; this may find the perfect balance where APWAs are concerned. The feel, while never losing crispness, is rich and downright lush from beginning to end.
While it feels better on tap, I prefer the bottle for the excellent flavor without the medicinal bitter tinge.

Serving type: on-tap

02-07-2012 14:42:29 | More by Brenden
Photo of AnnArborJoe


3.68/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Notes - had on tap and bottle.

A - straw colored clear with big white head, lots of lacing.

S - hops, slightly bready, peaches maybe, some wheat

T - hops then peach or apricot flavor, some zing from the wheat.

M - light bodied, good carbonation, refreshing and light.

O - excellent. Perfect summer beer. Can drink a lot of this. I'm not a huge fan of wheat beer but this is fantastic.

Serving type: on-tap

02-03-2012 16:49:27 | More by AnnArborJoe
Photo of wvsabbath

West Virginia

4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - On-tap

Appearance - Dark tan/brown, monster froathy 3+ inch head, tons of lacing.

Smell - Hops, pine, grapefruit,some yeast, pale wheat, some grassy/earthy spices. Slight malt aroma.

Taste - Nice pieny hops mixed with some pale wheat is the first flavors. Malts comes in at the end and add a little boldness. Some mild earthy spices and a little added sugars give a little sweet flavor. Very balanced and lacks the typical skunky yeasty wheat flavor i dont enjoy from the style.

Mouthfeel - Nice smooth and mild, easy on tounge with low ibu's and not much bitterness. Palette gets alot of remaining hops, malts, and yeast. Afertaste is wheaty, hoppy and dry.

Overall - Wow this is really good. Balance is unreal along with great additon of the fruity hops, makes this a wonderful, low alcohol beer to drink. Im not a wheat ale fan but i sucked this brew down without a issue and would buy again. Fantastic, world class, and a must try, even if not a fan of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

01-28-2012 00:11:36 | More by wvsabbath
Photo of Stinkypuss


4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Three Floyds

Pours a light straw yellow. Very good clarity and decent head retention. Aroma of wheat, citrus and mild herbal qualities. In the taste, moderate wheat, and a good dose of hops. Hop flavors of citrus, tropical fruit (mango, pineapple) and mild pine. Still, the hops are in the background and don't steal the show. More wheat, with a grainy flavor and a touch of lemon. Mouthfeel is light/medium bodied. Overall, a really nice pale wheat, refreshing and enough hops to keep it interesting.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2012 18:16:20 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of Ryan011235


4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap in a pint glass at Bodega on 10/22/11

Flat-hued honey amber with golden highlights. 1/8th inch head wisps out quickly to a soapy film. Loosely scattered spots of small lace.

Really nice aroma; it just seems happy. Toasty wheat is well matched with the hop, perhaps leaning in the direction of the latter. Juicy grapefruit, pineapple and lemon zest. Soft floral and honey sweetness rounds it out. Hints of cracker.

Pleasant flavors and feel, too. Lighter body without coming across as thin. Modest carbonation suits it and teams with balanced oily/resiny hoppage. Flavorful hop notes ramble through wheat and subtly sweet cracker. Shifts back toward a dry finish. Plucky hop presence throughout with lingering residuals and a touch of bitter grapefruit pith.

Overall impression - I can see why the Chicago guys get fussy about this critter.

Serving type: on-tap

11-16-2011 23:02:19 | More by Ryan011235
Photo of rtepiak


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

i take it that it his doesn't sit well with the subtle banana undertones. very very subtle. this is properly hopped. as in a lot like all there other beers. brisk. the adjunct is like a charm. and american and adjunct is like a hex. they do it great. wonderful look for a session. although sort of watery in persona. still very accessible. probably the most being a three floyds when it comes to hop character. golden clear. small head. brisk hop... dry mild floral. and a hint of yeast starches in the back note which i'm sure may over develop over time. i would lavender zucchini bread... but um... beer.

Serving type: on-tap

11-12-2011 12:03:38 | More by rtepiak
Photo of mcb4538

New Jersey

4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft, appears light golden with half finger of head.  Appears very carbonated, but dies quickly. Smells of fresh grass and pines.  Complimemted by amazing floral tastes. The hops are not overbearing in the least. Very smooth taste and mouthfeel. This would make a great session beer. Very impressive. 

Serving type: on-tap

11-04-2011 23:49:29 | More by mcb4538
Photo of Avantyawn

New York

4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had 2 pints of this on tap for the first time in Chicagoland

A: Nice murky golden yellow, small head

S: Slightly spicy , vibrant citrus , orange rind , complex add amazing smelling

T: Leafy , grassy, sharp, spicy, tangy almost lactic sourness, some citrus and a nice bitter finish.

M: Mouth has some substance to it thanks to the wheat, medium bodied, bordering on a bit thin, but substantial, especially for the low APV. Has a nice grainy feel.

O: Overall a hoppy slightly intense, yet utterly drinkable and very refreshing ale. I could suck down quite a few of these in a row for sure. Not "blown away" but very impressed at the same time.

Serving type: on-tap

09-29-2011 03:54:43 | More by Avantyawn
Photo of MrMcGibblets


5/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

my on-tap standby at the local daily bar on lincoln. so glad i talked them into getting this long ago.
a: clear gold with a tinge of orange, nice white head and lacing.
s: has that signature fff smell...is it the house yeast that that adds that unique extra fruity note? kinda like juicy fruit gum for lack of a better descriptor. amarillo hops are beautifully showcased here-tropical fruit and citrus explode out of the glass.
t: i'd never guess there was wheat in here, which is good for me. not missing that wheatish soury twang. this is significantly better ontap than bottle, the taste and mouthfeel are fuller and rounder. beautifully balanced between the lightly sweet bready malts and smooth, juicy hops. finish is dryish with lingering fruity lemony hops.
m: this feels much, much bigger than 4.5%...still don't know why many places (including this site) have it at 5.5%. i love the carbonation level/feel ontap.
o: thank allah i can drink this ontap on a regular basis, the only thing better is zombie dust. both are perfection.

Serving type: on-tap

09-22-2011 21:38:08 | More by MrMcGibblets
Photo of mattboyer182


4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - a beautiful golden color with a smallish head but really nice lacing.

S - an amazing citrus hops. Delicious floral and grapefruit smell.

T - once again the hops are right up front with the taste. For a wheat ale it is pretty much all hops. The grapefruit so prevalent in the taste.

M - light bodied and medium to heavy carbonation.

O - probably the best wheat out there. Super good beer! One of the best things about living in indiana.

Serving type: on-tap

09-05-2011 05:13:45 | More by mattboyer182
Photo of TheRealBigC


3.58/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Big Star in Chicago.

Standard hazy golden body and lemony scent with a noticeable hoppy character. Flavor followed suite. This one fulfills the 'pale' in "pale wheat ale" nicely. I definitely puckered when I sipped, but it was a nice change of pace.

Serving type: on-tap

08-31-2011 07:00:47 | More by TheRealBigC
Photo of TheBeerAlmanac


3.55/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Draft served in a pint glass

A: Pours a golden sunflower hue with very little fizzy white head.

S: Aroma is pleasant and bright with orange juice and zest, hints of grapefruit, and some malt backbone.

T/M: Tastes mildly hoppy up front and lingers with grapefruit and pine notes, giving way to a sort of mildewy panache at the end, strange as that sounds. Most definitely from the wheat, I think.

It's not a great finish but very pleasant otherwise. And even better the second time around.

Serving type: on-tap

08-30-2011 01:03:17 | More by TheBeerAlmanac
Photo of robwestcott


3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

cold from the tap to a 23oz pilsner a translucent straw gold with a 1/2 finger white head with spotty lace that recedes quickly.

nice subtle yeasty aroma with a bit of citrus.

oranges, subtle citrus hops, yeasty wheat beer.

light bodied, subtle bitter, tangy citrus.

overall - nice refreshing wheat, big citrus.

Serving type: on-tap

08-09-2011 23:12:04 | More by robwestcott
Photo of Holland


4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap into a pint glass at Binny's South Loop.

A: amber in color, this pours with a fine head that dissipates and leaves a little lacing.

S: smells of light malt, fruity esters, and - yes - candy or gumballs. About as I expected for the name, but wild for a wheat beer.

T: not as strong as the smell, but you get the same flavors with the addition of some bitter hops.

M: the bitter hops and deep color for the type make this a nice mouthfeel that changes as you drink it. I'm generally a fan of the changing beers, so this is great.

O: drinkable, delicious, and not overpowering. I'd have it again if I could ever find it.

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2011 19:01:20 | More by Holland
Photo of sweett3k


4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I stopped in at Bass Pro Shop in Portage, IN. and they had this on tap as their house special. I knew 3 Floyds knew their shit about beer because they are one of the greats. This beer at first is not too impressive, but as Hank the Tank put it....once it hits your lips it taste so good. The beer pours a nice golden color with a decent head. Not too much aroma coming off but a slight citrus fragrance. In you mouth it is a great summer flavor explosion going on with taste of sweet summer citrus and honey going on. Feels so good on the palate. I would drink 12 of these if I had the time. BTW.... They are pretty close to the MICHIGAN border. No wonder they know their beer!

Serving type: on-tap

07-07-2011 23:45:56 | More by sweett3k
Gumballhead from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
94 out of 100 based on 3,775 ratings.