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Willy Wheat Ale - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
Willy Wheat AleWilly Wheat Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
75
okay

51 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 51
Hads: 165
rAvg: 3.2
pDev: 16.88%
Wants: 0
Gots: 11 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2003

An American Wheat ale. More than half the malt used is White Wheat known for a sweetness not found in red wheat or malted barley. Unfiltered and easy to drink.
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Reviews: 51 | Hads: 165
Photo of beerloverinmanila
2.9/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Light golden in appearance.
Medium head. Lemony aroma.
Clean and crisp, very little bitterness, very easy to drink. The wheat is not that dominant though. (154 characters)

Photo of Sandalwood
3.16/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a golden yellow color with a smell white head with a lot of carbonation. The odor is grassy, herbal, spicy, citrus, lemon, apricot, orange, slight passion fruit. The taste is refreshing, light, lemon, spices, clove, coriander, fruity, slight bread like, not bitter. (273 characters)

Photo of BucannonXC5
3.58/5  rDev +11.9%

Type: 22-oz. glass
Glass: Stone Ruination IPA glass
From: Alpine Beer Company Pub
Price: $4.79
Purchased: Nov. 12, 2014
Consumed: Nov. 16, 2014
Misc.: N/A

Poured a golden, pale, clear color with one finger of off-white, grayish head that dissipated pretty quickly. Slow moving streams of bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. No lacing on the sides of the glass. Minimal-to-no retention on the top all the way down. (Sight - 3.00)

Smelled boozy lager notes up front. Got next day beer smell, sourdough bread, honey wheat, lemongrass, cereal and slight nuttiness. Got better the more I smelled it. (Smell - 3.50)

Tasted a bit better than the smell. Initially reminded me of a good summer brew. More citrusy notes than the smell. Got honey, lemon grassy notes, bready malts, some Citra hops, floral hops and the bottom of cereal milk. (Taste - 3.75)

Light body. Thin texture. Average carbonation. Abrupt, crisp finish. Rather refreshing. (Feel - 3.38)

This was an OK beer for the style. Not something I’d pick out normally, but crisp and refreshing. Great summer brew. (Overall - 3.50)

3.58 | 81 | B (1,116 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
3.2/5  rDev 0%

Poured from the bottle into a wheat ale glass.

Thin head, off white, and very fleeting, barely makes a finger off the pour. Settles to a very thin puck, but gives a thin slightly hazy barely golden lemon body. Lots of carbonation, but barely keepin a two milimeter collar alive. Beer looks a little dead on arrival.

Aroma is not particularly impressive. Slightly dough malts but an off sense of rancid grain a bit. Manages a husky quality but there's an off sensation that almost borders vegetative character. Some decent quality and faint sweetness and chew hiding, but totally buried. Very borderline could go either way.

Palate mentions to show up. A surprising splash of lemon citrus and density, but an extremely fleeting palate. All the flavor is in the aftertaste. Bakery white bread finish and dough. Surprisingly very wet texture, with a flattened soda like carbonation. Warmth brings a bit more controlled flavor and drinkability, as the chewy character seems to build.

There's a good beer in here screaming to show up, but it just doesn't get out. Much better APWAs out there, and unfortunate bit of underwhelming brew from Alpine. Still drinkable. (1,178 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
3.75/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Some times you find a beer that may not be immensely complex or for that matter it may never win an award, but it delivers a very satisfying and delicious experience. This is one of those beers. The body holds a clean honey complexion while the nose and flavor mirror that. Fresh wheat malt, honey sweetness, a touch of bran or barley and a soft perfumey flower petal meet the nose and palate. The feel is very clean and easy and though it drinks like water it is never watery. Perfect for hot weather or to be a simple sessionable ale. (536 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.29/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clear golden yellow with a foamy tan head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, wheat, hay, and grass aromas. Taste is much the same with wheat and grain flavors on the finish. There is a very mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that has a pretty solid wheat and grain aroma, but the flavors are a bit boring in my opinion. (581 characters)

Photo of gatornation
3.35/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A-pours a hazy golden yellow with a white head that recedes to a fresh collar
S-wheat malt and lemon grass some citrus and fruity peels and biscuit smells
T- watery wheat with a lemon spritzer taste some malts and bread slight hops
M- watery with medium carbonation
O- easy to drink but not very tasty (303 characters)

Photo of lsummers
3.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a bright golden yellow. Cloudy with a thin lisp of an off white head.

Smell is fantastic, lemon with a touch of orange and some floral notes. Biscuity sweetness.

Taste is initially not as impressive as the smell. It's very refreshing and crisp but has a watered down feel. That lemony clove hit initially with some very subtle wheat malt on the backend.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp. Maybe too light.

Overall, I think this is a good session beer, it just has a lighter, watered down note that doesn't serve it well. I was initially hoping for a more flavorful beer based off the smell. (595 characters)

Photo of Mic-Lee
3.77/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear golden color. No lacing, about two fingers of foamy loose head. Smells lightly of sweet malt. Flavors of hazlenuts, with delicate, faint floral hops in the background. Extremely light, drinkable and refreshing. Medium to low carbonation. Light mouthfeel with a touch of creaminess.

Overall: Another delicious brew from Alpine. This beer is very refreshing and sessionable in a major way. It has a great balance of richness and lightness from the floral hops and creamy nuttiness. Growler worthy. (503 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
2.82/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

22 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Uinta pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high; I've grown to love Alpine within the past week after visiting their brewery. Purchased at the brewery two days ago.

Served straight from the refrigerator. Poured with average vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours evenly, with no signs of flawed carbonation. Pours a thin one finger beige colour head of no real cream and poor thickness. Colour is a clear pale yellow. Looks pretty off for a wheat beer. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Stale malts and plain barley. Background hopping. Stale lemon. Pleasant fresh wheat. Vague citrus. No yeast comes through. A mild strength aroma. I don't get the "nutty" character the label describes. Maybe in the taste...

T: Yeah, a little bit. There's a nutty character there. Plus the usual suspects: wheat, malts, and barley. The nut is mainly on the open, generating a strange structural balance. It's not watery, thankfully - but it is quite simple. I like what they're going for, but it's a bit pedestrian by Alpine standards. There's nothing unique or special here. It's clean and pleasant, but offers little in the way of complexity or subtlety.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Overcarbonated. A touch thin. Loses its body in the third act, leaving an empty flavour that is a rather bland way to close it out.

Dr: Pedestrian. Alpine does far better. This is one to skip if you're getting Alpine. I wouldn't get it again. Something of a disappointment. Overpriced. Drinkable but meh. Low alcohol.

(1,658 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.18/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 9.11.12.

A - Pours a clear, light yellow with a fizzy white head that is gone quickly.

S - Nutty and sweet. Very light.

T - Nutty and a touch of sweet carmel. Very pilsner-like finish.

D - Good carbonation with very light body.

O - Light and crisp, nice nutty and carmel flavors. (301 characters)

Photo of notchucknorris
3/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Alpine

A: Pale golden color with a thin tan head. Looks very lager-ish.

S: Toasted malt and sweet wheat aroma with a little mustiness to it. A little sweeter than I'd expect.

T: Lots of cereal and buttery yeast throughout. A hint of wheat, but there's a huge sweetness throughout that makes it a little hard to get through. Not really a fan. (354 characters)

Photo of ngeunit1
4/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden-yellow with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of sweet wheat with some with some citrus hop, lemon, and a touch of malt.

T - Starts off with sweet wheat flavor with some lemon zest and a touch of citrus hops. Through the middle, some light nutty malts come through with a bit more citrus hop. The finish is a mix of sweet wheat, bit of malt, and lemon.

M - Light bodied with moderate lively carbonation. Smooth with a lightly sweet and dry finish.

D - Very drinkable. Very nice light wheat beer that does not sacrifice too much on flavor. There is a nice balance of wheat and citrus flavors while still staying very crisp. (731 characters)

Photo of mactrail
2.88/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Light yellow in color with a slight foam that drops off fairly rapidly. Carbonation on the tongue is pleasant, however, for a while. Slightly sweet at first sip. Flavors are thin. Body is light. A little bit of orange peel flavor. Hopping is "mild and gentle," as they say on the label. Aroma is faintly malty and cardboardy. Drinkable, but it's more like a lager gone slightly off.

Ends with a metallic taste on the lips and some earthy, dirty hops. Certainly the classic flavor profile for the American wheat category, which is turning out to be one of my least favorites. A 22 oz bottle from the Olive Tree in OB. (617 characters)

Photo of 100floods
3.95/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

What better wat to spend a warm January day off in San Francisco than pop open a brew?

Willy pours a crystal clear pale yellow. You can see a decent a mount of carbonation, but no head.

Sweet, malty, even grassy aroma. Big wheat malt aromas. Some juicy yeast notes, too. Reminds me of summer.

Very crisp and refreshing. Nice balance of sweetness and wheat flavors with a hop finish for bite. The sweet notes remind me of honey and something close to the less citrus aspects of an orange. The medium body helps the flavors move along, but without missing anything. The low carbonation isn't the worst thing in the world. I think I'd be missing a lot of the flavors if this were a straight up wheat ale. The malt start and the hoppy finish provide a good balance and not a collision. Perfect summer beer, or just a great beer to wind down with, without getting to suacy. (871 characters)

Photo of pmarlowe
3.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tulip glass.

A: Pours clear pale with a quarter finger of white foam which quickly fizzles out, leaving a ring of large bubbles.

S: Briefly I get some lemon, reminding me of a chardonnay, and then some malt. The smell is pretty faint.

T: Basically just malt with some sweetness. After awhile the sweetness kind of wears you down. Decently long finish.

M: Medium body and carbonation. Kind of flabby.

O: Pretty mediocre, and the sweetness limits its drinkability. I'm amazed at how mediocre Alpine's regular rotation is given that it's one of my favorite breweries. (569 characters)

Photo of inlimbo77
3.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a Deschutes snifter glass. No bottle date present, but believe it's from late August from the trade I ran.

A: Pours a clear yellow color. Half finger bright white head. Not a lot of lacing. Low alcohol so no real feet.

S: Really malt forward. Their is some crisp hop flavor but age might have got to this one.

T: Really crisp clean wheat/pale ale. Even with some age it still has some hop bite. Not much going down here.

M: Light bodied with no real mouth coating.

O: I gotta go B- on this Alpine beer, which pains me to do. I love all their IPAs but this one falls a little below the mark. (620 characters)

Photo of kevanb
2.52/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bomber into an Alpine Pint glass.

Pours a really bright golden straw color, no head at all. It's super transparent and looks basically like a bud, not very inviting at all. It smells better than it looks, but not much better, acidic, bit of wheat, but really smells more like a lager than a wheat ale. Again, I'm reminded of Bud here. Flavors are bland, no wheat at all, more acid and bits of lemon, not even a hint of biscuit or bread. It goes down pretty easily, I'll give it that, has a surprisingly nice body and the carbonation is a bit much, but not annoyingly so.

Verdict: Not very pleasant at all. I drain poured it, a real let down from Alpine who are pretty good at making a world class beer. (704 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
3.58/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into SN tulip pint glass.

A: Pours a clear light golden with two fingers of fluffy bright white head that slowly faded into a thick fuzzy film that left a good network of lacing down the glass.
S: I get notes of dry wheat, chalky yeast, cracked grains and maybe a hint of spicy hops.
T: Follows the nose with crisp flavors of cracked wheat and clean yeast and grains. Light flavors all around, and nothing distracting. Finish is lightly sweet and the aftertaste has just the fainted suggestion of citrus. Not getting any hops at all.
M: Light bodied, crisp and drying mouthfeel, and light refreshing carbonation.
O: A really clean and refreshing drinking beer, but it’s pretty low on flavor. I bet a lot of BMC drinkers would like this. It’s good, but there are better versions of the style. (811 characters)

Photo of regspeir
2.5/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Disclaimer - I doubt this will ever be I style I could love, even though this brewery makes some of the world's most wonderful beers. Got this in a trade with hamilton23 (thank you!). 22 oz bottle into a wizen glass. This beer poured a light yellow with a tiny white head which disappeared almost immediately. There was almost no lacing to speak of. The nose was wheat, yeast, and some lemon zest but very faint. Taste was similar, i.e. wheat, yeast and a tiny lemon tinge. There was little carbonation and the mouthfeel was very light. While not displeasing, this is the most forgettable beer from a great brewery. I have had 9 Alpine beers and this is the ONLY one I would pass on, if offered. (695 characters)

Photo of snpub540
2.45/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a very fizzy pale yellow hue into my pint glass. Had a one finger white head that turned into fizzy bubbles fast. Not a bit of lacing.

Can't really say much about the smell. Grainy, slightly bready, and that's about it.

Taste was pretty much like a generic American lager. Really had not a lot going on.

Mouthfeel was very thin. Not a fan of this one at all. (369 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
2.95/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

520th review on BA
Draft to pint
@Alpine Beer Pub

App- This was almost water clear with some yellow food coloring. No head just a thin layer of bubbles.

Smell- Very very light. A base of wheat with a little bit of peel or zest on the nose

Taste- Taste follows the nose. Its a run of the mill APWA but doesnt bring a whole lot to the table. Glad I had this on tap vs bottle.

Mouth- Light bodied and high carbed. Left just a watery wheat taste.

Drink- It was okay, just a base beer to appease the masses with something light. No real flavors behind it. (555 characters)

Photo of dmsohyea
2.03/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

On-tap at the Alpine brewpub.

A - light, straw yellow and very clear. No head or lacing to be seen.

S - Getting a good bit of skunk on the nose. Not enjoying the smell of this one at all. Some faint honey, wheat and orange notes come through under the skunk.

T - Tastes worse than it smells. A little lemon and orange but the yeast is overpowering to all other flavors. And the yeast tastes bad to me. You may like it if you're bit into whitbeers, but this one isn't to my liking.

M - Extremely watery and carbonated. Think Corona.

O - Not a beer I'll be sampling again. It hurts me to crush Alpine like this, but I couldn't finish 4 oz of this beer. (655 characters)

Photo of Trilogy31
3.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice clear light gold with a finger of frothy head into my duvel tulip. Nose has a touch of biscuity malts with some grassy herbalness, also a bit of skunky hops. Almost smells like a cross between bud and heinken. Very refreshing mouthfeel and tastes of light clean crisp malts, grass and light nuttiness with an ever so light hoppiness. Very much like a quality bmc. Nice for what it is but would rather drink a bud at the price willy costs. Slightly more interesting with the hint of wheat and i feel better about myself drinking alpine but all in all its really not a special beer. (593 characters)

Photo of Eriktheipaman
4.08/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a strange orange/yellow with white head that fades quickly and doesnt leave much lacing.

Smell is very faint and all I can pick up is slight biscut.

Now for the taste. At first sip it almost tastes like your drinking nothing, but the out of no where...WOW. Amazing malt comes through to kick you in the throat. I could see why this beer would be given a C+ average here on BA but I think its a great beer. Its very sessionable and the malt kick is very tasty. (468 characters)

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Willy Wheat Ale from Alpine Beer Company
75 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.