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Portsmouth Wheat Wine - Portsmouth Brewery

Not Rated.
Portsmouth Wheat WinePortsmouth Wheat Wine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

107 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 107
Reviews: 66
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 10.3%
Wants: 67
Gots: 6 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Portsmouth Brewery visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Wheatwine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A toffee-like flavor predominates this bold & assertive wheat ale.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 03-08-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Portsmouth Wheat Wine Alström Bros
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Ratings: 107 | Reviews: 66 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of Jason
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 22 oz brown bomber with a bottled date on the label.

Appearance: Decent frothing with some killer stickage from a good head retention. Clear but quite dark, orangey brown in color.

Smell: Shortbread cookies, vague vanilla, caramel, sweet blueberry skin … clean nose and subtlety aromatic.

Taste & Mouth Feel: Creamy slick full bodied mouth feel. Thick malty palate with a warming alcohol attached. Modest hops let the malt character unfold; toasted malt, hint of soft cocoa, faintness of brown sugar and a bold spicy wheat. A touch of herbal hop middle to end. Nice lining in the finish of a toasted malt flavor.

Drinkability & Notes: This brew proves that wheatwines are very different from barleywines. Without a doubt this is a sipping brew, a great one none the less.

Jason, Mar 29, 2005
More User Reviews:
Photo of hopsleeroy
3.73/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Thanks again to JDV and pintsized

A-Cloudy yellowish amber if such a color exists. Little head
S-Diacetyl-Like butta'. Some malt flavor almost reminded me a buttered bread. Some light fruit flavor as warmed.
T-Alot like sweet buttery toffee. Some light peachy fruit and oak flavors were there as well, but the malt butter flavor dominated. Noticed the wheat flavor more as it warmed.
M-Creamy in the mouth. Nice.
D-Very interesting brew but too much butter flavor to make me reach for another one.

hopsleeroy, Jul 30, 2008
Photo of lordofthewiens
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This seemed like a good beer to drink on a snowy day (in April, yet). It was a hazy copper color with a small white head that dissipated quickly. Impressive lacing early on, but less later. It had a sweet, spicy odor, with a bit of graininess. It tasted sweet (caramel) with a little spice, and a lot of hops that lingered. It was a big, bold beer, very reminiscent of a barleywine.
Very good.

lordofthewiens, Apr 05, 2006
Photo of warriorsoul
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another fine offering from the Portsmouth Brewery.
Arrived in a 12oz. chalice...cloudy, dark mahogany in color w/ no head and very little lace.
Nice aromas packed w/ cherries, orange rind, honey, and a hint of alcohol.
The taste was excellent...I was expecting a much lighter/sweeter style ale, but was blown away by this one. Most of the scents mentioned above made its way into its flavor and the alcohol was not easily detected.
Mouthfeel was also thinner than I was expecting, but on par w/ most American Barleywines. Carbonation was perfect IMO.
Drinkability is good for the ABV...I could easily enjoy more than a couple of these in an evening.
Liked it so much I picked up two bombers to go...I believe JayT claims this one will be a year-round offering...that will keep me coming up every few months.
Great job...if you are a fan of barleywines, you need to try this brew.

warriorsoul, May 28, 2005
Photo of tigg924
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the brewery—served into a pint glass

Appearance: copper in color, hazy, minimal head, moderate carbonation

Smell: caramel and wheat

Taste: big time caramel, toffee, wheat, alcohol, and some hops—maybe citrus at the end

Mouthfeel: very sweet with alcohol burn—slight bitterness at the end, low carbonation, medium-heavy bodied

Overall: A nice, complex, and hot sipper. I like wheatwines and this one holds up as another highly recommended brew from Portsmouth. I would certainly get this again. It was my favorite from what I tried in my recent visit.

tigg924, Jan 04, 2012
Photo of ADR
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap, Extreme Beer Fest 2005...

Copper color, tends toward clearish. Sudsy head, leaves rings on the glass but not a lot of lacing. Lurking aroma, not overt, lightly fruity and somewhat estery, reminds me most of candied citrons with a bit of other candy elements to it. Active and nicely done carbonation -- parses out the licorice and ginger flavors well, making it fun in its mouthfeel and letting the flavors play out in grand style. Finishes with a light bit of green leaves and even some cigar tobacco (the 70 IBUs asserting themselves?). A bit of alcohol comes through at the close. This is a very entertaining beer to drink.

ADR, Feb 01, 2005
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%

acurtis, Sep 30, 2012
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Portsmouth- Wheat Wine

Appearance- Amber brown with a small light lacing head.
Smell- Big fruityness. Cherry, apple, and pomogranite.
Taste- Cherries and pomogranite really come through. Slight grape undertones. Chewy malt throughout really balances this beer out.
Mouthfeel- Sweet, yet never cloying.

Overall- Quite delicious and the high alc. is really hidden. This could easily be a session beer. My next trip up hopefully I'll buy a bomber or 2 to bring home.

NJpadreFan, Jul 10, 2007
Photo of jh1982
4/5  rDev +0.5%

jh1982, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of Photekut
5/5  rDev +25.6%

Photekut, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of qcbrewer
4/5  rDev +0.5%

qcbrewer, Jul 10, 2014
Photo of nickd717
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared at the after-Bruery tasting. Wait a minute - this wasn't wine, it was beer! Oh man, I love that joke. Actually, I thought this was Kate the Great at first after seeing the bottle, then I just realized that Portsmouth has the same boring label art on all their beers.

This "wheat wine style ale" pours slightly hazy orangish-copper with a one-finger white head.

Aroma is very nice, wheat, banana, clove, caramel, and hops.

Flavor is wheaty, yeasty, and mildly hoppy, very fruity with banana and mild citrus. A little alcohol. Pretty good for the style.

Medium-full body with slight syrupiness and booziness.

Drinkability is good for the ABV. A very nice beer overall.

nickd717, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of CharlesDarwin
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Originally reviewed May 29, 2005. On tap at the brewpub. Crystal clear ruby brown pour, with a thin light tan head. Light sweet cherries aroma. Very fruit with a light caramel tone. Some definate floral tones, but they’re coming from a hop I’m not familiar with. It’s more potpourri than hop. Distinctive strawberry and blackberry flavors. Maybe a hint of ginger. Geez this thing is deep. Light sweet maltedness and very well balanced.

CharlesDarwin, Aug 11, 2006
Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

GRG1313, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Wil for sharing this! Review is from written notes.

Saturated golden orange body, bubbles form a string of pearls around the edge. Spotty lace with a thin initial skim across the surface.

Rich and malty sweet caramel toffee aroma, fruity notes of plum and pear. The flavor brings more sweet fruitiness of apricot and apples.

Lush and velvety, creamy feel, with a sweet toffee aftertaste that additionally has a somewhat mellow bitterness. Very drinkable, almost perilously so in the words of the late Michael Jackson.

emerge077, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of fank2788
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice brown, pretty cloudy with a thin head and some lace. The smell is of blueberries a bit of vanilla and some heavier alcohols propanol for example. The taste is interesting, a bit sour almost more like a wild ale than a sweet wheat wine. The malt character is somewhat restrained I do notice a fair amount of caramel malt but it is pretty one dimensional and a bit syrupy. Bitterness seems to be limited only to the sourness and not really much from hops. The mouthfeel is pretty clean it does finish quite tingly and a little puckering. I'm not sure what is going on with this one. Perhaps I've got a bad bottle because it doesn't seem to match what others have said in their reviews. It is different and still enjoyable but not my favorite. Glad to get the chance to try it all the same.

fank2788, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of mikesgroove
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Believe it or not I had not tried this one before, I could have swore I did but apparently no. One of the random bottles I pulled from the fridge last night, served cold in a snifter, this one was consumed on 05/16/2010.

Nice pour, a very odd amber color, almost like apple juice with a light cloudiness to it. Small, very quickly fading head that left really no lacing at all. Strange.

First aroma is light, lots of fruit here, figs, grapes, touches of pears as well. Sweet with an almost candy like aroma at times that comes across nice at first but gets to be a little much after a while, still though decent and well recieved. First sip is slick, with an almost syrup like feel, just not carbonated enough for me, but thats the style, what can you do. Bready notes mix with loads of fruit and touches of earthy hop notes. Lots of bread and figs, pears especially in the finish are also very prevelant. Light boozy notes is covered quite well and one thing I can say is this did not drink like 11 percent.

Overall a very nice, solid beer. Not really my prefered cup of tea, but very solid none the less.

mikesgroove, May 18, 2010
Photo of heganhound
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

heganhound, Jul 08, 2012
Photo of richbrew
4/5  rDev +0.5%

richbrew, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky reddish brown, not much head with no lacing.

Smell is surprisingly weak, couldn't make out much of an aroma, slight malty aroma with some fruitiness though.

Taste is very smooth and slick, not quite what I expected but very welcome, the alcohol is well hidden and only has a slight warming sensation, very malty with a fruit backing.

deltatauhobbit, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of carln26
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I’ve been wanting to try Todd Mott’s Wheat Wine since he moved up to Portsmouth. On vacation about 5 years ago, I stopped by the Boston Beer and Fish company down town, and was blown away by his barleywine. This beer poured an amber color with a thick cream colored head. Mild hop aroma. There really wasn’t much beyond the hops in the nose. A mild boozy character, but little else/ The head did leave a remarkably good lace for this style. Mildly boozy taste too. A sweetness comes to the front with some citrus hop character. Very slick mouth feel. Ok drinkability. This wasn't what I remembered from 5 years ago, but was still a decent beer.

carln26, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of mountdew1
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass. No noticeable head. Was a slightly hazy/cloudy orange amber. Aroma was slightly fruity, maybe fig or prune. Hints of alcohol were detectable, along with bits of wheaty grain. Taste was up front sweet, but not in a sugary syrupy sweet way. Spiciness tended to end the sip, maybe some pepper? Felt outstanding in the mouth. Coated very well, felt great in the mouth. Hid the alcohol nicely, but still a sipping beer. Extremely pleasant, mellow beer.

mountdew1, May 31, 2010
Photo of HattedClassic
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%

HattedClassic, Jun 07, 2013
Photo of jasonjlewis
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I took notes on this with my cell phone. I'm sorry. I had a few wheat wines, and decided to get a good sample of this and use it as a reference when I want to explore more wheat wines. I enjoy the style.

Good head and retention. Nice apple phenol on the nose. This beer has a good strong and smeet maltiness fron the great amount of wheat. It is also balanced with a good hop bitterness. I enjoyed this beer and it made me seek out wheat wines to try when I was at the GABF to get a decent initial understanding of the style's characteristic. I am a fan of wheat wines.

jasonjlewis, Oct 15, 2007
Photo of IBUnit63
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber purchased at the brewery...into the Portsmouth snifter, of course...

Pours off a typical 2/3 finger ginger head (typical for this snifter) and tops a bourbon/dunkel body that's a little cloudy but pronounced and robust on the first pour. A later pour reveals a more substantial head - a little over a finger. Staying power isn't huge. Looks a more clear version of bourbon now.

js there a little diacetyl? Spicy ginger/cinnamon but a milky, blunt, sour haze is engulfing this. I am rather concerned. After a while (and I mean an hour or so) it subsides, bringing out a little more of the dried fruits...dates and so forth, but that first whiff was tough. I'm sensing a few baked apples in there, too. I stopped this bottle up and let it sit at room temperature for several hours...
...now I'm still getting a little buttery diacetyl (or is it more of a toffee?), but the wheat electricity has shown up...finally! Hops are still a little grassy but they don't provide a huge impact - having this aged, it's expected.

Hmmm. There's a bit of an unnatural temperament to this at first. It's not wheat electricity - it's just a dull, mildly sour, almost glu-ish buttery off note...again, straight butter or toffee? There's a hint of the style but it's way in the back at first. Missing residual sweetness and booziness; this has the heft and maybe with warmth I realize that it's not infected, but it's not releasing the bountiful flavor profile I'd expect. Very mild, with your typical dried fruits and all that. Something's missing...
...as mentioned, I stopped this and let it sit at room temperature for several hours and opened it back up. It's better now - the wheat has shown up quite nicely. Carbonation works with it very well. The taste profile is more mild - very light yet husky dates. A little bit of booziness keeps it interesting. All is not lost. Still, would prefer more of an impact here.

Weight on the palate is about right - slight syrupy heft. A little spice lightens it up but the inherent nature of the style doesn't really make it a spritely pour, and the wheat electricity is rather dormant...
...after stopping and re-opening there's a little spring in its step that's quite decent. Finish cleans up.

I've never been disappointed with Portsmouth offerings...and I really mean never...but this one is a little off the mark. Not sure if there's a capping problem or an inherent flaw (or the toffee thing again), but something leaves this wanting quite a bit. Heft makes it tough to plunder through the whole bomber. Even after stopping this up with a wine stopper and re-opening, what I'm left with is a decent example for the style but not the excellence I'm used to from Portsmouth. For the weight class the flavor is a little too meek. Maybe there's not a capping/bottling issue, but the off-flavor, butter, toffee or butter toffee at least burned off after a while. Still, it's not too bad for mere mortals. As far as the pure question of "how well it drinks," it drinks pretty well after breathing for quite a while.

IBUnit63, Jun 03, 2009
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Portsmouth Wheat Wine from Portsmouth Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.