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Gumballhead - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
GumballheadGumballhead

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,881 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,881
Reviews: 1,449
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.45%
Wants: 841
Gots: 722 | FT: 25
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: 4,881 | Reviews: 1,449 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tpd975
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden yellow in color with a solid one finger head. The head dies to a nice ring and left behind nice thin sheets of lace.

S: The hoptastic aroma is what always brings me back to this one. Nice citrus hops with light touches of sweet pine and earthy green grass notes.

T: Your typical wheat beer this is not. The taste of bold citrus hops is what this one is all about. It has the taste of a piece of fresh Florida grapefruit with a nice piney sweetness in the finish. This beer like most from 3 Floyd's is VERY aggressive for the style. This aggressiveness is what put them in a class of their own to us loyal following of HopHeads.

M: Nice crisp carbonation very smooth.

D: Very drinkable. I really like this beer. Three Floyd's never disappoints. I am glad I am back home in Indiana for a short stay. A growler of this delivered by my brother was the right way to kick off my trip.

Photo of semihobo
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle from a fresh six pack.

Pours into a pint glass with a trim white head, dies fast but leaves good lacing down the sides. The beer is pretty clear itself, instead of a general haziness you can make out each of the thousands of individual particles in suspension. Trippy. Two bigger chunks of yeast sank promptly to the bottom.

That smell is insanely good and powerful, it hits you from a few feet away. The fruitiest hops I have smelled, like a sugar Del Monte canned fruit cocktail. Mostly apricot and pineapple. A hint of walking through wet woods as well as a touch of mint. It is tempting to just keep smelling it, but that's not what beer is for.

Rather than the simple traditional wheat malt profile, Gumballhead has amber malt and toasted notes blending with the graininess. The wheat malt combines with the hops to produce the taste of tangerines, especially on the finish. Hops are floral and fruity, just how I like them, with a peak strength in the sip that is reminiscent of an IPA. Bitterness is moderate, though, except on the finish where it kicks up a notch. Sweet but not cloying.

Mouthfeel is part luxurious, with soft bubbling, and part syrupy, especially toward the finish. Perfect soft carbonation to let the taste shine, it plays the supporting role well. Medium-light mouthfeel is right for the style.

Drinkability takes a small hit due to the intense flavors in this beer. It is the beer equivalent of a rich double-chocolate cake: so delicious, but it would be overwhelming to have it for an entire meal. It is the most expensive APWA I have seen... and now I understand why, and that it is worth every penny.

Photo of roadhouse
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appears a semi-hazy golden color with a one inch white head. Leaves some good looking lace.

Aroma is bursting with floral and citrusy juicy hops. Almost like stuffing your face into a bag of fresh dried hop cones.

The taste is hoppy from the start unlike most Pale Wheats, more of the floral citrus typical of Amarillos. Not very bitter, but the hop flavor is certainly the centerpiece. The wheat malt barely struggles to make it through. Finishes with a citrusy linger and very slight breadiness.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, good carbonation level, nice and refreshing. Very high on the drinkability scale.

This is an amazing summer beer which I am quite fond of. It has huge citrusy hop flavor, but it's really not very bitter. Definitely not a traditional APWA - it doesn't suck. The Floyds are on to something.

Photo of khiasmus
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly cloudy light orange with two fingers of soapy white head that leaves beautiful lacing on the sides of the glass. Head drops to a ring and lace, but remains as a thin layer for the duration.
Aroma is both huge hops and huge wheat malt... very well balanced between the light, grassy spicy hops and the orange caramel wheat malt. Spiciness is quite evident and a bit unexpected... the yeast lends a slightly bready note, and there is almost a white pepper in there as well... Almost like a pepper vodka. Amazing.
Flavor is much like the nose with the added benefit of a bready yeast character. The hops are not quite as strong in the flavor as the nose, and the grassiness fades to a mild citrus tang. The flavor is not as good as the nose, but still quite tasty.
Mouthfeel is good with medium carbonation and a clean, light finish.
This is the most drinkable wheat beer I've ever had. I'm not a huge fan of wheats, but this is exceptional. The American hopping provides an adequate balance for the sweetness that is wheat malt... overall quite satisfying.

Photo of hwwty4
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to deepsouth for this one.

Poured into my New Belgium globe. This beer pours a slightly hazy straw with a small half a finger head that left just a tiny bit of lacing. The aroma is slightly happy, a hint of oranges, and a bit of a wheat tang. The taste is wheat in nature, a bit of coriander, but the flavor was mostly a slight hoppy bitterness. The mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing. Slight effervescent. This would be a great summer beer, when its hot and humid outside.

Photo of clintone
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just about the best thing about my move to West Lafayette, IN was that Three Floyds is sold all over the place. In my effort to try them all I picked up a 6 pack of this at a local liquor store

A- a very nice golden brown, very clear, only the slightest hint of haze. Not a lot of head, maybe 1/4" or so, but good lacing throughout.

S- I hadn't read any reviews on this before I got it so I wasn't sure what to expect and it kind of shocked me to smell it at first. Very flowery and citrusy, like lemon grass almost. Very crisp and refreshing.

T - Just like it smelled, a different taste than I was expecting, I actually wasn't to fond of it at first sip. By time I had finished the whole beer though it was excellent. Very citrusy and hoppy, it's difficult to actually explain because I've never tasted anything quite like it.

M - Extremely crisp and refreshing. Very nicely carbonated.

D - Not only could I have drank several, I did. My friend was so impressed that he went out after we polished off the 6 pack and got another.

Photo of kels
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had the good fortune to try this beer at Dark Lord Day and hadn't seen it anywhere since. I was so excited to find it on tap at J Gumbo's cajun restaurant in Indianapolis in June. Review from notes:

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Bright golden yellow color with very little white, foamy head that fades fast and leaves very little lacing. Beer is pretty transparent - no cloudiness.

Smell: Surprisingly strong smell for a pale ale with such a slight head. Crisp, light, citrusy scent - very bright and mouthwatering.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Very clean, bright and light mouthfeel - just like the smell. The citrusy taste is deliciously complemented by a strong, straightforward hoppiness that's so characteristic of Three Floyd's. The wheat is subtle and not overpowering and lends a little weightiness to the beer, keeping it from being too light or watery. Good carbonation keeps the feel and taste crisp. The alcohol is only barely present in the finish.

Drinkability: I could drink this all day long - absolutely delicious, tasty and satisfyingly refreshing without being overpowering or heavy in any way.

Photo of treyrab
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this as an extra from brandoman63. Thanks Brandon. Poured this into my pint glass...

A: Semi-hazy, yet transparent, light apricot copper with a one finger fluffy white head. The head does not last long at all, but Gumballhead laces very nicesly.

S: Intense smell of citrus hops. Smells like an IPA, very nice! Some grapefruit and oranges in the nose along with some pale wheat malts.

T: Very hoppy Pale Wheat Ale! Tons of citrus hops thrown in here that leaves you with a taste of intense orange and lemon. The wheat balances it out however, as this is not overwhelmed with hops.

Overall, a great, crisp, clean ale that is intensely hopped! At 4.8ABV, one could drink these all day.

Photo of Jwale73
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ThirstyBird for generously sharing this and thanks to Wes for carting it back from Indiana to Rhode Island. Served in a tumbler. Poured a murky yellow-gold. No head or lacing during the session. Nose is primarily grapefruit, but character was not at all sharp. Also picked up a mild hops presence towards the back. Taste is consistent with nose. Very smooth and balanced. Mouthfeel was light-bodied with even carbonation throughout. Drinkability was fantastic. So easy drinking; easily the best APA I've ever had.

Photo of larsee01
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into Hoegaarden glass

A--Creamy head lingers over a bubbly golden brew. Surprisingly clear! Lots of rising carbonation. Tremendous sticky lacing!

S--Grapefruit and spruce from the hops. These guys love their hops! Not used to a hoppy wheat beer, but it smells like that's what's in store for me.

T--Pronounced floral hoppiness to begin, but followed by a balancing malt sweetness and breadiness. Tart bottle yeast says hello. Surprisingly low hop bitterness...a bit at the end. Fine by me. This is a very complex beer. I'd liken it to biting into a garden of herbs and wildflowers. Unlike any wheat beer I've encountered. Did I say that before? Interesting but balanced.

M--Crisp, clean, fresh. Some hop oilyness, but smooth lingering mouthfeel.

D--A heavy, heady beer for 4.8 ABV. Not a pounder, but why wouldn't you want to slowly savor this? Refreshing nonetheless.

Photo of ckeegan04
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Hazy golden yellow color with a thick lumpy white head. Head slowly fades to a thin bubbly layer on top. Excellent lacing up and down the glass.

S - Very sweet smell with a tropical hop aroma. The hop aroma is not dominating like an IPA but is still very strong. Faint wheat aroma as well.

T - Light wheat malt sweetness up front quickly overtaken by a tropical/fruity hoppiness. Mango and pineapple as well as a little bit of bubblegum.

M/D - Light to medium bodied and very smooth. Not the chewiness of many wheat ales. Incredibly easy drinking.

Photo of brewdogmrb
4.25/5  rDev +1%
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 Metalmonk
4.8/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Began the day with this beer, and am finishing the day with it. Was completely blown away with my first try earlier today; it was fresh on tap at FFF and I might've called it perfect had I reviewed it. This bottled version that I'm reviewing is almost as good as the tap version. Wotta beer.

The "slight haze" noted on the label isn't present in my glass. It's an ultra-clear golden copper color, and the head is thick and foamy, dying down to an eighth-inch skim quickly (about...it's not like I've got a ruler to the thing...)

Hops are loud and clear in the aroma, and there's a background lemon-y smell, and--I am not kidding--something that reminds of Bounce laundry sheets. I don't mean that in a bad way, it's not offputting, it's just...very fragrant and super-fresh, in a way that's hard to pinpoint exactly.

I like the "boatloads of Amarillo hops" noted on the label, and they dominate the flavor. Along with a balanced tartness, it's crisp on the tongue with a kind of lager-y vibe. Quite dry in the finish with lingering hop presence caressing the tongue. Wheat seems to a be a soft bed that the big hops lay down on...wheat malt profile is subtle, allowing the hops to dance around and do their thing. It's not even complex, but it doesn't need to be. It's not your average wimpy American wheat ale. It just isn't.

Gumballhead is the ultimate in drinkability and big flavor. Can't think of another 4.8% beer where the "Wow"-factor is so high. If I could get this where I live, it would already have trumped my recently-discovered Green Flash Hop Head Red as the favored every-day beer. Three Floyds does it again.

Photo of rivertrance420
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of my favorite wheat beers which says a lot because wheat beers do not excite me at all. Pours a beautiful golden color with a nice head. Smells of sweet candy and fruit.Taste is mildy sweet in the beginning almost like the shell of a gumball, but flows nicely into hoppy territory with a bombardment of amarillo hops. Definitely try this if you haven't. Its definitely the session wheat beer, for people who like an interesting twist.

Photo of JoeMayo
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours slightly hazy, but brilliant gold in color with a rich head that lasted through most of the glass.

S- The smell is truly unique. It has a distinct hoppy aroma with notes of pine, orange rind, and lemon, but also a slight fruity sweetness from the wheat. It may be a mind trick, but I smell bubblegum as well.

T- Surprisingly sweet, but still aggressive in its hoppiness. Very well rounded with sweet bubblegum intertwining with citrus and piney hop flavors.

M- A little bit sticky, but still creamy and effervescent

D- Not too bitter, not too sweet and amazingly well-rounded

Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle with a shiny foil lable poured into a Sam Adams pint glass.

A: Pours a clear and clean golden yellow with a one inch pure white and super bubbly head that quickly dissipates and leaves little lacing. Not too reminescient (sp?) of a german hefe at all.

S: Smells great, amarillo hops greet the nose with a nice mix of pine, grapefruit and the malts come together and form a nice ceral grain kind of mixture. Wait, what's missing? Oh yeah the wheat, but who cares this stuff still smells pretty damn good.

T/MF: Very very juicy, not bananna mind you, grapefruit and orange, I'd say there is the slightest amount of a wheaty profile in this beer but it drinks tastes and feels like an IPA, give this to anyone and they'd probably tell you the same. Knowing this the beer still tastes and feels great but it does not fit the style at all (which I suppose is what FFF likes to do and is famous for) and so is a bit difficult to give a solid judgement of.

D: Super drinkable, very refreshing and tastes much larger than it is, I could probably drink these all day.

Photo of Slynger
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Gumball head has been my favorite summer brew since I first found good beer. It pours in a lightly hazed, lightly peached, pale lemon color, with a fluffy lid of fine, lightly creamy, white.

Sweet smells of pale malts and bubble gum with pineapples, oranges, and fresh pine needles.

Sweet wheat with pale malty, gumball infused, cake batter. Juicy fruit amarillo hops come in sweetly lemony-orange, and pineappley, along with some lightly bitter-spicy pine. Nice light-medium body is lightly oily smooth, with a fresh tingly-creamy-fuzzy carbonation.

Great beer, great flavor, possibly the greatest sessioner of all time, absolutely perfect for the summer.

Photo of yourefragile
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz bottle poured into a weizen glass

A: Chilled, crisp golden color with a giant, densely packed white head of tiny bubbles. Sticky patches of web like lacing and very retentive.
S: Big wheat beer smell underlined by an equally big hoppy aroma. Citrusy, lemon zest smell, with lingering bitter hop smell.
T: Light body with high carbonation. Immediate hop bitterness, with slight sweetness from malt trying to balance it and finishes with wheat taste and dry hop taste. Strong lemony citrus flavor in the body as well. Very crisp and refreshing, great summertime beer.

Photo of Jerzy86
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I just still am in shock at how much I have fallen in love with this beer... Wheat beers have never really been on my top favorites, but this changes that for sure! The aroma was so fresh and crisp... Such a well hopped wheat is going to have to be the next beer I plan on brewing and it will probably be a clone of Gumballhead...

Photo of ffejherb
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz. bottle into Sam Adams glass on 8/15/08.
Thanks to brewslut for bringing these back to me from a recent trip to Great Taste.

A - Clear light golden body with half a finger of creamy white head that receded into a thin veil of retention and left a good bit of lace around the glass. Cyclone of tight, swirling carbonation bubbles permeate the body.

S - Huge citrus notes for a wheat beer with lots of grapefruit and lemon. Nice malt presence as well with bready notes.

T - Tangy citrus hops mingle with crusty bread maltiness and some grain. Lemon zest is apparent. This almost has the tartness of a Berliner Weisse, but with quite the hop presence for a wheat beer. Flavor finishes with a bready malt aspect that ties everything together.

M - Light body with medium carbonation and a smooth, crisp finish. Mild bitterness on the palate with a bit of a tart character.

D - Man, another awesome creation from FFF! This brew boasts superior drinkability and tons of fresh flavors and aromas that will keep me coming back for more. I'm glad I have a couple of these on hand, as I will definitely be revisiting this gem very soon!

Photo of supermanjace
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to Finnman for this gem...

Wow, dangerously close to being my coveted, wished for lawnmower IPA, Gumballhead answers the question, "What would happen if we added an s-load of hops to a wheat beer." To just call this a wheat beer is to sell it short. More of an IPW, if you'll allow.

It pours a hazy straw color with a smallish head for a wheat beer. But, carbonation is tingly and makes for a very drinkable beer. Light in alcohol but high in hops this is something I could see myself taking home to meet my parents.

My first dance with FFF, I am hooked.

The hops are excellent. It's by no means a hop bomb but in the nose and finish you really get a dosage of nice, citrusy hops. Bitter but not sharp, they really complete the beer and elevate it from just another wheat beer into a unique stylistically daring treat.

FFF is far too hard to find, but well worth the effort.

Photo of gamblor21
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had it at a festival on tap.

Great hop flavor but not to overpowering. Would compare it with Hop Goddess, or 60min IPA

Would love to drink again, but almost impossible to find outside of Illinois or midwest area

Smooth finish no strange or overpowering after tastes

Photo of rrg1gb
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden yellow with medium head that lingers, and carbonated more than a soda. Light citrusy aroma with a slight sweetness to it. Definitely Pacific Northwest hops.

Mainly a hoppy flavor, but a bit of wheat as well. Malty aftertaste and it is smooth from beginning to finish. Very good - I'll definitely have this again.

Photo of mayor55
4.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried this for the first time as a surprise purchase from my sister.. Pale golden color with thin white head. Head does not leave marks on the glass. Excellent aroma, smells like citrus. Different citrus flavors and smells throughout. Very unusual and pleasant aftertaste. Very drinkable, goes down quick. Low alcohol level. I'm not a big wheat beer man, but will try this again. Three Floyds rules!!!

Photo of julian
4.63/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Review #2. This is my last 12oz bottle from a 6 pack received in the same trade as indicated below. I felt I needed to retain my original review but re-review based on my now complete love for this beer! I am only re-reviewing the categories in which my opinion has changed.

S: hoppy floral aroma, tons of citrus abound, sweet candy like aroma. The smell is absolutely intoxicating!

T: light hop bite up front followed by an onslaught of citrus flavors and candy like malt sweetness. This is one beer you must try over and over to fully appreciate. It's definitely grown on me and is quite possibly one of my favorite summer/session brews!

D: This is an amazing beer, with a unique and perfect balance of hops and citrus and malt that make this a truly engaging beer time after time. Highly sessionable!

---

Received in a trade from cpferris. Thank you!!!

A: pours an absolutely clear golden color with a slight orange hue. effervescence is visible but subdued. barely any head from a vigorous pour...disappeared immediately. sparse sticky wet lacing. Deducting points for lack of head and head retention.

S: hoppy floral aroma....that's about it.

T&M: low-medium hop bite. clean, refreshing and crisp. Goes down easy. Due to the bitterness of the hops (albeit mild), I can't really taste anything else...kind of a disappointment as I was looking forward to this and hoping to taste more citrus and wheat notes. There is however a dry lemony sour note in the aftertaste.

D: easy drinking, nice and crisp and average abv make this a good summer beer. I could see how one would want to pound these back. I gave it a good rating for drinkability, but I don't think I can even drink one more...not being a hop head, even the slight hop bite in this is dominating my palate.

Overall: Gonna have to agree with the Bros here. This is a "good" beer, but not amazing.

Gumballhead from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 4,881 ratings.