1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat - Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Leinenkugel's Sunset WheatLeinenkugel's Sunset Wheat

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,095 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,095
Reviews: 871
rAvg: 3.36
pDev: 20.83%
Wants: 25
Gots: 143 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Witbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Belgian Wit in style, but brewed with a lager yeast strain and a top-note of blueberry added (info directly from the Leinenkugel Bros).

(Beer added by: jj21 on 03-16-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,095 | Reviews: 871 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BBM
3.1/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a cloudy, fizzy yellow into the pint glass. Nice, sturdy head on this one. Good looking beer overall. Smell was very fruity; berries, citrus, bread... perhaps a bit too fruity. Fake-fruit to boot.

The taste was also way too sweet. You get the same berry and citrus flavor, along with a biscuity wheat flavor, but it doesn't work too well. It tasted much like Fruity Pebbles, between the sweetness and the wheat. That can't be a good thing. The orange and lemon flavors really come at you, but it's more of a sweet citrus than a bitter one. On top of that, the mouthfeel was WAY too fizzy and thin. I know it's a summer drink, but it felt like a soda.

Still, despite all that I found myself downing two fairly easily. This isn't the worst wheat beer out there, but it's not the best either. Seems like it's becoming more readily available, so give it a try.

BBM, May 15, 2007
Photo of TheSarge
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sunset Wheat pours with a finger thick, bright white head, which dissipates rather quickly into fine lacing. The body of this brew is ultra cloudy and is apricot in color. Lacing lasts all the way through.

The aroma provided is of subtle hints of orange rind, cotton candy, and perhaps a touch of strawberry bubble gum.

This tastes initially orangy, more specifically blood orange. As the brew warmed up a little bit, I can detect peppery and blueberry flavors.

Every sip feels like I'm biting into an orange. Well balanced between the hops and the wheat malt.

This makes a good session beer, even my wife liked it.

TheSarge, May 14, 2007
Photo of Monkeyknife
3.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served up a nice hazy summer yellow with a rich creamy head. Lacing was moderate.

Aroma was loaded with citrus while the wheat presence was slim-to-none.

Too sweet! This beer was over the top with fruity sweetness. Almost like a shandy but with more orange than lemonade. As in the smell, the wheat was hardly there.

Heavy carbonation and light-medium body.

To each their own but this beer wasn't for me. Too much citrus–too much sweet.

Monkeyknife, May 13, 2007
Photo of genog
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

had this on tap a BW3 for a good price.
poured a very rich orange color with hazy character. Limited smell with the low temp of the serving. Tasted very nice strong orange wheat flavors that lingered through the first half of the experience. Very nice light carbonation that lingered in my mouth.

It was a good beer, had a few since it was the special. I would give this a solid recommendation for someone who wants a light summer ale.

genog, May 13, 2007
Photo of dojobrewco
3.23/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Interesting hazy orange color and a thin head that seems to be retaining well so far. Very slight hop bitterness. Overly citrus but with just enough wheat character. Very refreshing summer brew. Good change of pace from the darker brews. I will probably buy another sixer of this one soon.

dojobrewco, May 13, 2007
Photo of Guardian
4.33/5  rDev +28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a great summer beer. It tastes literally like liquid fruity pebbles and the drinkability is first rate. My only complaint at all is that I get a feeling that drinking too many of these in a session may be too sickeningly sweet.

I have this in my top 5 of current beers to drink.

Guardian, May 12, 2007
Photo of mooseisloose
3.38/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very sweet smell in the bottle. Poured it into my trusty chalice. Great head. Color golden and opaque. Head has staying power. Taste is very different. Sweet like honey with hints of black licorice. Very creamy mouthfeel. A very sweet bitter finish. Laces nicely on the glass. Jake and family has done a good job brewing a good variety of beers since the old days of the original standby Leinie's.

mooseisloose, May 12, 2007
Photo of shroompod
3.35/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy pale yellow , decent carbonation.

Smell is fruity, blueberry.

Taste is blueberry and pretty much nothing else. With this amount a fruit flavoring I'd expect maybe some blueish red hue, or something on the label stating so.

Mouthfeel is good, light, decent carbonation.

Overall drinkability of this good if you can get over the shocking abundance of fruit flavor.

shroompod, May 11, 2007
Photo of bklynbeerbaron
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle, poured into a pilsner glass.

Appearance: A cloudy, pale yellow with a thick, pillowy white head that dissipates but still leaves some decent lacing.

Smell: A sweet, orange aroma, no bitterness

Taste and mouthfeel: Very sweet and citrusy - I get orange and lemon. You can taste the blueberry in the back, but it doesn't overwhelm. Mildly spicy and hoppy - alcohol is nonexistent. Mouthfeel is crisp, light carbonation and finishes clean.

Drinkability: Extremely refreshing and goes down nice and easy.

Notes: Not a witbier in my book, doesn't have the spice complexity. Just a nice, uncomplicated wheat ale and a solid sessioner on a hot day.

bklynbeerbaron, May 09, 2007
Photo of ctdfalconer
1.85/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Now here's a very common problem with a lot of witbier brewers: they act like it's a blank slate that will accept any old flavor and they shovel in a heinous load of spices or an orchard of orange peels or worse yet, a bucket full of fruit extract, and they end up with a horribly disjointed, off-balance candy-beer that they call a witbier because it's an exotic name that will sell a few cases. This is all well and good but for the love of wheat, please don't call it a witbier!
A great witbier is a study in subtlety. It has just a touch of spicyness, just a bare whiff of aromatic citrus, a light twang of phenol from the yeast, a hint of tartness and a delicate dry finish. All these things are present and harmonious, none are overt. Sadly, this is a rarity, but it's a good sign that the style is catching on.

This particular beer has a fruityness the likes of which I generally associate with a bin of Brach's. It reeks of marketing obscuring the brewer's art. I'll yield the point that it uses blueberries in unusual fashion, but it comes off like artificial berry flavor. All the same, I would call this a fruited American wheat beer...not a witbier by a long shot.

ctdfalconer, May 08, 2007
Photo of HumuloneRed
3.9/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. Bottle. Pours a cloudy orange/yellow with a thick creamy head and lacing. Intense blueberry aroma with some citrus notes. Big blueberry flavor with orange and bubble gum in the finish. I had heard about the blueberry flavor but didn’t believe it until I tried it. Nice beer but a little too sweet for my taste.

HumuloneRed, May 08, 2007
Photo of mountdew1
3.03/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard pint glass. Appeared exactly like a hefe should be. Slightly cloudy, color was a nice golden hue. Head was non existent, but there was a little lacing that clung to the side. As many of my friends have described, it smells just like a loopy frooty cereal. Breathing in from the glass gives a similar taste in the mouth. The actual taste is lacking. Initially there is a blueberry type flavor, however that quickly disappears to basically nothing with wheat undertones. Felt ok in the mouth, but was a little thin. Very easy to drink, but nothing special about it beyond the frooty aroma and quick flavor.

mountdew1, May 07, 2007
Photo of jtslay
4.5/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As a big fan of hefeweizen-style beer, I truly enjoyed this witbier from leinenkugel. The aroma is highly suggestive of fruit and as expected the taste reminds one of a fruit-flavored breakfast cereal. The head of this beer was practically non-existent, but the overall appearance is what one would expect of a hefeweizen. I really enjoy drinking this beer and believe it to be highly drinkable, especially for those whose taste is more inclined to sweet beers. Would make an exceptional desert beer or a nice complement for a seafood dinner (salmon, lobster, etc.).

jtslay, May 06, 2007
Photo of Shaner
2.75/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I'm a big Leinenkugels fan. That being said, I ordered this beer with high expectations. I drank it out of the bottle, so I can't comment on the head or the color. But with the first drink, the only thing that I could taste was fruity pebbles... Not what I expected. I bit too sweet for my taste. Don't think I"ll be ordering this beer again.

Shaner, May 05, 2007
Photo of WMBierguy
2.28/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer looks good when you pour it; it's cloudy yellow, and it has a pure white head. It's all down hill from there. There's a strong lemon smell when you open the bottle. The taste is overwhelmingly lemon, like someone mixed a hefeweizen or a Belgian white with a glass of lemonade. It ruins anything that the brewer was trying to do with the wheat. If I wanted lemon flavored malt drinks, I'd buy a Mike's Hard Lemonade. The mouthfeel is decent, but the beer's flavor makes this an undesireable beer.

I don't know why, but Americans just can't seem to get wheat beer right. I think that it's this weird tendency that we have to add citrus to them. I have no idea why we do it, as all it does is detract from the actual taste. Maybe we just can't duplicate the subtleties necessary to create truly great wheat beer, so we substitute citrus instead. We even go so far as to ruin good German and Belgian wheat beers by serving them with lemon and orange wedges, as our wheat beer sensabilities seem to demand citrus. Whatever the reason, it's a shame.

Avoid this beer. Get some Hoegaarden instean.

WMBierguy, May 04, 2007
Photo of Foxman
3.55/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It pours a soft, hazy, and carbonated yellow gold. Two fingers of stiff white head settle quite slowly. Lacing was surprisingly spare and diffuse.

The aroma is briefly tart and sweet, rich with wheat, but it's the ensuing combo of blueberry, banana, and a floral spice bit that has the air a bit confused and perfumy.

Upon tasting, the grain sweetness is considerably stronger than anticipated, wrapping the tongue in a slightly tangy sugar hold that, to its credit, does give way to the expected blueberry and banana fruitiness. The general floral tinge comes through again as well, though more on the background here. A yeasty biscuit note comes around toward the close along with another brief brush of sweetness before the finish dries out to a rather clean, lingering crispness. It's actually rather tasty, really, but also a bit more frou-frou than I'd prefer.

Light bodied, the carbonation is the one real noticeable component here, as the grain is swept away in a tidal flash.

They had this on tap during a family dinner at TGIFriday's. That it was there at all was a pleasant surprise, and drinking it was a breeze, at least on its own, but I have to tell you, that tendency to perfume was moderately bothersome. Not only that, the floral and fruit pieces make it less than a willing accompaniment to most strongly flavored meal choices. In fact, it got utterly lost against my Cobb salad and did nothing more then wet my whistle. Still, were I to find myself in the hot sun and this was in my hand, I'd be fine with it. As long as it was the best choice, at least.

Foxman, May 02, 2007
Photo of arguemaniac
2.9/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Fairly genuine blueberry flavor comes through very distinctly and blends well with some of the tart wheat flavors, but sort of clashes with the yeasty banana/bubblegum character.

It’s sweeter than most American wheats and quaffable at first, but, personally, I found the blueberry flavor to eventually become cloying.

Not terrible, but I got tired of it quickly.

arguemaniac, May 02, 2007
Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.63/5  rDev +37.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from Mushroomcloud via Secret Bunny 2007

A - pale hazy straw yellow with plenty of swift carbonation feeding a huge rocky white head, rather inviting after a long day at work, like today (everyday)

S - a nice sweet wheat aroma with infused lemon zest aromas as well, that strange enough, when they become muddle from a few inches further away form a fresh blueberry-esque aroma, some herbal/floral notes from closer up, rather,.... intriguing

T - a surprisingly complex aroma, not that i expected poor quality, just not this much, definitely the best wheat beer i have ever had, lemon, herbal, floral, fruity, layered and layered, what a great flavor

M&D - smooth and light bodied, with a great easy down-ness, i am so surprised i will buy this more and more and more, not just as a BA enjoying and respecting a great beer, but when i have company over, or when its hot out and im sitting on the porch waiting for a thunderstorm to roll in, this is great.

sinstaineddemon, Apr 30, 2007
Photo of kelticblood
4.9/5  rDev +45.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice looking cloudy color with a pure white inch thick foam head. Straw yellow in color with a good amount of lacing. Served on tap at O'Driscolls Pub in Wilbraham, Massachusetts. This has to be the best tasting and most drinkable Witbier I've ever had. I've never heard of the brewer or the beer. I just seen the tap and said give me one of those. The aroma was amazing and truly unique. I still can't make out a few of the aroma's qualities. Definately a strong herbal and floral nose. With hints of Lemon, Hops, Wheat, Blueberries, and grassy notes. It does have a taste of fruity pebbles cereal. The mouthfeel was excellent and went down sooo smooth. Could use a bit more carbonation on the mouthfeel. Creamy rolling texture that had a spicey bite and subtle lingering bitterness. I couldnt believe how good it was. I told the wife to try a sip and she hates beer, but was surprised on how good it was, and took a few more sips. Solid five for drinkability here.. The only thing that stopped me from drinking more than two was the friggin' diet I just started. Extremely light and refreshing. Gentle on the throat and stomach. Perfect summer brew. I've been thinking about this beer all weekend and can't wait to go back for another pint. Absolutley amazing taste. Nice spicey hop taste coupled with hints of bluberries and wheat. So much is going on with this brew. It looks and seems simple, but it's not. A must try!

Note: I've found this in bottle form and it does have more carbonation than the tap version.

kelticblood, Apr 29, 2007
Photo of laughatdanger11
3.95/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Beautiful colored with a mandarin orange haze. Very enticing. Nice two inch head that subsides after a few moments.

Smell - Earthy. Wheat. Orange. Blueberry?

Taste - Wow. Oranges. Low hop bitterness let the orange shine through carried by the wheat. Malty sweetness compliments tartness. As this beer warms the orange flavor is more pronounced. Last sips leave your mouth puckering for more. Damn. This beer tastes good. Successful brew.

Mouth feel - Very nice, healthy body. Well rounded.

Drinkability - Average. Delicious. A little filling. I can't session this beer, but it was a wonderful treat. Very enjoyable.

laughatdanger11, Apr 29, 2007
Photo of StarSAELS
3.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Totally opaque, brownish golden, like a rich vegetable stock or golden mushroom soup. Two-finger whitish head with tiny bubbles reduces to a thin filmy head that stays around till the very end. Streaky, clumpy lacing.

S: Citrusy, kinda grapefruity, a little orangey, and a little bit of an herbal scent.

T: Citrusy, a little hoppy. Malts appear in the finish and aftertaste once the citrus fades. Spices play a quiet note, but they're there. After warming 10+ degrees, the citrus flavor goes from a light and fruity orange to a more bitter grapefruity flavor. There's a bit o' pepper on the back of your tongue, too, after it warms.

M: Light carbonation, a very fluidic texture. A little thin for a witbier, I think. Warming doesn't help the mouth, either. Seemed like it got thinner... or maybe that was the alcohol kicking in...

D: Much better flavor than Blue Moon, but it takes a way back seat (ie, the very back of the station wagon) to Hoegaarden. This is a nice brew for a summer afternoon—a nice change of pace from the IPAs.

StarSAELS, Apr 28, 2007
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
2.65/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

AP: Hazy orange tint with big carbonation creating a two-finger deep frothy and foamy pure-white fluff-cloud head that displays really good retention; in fact, nearly 1" of the head remained until the last drop.

nose: blueberry>old spice>citrus/lemmon>boysenberry and cream.

Taste: This is basically a light wheat beer that already has the added lemmon in it...it seriously taste's as if someone had crushed up fresh lemmon and threw it in my beer when I wasn't looking. It's a very authentic citrus flavor but it over-rides all of the other potential flavors.

Feel: light bodied, mildly crisp with a decent smooth effect from the ever-lasting head.

DA: Take it easy on the lemmon/lime wedge effect and this one might be pretty drinkable.

GratefulBeerGuy, Apr 28, 2007
Photo of Kicksmile67
3.35/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Murky and bubbly. Not what I expected but pretty good for the price.

S - Very strange herbal smell, with a light hop and maltiness

T - The herbal note returns and is a bit strong, an orange slice lightens the taste and rounds it out

M - Little too much carbonation, bit thin for a witbier

D - The strong herbal notes make it hard to drink fast or more than one. Interesting for any advocate to try.

Overall, good but probably wont buy again. I'd spend the extra to get that cleaner taste.

Kicksmile67, Apr 27, 2007
Photo of beerrookie
3.05/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Been trying several different wheat beers lately. Many give me a rash, some don't....anything to the further my beer education. Anyways, it smells grassy but has some other scents That I'm not advanced enough to place. I know there has to be lemon and probably pepper but later in the flavor, I encounter something else. ugh! what is it? the label doesn't say, I haven't tasted it in the others. It's driving me nuts. somebody mentioned either blueberry or pamogranate. Not being a fan of either, I could not tell you what the two would taste like, let alone in a beer. If anyone knows, I'd be willing to listen. It looks good. Its not real heavy and I imagine you could throw down a few, if you don't mind the mystery fruit taste at the end. As it warms, that underlying fruit taste increases. okay, I think the guessing is over....I think I have Friggin' blueberries in my beer.

edit: i guess if I had read the BA notes, I would have known it WAS friggin blueberries.

beerrookie, Apr 26, 2007
Photo of Dolamite
4.05/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich golden color, and slightly cloudy in appearance. Great head which settles to form a thin foam cap atop the beer. Exceptional lacing, sticking to the sides of the glass throughout the beer. Nose and taste both consist of pronounced citrus, specifically orange, and finishes dry. Light bodied mouth feel makes this an excellent summer brew.

Surprisingly smooth and sweet, this would make for an excellent indoctrination to the world of beer for non-beer drinkers (read: girls) but is still more than enjoyable for more seasoned drinkers.

Dolamite, Apr 25, 2007
Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 2,095 ratings.