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Hoegaarden Original White Ale | Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

very good
1,717 Reviews
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Hoegaarden Original White AleHoegaarden Original White Ale

Brewed by:
Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
Belgium | website

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by purplehops on 07-08-2001

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Reviews: 1,717 | Ratings: 4,941
Photo of SkunkWorks
3.4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Poured out a cloudy, straw color with an enormous head despite a very cautious pour though it dissipated quickly not leaving behind any lacing. Aroma wise, I get a hint of wheat. The taste is very bland and it reminds me of an American macro to be perfectly honest. I get a hint of orange but that's about all. Its very smooth and easy to drink, so that is a plus, but overall kind of a boring beer.

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Photo of GrimGuzzler
3.4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a bottle into a properly cleaned pint glass.

A: Pours a not very attractive murky yellow (Keep in mind this is unfiltered) with a lovely, solid, white head which rapidly dissipates into a thin but ever present foam. Mild lacing.

S: Sweet citrus and pale wheat hit the nose first. Coriander, white wine, and apples make their way up after stirring the beer a bit and exciting the volatiles. Lastly a hint of alcohol wafts around the glass.

T: It has a yeasty unfiltered taste with zest and wheat first. This soon turns into a slightly spicey/herby taste (Brewed with coriander) with a sublte hop bitterness then ending with dry, tart, apples.

M: Effervescent, however not crisp. A gentle amount of carbonation, but I wouldn't mind more to keep the beer interesting.

Overall a well balanced beer, very drinkable, perfect to cool off but lacks body and intensity. However i suppose this is typical of the style. Certainly a beer I would buy again, but only if the weather called for it.

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Photo of Jessearellano
3.39/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Its very cloudy and looks whitish yellow.


It doesn't smell very good at all but you can defiantly smell the wheat.


Defiantly some clove with a hint of pineapple and citrus.


Very watery with a wet finish.


Extremely easy to drink, not very much carbonation and its a bit watery which makes go it down very easy.

Decent beer but would not buy again, I don't like wheat beers very much..

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Photo of beerphan
3.39/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle -> pilsner
no date

Pours a hazed muted pale yellow with a modest tight white head. Some fine rings of lace. Carbonation appears robust.

Nose: Banana, yeast, spice

Some light grains and a lemon tart finish. Not much in the spice/herbal flavors.

Light crisp mouth.

Easy enough to drink, but not very flavorful.

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Photo of Thrasher
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is a luscious refreshing white, good for a sunny Sunday brunch. Nothing extraordinary but decent, indicative of the style. Doesn't get superb marks from me because I inherently distrust Interbrew. Their beers suffer from the enormity of the company, and their costs are prohibitive. I once paid $9 ($10 with tip) for one of these in an annoying Manhattan bar/lounge, so I decided to keep the glass.

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Photo of r0nyn
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at O'Donoghue's in Nyack. Served in a pint glass with a wedge of lemon (which was promptly evicted with great prejudice).

Cloudy and unfiltered, as is on par for the style. Minimal frothy white head that leaves trace amounts of lacing clinging to the inside of the glass. Smell has a prevalent amount of citrus notes, along with hints of coriander and other spices. Definite wheat component to it as well, along with an almost palpable breadiness in the nose. Mild and sweet malt notes round out the end.

Taste has the same essences as in the nose, just a little bit more subdued, which is both surprising and a little disappointing. I guess I was expecting a certain level of robustness and I didn't get it. Still, there are notes of citrus and spice to provide the major components of flavor, along with a twangy, slightly sweet wheatiness. A little bit of an acidic kick in the finish. Mouthfeel is pleasing, with a reasonably medium body and a finish that leans a bit to the dry side, but not all the way. Some zingy carbonation provides a bit of a tart pop at the end.

Not a bad witbier at all, and certainly better than the other offerings on tap. I would have preferred more of a flavorful experience, but Hoegaarden is a perfectly serviceable brew and still miles and miles ahead of that adjunct dross that passes for beer at most bars today.

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Photo of ludachris
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this one as part of my Belgian beer gift pack. I like how they made the shape of the bottle their own. Pours a hazy straw colour with about a finger and a half creamy white head. Decent retention and decent lacing. Some sediment is visible and rising with the carbonation. I'm not a big fan of that, but doesnt take away from the beer. Smell is a bit milder than I hoped; banana upfront, clove and spice backing it up. Taste identical to the smell with a bit of a buttery finish. Carbonation is really nice; nothing too offensive.

This mild, fairly watered down witbier makes it perfect for a large target audience. There was nothing bad about this beer, but at the same time, nothing really jumped out to distinguish it from others. On the other hand, it's very refreshing and definately sessionable. Overall, a decent brew that I wouldnt turn down if offered.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Tuscan Tavern, Blackwood, NJ

A nice wit, that I guess is the standard for witbiers. If you're a Blue Moon drinker, try this instead, because it's better. Pour a hazy, pale yellow with a nice white head that retains rather well. Light wheat aroma with citrus notes. Light orange and lemon zest taste, with smooth bready malts that are somewhat overcome by the general wheat beer harshness; acidic, with a bitter aftertaste. Light body and easily drinkable.

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Photo of BelgiumBill
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a 1pt, 9.36 oz large bottle at Total Wine for $3.99.

I slowly poured the whole bottle into my dimpled 1 liter Paulaner seidel. It was a hazy pale straw yellow and a bit watery at the edges. A small bubbled thick foamy head crowned the top. My wife said it looks like meringue which seems appropriate given the lemony color of the beer and the citrus notes. Not a lot of lacing and the foam receded to a thin blanket.

The fragrances were as expected; citrus rinds, orange peel, spices lead by coriander.

The flavors were herbaceous, slightly spicy led by the coriander and maybe hints of nutmeg, Citrus rind was bright and up front.

In the mouth it was crisp, refreshing and cleansing.

All in all not bad for something made by Budweiser.

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Photo of Dusty6467
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: cloudy greenish-yellow, 2 finger head that dissipates quickly

S: strong lemon, metallic, can tell its a wheat beer, but not overwhelming

T: great crisp taste, lemon, bannana, grassy, taste like it smells - would taste good with an orange slice

M: decent balance, finishes dry, high carbonation (though i could use more), light, sessionable, would be a good summer beer

O: decent, but nothing to seek out, for the style I'd much prefer Ayinger's wheat beers

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Photo of nukem5
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Got this one poured for me at the Mellow Mushroom Pizzaria in Mobile AL. Came in a standard pint glass and was icy cold on a day in the high ninetys after swimming at the beach all afternoon. Nice and cloudy as usual with a nice foamy top.

S: Smells of clove and light orange smell.

T: The clove,citrus, and coriander blast the senses and bath the toungue with cool refreshing waves of taste.

M: Medium to light feel with a good amount of carbonation , to help clean away all the garlic from the pizza and give way to all the tastey goodness that you expect from this one.

D: Very drinkable and whenever on tap hot days it just seems right to order this one.

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Photo of depechemode1983
3.37/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pretty good looking Witbier. Cloudy bright bright yellow in color. Retention is fantastic. Lacing is just patchy and random.

S - Wheat, clove spice, and lemon zest are right up front. Theres a nice lingering candy type sweetness in the middle with some peppery undertones. Pretty classic.

T - Very peppery. I dig it. Wheat lightens it up a bit and the lemon gives it a little kick. The candy like sweetness I was picking up in the nose is almost completely absent. Almost the complete opposite of the smell.

M - Medium bodied over all. Could use a little more carbonation. Border flat almost. Not horrible though.

O - Ive had this one on several occasions. I think the tulip glass really helped this one out. I don't remember this beer being this good.

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Photo of mothman
3.37/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured into my New Belgium Globe Glass. Best before 6-12-09.

Color is a really hazy dull yellow. Thin white head that fizzles down quickly. Little lace observed.

Smell is very fruit. Main smell is bananas. Taste is similiar, but there is more of a hoppy taste involved.

Mouthfeel isn't very pleasent. Starts out bitter and then eventually ends smooth after a while.

Overall, it is a decent brew for something so popular. I could probably enjoy this at a bar or have this for a session beer.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Yellow pour with a massvie white head. Definite sweet aroma and taste, with the orange peel and coriander strong up front. Some vanilla and wheatiness in the middle, mixed with clove and yeast. No real sourness to speak of. Wasn't really expecting such a good wit from a widely distributed beer.

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Photo of bashiba
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a such a light cloudy shade of yellow the beer was almost truly white in appearance, with a huge white head and tons of lacing.

Smell was a very light bit of wheat and orange.

Taste was a very subdued crips citrus flavors with just a touch of light hops.

Mouthfeel was crisp with a nice carbonation feel.

A decent beer, with a nice drinkability, but I fully admit to liking several American versions of this belgian classic better.

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Photo of hooligan
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Beer pours a uniformly hazy white-gold with a stark white tightly bubbled head.

Smell of spices and citrus upfront, strawlike yeast and astringency.

Orange peel and coriander upfront with a lingering astringency from a combination of the orange and hop. Light and clean malt character with the straw and bread-dough yeast characters common with Belgian suds.

Easygoing mouthfeel with a gentle carbonation, soft viscosity, and slight fizz at the end.

Popular beer for good reason; really not one of my favorite styles but definitely quaffable and the well-known benchmark for the Witbier style.

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Photo of seanyfo
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this numerous times bottled but saw it recently on tap and thought i better review it.

A: Straw cloudy blonde appearance with a thin white creamy head layer sitting on top, dissapates quickly to leave only the crown

S: Lots of citrus, fresh hops and some grapefruit. Also a lot more sweeter i think than when poured from the bottle

T: Tart with the citrus but also a delicate sweetness, i found it hard to distinguish what the sweetness was in the smell but in the taste i feel its very much spice, well balanced which makes it light and refreshing

M: Light and spritzy on the tongue, fluffy almost!

D: A nice summer refresher, nothing too complex but a nice change from when your sick of pale ales!

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Photo of Crosling
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy light blonde in color. Moderately aromatic, full of fruit and spice, giving a scent of curacao and coriander, along with a light hint of hay. Flavor is light and airy, coating with a butter toffee blanket and loaded with light spice; coriander and curacao. A pleasant, yet unexciting witbier. Boy I wish I could have tried this 20 years ago.

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Photo of Bockrules
3.35/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured from the bottle into a decahedral mug (closest to the special hexagonal Hoegaarden glass suggested)

A - Poured as directed. Pours a hazy pale gold with tons of lively carbonation. Head is a huge, 4-finger, frothing white mass. Head stays intact to nearly the bottom of the glass, leaves behind a few blotches of lacing.

S - A generous amount of wheat malt and musty yeast with a dose of orange peel and coriander. The spices come out even more in the glass. Very inviting.

T - A little bit of wheat and almost watery upfront. The body has some light wheat malt notes mixed in with slightly sour yeast and lemony hops. Orange peel and coriander spices round out the flavor profile. A flash of yeast flavor as the beer passes over the pack of the tongue leads to a slightly sour and musty orange finish.

M - Very thin bodied and with plenty of carbonation. Could stand to be thicker and maybe more carbonated.

Finally picked this up to complete a 6-pack in San Diego. Although this is probably the quintessential benchmark of the style, I feel many U.S. brewers have passed them up. Although the appearance and nose are pretty well nailed on this brew, the flavor was marginal at best. At times I was vividly reminded of those Emergen-C powder packets that you mix with water. Not worth the price by any stretch of the imagination.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Cloudy pale yellow. Large white head with scant lace and retention--poor performance for a wit if I do say so myself.

Yeast, wheaty spice, orange zest and lemony coriander aroma. Taste is fairly tart with some wheat spice. Not as snappy as I remember.

Along with Harpoon IPA this was one of my gateway beers and I could have sworn it used to be better. Still, I feel like I'm drinking a piece of brewing history, thank you Peter Celis.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: The pour is an extremely pale yellow color with an intense haze to it. The head is medium in size and white in color.

S: Big time coriander aroma to this beer. The wheat and other malts provide a moderate amount of sweetness to the nose, and there is a minimal citrus note.

T: Again, a heavy hand on the spice component. Lots of coriander and wheat with a distinct lemony tartness. Where am I, BJ's?

M: The body is quite light and the carbonation is quite high and lively.

D: Another one of those really well known beers that everybody sort of has to try somewhere along the way. I haven't had this beer for a long time, but I did not find it did much for me on this occasion.

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Photo of crayolahalls
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a pint glass at Winking Lizard tavern in Akron. A slice of orange was mounted on the side of the glass. Was a follow up to a Three Philosophers and accompanied a spicy chicken sandwich with fries. This was certainly not the right way to enjoy this beer, but it was the first Belgian White I have tried and was not sure what to expect.

Appearance - Sunny yellow. Cloudy. Very think white head formed from tiny bubbles. Looked almost like a smidge of meringue on top.

Smell - Not really strong. Couldn't pick up much of anything. Better than Bud, but hard to describe. I think the taste of the hot sauce was strong enough to diminish the main smell.

Taste - Was very light, slightly tart. Kind of refreshing. The orange served in the glass almost overpowered whatever was there to discover. I did notice a slight alcohol flavor. NOT a good pairing with hot sauce.

Mouthfeel - Combo with hot sauce made me pucker. Was very light in consistency.

DRinkability - Actually had a hard time drinking it. This is one I would like to try again while outdoor in the dead heat of summer. Everything about it screamed light and highly drinkable, but not appropriate with spicy food.

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Photo of PartyBear
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a chilled 330ml bottle into a traditional half-pint Hoegaarden glass.

A - Cloudy lemony yellow in colour, with a good head. Not the prettiest beer, it has to be said.

S - Very complex spicy aroma, with a cutting citrus.

T - Powerfully fruity, but more complex than a PhD in quantum physics. There is a sweetness in the mist of the fruit, maybe honey?

M - There is a sharp lemon bitterness in the back of the mouth, along with a clear carbonic liveliness.

D - I have been drinking this beer regularly since I was in college, and never really stopped to think properly about what I was drinking. It is not the best beer I have ever tasted but it is one of the most interesting.

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Photo of wahhmaster
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 0.33l bottle into an unbranded 0.5l nonic pint glass.

Appearance: Pale yellow color with a fizzy head that dissipates quickly. Cloudy, like most wheat beers.

Smell: Smells wheaty and grassy with definite citrus fruit notes. Basically smells like a wheat beer should.

Taste: Citrus notes with a definite wheaty, grassy taste.

Mouthfeel: Kind of thin with noticeable carbonation.

Drinkability: A good wheat beer, maybe not for the price. There are other better choices.

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Photo of tdm168
3.33/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, cloudy, bright yellow with a mountain of soft, white head that fizzes away after a few minutes. The nose has notes of straw, lemon, faint spices - pepper and coriander, and yeast. The flavor is very light and has faint straw and lemon notes with some orange zest and extremely faint spices in the finish. The mouthfeel is very light and smooth with some fizzy, soda-like carbonation.

This is a quaffable beer, but light and ultimately not flavorful. I'll pass in the future.

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Hoegaarden Original White Ale from Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
86 out of 100 based on 1,717 ratings.