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Thumbprint Imperial Weizen - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thumbprint Imperial WeizenThumbprint Imperial Weizen

Educational use only; do not reuse.

631 Ratings

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Ratings: 631
Reviews: 342
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 12.35%
Wants: 99
Gots: 48 | 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: 631 | Reviews: 342
Photo of Axic10
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy deep golden yellow with three fingers of fluffy white head that takes its time settling down to a thin layer that leaves some nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: Heavy aroma of yeast, banana, clove, lemon and a hint of bubble gum. Not a trace of the 9.6% alcohol.

Taste: Banana, yeast, clove, spices and some lemon zest. I pick up an alcohol burn which wasn't in the nose, which takes away from the taste for me.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with proper carbonation.

Overall: Overall a decent take at the Hefeweizen that would be outstanding if the taste didn't have an alcohol burn (although it is an imperial). Would like to see what they would do with a 4-5% version.

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

never been much of a fan of hefeweizen style, but it a New Glarus Thumbprint beer so I am going to give it a try with an open mind!

poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: opaque yellow bodied beer that looks like it is glowing. Frothy and foamy gushing white colored head.

Smell: lots of clove, smells like a belgian style beer, and some citris.

Taste: candied or sugary bananas, with massive clove flavor and massive lemon flavor; all three flavors work well together. I normally dislike hefeweizens that have a strong banana taste to them, the clove and lemon seem to make the banana become more balanced. Its nice! The cascade hops show up in the middle of the beer with a mild hop bitterness and quickly goes away as the banana, clove, and lemon take back over as the prominent flavors. May be a hint of cinnamin and some yeastiness in the background of this beer. No alcohol taste noted.

Mouthfeel: Really light and refreshing beer. moderate carbonation. I cant beleive that this beer is almost 10 percent.

Overall: This is a really good beer! I have never had an Imperial Weizen before, but this was an exceptional beer. Another solid New Glarus beer!

Photo of bashiba
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a golden orange with a long lasting thin white head.

The smell is full of lemongrass and tropical fruit notes especially pineapple.

The flavor follows the nose nicely, a big blast of citrusy lemongrass, followed by mango, pineapple, and tropical fruit flavors. Very sweet and fruity, with hints of banana and classic clove spices, very hefe on steriods kind of flavor.

The mouthfeel is light with good carbonation, and a bit of abv warmth.

Not to bad overall, a fun giant hefe.

Photo of Blakaeris
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours pale and very hazy yellow with a soapy head that leaves slight lacing.

Aroma is sweet grainy malt and a good bit of bubblegum, lemon zest, and coriander.

Taste is similar to the nose. Sweet grainy malt up front. Quite lemony, with additional subtle light fruit. Finishes with a rather prickly yeasty spice. Slightly herbal. Plenty of coriander and allspice lingering in the finish with a mild alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel is medium-full.

A very flavorful brew, with interesting spice character. Would be great with seafood. Very nice.

Photo of Kbogac
3.55/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Big white head with a cloudy dark yellow color. Smell is mostly citrus and banana with a little clove. Reminiscent of orange juice. Sweet orange banana taste with alot of alcohol. Some hop bitterness at the middle through finish. Tough to give a good opinion since I. Have nothing to compare it with. I'd say interesting beer but I don't see me having it again.

Photo of beerwolf77
3.18/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tulip.

A: Cloudy pale gold hue. Solid finger of bright white head. Some sticky lace remains.

S: Super pungent citrus hops along with clove, banana, wheat bread and a bit of the alcohol. No mistaking this is an Imperial version of the style.

T: Again I'm blasted with citrus hops. Lemon and grapefruit are overly dominant. Luckily as it warms the banana starts to really come through. Clove, coriander, wheat and bubblegum are present as well.

M: Medium body with a creamy start and a carbonated finish.

O: Way too hoppy for my taste. I love heffes like no other but this one is just a bit strange for me.

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

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: golden yellow orange with hazy and a 1 finger white head

smell: banana's, clove, citrus,

taste: banana's, clove, citrus,

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: Now that was a very good rendition of a Hefe. Would love to have more of this beer.

the CPJ

Photo of seeswo
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy straw yellow with a fluffy white head. Looks quite nice. A swirl and a deep sniff reveals alcohol, candy banana, and cloves. Maybe even just a touch of citrus hops. Kind of a weird balance of smells in a Weiss beer. The taste is strong wheat, big clove spiciness, monster banana and finishing hops that bring a bit of a citrus component and help dry the finish a touch. Don't get much of that boozy component from the nose. It's all a bit big and a little imbalanced. Some sips draw me in and make me feel like the beer is something special, others are just somehow out of whack. Big carbonation with a sugary mouthfeel. The sugar just hangs out in the mouth well after the beer is gone. It's pretty unfair to compare this to the balance and restraint of a successful Weiss beer. This is a really interesting experiment that has some success, but needs a bit more work. The hops don't balance the sweetness enough, for starters. That said, I really enjoyed tasting the experiment.

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

This unplugged beer pours a cloudy orange-straw color with a very thick, clingy bright white head. The aroma is an inviting mixture of spicy notes from the yeast, sweetness from the malts and lemony citrus from the hops, truly showcasing all elements of a beer. The flavor is an intense burst of spicy cloves and citrusy hops, those flavors linger and the beer finishes a bit tart, slightly dry, and the weight of the alcohol pokes through without overwhelming. The carbonation is high and body medium-full. Overall a wonderful beer, if you see it, buy it -- period.

Photo of BarrytheBear
3.92/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle purchased from the brewpub and decanted into a flute while pouring over NFL draft literarure and trying to best predict how the Bears will shit the proverbial bed this year.

Pours a cloudy yellow-orange with a massive billow produced, perhaps, by a slight over exuberance. Clings like a needy girlfriend during some low grade horror film.

Smells of bubble gum, clove, banana, and a snappy lemon rind from the hops, which play heavy here.

Base wheat is clove heavy and spicy. Bubble gum and banana from the nose join in as well, leaving the Lemonheads candy playing the roll of hops at the finish leaving a long sweet and sour finish. A bit disjointed and uneven from sip to sip, but an effort I appreciate.

Mouthfeel is nice and creamy with ample carbonation.

Overall, I can see how this could be a polarizing beer. I wish more weizens went the hoppier route, and I'm probably in the minority preferring Cracked Wheat to Dancing Man, but this creature is alright. A bit of a Frankenstein, but don't we all feel he got a bad rap?

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

12oz bottle into tulip.
A: A deep, murky golden haze sits below a two finger white frothy head. Lacing is left in a sticky, foamy layering.

S: The aroma has a very floral west coast hop presence. A warm note of rich weizen and a smooth aroma.

T/M: The front of this beer is very hoppy, while still holding a nice Bavarian wheat note. The body is quite hefty, while finishing smooth and silky. The spice of the yeast hits on the finish when the hops have mellowed down. The lingering taste is very complex and shows hints at clove.

O:This is a very bold Hefeweizen, with a nice change up with the use of dry hopping. Overall, one of the best imperialized versions of the style. Very well done.

Photo of LaCoursiere
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a New Belgium snifter with laser etching in the bottom. Nice half finger head stayed around for half the glass with a generous amount of lacing. Laser etching maintained a thin head for the rest of the glass. It had a dark honey color and was very cloudy.

S - Strong Belgian yeast dominates the aroma with hint of clove and faint alcohol.

T - Clove, banana and yeast up front with an alcohol warmth midway that fades as the malt and wheat come through in the finish.

M - Medium bodied with a nice light carbonation that dances on the tongue.

First time trying an imperial weizen. I'm usually not the biggest wheat beer fan but I really enjoyed this one. I think because it was more complex than most that I have had. While I will definitely drink this again, it's heavy enough that I wouldn't drink two in one sitting.

Photo of gatornation
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

out of retirement? unplugged imperial weizen

A- it poured a cloudy pale orange.amber color with a white 2 finger head that receded to reveal some chunky lacing on glass...a beautiful look indeed

S- was banana and apples,with some clove ,a little grain,and a backdrop of citrus hops ..very nice

T- was bananas and clove a dash of pepper followed by just enough hops,,a touch of alcohol heat in the finish the taste was not as strong as the smell

M- was medium carbonation but somewhat thin on the hefe tastes that i enjoy..dont know if it was the high ABV..cause its not really detectable

O- a tasty hefe for sure ..but i would choose dancing man or cracked wheat b4 this one..still this is a great one from NG

Photo of jimicoop
5/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Aptly named. This Imperial Weizen is amazing. Banana esters and cloves stand out and mix well with the citrusy character of the yeast. The Higher ABV adds a prominent sweetness and creates a great balance to a beer that could easily be off balance.
Though it's a strong beer it's hard not to want to enjoy more than one! Surprisingly light body and very refreshing! WoW!!! Go go New Glarus! :)

Photo of Bobby12many
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I was under the impression that this beer wouldn't be out until late May, so I was quite surprised when I saw a few 4 packs of this in the cooler of a local convenience store. New 'Thumbprint' style packaging with the older 'Unplugged' label on the bottle. Odd...

A - Opaque fuzzy orange hef with a lofty 4 finger head that leaves wonderful lacing as it recedes.

S - Big time bubblegum. Hint of musty yeast, fruit esters, banana, and clove with a touch of the alcohol induced backdrop.

T - Banana and citrus notes harmoniously blend with the clean bready wheat flavor I just love. Just enough alcoholic sweetness to make it interesting without overpowering. Truly Outstanding wheat beer.This is what I would call the 'Aventinus' of the Summer months. Crisp, complex and incredibly clean

M - On par for the style, lively, well carbonated.

O - Another incredibly well made beer from New Glarus, and up there with some of the best big wheat brews I have ever had. Drinks far too easily for the ABV, but that really makes it what it is; A Bold, Fresh, and Complex weizen. Cant wait to seek it out on tap!

Photo of WastingFreetime
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was surprised to find this one for sale again as this website claims it is retired.
Very vigorous pour into a weizen glass from 12oz bottle.

A. Murky and opaque just how I like it. Hooray for unfiltered beer! Colored like a hazy setting sun, orange in the thickest part of the glass shading to yellow tones around the edges. But the head should have overflowed for the pour I made, yet it didn't.

S. Exactly like a lot of oranges and lemons that have been riveted with cloves all over like that potpourri centerpiece thing.

T. Very bready at first, gradually changing into almost an IPA flavor profile, but with wheat. Cinnamon doesn't kick in until the back end of the sip for me, and I would have liked a bit more of that fleeting hotness. I think the high ABV is masking the cinnamon with hotness.

M. A little bit to thin for my liking, the only meaningful complaint I have. The body needs some more...oomph.

Photo of levifunk
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this at a small tasting recently. Reviewed from notes.

a - cloudy golden body with a white head.

s - wheat, grass, lemon.

t - smooth flavor. still grassy with some hops.

m - light body with nice carbonation.

drinks very well for 9.6%. booze is very mellow.

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

12 oz bottle received in a trade-poured into my snifter.

Still warm out even though it is September.

A-Body is a hazy, quite cloudy copper hue. Fogginess is dynamic and thick. Pours with a 1-2 finger foamy white head which eventually fades to a thin collar and leaves no lacing behind in the glass.

S- Alcohol is potent initially but some classic hefe weizen characteristics can be detected in the background- clove, white bread, a hint of banana-and maybe even a hint of anise.

T-Mild fruity esters upfront-a hint of apple, and white grape. A slight grainy tone is in the background as well as a hint of yeast. Some banana and spice come through for the finish with a moderate alcohol bite and big alcohol heat. The alcohol is most prominent in the end but some initial flavors linger.

M- Body is fairly light and dry and has high carbonation as well as some spritzy champagne like qualities. The yeasty smoothness keeps it from falling into the champagne category.

D- This is a decent brew, that with age, is reminding me more of a belgian tripel (american interpretation) than a german ale. Its quite boozy but complex enough to be enjoyable. Not sure what this was like fresh-right now it is decent, but not the best NG brew out there.

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

Poured from 12oz bottle. Review from notes.

A- Pours a semi-hazy golden orange color. Three finger cloudy white head dies down pretty fast to a small cap on the beer. Sticky lacing binds together on the sides of the glass. Looks like a good beer.

S- With the age on this one it still isn't muted at all. Actually the aroma seems to jump out of the glass. Big fruity notes (banana and lighter apple) come into play first with some wheaty notes. Light bubblegum smell which is the first time I can really smell this in a beer. Lastly some hints of caramel malts in this as well.

T- Taste follows the aroma pretty much on par. I kind of wished I had this when it was fresh as the hops I think would have been amazing on this making the beer stand out more so than what it does now. This beer is a nice crossbreed between a hefe and lighter IPA flavor. Nothing more nothing less. Tasrte follows the aroma perfect to me

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Light drying on the palate. Big banana flavor left on the palate with light citrus hops. Aftertaste is more hefe than anything. Alcohol is well hidden in the beer which surprised me. Flavors are blended well together with this beer.

D- This is a well made imperial beer. I would only be able to drink a couple of these. Still would have liked a couple more for the cellar. I will be looking forward to them maybe making this again...are you listening New Glarus??

Photo of MasterSki
3.91/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to FlandersNed for this one. It's from February 2008. Served in a weizen glass.

A - Pours with four-plus fingers of soapy foam that dissipates slowly to a thick cap with tons of sticky lacing. Hazed dark golden orange color with some obvious suspended sediment and a few tiny bubbles. This is pretty much right on for a hefeweizen.

S - The smell is a cross between faded IPA and hefeweizen. I'm guessing this was hoppy a la Crack'd Wheat when it was fresh. It's aged into a potent blend of fruits, notably apple and banana, mixed with some caramel, malted wheat, and a hint of bubblegum. The smell is perceptible as soon as the cap is removed, and leaps out of the glass. Damn I wish I had this one when it was fresh. Alcohol is very well hidden.

T - Taste is more citrus (mostly orange & lemon) mixed with hefe yeast, bubblegum, and malted wheat. There's a mild soapy finish which I suspect is a result of the Cascade hops, and it's unfortunately a little distracting. Again, the booze is very hidden. This is definitely past its prime, but it still enjoyable.

M - Body is sufficiently big for the 9.6% ABV, but it's still refreshing like a session hefeweizen. Some zesty carbonation that's not overdone, and a little bit of residual graininess.

D - You can start feeling the higher ABV about halfway through the bottle, so I can't imagine having more than a couple of these. Still, I hope they make this again or better still introduce an Imperial Crack'd Wheat with this recipe.

Photo of coldmeat23
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

GLASS: Weizen Glass
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees

This pours a slightly hazy, golden orange color. It sits below a three-finger head of eggshell colored foam. The retention is great and the lacing is like the surface of the moon, solid white with little spots and divots all through it.

This beer has a powerful nose, which I can easily smell from about eighteen inches away. It has a huge yeastiness to it. It is also filled with a boatload of citrus fruit smells. A good amount of bubblegum. Light spice notes and citrus/floral hop notes.

This is like apple/pear/grapefruit jam spread on a biscuit. The big yeast presence and citrus presence are joined by orchard fruits and all of them are playing nicely together. Bananas, lemons, oranges and peaches are all here. Mild notes of bubblegum and spices, mostly clove.

This is full-bodied and slightly viscous. It is a touch bolder than I expect from the style, but I like it alot. Nice light-to-medium level of carbonation gives it a mild touch of creaminess, which is quite nice.

I like hefe's, in general. This a great example of what can be done with the style. I'd love to have regular access to this one.
Well done, New Glarus!

Photo of drizzam
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Poured a cloudy dark amber with a fluffy one finger head that refused to go away, leaving excellent lacing down the inside of the glass.

S - Very citrusy nose...grapefruit and orange rind. A very fruity smelling brew. You can tell Cascade hops were used with the citrus nature of this beer.

T & M - Very bold taste. All the citrus esters I got from the nose showed up in the taste. Unfortunately it finished with a big alcohol kick. I think this would be a better beer if it didn't have the 9.6% ABV. That being said, it is definitely worth a try. Mouthfeel is on the viscous side, almost oily.

D - Unfortunately the alcohol was a big detractor from the drinkability of this brew. It would have been much better had it not been for the huge ABV, or had it been masked a little better. Still worth trying a bottle though.

Photo of alcstradamus
3.33/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Found a stash of these at my favorite local beer spot. Not sure if they had had them stashed in the back of the cooler for the last 18 months or if perhaps the New Glarus distributor unloaded some old inventory on them. Either way, I'm excited!

Pours a clear glowing amber/orange color with 3 fingers of fluffy head that leaves lacing behind. Quite beautiful really.

Smell is apple peel, clove, biscuits, alcohol burn, and some pink bubblegum. Pretty bold...this doesn't appear to have faded any. We'll see how it tastes...

Hmmm, this is definitely unique in the world of Hefeweizens. Not sure if it is just the age, but I'm picking up more bold musty flavors and alcohol that I normally do from this style. Not bad though, just different. There are some subtleties floating around but mostly the taste is just orange peel, yeast, and booze.

Mouthfeel is highly carbonated and medium bodied. Solid in this department.

This one just has a bit too much heat for the style to give it good drinkability. I'm definitely glad I got to try it though.

Photo of russpowell
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this one from Beertracker, cheers Jeff! Review based on notes

Pours effervescent apricot with 2 fingers of cream colored head. Very good head retention & lacing

S: Loads of bubblegum & tropical fruit

T: Bananas, sweet tropical fruit & lemony hops up front. Mango & grapefruit assert themselves as this warms along with green bananas & appleskins. Finishes with more green bananas & appleskins

MF: Chewy & smooth carbonation

Drinks pretty, easy one I like, but don't love...

Photo of daledeee
3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice big head with a orange body and not too much cloudiness.

Nose is rich and sweet with alcohol and some floral undertones.

Taste is very fruity with apricot and hops. Mouth feel is a little weak for a wheat beer but that might be cause of the ABV. Drinkability is lower due to strong apricot which did not appeal to me. Still a fine beer just not my liking. Not characteristic of other wheat beers.

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Thumbprint Imperial Weizen from New Glarus Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 631 ratings.