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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: 66
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
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Ratings: 107 | Reviews: 66 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sendsilk
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%

Reviewed from notes:
22 oz bottle poureat a recent barleywine tasting. No indication as of the year or date.

Let me start by saying this was at a barleywine tasting and I really don't care for barleywines. This was one of the few offerings that I was able to bring froma great trader up in the NE.

This wheat wine was very refreshing as it differed pretty nicely from the barleywines. Notes of citrus, honey and a somewhat floral bouquet. Nice creamy mouthfeel and great taste, but can taste the alcohol coming through. My wife would really like this one. Wouldn't mind having one again.

sendsilk, Jun 16, 2011
Photo of MasterSki
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%

Mini-vertical. '10 sent to me by Reagan1984, '09 supplied by Mike (AgentZero). Served in a Russian River tulip. I'm going to mainly review the 2010, as it was superior. The '09 seemed..."off".

A - A finger of white foam settles to a partial cap and leaves behind spotty lace. The body is a transparent orange. In contrast the '09 was hazy and darker in color.

S - Fruity esters, sharp wheat and toasted grain, light honey, and some sugary notes as well. The '09 had a strange off aroma that was very musky and vaguely reminiscent of body odor and cologne.

T - Taste has more apple flavor mixed with fruity yeast esters, sweet malted grains, and surprisingly well-hidden alcohol. Somewhat bland, but easy enough to drink. The '09 again has a weird cloying rotten fruit flavor.

M - Medium body, low carbonation, and a fairly clean finish. Minimal alcohol presence - surprised to see this is 11%, as I would have guessed 9% tops.

D - The '10 was a pretty good wheatwine, a style that I don't generally find very exciting. The '09 had unfortunate similarities to the '10 Bare Tree from Two Brothers (although it wasn't nearly as awful). While the '10 is one of the better Portsmouth offerings I've had, it's not something I'd actively seek out or highly recommend. Still, the well-hidden alcohol and inoffensive flavor led me to have a second pour.

MasterSki, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%

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 mothman
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%

Courtesy of kbutler1

Pours ½ finger of beige head. Color is an amber orange.

Aroma: Sweet. Honey flavors, caramel, green apples, wheat. Fairly hoppy.

Taste: Sweet honey, kind of wine like (even though I know the style wheat wine has nothing to do with it having wine like flavors). Fruits. Bananas, green apples, some spices, wheat. Pretty solid. A decent amount of hops as well.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Nice feel to it. Ends clean.

Overall, a really solid wheat wine. Nice flavors and a good drinkability. A must try.

mothman, May 19, 2011
Photo of kbutler1
4.1/5  rDev +3%

Bottle. Poured into a tulip glass a slighlty hazy copper color with a slight white head. Crazy sweet aroma with big notes of caramel and fruit. Medium/heavy mouthfeel with slight mouthfeel. Nice lace on the glass. Very sweet with notes of honey, caramel, and orange. It’s actually a pretty good beer with nice flavors. Some banana as well. The alcohol is surprisingly mild in the flavor. Overall, a solid beer that I would drink again. Split between 5 people was the perfect amount as I think the sweetness may become a little overpowering with bigger pours.

kbutler1, May 12, 2011
Photo of Reagan1984
4.1/5  rDev +3%

A nice aggressive tan head forms atop this beer. There seems to be a distinct almost dull straight brown amber color to wheat wines. This one does not stray from what I've seen from other versions of the style. A healthy amount of lacing.

Aroma is deep, thick and quite nice. Very fruity. Just a hint of alcohol. Certainly hints of grain/wheat here.

The fruit festival continues in the flavor. There is a pleasant combination of light caramel, wheaty bread flavors and the fruit. ABV is not in your face and there is a nice warming tone to the flavor. Enjoying this. My buddy who is learning about beers and different styles loves it.

Bold body, slick and warming, but not hot from ABV.

Enjoyed sharing this bomber with a buddy and wish I had another.

Nice beer.

Reagan1984, Mar 19, 2011
Photo of ToasterChef
3.9/5  rDev -2%

Reviewed from my notes. Served in a tulip glass at the brewery. This is the 2010 edition of the Wheat Wine (it was listed as Aged Wheat Wine at the pub).

A: Cloudy burnt orange liquid. Tan bubbles on top settle down to expose the liquid. I cannot see any rising carbonation. Swirling the glass leaves behind plenty of film and foam.

S: Some sweetness and some alcohol. Reminds me of crystalized ginger, but also has some ties to strong English ale styles (Barleywine, Old Ale).

T: Some fruit and alcohol. Apple, pear and plum are all present--lots of non-citrus fruits! Tastes of honey as well.

M: Full bodied, but viscous. The carbonation tickles my tongue, as does the alcohol. Sticky lips. Light coating that is sweet.

D: A slow drinking beer. 10 ounces is plenty at the end of this session. Strength and thickness of the body limit this beer.

ToasterChef, Mar 03, 2011
Photo of aerozeppl
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%

From notes.

A: The beer was a deep copper color with a touch of orange to it as well. Impressive lacing for the ABV. White head with about a quarter finger.

S: The nose was quite fruity for a wheatwine. A little bit of alcohol creeping in. The wheat did come across nicely. Got a little bit of pineapple. For a moment it had something in common with Bottle Rocket in that how the hops in that come across super fruity.

T: The taste was awesome. The best non oak aged etc wheatwine I have ever had. Not that boozy enough malt and yeast complexity to keep you coming back. The fruity esters really made this one for me.

M: Little bit on the thick side. Carbonation was soft and enjoyable.

D: I wish there were more examples of this style out there. This is the second best beer I have ever had from them.

aerozeppl, Feb 19, 2011
Photo of fank2788
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

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 womencantsail
2.98/5  rDev -25.1%

Thanks to Joe for sending me this beer awhile back in the 666 BIF.

A: The pour is a deep golden-copper color with a finger's worth of off-white head.

S: A slight sour fruit note to the nose along with caramel,brown sugar, and grapefruits. Also some dark fruit notes and a touch of alcohol make their way into the aroma.

T: The sourness is much more pronounced in terms of the flavor. I think an accurate descriptor would be caramel covered sour apples. There is some brown sugar and a light fruity character to the beer as well, but it's really overwhelmed by the sourness.

M: The body is medium to full with a slightly sugary/grainy feel on the tongue and a lively carbonation.

D: The sourness kept this from being cloying, but it wasn't exactly what I was expecting or hoping for.

womencantsail, Sep 06, 2010
Photo of joepais
4.9/5  rDev +23.1%

Well time to break down and review another of my regular drinking beers. I am doing it because this years batch deserves it. Not that the others didn't but this one was especially good

I kicked back yesterday with a growler of this and a growler of IPA along with a couple cigars and watched the world cup. I poured it into a strait pint and got a short lived tan head that went away and left a ring of bubbles around the glass. The body was orangey brown if that's a color. The aroma was sweet and caramel Yup there are some sugars' there. There are also some nice dark fruits present in the aromas as well. The flavor comes off the same as the nose but what makes this years special to me was the lack of alcohol heat this brew. It is dangerous there is no warning at all that this is a big beer and the flavor is so delicious that you get sucked into drinking more. It was a great sipper medium to full body with light carbonation it comes off like a cordial more that a brew to me.

This one needs to head back to GABF this year great job guy's

joepais, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of Boppar
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%

Alright, review #100!

Served from the tap into a tulip glass.

A: Deep, deep gold to the point that it is almost orange. Two fingers of huge, billowy head.

S: Hard to detect too much going on in here except for alcohol heat, and some wheat.

T: The taste is bold and assertive, yet smooth. It is a very malt-heavy beer with almost no detectable hop presence, except for the faintest hint of ginger. I don't know where that's coming from, but I'm glad it's there. It tastes of sweet breads.

M: Thick, heavy, and slick.

D: It does down a little too well for 11.00% ABV. One could get himself into trouble with this one.

Boppar, Jun 05, 2010
Photo of mountdew1
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%

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 mikesgroove
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%

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 BeckyFreesTibet
4.22/5  rDev +6%

Another solid offering from Portsmouth. The appearance was coppery, hazey and golden with moderate egg-shell colored head. The bourbon, brown sugar, candied fruit and slight maltiness in the aroma actually reminded me of a scotch ale. The taste was a little syrupy and a little boozey but was true to the smell, with noticeable yeast and sweet fruit and a nice caramel hint. The mouthfeel was also a little syrupy but overall very pleasant. Drinkability was average for the style.

BeckyFreesTibet, Apr 21, 2010
Photo of nickd717
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%

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 Gosox8787
4.18/5  rDev +5%

Presentation: On tap at the brewery poured into a snifter.

Appearance is hazy mahogany to medium brown with a light beige one finger head with decent retention. Strong bouquet of brown sugar, molasses, wheat, and slight booze. Taste is lots of brown sugar and molasses sweetness countered by some light fruit notes. Not much hop bitterness, just enough to keep the brew from being overwhelmingly sweet. The wheat also presents nicely providing a nice breadiness to the brew. Mouthfeel is full and very creamy. Drinkability is rather average due to the high ABV, strong flavors, and full mouthfeel. Definitely a sipper.

Overall, my first experience with this style was pleasant and enjoyable. Great flavors and a stellar mouthfeel really made this a standout in my mind.

Gosox8787, Dec 05, 2009
Photo of rpstevens
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Poured from a bottle into a Portsmouth Tulip.

The beer pours a deep amber with ruby highlights. The head is a frothy white two-finger affair that fades quckly to a white still crust. There's some oily lacing left on the sides of the glass.

The smell is sugared candy malts (or is that a sugar cookie sweet? this beer is hard to pin down), a splash of citrus, caramel, a hint of blueberry?, and a slight boozy (yet strawberry) sweetness.

The taste is incredibly complex, candied fruits, caramel, orange, lemon, graham cracker, and fresh cut grass roll over each other and compete for attention. The final taste is strawberry jam sweetness, very interesting.

The beer is heavy, almost syrupy, and the alcohol is still present even after aging, but the flavors keep enticing me back to the glass, dangerous.

It is worth noting that when this beer was released I found it almost undrinkable on draft, it was hot and almost overly malty sweet. By the end of its time on draft I started to enjoy it, and now the bottle is really coming into it's own after a few months.

rpstevens, Oct 15, 2009
Photo of rye726
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

Pours a medium brown with tints of amber and a thin beige head. Nose has sugary malts, citrus, caramel, toffee, grassy hops and ripe fruits. Taste has more sweet fruits, wheaty malts, dark candies and floral hops. Medium body is well carbonated. Tasty Wheatwine from Portsmouth. Drinks very easy for the style.

rye726, Sep 13, 2009
Photo of Buebie
4.1/5  rDev +3%

Picked up this little lovely from joepais.

Poured from a bomber into an oversized merlot glass. The pour produced a smallish half inch white head, quick to recede and leave really no lace.
The color is a darker brownish red, with darker glowing copper colors. Its not transparent, but not completely hazy either.
Retention ring leaves a thin collar.

Aroma is sweet and malty, caramel, brown sugar, tangerines, a citric floral note, no alcohol present.

Taste is pretty fruity upfront with more tangerines, caramelized sugars, vanilla, a touch of a bourbon. The weat comes in much stronger as it has warmed to near room temperature. There is a strange aftertaste that reminds me a bit of orange peel. Hops bite just enough to keep the balance very even. Citric like with good amount of orange and a touch of banana.

Mouthfeel is slick with mild carbonation and a bit sticky with just a bit of a syrupy texture.

This is a delicious brew, very grateful to have tried it. No warming in aroma, but mildly in taste and not at all boozy. Very interesting take on this, not sure what style its following, but overall its refreshing and delicious. Hoppy, malty, wheat, citric surges....delicious.

Thanks Joe!

Buebie, Jul 17, 2009
Photo of IBUnit63
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%

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
Photo of Overlord
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Thanks to rpstevens for the great trade!

Pours an orange-ish brown. Big tan head. Smells like ... caramel, brown sugar, some orange-y citrus, and an almost hefe-weizenish wheat backing. Interesting.

The taste, is frankly, a bit raw, but pretty tasty nonetheless. Some definite barleywine character with the sweet malt and creamy mouthfeel, but it almost tastes like it was blended with a wit and a hefeweizen, as there is orange/tart citrus and wheat in there as well.

Good, would revisit, but will probably never get the chance.

Overlord, May 29, 2009
Photo of Durge
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

This beauty presents a thick and dark caramel brown color, cloudy and mysterious. It has a decent medium sized off-white head and goodly patchess of lace on this classic chalice served at the Portsmouth Brewery. The aroma is an intense, but tasteful butterscotch caramel, plain and true, very enticing. The taste brings strong malt sugars and hints of licorice and floral hops blended nicely into a full bodied, viscous, fair alcoholed brew of great distinction. Midland drinkability but normal for this style. Quite sweet, perhaps a bit much for the uninitiated. It definitly brings a red wine quality along with the tartness of cherries and the acrid contrast of grassy wheat. Quite a solid brew that deserves a try by anyone interested in the more intense varieties.

Durge, May 29, 2009
Photo of RblWthACoz
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Pours a pretty fogged in brown with an orange tone and a thin creme head. Nose is malty caramel. Slight touch of orange on the nose as well I think? Flavor is interesting in its caramel tones. That touch of orange is there as well. There is a hit of alcohol that doesn't come until the latter part of the ride of flavor. Fairly robust. Almost seems slightly like a barleywine. Feel is thick enough on liquid. Carbonation is slightly subdued, but still nibbles just a slight bit on the tongue. Not too shabby. A bit boozy, but overall a nice production. Would love to see how this ages.

Thanks to brewandbbq for this one!

RblWthACoz, May 25, 2009
Photo of Damian
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%

Drank from a 1 pint 6 fluid ounce bottle purchased at the Portsmouth Brewery, Portsmouth, NH
Served in a snifter

The beer poured a cloudy, dark rust color with a small, light tan head that faded to a layer of bubbly froth. As the beer warmed, the chill haze eased up and the liquid turned a hazy shade of ruby red.

The aroma was sweet, smooth and boozy. Bready. Rich and malty with a noticeable spicy quality.

The taste was intense. The beer indeed was like a cross between a barleywine and a hefeweizen, with the former style being more dominant. Malty (caramel malts came through strong), sweet and boozy. Bitter orange peel appeared up front. Super piney hops and some sour notes came through in the center and lasted into the resonating tart (lemony) and bitter finish.

The mouthfeel was medium-light bodied for the style (a touch watery) with a fine and mild carbonation. Somewhat smooth and creamy initially. Sticky on the lips. By the drink's end, the beer was nearly flat.

Drinkability was decent. This was a tasty and intriguing (yet super hoppy and boozy) beer that is definitely not for the faint of heart.

Wheatwines are slowly become a more popular style amongst a number of craft brewers, and that is a good thing. Although I enjoyed this offering from the Portsmouth Brewery, it was not one of the better examples I have come across.

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