Thumbprint Imperial Weizen - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Imperial WeizenThumbprint Imperial Weizen

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

634 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 634
Reviews: 342
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 12.35%
Wants: 101
Gots: 49 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Weizenbock |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: EliteDigger on 02-11-2008

Do not waste time attempting to box this brew into some esoteric guide to styles. This is Dan's bold creation. His passion for unfiltered Weiss collides with Cascade Hops inventing our Imperial Hefe-Weizen. Dry hopping boldly rules over Wisconsin red wheat and our special strain of Bavarian yeast. At almost 20 O.P. this is the super mac daddy of Weiss beers. Decoction mashing was followed by excessive dry hopping to create a fierce onslaught of clove, cinnamon and citrus all in this living beer. Don't bother waiting to enjoy - the time is now.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 634 | Reviews: 342
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.63/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

(Served in a snifter)

A- This beer has a hazy dirty yellow body with a thick white head cratered like the moon that last forever even after the beer is gone. There is a sea of tiny bubbles that pop in and out of the hazy on their way to support the head.

S- This beer has a perfumed clove hop nose with a rich smell of wheat with some slight toasted wheat notes and a finish of more perfumed hops with a citrus blossom quality.

T- The note of spicy clove gives way to a full wheat flavor with some caramel wheat malt qualities and a note of darker roasted malt deep underneath. There is a finish of perfumed citrus hops with a yeasty pine bit at the finish.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a creamy texture and a soft alcohol heat that enhances the hops. There is a nice tight little fizz that balances the sweetness and cleans up this beer.

D- This is a wonderful beer. The perfume qualities remind me of some Belgian yeast strains and the hops are really matched well with the great Weizen qualities on top of some nice wheat wine notes. This beer went down smooth and was wonderful fresh. I don't think it will last long enough to age and I think it will also be a totally different beer without the hops.

Photo of Bitterbill
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this bottle in a trade with Wasatch. Thanks John!

This pours a cloudy orange yellow with a huge 3 finger, ever growing, head of foam. Lots of lacing and bubbles here and the head retention is very very good. This is a very nice looking brew in my glass.

The smell is very complex with notes of banana, wheat, clove, and some lemon.

The taste is as good as the smell! Plenty of banana and clove followed closely by a nice wheat flavour and some lemon hoppy goodness which, btw, just adds a bit of bittereness and is no way near in control and that's how it should be. Nice. Oh, did I mention there's quite a bit of caramel sweetness here as well? I didn't? My bad. Another thing that impresses me is that this is 9.6%abv...I would have never guessed!!

It's medium bodied, the carbonation starts of very lively but settles down after a while, and it finishes with another nice kick of clove, lemon, and banana. I'm really impressed with this souped up Hefeweizen and I give kudos out to New Glarus for brewing it, and Wasatch again for sending it my way!

Photo of scootny
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of Dr Dogbeer into my UFO glass. Thanks so much! A hazy orange gold brew with a tall three finger head that slowly fades to a quarter inch cap. Nice lacing down my glass as I drink and light but active carbonation. The head thickens as move the glass.

Smell is of hops and caramel. Pine and grain sugar. A slight fusel alcohol note mixed with yeasty esters and spiciness. Wheat malt and grains hide in the back.

Taste is more hops and caramel. Wheat malt backbone adds a crisp refreshing aspect. Strong and crisp hops in the finish with a light biscuit on the palate. Finishing notes contain light banana and yeast esters in the nose. Clean dry finish. Alcohol is well hidden.

Mouth feel is superb. A medium overall. Carbonation is spot on allowing what should be a heavy beer to dance in the mouth like a light one. That said, there is a light chewyness but it dissolves into the dryness of the finish.

Drinkability is limited by availability and your head. Easy to drink and session but it is sneaky so watch out!

Photo of gford217
4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of jw347 poured into a weizen glass.

A: Pours a bright hazy golden yellow with a huge billowy three finger head that hangs around for ages leaving great lacing. This is what a hefe should look like.

S: Huge nose on this with the sweet wheat, yeast and massive spiciness interacting beautifully. Not to mention the big banana aroma with lemon zest. Wow, this is a seriously big aroma for a hefe.

T: Big wheat taste up front which gives way to the spices - cloves are the showcase in the middle. The spice gives way to the lemon zest and orange peel in the finish with a hop bitterness. I didn't get too much banana in the taste compared to the smell.

M: Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth but, with the carbonation and the spice, there is a serious zing on the tongue.

D: This is certainly one of the better hefeweizens I've ever tasted. The spiciness is pretty big so the drinkability isn't quite what it could be. However, this is, without a doubt, the most complex brew I've ever tasted in this style. Highly recommended!

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.73/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle to a big glass, the liquid is a semi cloudy dark gols with excellent carbonation. The head is huge big white and leave lots and lots of lace. Excellent looking brew

The smell is very good, rich spices, toasted banana, Yum

The taste is about as good as this style could get. I was starting to think that the style was a lost cause and that only average nice craft brews would come from it. Wow am I surprised. NG was able to capture the best of the Hefe style and magnify it.

The mouthfeel is very good. Thick body, not too sticky and good carbonation.

The drinkability is very good, I wish I was able to get more.

Prosit und Zum Wohl. MK

Photo of bound4er
4.11/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours nicely into a weiss glass - one plus inch thick head that laces nicely. Somewhat typical nose - a yeasty, hoppy, malty blend. I am having a hard time getting my mind around this beer's taste and overall drinkability - one sip a get greatness and the next a nice wallop of alcohol. I guess it is what it is - an imperial style weiss and as such, the alcohol will poke through. Enjoyable but not something I need to have a stock of in the fridge.

Photo of jamie2dope
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer is part of New Glarus Brewing Company's series of Unplugged, limited edition beers. Thanks to danielphoran for sending this sample my way. Poured in to a Paulaner glass a glowing golden orange, with a 2 finger white head that shows some lasting power. Nose has traces of citrus and cream, and also a spicy hop character in the background. Taste starts off with the cascade hops pushing up front, followed by the citrus and cream, which is reminiscent of an orange creamsickle. Hops are oily enough to also make themselves known in the finish, making it a mix of bitter and sweet when all is said and done. Body is lively with cabonation, hop flavor, and many appealing tastes to go around. Drinkability suffers a bit for me with this one with the alcohol, although I suppose that is the point of an Imperial Weizen. Still, I like my Weiss brews to be drinkable, imperial or not. That being said, this is a great brew to have one or two of. Reminds me a bit of Southern Tier's Uber Sun beer, which is also very good. One to seek out. Cheers

Photo of robbyc1
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It is what it is, a highly hopped Hefeweizen.

Very nice look, cloudy wheat color, nice fluffy head, leaves to a white puck on top of my Samuel Adams glass.

You can smell the usual yeast flakes from a banana, etc, but lots of hops, very peppery.

Taste is intriguing, peppery, the hops, dry at the end, good flavor, lots of wheat malt.

Decent mouthfeel, nothing special.

Only trouble, a bit tough to drink this, it's interesting but maybe my mind can't think of it, the hops dominate, wonder what the IBU is, I would think it's close to 70-80 or so which dominates this style, oh well I will keep some I have but give some away too.

I do love this brewing company, good try, I will always try these special beer.

Update: March 2009, had the last bottle of my ownership yesterday. It is a much better beer than I previously thought.
A: Still a great look, no change
S: Great wiff of the hops, Cascade I believe. Better than most Double IPA's. love it, upped my score by whole point.
T: The taste is great, no change in comments, but I love it and upped it another point here.
M: Mouthfeel is a bit fizzy, overdone, leave that as average.
D: Up the drinkability, this one goes down well if you love hops.

Photo of markaberrant
4.38/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Cloudy, soft orange colour. Gigantic, fluffy white head. Leaves thick sheets of lace all the way down.

S - bananas, sweet non-descript citrus, earthy cloves

T - comes off as a banana cream pudding to start, kinda surprised by the sweetness and creaminess. Lots of sweet citrus from the hops, again, expecting more of a bitter grapefruit. Dry and tart finish, with a lingering clove spice.

M - full and creamy mouthfeel, but body is light. Amped up carbonation is smooth as can be. Better done than most strong Belgians in regards to creating a full mouthfeel, but keeping it light and refreshing.

D - very creative, and extremely well executed.

This beer has 2 extremes - sweet softness and refreshing tartness, yet they blend so well together. This beer totally surprised me the way it was put together, I was expecting to just get whacked over the head with hops, but instead the hops are a wonderful complement to a strong pale weizen. I was getting somewhat bored with the Unplugged series of "let's put everything in a barrel with brett," so I'm very impressed with the originality on this one.

Thanks to Demcorhip for the bottle!

Photo of kenito799
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottlepoured into a chalice. Thanks tizzod! Another midwestern beer journey.

This brew is tangerine-colored haziness that glows from within, capturing and refracting the light...firm rocky white head raises and lingers, lace is left, a perfect-looking beer.

The aroma is fairly typical clove-banana hefeweizen scents. Quite nice.

On the palate the mouthfeel is creamy and fine-bubbled, excellent. There are a lot of flavor sensations, with some fruity sweetness, strong citrusy bitterness and a hint of the wheat sourness. Complex, delicious, you taste something different in each sip--never tire of coming back for more. Alcohol perfectly integrated, never apparent. Outstanding.

Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy honey/amber color with a massive head that matches the best Germany can offer

Smell: Massive aromatics - clove dominates, but banana, bubblegum, circus peanuts and a citrus/alcohol concoction that I cannot quite place; while interesting, there is something not very appealing about it to me

Taste: Immediately, the clove and banana flavors jump to the fore and a spicy cinnamon peppery bitterness appears; the bubblegum also joins the other flavors at mid-palate; after the swallow, it becomes rather alcoholic and aggressively spicy, with the grapefruit persisting at the end

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with significant carbonation and a lot of warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Schizophrenia in a bottle; I appreciate the craft but I can't say I really enjoyed it; I re-visited another bottle 18 months later and it was very different - still boozy, but the hops had faded and it was much more recognizable as a boozy hefe

Thanks, Atron67, for the opportunity

Photo of happygnome
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a nice very hazy light orange color with about an eigth inch of head that dissapears leaving a good amount of lace
s: strong bananna and clove aroma with hints of alcohol
t: bananna and clove are strong
m: medium bodied beer with a good amount of carbonation

overall, i really enjoyed this brew

Photo of ncvbc
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Golden straw, moderate carbonation, huge head which falls very slowly...Massive scents. Spice, banana, clove, cinnamon...but I'm getting hops. Citrusy grapefruit for the most part. A bready character as well. Taste is much of the same. Most of the usual flavors come into play. It's quite spicy up front. Cinnamon, clove, some banana and bubble gum. Hops come in with grapefruit, orange, and lemon. Big wheat bread. Creamy, slightly bitter. Quite enjoyable. Not as easily drinkable as your typical but still unbelievable. It's a little bigger than the norm but just as drinkable all things considered. A very interesting take on the style and while it's huge it works. Easily a favorite and one that stands out from the pack.

Photo of WJVII
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured into a pint glass has a awesome sunset orange color with a creamy tan head leaving nice lacing on the glass. The smell is fruitful with citrus and clove prevalent. The taste is extremely complex, but not messy. The fruits are upfront, orange, lemon, and kiwi come to mind. The finish is bitter with the hops coming through. This is a fantastic brew, too bad they only come in 4-packs, six would have been nice!

Photo of BeerZack
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy honey-like orange color with thinnish head that clings to the sides of the glass.

Sweet and sugary, banana, circus peanuts, Extra bubblegum, slight impression of alcohol.

Big taste caught me off guard. Dry and almost bitter or tannic impression. Lots of citrus; somewhat odd flavor/feel. Almost hot and spicy feel that's not very appealing to me.

Decently drinkable, considering the alcohol content.

Photo of morimech
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy yellow with a nice white head that has some nice retention. Heavy lacing left on the glass surface.

Heavy yeast smells of coriander and other cuboard spices. In the background lingers the banana esters and some alcohol.

The yeast spice dominates the taste as well. Just a hint of wheat malt and the banana esters. Not your normal Hefeweizen. A little alcohol is detected.

It still maintains a light body with good carbonation.

I suspect the alcohol is closer to 10% than 5% so it limits consumption. Definately not a Hefeweizen you will be drinking a lot of in an evening.

Photo of ejquin
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice sunny orange with thick white heag. Good retention.

S: Really nice, banana, clove, candy sugar sweetness, nutmug, yestiness. Smells like a Beligian golden/wheat combo.

T/M: Much deeper than you'd expect from the aroma. prickly feeling in the mouth. slight banana but clove really comes through fading to an anise type note. Grapfruit/citrus acidity and bitter hops. Carmel on finish with alcohol burn. You can definitely tell that this one is not your normal wheat beer and the abv is up there probably pushing 8, 9%

D: You can look at this two ways; obviously it's down from a typical wheat beer, but better than most 8-9% abv beers.

Ovr: Others have said it, NG has a way with fruit beers and wheat beers. It's a great style. Paradoxial in what you would typically think of a highly quaffable wheat beer, but it's a nice break from that. Spring is a great time for this one, when it's cool but nice and sunny.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to flyingbison for this extra bit of New Glarus goodness. Poured from 12 oz. into BMS mug...

Beautiful, thick meringue head with solid staying power and excellent lacing. Can almost see layers in the seam between head and body. Perfect natural honey color with well-placed haze.

There's a fair amount of yeast here. Some powerful soapiness and floral character of hops complement the yeast and wheat nicely. Alcohol is mild but present. Smells "warm."

Didn't see this coming, even after reading the label! Copious amounts of yeast, wheat and floral hop bitterness. Creamy with lots of honey and a caramel/butterscotch kicker. A little citrus (grapefruit) and tangy finish with mild carbonation spike. A hint of banana ester and zest; spices emerge with warmth. Wow!

Behaves like a hefeweizen until the taste - a little heavier than expected; very warming. Nice bitterness from wheat and hops on finish - electric tang throughout couples with warm caramel viscosity to provide bountiful comfort.

Complex and thick enough for a sipper, even with the clean nature of its taste. Excellent!

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.48/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, golden body with a small, fizzy, white head.

Smell: Aroma very nearly stinking of coriander with lesser notes of toasted banana chips, tangy-smelling wheat, and grapefruit juice.

Taste: Tangy wheatiness with a dash of citric grapefruit juice hot on its heels. Then, it's back to wheat with a subdued sweetness, though it builds upon warming. Flavors of banana and a big hit of coriander. Medium-high bitterness. Some floral hints prior to the tangy, bittersweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Pretty exciting for wheat!

Photo of Wasatch
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to Monsone for this brew.

Pours a cloudy golden yellow color, nice carbonation, nice two-finger white foamy head, lots and lots of nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, yeasty, nice touch of banannas, cloves, some caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, yeasty, with some banannas/cloves tones, with caramel. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a tasty brew, another nice one from NG.

Photo of thickerfreakness
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this out of a 12oz. bottle into my Saint Arnold's glass.

This beer looks pretty typical for a hefeweizen. It pours a nice hazy orange and has a very nice off white head that lasts for quite a while. The smell is pretty expected except for that amazing citrusy hop coming through past the banana and clove. Wow the taste of this is something else. It hits with banana and clove flavors and then the most amazing hop bitterness I've ever had in a wheat beer. This is one hell of a beer. Highly recommended.

Photo of dogger6253
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours out into the haziest orange-to-yellow gradient you've ever seen. Huge, lasting head just hangs on the glass forever. This is hot.

I could smell banana the instant I popped the cap off, huge floral hops bouquette with pine and grapefruit taking over. The smell is very unique, entirely unexpected, but welcome. Great nose.

A little hops in the back of the flavor, not as dominating as the smell led me to believe. The flavor is mostly typical - banana, coriander, cloves, lots of citrus under the surface too, making way into more subtle spices, grapes and apples with a touch of cinnamon.

The body is thick and heavy, sticks to your mouth, there is a little carbonation going on too. Great warmth can be found as well.

Oh man, the Unplugged series of beers keep knocking my socks off time and time again. High quality and affordable, accessible and original. I'd drink this all of the time.

Photo of ohmybock
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Now *this* is an interesting wheat beer which I just picked up in Madison, WI. From reading the label, I could tell I was in for something a bit unique...

This one pours with a cloudy, light-ish, golden color. There's a thin head which persists, but it's not as thick as many German weizens. The aroma is a very good indicator of what is to come. There's definitely some German wheat beer character in there, but something else too. Upon tasting, the unusual mix of characters becomes much more apparent. There's a citrusy character infused with the expected "normal" German character along with something else..."minty" perhaps? The label mentions Cascade hops and "excessive dry hopping". That explains a lot of what is going on here. The bitterness is not overwhelming, but it might be a little aggressive. I can't stop sipping this brew and pondering the odd mix of flavors in it. With that being said, I'm still not overly-enthusiastic about the end product's mix of flavors as a whole. This is a very interesting brew which I'm very happy I bought, but one 12oz bottle is probably more than enough for me.

This NG brew probably fits into the same style as the Schneider-Brooklyner Weiss. Both weizens are heavily dry-hopped and are new interpretations of the style. Kudos to New Glarus for trying new things with the Unplugged series. I wish more breweries would do the same!

Photo of blackie
4.64/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

a: cellarfridge temperature into my Piraat snifter, nice off white head with very good retention, beautifully hazy golden-orange beer...a gorgeous looking ale

s: stunningly complex with supremely delicate aromas of spicy wheat, doughy yeast, sweet and creamy fruit esters (banana, apricot, peach), coriander, sweet orange peel, white pepper and a touch of clove, perfectly aged hops, floral perfumes (magnolia, gardenia), hot and fresh sugar cookies, barely detectable ethanol adds only a sweet-spicy note

m: ridiculously smooth carbonation given the high level, body just over the line that separates light from medium...creamy

t: clean wheats with doughy yeast flavors, essentially the same florals and fruits found on the nose that I'm not gonna get into as I'd rather just enjoy it, moderate sweetness, papery hop flavors with a mild bitterness

d: another winner from a brewery I've become no less than infatuated with [no bias], but likely limited to one or two as this one is pretty challenging and seems to be a creeper...as is typical of the Unplugged line, this fine beer is best consumed with no concern for adherence to style guidelines

yes, the North Carolina beer scene is quite saturated with excellent locals, but it's nice to have a gem from New Glarus shipped down from time to time via the filth factor

12.13.2013 - two bottles generously wedding-gifted by Kyle, and as fantastic as I ever remembered. lovely appearance with a glowing orange body and a rocky off-white head that doesn't quit and laces heavily. the combination of Cascade dry hop and lusciously spicy weizen yeast is just too much. lovely banana, peach, and alcohol undertones. silky smooth on the palate with a lively but delicate carbonation. kiwi and lime. i just, i just don't know.

old scores 4.5, 5, 45, 5, 45

Photo of joe1510
3.84/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle

Received this in a recent trade with Mully, thanks again Matt for the great trade! Imperial Weizen pours a beautiful hazed golden. After I swirled the bottle and finished the pour a fog like haziness slowly overtook the polished golden. A soft pour produced an off-white two + finger meringue like head that only fell a half finger and left some really great webbed lacing on its way. A great looking brew!

Wow! There is an intense spiciness in the nose. Big bold clove, banana, orange peel, and lemon greet the nose right away and pretty much dominate. There is white pepper spiciness in there as well. Whatever strain of yeast they used....damn, did it create some big aromas. This beer is just a little too big on the spiciness for my liking.

There's a hint of banana on the finish but it's not nearly as strong as the nose suggested. The wheat base is evident with a twang upfront before it cools down and lets the fruit come through. Big orange peel and clove mid-palate eventually die down and the wheat twang shows itself again on the swallow. A kind of dusty/chalky yeastiness comes through every now and then. A big weizen without a doubt!

The body is a hefty medium with a little stick in the back of the throat. A healthy massaging carbonation produces a silky smooth body.

The spiciness in here is so big that one bottle in a sitting is enough for me. With that being said, it's still an enjoyable brew.

New Glarus does a great job with everything, but especially their wheat beers. Although hefes aren't my favorite style this is another good one although maybe a touch over the top. I've fallen in love with their Unplugged Series!

Thumbprint Imperial Weizen from New Glarus Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 634 ratings.