1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Wells Banana Bread Beer - Wells & Young's Ltd

Not Rated.
Wells Banana Bread BeerWells Banana Bread Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,533 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,533
Reviews: 813
rAvg: 3.49
pDev: 18.91%
Wants: 64
Gots: 303 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Wells & Young's Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: rastaman on 08-15-2002)
View: Beers (42) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,533 | Reviews: 813 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rarbring
2.15/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A clear amber liquid with a nearly white head that leaves no lacing.

The smell is sweet, jelly beans and banana foam. Cookies and dough.

The taste is also very sweet, banana candy, lemon drops, and a short chemical bitterness.

The carbonation is rather sweet, and the fluid is rather watery.

Far too sweet for me and rather unbalanced, and I have a hard time imagining something that would go well with it.

Photo of joecast
4.1/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

initial head formation was quite impressive. a good inch thick off white and frothy above a clear, light amber beer with low carbonation. score had to be knocked down for poor retention as after only a few minutes the head was all gone leaving only a thin sparse lace. no lacing down the glass to speak of.

impressed by the aroma. i actually do pick up some banana. per the name, its not banana on its own, but some spice and breadiness. how the hell did they do this??

taste also has banana and bread aspects to it. still retains a beer background but the spicy, banana and bready characteristics are all there as well. lacks the hop part of the equation but the malt is certainly there.

the beer just feels too thin in the mouth and with the unique character here i think a bigger body would have helped carry it.

while the banana bread part was pulled off exceptionally well, this remains a novelty been for me. kind of circus like in that it is enjoyable, but only every couple of years.

Photo of jwillcourt
2.75/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the 25 oz bottle into a wine glass.

A - Orange shade of gold. Clear with a steady stream of bubbles. Pillowy, two-finger head that settles quickly into a skim of foam and leaves little lacing. Why did I expect banana bread beer to be a brown ale?

S - Smells just like banana taffy. It smells sticky but not too sweet.

T - Banana dominates the taste too. Bready malt flavor hides behind the bananas. It tastes like it was brewed with real bananas, rather than using artificial flavor. It tastes like bananas on white bread rather than banana taffy. It is sweet, but not too sweet. I commend it for that. However, the finish includes a bitter and unpleasant aftertaste that lingers too long. The hops counterbalance the banana and malt to keep the beer from tasting too sweet, but the hop flavor just doesn't work well. There is a funny sour taste in some sips as well. Where are the nuts? I can't find them.

M - Medium body. Carbonation is a little heavy. It grows more creamy as it warms and the carbonation dissipates. It does not feel sticky, as I expect from the smell.

D - This beer is very filling for its medium feel. The poor aftertaste also discourages me from having another.

Overall - This banana bread beer is what it says. It succeeds in that respect. But I expected something more like a loaf of banana bread: brown, roasted caramel malt, nuts, bananas, spices. The label claims "banoffee" flavor, so why wouldn't I expect a toffee malt flavor? It should say "banaffy."

I recommend drinking this beer along with food. You need something to take the bitter aftertaste out of your mouth quickly and to complement the bananas. I ate candied walnuts, and they improved the beer a lot.

Photo of ShadesOfGray
3.88/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1pt 9oz bottle into my Mad Elf tulip. Pours a copper color, light and clear. Little head that disapates very quickly. Lacing isn't really a factor since it slides extremely quickly down the sides of the glass.

Aroma is, well...of banana. Kind of like sour banana. With that said, that's about all I can pick up in the nose.

Flavor is like your average crisp carbonated ale, followed by a long lasting banana aftertaste. Banana flavor is overall light, which surprised me. I was expecting heavy banana sweetness...but alas, not at all. Once again, pretty mild...light mouthfeel. Not overly sweet. Not bad.

Photo of SPThirtyThree
2.35/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A: Crystal clear, darker than an amber, more brown than red. Light a bright mahogany. One finger-sandstone head. Head retention is fairly high - it keeps a solid lid on the beer until the finish.

S: An explosion of banana smell, and not in a good way. The banana smell doesn't seem genuine, but rather, an artifical, candy banana flavors. Nutty and bready, with an almondlike biscuit malt smell. The combination of banana and nutty brown clearly provide inspiration for the "banana bread" title, but it still falls short of the real smell of banana bread. Slightly too tart, like apples.

T: There it is again, too much banana. The banana tastes exactly like banana Runts candy. Yuck. Saccharin taste. More citrus hops than were present in the nose, which adds a nice lemongrass taste. This flavor is actually very pleasant and compliments the awful rotten candy banana taste. Some nuttiness. Some acetaldehyde.

M: Light, and soft. Not much here.

D: Low. I'm not sure banana is actually soluble in water, so artificial flavoring seems likely, although the label indicates that "Fairtrade Bananas" were used. Right. A handful of bananas and a gallon of banana flavoring.

Photo of WeezyBoPeep
3.7/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a dark brown bottle into a standard pint glass.

A: Clear copper with a little soda-like head.

S: Super ripe bananas and a sugary sweet character are accented by an underlying grainy scent. Corn maybe?

T: Better than the smell. Slightly sweet and nicely carbonated front, banana peel in the middle with slightly bitter malts and floral hops, good balance. Bitter finish with a miscellaneous spice that lingers for a little.

D: For me, pretty high. I've come to realize that anything "banana flavored" is going to come across as artifically flavored, but I happen to love banana flavor so this beer could be enjoyed over an evening.

Value: The worst thing about this beer. I paid $4.99 for a bottle. Should be priced at half that.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up because I've never tried this before and it seemed like an appealing flavor. While this was a bit of a letdown, it wasn't a bad beer and if it's a novelty that you're going after, this will more than suffice!

The deep apricot hue was nice but there was little head and no lacing to be seen once I started to work my way down my glass. This has a very thin mouthfeel to it and it seemed almost like mineral water in terms of it's consistency. There's banana here but the malt-liquor aspects of this beer show up much sooner than the smoothness does in the back. I expected a beer like this to look and taste much thicker along the lines of banana bread, but it's just not meant to be here.

The lightness extends to the alcohol, which can hardly be felt here. Polishing off one of these wouldn't be that hard to accomplish in terms of how strong it is but it takes too long for the European-like hops in the back to kick in. Worth a try once only because I have yet to find anything out there remotely close to this!

Photo of tavernjef
3.45/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark goldenrod, glossy and semi clear with a slim khaki hued foam that crowns itself briefly. Lacing in a few strains of torn and tattered tissue paper are flecked about the glass.

Aroma is quite nice, very bready and doughy fresh, fresh yet browned banana, deeply soggy, kinda mushy, with a super nice splice of sweet dry nuttyness and butter.

Flavor is simple and a bit more low key compared to how much aroma it kicks off. Plain grainyness with a small pitch of breadyness and a tablespoon of banana and nuts. The finish is what really keeps this from being better as it gets off on some wierd drying medicinal, metalic taint taste as it drys with tannins of tin.

Body is lighter then medium with a simple, easy going tone that's partially watered down in some areas. More malt please. And the finish is just so off with its quickened dryness and tinny tone.

Incredible aroma, but stops there and goes downhill quickly as it doesn't quite have the taste and body to back it up.

Photo of jhall00
2.48/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- pours dark brown beer with little to no head

S- Well....bananas over some malts

T- Well...bananas, sort of. And then nothing.

M- Very limited mouthfeel. No body.

D- For me, not so much. For my wife, who is a fan of fruity beers, not so much either. She was frankly disappointed.

Definitely cannot drink more than one in a sitting.

Photo of WhiteOak
3.33/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- bright golden amber. Eruptive head w/ white lacy foam.

S- Banana taffy.

T- Initial (somewhat contrived) banana flavor, followed my light-bodied malt, a touch of cookie dough.

M, D- Too light on structure and too heavy on CO2. Perhaps a passable hot-weather thirst quencher, but not suitable for serious ale drinking. Nothing very objectionable, but nothing inspiring either.

Photo of fastsrt
3.85/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

bottle to pint glass
A: iced tea, 2 finger head
S big on banana, a touch of spice and hops
T: banana, spice and hops
M: dry, lingering banana and hops
D: its good but, would only be willing to drink one of theses. It would pair well with some foods and is unique, a good change of pace.

Photo of DerBayer
1.4/5  rDev -59.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

The thing that stands out about this beer is the sickly and artificial smell of bananas which nothing to do with the beautiful taste of say Hefeweizen but smells and tastes chemical sweet and sickly.

In short this beer is entirely hampered by what it purports to be - Banana bread beer!

Photo of hoegaardenhero
4.18/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a:no head, crystal clear amber-brown body
s: hints of banana, on a toastd sweet malt backbone; pretty mild nose byt definitely u can smell the banana
t: so much bananabread flavor i am simply amazed; super sweet bananas; there isnt really much to sat escept that it is really sweet and tastes like banana bread
m: could br a little less watery ; has light-med carb
d: i would drink it asgai many times, i would session it; and it would be a good beer to give to that annoying female friend you have who

Photo of PhiGDeltaBrewman
2.95/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

bought this beer due to curiosity of my lovely girlfriend (she brews beer too) and we didnt know what expect, lambic? framboise? it has a nice color, good carbonation, and one hella banana taste!

good toasted/nutty balance to cut through the banana flavor, its a woodsy banana beer without all the sweetness of a lambic.

wouldnt necessarily buy it again but its better than some beer!

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a 3 oz. Sam Adams sampler.

A: Poured a golden amber color with a slight chilled haze and a thin film of carbonation leaving no real lace.

S: Smells spot on like banana bread; a baked grain smell with bananas and a little walnut aroma.

T: Taste mimics the smell pretty closely, although the grains are a lighter and brew a little fizzier than I expected. Finish and aftertaste is a smooth lingering banana bread though.

M: Mouthfeel is pretty smooth although a tad on the carbonated/fizzy side.

D: Pretty nice as an apertif or dessert brew, as well as pairing fantastically with banana bread, spice cake or banana nut muffin.

Photo of McDosey
1.88/5  rDev -46.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Had a pretty mellow New Year's Eve this year. Just wanted to catch Canada in the World Junior Hockey Championship, eat some frozen spinach pizza and enjoy my bottle of Wells Banana Bread Beer. Well, Canada won in a shootout, the pizza was actually better than expected, but I fell short of the hat trick because this beer missed the mark for me.

Things started promising, with a pillowy two-finger head developing after a straight-down-the-middle pour. The eggshell-colored head showed good retention and would re-appear on command after a couple swirls. The beer itself was a medium-dark amber, very clear, with some copper highlights.

Unfortunately, my first sniff confirmed my suspicion about this beer's unique flavoring. Rather than a rich, organic, banana bread fragrance, I got a thin, chemical whiff of banana candy. If you're familiar with banana Runts, then you know the smell. Cool for sugar snacks for six-year-olds, not cool for a $4 bottle of beer.

The taste revealed nothing that the smell already hadn't - more thin, chemical banana candy flavor without much else of interest. A slightly soapy, mineraly, flinty taste arrived behind the banana and finished quick and bitter. No aftertaste, nothing to savor. Like many other posters, I was hoping for something deeper, richer and more layered.

Overall, the beer was watery and thin, with little complexity. I found the chemical notes and bitter, flinty character not to my taste and dumped half the bottle.

For those looking for a good banana-flavored beer, I'm sure many hefe-weizens would fit the bill. There was a great one in Toronto at a brewpub called Denison's, but it's been closed for years and I'm not sure whether the beer went with it.

As far as Wells entry goes, it's a thumbs down for me, which is too bad because the idea is a good one and I do like banana bread. Maybe the beer is poorly executed, maybe I got a bad bottle, maybe my taste buds don't know sh*t, or maybe a banana bread beer is just not meant to be. After all, I like pizza too, but a pepperoni and sausage ale would surely fail from the start.

Photo of Contra
3.18/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Seeing a bottle of "Banana Bread Beer", I had to try it. I love the banana-like flavor of Tripels, so this might be worth a try, I figured. It's about what expected, although, oddly enough, the banana bread flavor is much more accurate than I thought it would be. Otherwise, it has a copper ale feel to it, and it does that quite well.

It's certainly worth trying, and it's not bad at all. Still, I'd rather have a slice of banana bread (preferably with some cream cheese on top) and a beer on the side (preferably not at the same time, but who knows). If you like banana bread, then definitely try it out. But I wouldn't get more than a bottle.

Photo of Richardberg
3.13/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - poured into a stemmed water glass. dark amber, mostly translucent but not see-thru, small cream head

S - huge banana esters, a little nutty bread

T - like the smell, plus some hops. Overall more bitter than sweet which surprised me.

M - lots of carbonation, somewhat crisp, bitter finish lingers

D - despite low ABV this would be tough to finish >1 due to crazy and not terribly attractive flavors

Photo of jpschouest
3.2/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured beer into a pint glass.

A= It was dark copper, amberlike very clear color in appearance.
S= faint smell of banana nut bread, but a roasty malty smell
T=definitely tasted like bananas, but also had a amber bock hint in it
M=very little carbonation but was descent
D= I like it but not one of my favorite beers.

Photo of SAABtech
2.88/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

average appearance.

smells like a bock with bananna hints

taste is unexpectinly differant, I wanted to taste a grainy bread with the hint of sweetness in bananna and instead i tasted a hop bitterness and a lacking sweetness to combat it. i would have ejoyed some more roasted malt flavors to add some complexity to the flavor but found it a little lacking. but overall a fair taste. (i would not have been able to brew one this good)

feels a little under carbonated and not as full as a beer whose claim is bananna BREAD.

Photo of natelocc787
3/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'll keep this one short and to the point. Cloudy yellow golden body with a big bubbled ivory head. The smell is mostly overripe banana, sugar, and a toasty malt character as well. The taste is the opposite of robust, muted, over carbonated banana soda with a shot of booze in the back. Lacking overall and very average if not below.

Photo of psujmatt
3.05/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1pt 0.9oz bottle into a goblet, which was probably silly but convenient. I drank well more than half, sharing the remainder.

A: Looks pretty standard. A big of an orange tint to an otherwise amber appearance.

S. Smells like a commercial banana nut muffin that you just opened from a plastic wrapper--not homemade goodness, but a definite authentic aroma.

T. A big let down after the aroma, although I have to admit I'm not sure I'd want a powerfully banana beer. I also expected a bit more bread-like tones, which seemed absent. I really was left wanting a banana-bread wheat beer instead of this. It tasted like a plain lager with banana flavoring added. No really bad flavors (unless you hate bananas!), but nothing exciting. A little like "fake" banana flavor, or banana syrup.

M. A little silky, but not noteworthy.

D. Went down very easily due to the sweetness and low alcohol, which was completely hidden in the fruitiness. I was not impressed with the beer but easily finished it with no hesitation.

Photo of cdizinno
4.13/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Poured into a tulip glass from a brown bottle(same label as pictured)

A: Amber to orange color with off-white head and moderate lacing.

S: Nice heavy banana scent. That's all I smell and that's all I have to say about that.

T&M: It's smooth and banana and slightly beerish. Mostly banana on the fade away. Wow. Much better than I expected.

If you need a potassium fix while drinking, I haven't found the content, but this may be the thing for you. Very good!

Photo of 1759Girl
4.43/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Perhaps earlier, unfavorable reviews were due to the clear bottle in the photo? I just poured a glass out of a brown bottle and was quite pleased. This may be the second fruit beer that I have ever liked.

Appearance>Clear, lively, small head dissipates quickly, no lacing.

Smell>Bananas, hops and burnt sugar. Excellent

Taste>Bitter start, hop punch, smoothes out with a resiny hang... But all the while there is an overlying (and not overpowering) layer of fresh baked banana bread. I think it's grand.

Mouf> Just okay

Drinkability> Sure!

Photo of mfabian12
3.88/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Dark amber color. One finger head and slight lacing on the glass.

Smell - Obvious banana permeating through. Smelled like an ale though. A little less banana-y than I expected

Taste - Exactly like a banana bread which I love, so this was obviously enjoyable for me. It definitely lives up to its name

Mouthfeel - It was pleasantly crisp and carbonated. Nice consistency.

Drinkability - Very smooth with a clean finish. It was a very interesting beer and definitely something different. I would definitely buy another bottle

Wells Banana Bread Beer from Wells & Young's Ltd
80 out of 100 based on 2,533 ratings.