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Hoegaarden Original White Ale - Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

Hoegaarden Original White AleHoegaarden Original White Ale

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

3,580 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3580
Reviews: 1601
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 14.78%

Brewed by:
Brouwerij van Hoegaarden visit their website

Style | ABV
Witbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: purplehops on 07-08-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,580 | Reviews: 1,601 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of randomNBGD


4.01/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Sipped into a chilled tumbler from a .25l bottle.
A: Hazy, colour between lemonade and honey yellow. Lots of yeast sediment.
S: Interesting combination of a classical wheat beer scent (banana whiff) and that of a Belgian ale (characteristic smell of Belgian yeasts, with some honey), together with slight indication of spices. Most appealing component of this beer.
T: Honey, spices, banana, yeast. Some roasted wheat appears shyly in the background. Well balanced.
M: Light body and profound carbonation. Refreshing in summer, but a slightly fuller body wouldn't hurt.

All in all, one nice Belgian wit. Maybe not as striking like some German top hefe-weissen, but has enough complexity to charm with every tasting.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2013 19:29:30 | More by randomNBGD
Photo of Darkmagus82


3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – Served a hazy straw colored brew with a two finger white head. The head had a moderately good level of retention, fading over time to give decent lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is heaviest of wheat and citrus with the citrus being of lemon and grapefruit. Mixed with these aromas are some lighter spicier aromas of a coriander and some lemongrass, producing overall a classic wit aroma

Taste –The taste begins with a wheaty and lemon flavor upfront. The taste sweetens quickly as flavors of tangerine and banana come to the tongue. Along with these sweeter flavors, so to comes a light spice flavor of coriander. These tastes take the taste to its end, leaving a sweet citrus flavor of orange and sweet white grapefruit as well as some wheat flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly lighter side with a carbonation level that is a tad on the higher side. The overall feel is rather nice of the style as it makes it quite easy to drink and suits the sweeter and citrus flavors quite well.

Overall – Quite an easy drinking and refreshing wheat and sweet citrus brew.

Serving type: on-tap

05-17-2013 00:50:57 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of spoony


3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 330 ml bottle (best by November 22, 2013) into a nonic.

A-The brew pours like soda-pop with a short-lived, thin white head and light body. The brew is murky, as you would expect, and light yellowish, golden, straw in color. No bubbles were visible.

S-The smell is a pleasant lemon-forward affair with some spice, some grassy wheat, and a touch of sweetness. Pretty true to style.

T-The taste is slightly more tart than the smell, and still full of lemon. The grassy wheat and spice are present, but play somewhat muted roles. It is simple, but again, pretty true to style.

M-The feel is a little too fizzy, with a lighter body that you would expect. Still, this is refreshing and drinkable for a summer's day.

O-Compared against great wit beers, the grand-daddy that is Hoegaarden falls a little short in the complexity and strength departments. The looks are pretty weak, too. Nevertheless, this beer is quaffable and a good fit for a hot summer's day.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2013 01:31:08 | More by spoony
Photo of fank2788


3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz bottle served in a pilsner glass
Cloudy pale gold with a huge white head comprised of tiny bubbles that takes a while to settle and laces nicely. The smell is clean wheat maltiness with lemon and orange citrus combined with some peppery spice pretty much spot on for a Wit. When it comes to the taste the spices come out in the front with the citrus moving to the background, a background well framed in by the wheat. Also perceivable is some yeast character but overall everything is a bit overshadowed by the coriander spiciness. The mouthfeel is acceptable with high levels of carbonation combined with a light body however I would have preferred it to be a bit crisper with a cleaner finish. Overall this is a very commendable example of the style and as one of the most easily recognized and available witbeirs it is doing the style justice

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2013 23:48:35 | More by fank2788
Photo of scottfrie


3.04/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12oz bottle from a six-pack.

A: Pours a slightly hazy chalky lemon gold with a couple fingers of fluffy bone white head that faded into a thick film.
S: Chalky wheat, mildly spicy yeast, and a hint of lemon citrus and pepper.
T: Crisp wheat, chalk, pepper, and faint clove, coriander and banana. Light and mild overall. Slight mineral water.
M: Foamy yet soft carbonation, medium-light body, crisp, clean, soft and smooth mouthfeel.
O: Solid and very drinkable but overall pretty plain.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2013 02:28:48 | More by scottfrie
Photo of dougbassett


3.89/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

One of the "1001 Beers You Must Taste Before You Die" -- #22 of the ones I've reviewed here.

I think it's neat that beer in America has gotten to the point where something like Hoegaarden is reasonably available, at least in cities. Heck, I know a strip bar that carries this, and they sell a fair amount of it, too.

Looks fantastic, just like this style should, a very pale yellow with a resistant head. Nose is light but evocative, sweet orange juice and spice. "The flavors are actually, I think, quite complex, the hops and spice are more into play and while there's still citrus, we've shifted to lemon peel/lemon oil. Finish is sort of a gentle wash of hops that is quietly assertive without getting out of hand, if that makes any sense at all.

I like this beer -- particularly in warm weather it's very nice indeed. As is often the case I could stand for the mouthfeel to be more assertive, to provide a better foundation for the flavors -- it's a little too light, I think, for my taste. But all in all a classic that deserves it's standing.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2013 22:40:39 | More by dougbassett
Photo of khensley


3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Served very cold in 22 ounce mug. Bright yellow, and hazy in appearance, very appealing color, but poor head retention and zero lacing. Smells really interesting, even for a wit, with all the smells from a bowl of fruit loops. Taste was strangely spicy on the front end, and then refreshingly sweet and fruity on the finish. Thin in the mouth, but bubbly somehow. I was really thirsty, and this beer hit the spot. I loved it so much, I decided to brew my own version of it! Way better than the more widely available Coors version of the same style.

Serving type: on-tap

04-27-2013 06:51:30 | More by khensley
Photo of punky796


4.11/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a frozen tumbler glass.

A - Pours a cloudy tan-yellow, with about two fingers of thick white head. Leaves some attractive clumpy lacing.

S - Boosh. Pretty heavy on the coriander, but it's the flagship ingredient. Some malts and hops, wheat, citrus.

T - Lots of coriander and wheat, not overly heavy on the citrus. A dab of banana and clove, maybe, but maybe I'm just imagining it due to what's typical for this style of beer. Strike the banana.

M - Pretty light, kind of a soapy feeling (but not taste, that would be bad). Bit of an odd aftertaste, but it's coriander-related, whatever it is.

O - This seems like a love-it-or-hate-it. The spicing is probably too bold for those who prefer more subtle flavorings, but those who like things up close and personal would probably love it. I can appreciate both depending on the beer, but I fall into the love it column on this one.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2013 11:33:36 | More by punky796
Photo of newton99


2.74/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

another one of the mix six beers i am going to review . a odd color reminds me of hazy pear or pineapple juice with a wispy head . a nice aroma of citrus and bananas. taste is typical to the style and is well balanced . it is a nice beer that for me would have been better on a warmer day . will have again.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2013 09:57:27 | More by newton99
Photo of tonton

Hong Kong

3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I love Hoegaarden, but the wheatiness can be overwhelming at times. Absolutely love the iconic glass, which is fun to share with a petite companion. The smell is a bit off-putting.

On one hand, Hoegaarden is wonderful because of the glass, the beautiful appearance, and the availability. It's not so good because of the smell and the taste, at least compared to other wheats.

Not having tried Erdinger or Maisel recently, I can honestly say that it's my least favorite wheat beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2013 06:51:48 | More by tonton
Photo of dorfenheim


4.01/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This ale is easy to like and very hard to hate. I've had Hoegaarden both from the bottle and on tap, and I've never noticed a significant difference between them. I enjoy mine with a slice and squirt of orange. As others have noted, Hoegaarden might not be quite as good as competitors like Allagash White, but it's cheaper and always refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2013 00:10:47 | More by dorfenheim
Photo of h4ximus


4.9/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

While Hoegaarden represents a style that's clearly not for everyone, this is a classic for those who prefer their beers unfiltered and less bitter.

A: Cloudy, pale yellow/white which fades into a lingering head when poured.
S: While typically served with a lemon (or orange) slice in some locations when it's on draught, banana can sometimes be more prominent. Near total lack of hops helps bring out the fruity, almost "smoothie" scents.
T: Hints of several spices, but not as prominently as comparable Witbiers (particularly domestics). Easily paired with most foods as the palate isn't overpowered. Try it with hummus that's received a light squeeze of lemon juice for an interesting appetizer.
M: Smooth but not especially crisp, however it breaks down if held on the tongue for too long.
O: The beer that will convince almost anyone who "hates beer" that there's more than light beers and IPAs to choose from. A good summer beer best enjoyed neither too cold nor too warm. The bottle is a bit small at 11.2 ounces, however that's not entirely uncommon for imports.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2013 21:07:13 | More by h4ximus
Photo of Haydn-Juby

Quebec (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served from a 330ml bottle

A: Very white looking and quiet pale. Intense carbonation streaming up the side of the glass. Fluffy soapy looking 1.5 finger head that retained very well and even left some good lacing.

S: Coriander, Citrus (mainly lemon but some orange), and a little bit of cloves.

T: Like the smell. The coriander and citrus are dominant but the orange flavored citrus comes through more on the taste then in the aroma. Bready malts and little hop flavor or bitterness make for a mildly sweet beer but not cloyingly sweet. Aftertaste is not very pleasant however but is not to noticeable.

M: Easy and crisp drinking with the aid of the high carbonation. The after taste is a bit annoying however.

O: I bought a six pack a while ago when I was first experimenting with new beers. This is a pretty decent macro honestly. A bit bland but fairly sessionable and ,imo, better than some of the other belgian whit macros like Shocktop and Rickards white. I'd happily drink another and if I was having non craft guests over I'd buy some and enjoy it with them.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2013 22:51:08 | More by Haydn-Juby
Photo of lancecenter


3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - super cloudy, pale straw color. Solid head retention and lacing.

S - citrus, pepper, and yeast.

T - similar to the smell. The peppery aftertaste really shines through.

M - just the right amount of carbonation. A little on the light/watery side though.

O - very drinkable, solid wit. One of my go-to beers.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2013 06:26:19 | More by lancecenter
Photo of TrappistJohnMD


3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Golden straw color with nice white head in Hoegaarden glass at Jackson, MS airport bar.

Smell is light fruit with a hint of spice.

Taste is sweet malts, light ripe fruit and spice. Hints of clove.

Mouthfeel is light and prickly.

Overall this was good.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2013 23:57:07 | More by TrappistJohnMD
Photo of phishsihq


3.69/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours a hazy, pale straw and our vigorous pour provides a pillowy head of white foam. Wheat and coriander, and orange peel dominate the nose, with hints of lemongrass and spice. The lemony aromas take charge on the palate. The initial zestfulness gives way to wheat and bready malt flavors on the way to a spicy finish that showcases coriander, clove, and orange zest. Lively carbonation and a lighter body

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2013 01:08:24 | More by phishsihq
Photo of atomic


4.58/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Its hard to complain with this beer. For the price and ubiquity, this beer has few faults. Sure there may be better examples of the style, Ommegang and St Bernardus spring to mind, but hoegaarden can go toe to toe with the best wits and it will hold up well in my opinion. Sometimes you just want a quick refreshing beer that you can share with anyone, for those days hoegaarden will always be near. Great beer to start people on as well.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2013 09:19:37 | More by atomic
Photo of angrybabboon

Rhode Island

3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Consumed 2/21/13

Appearance: A uniquely odd color - extremely pale yellow, with some pale gold - almost white when held up to the light - very hazy (as it should be) - decent, white head, leaves a ton of spotty lacing - classic, with a nice head, but it is an ugly color

Smell: Belgian yeast, wheat, and spices - yeast funk, with a hint of lemony sourness/tartness - bananas and more lemons - touch of clove and a bunch of coriander - wheaty, but not excessive - interesting overall

Taste: Very light but still interesting - lemon juice, with some tart lemon - lightly sweet overall, with some banana candy - lightly yeasty and spicy, not as much as the smell suggested - light wheat - some seltzer water, very fizzy finish

Mouthfeel: Light body, high carbonation

Overall: Who gardens?

The first time I encountered this (probably early 2008), I thought it smelled like a complete disaster. The times have changed. This is a classic, and it is certainly has its charms. It's extremely light, but it works. It's not top tier (thanks a lot, Allagash White, for demolishing the competition), but it's certainly way better than Blue Moon.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2013 05:20:40 | More by angrybabboon
Photo of baddogrudy


5/5  rDev +31.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this is the standard of all wit beers. smooth, taste is great, and no lingering bitterness. perfect. Its not extreem in flavor or alcohol content, so many will under rate this brew. If you want a witbeer that has drinkability unmatched, flavor so smooth, taste so perfect, this is the beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2013 00:34:56 | More by baddogrudy
Photo of Digimaika2

Ontario (Canada)

3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

(3.75) A: Semi-hazy and a very light pale straw coloured with a billowy stark white foam head. Decent retention with clinging lacing down the glass.

(4.0) S: Tall grasses, cloves, banana, pepper, orange, and lychee fruit. Solid aroma with a bit of variety. Nicely spice forward.

(3.25) T: Generally a faint taste profile that feels a bit muted. Grasses, cloves, grains, and hints of tropical fruits (banana and orange) but not to the extent indicated from the aroma. Rather clean and crisp with little bitterness and a slight tangy taste.

(3.25) M: Light bodied with moderate carbonation. Thin with a clean texture.

(3.5) D: A decent witbier with an inviting aroma but falls off the mark with a fairly thin and flat taste. Can't really compare this to the more full flavoured options out there.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2013 01:20:34 | More by Digimaika2
Photo of falloutsnow


3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

From: Binny's, Champaign, IL
Date: Best by 06/10/2013
Glass: New Belgium globe glass

Hoegaarden is unquestionably refreshing and enjoyable, and its aroma and taste are just below the threshold where a bit more presence from each would bring this to a much higher plane. That being said, this is a reliable, perpetually available, and affordable witbier to enjoy when desired.

Pours a substantial 3cm tall head of clean, white bubbles that are medium to small in size, creating a mass of foam that is a bit spongy-looking. Retention is above average, lasting over two minutes in its decline to a 0.5cm cap atop the body of the beer. Lacing is present, but minimal, a few thick blobs and splotches scattered across the insides of the glass. Body is an opaque, cold yellow hue, with light bringing out a very pale, cloudy yellow color. Carbonation is visible streaming along the sides of the glass, apparently numerous and modestly active.

Yeast, lemon citrus with faint tartness, coriander, and a mild herb potpurri. Altogether good, but somewhat wilting: could be bolder and benefit.

Front of palate is sweet with wheat malt flavor, citrus peel, coriander, and faint banana ester. Mid-palate has stronger citrus (lemon) peel flavor, coriander, creamy wheat malt sweetness, faint bitterness. Back of palate picks up sweet wheat-focused malts, coriander, and banana ester. Aftertaste of yeast, banana ester, faint citrus peel, coriander, and a wheat-centered malt base.

Beer is medium-light in body, with plentiful, but soft carbonation that results in a soft, foamy mouthfeel that is quite enjoyable. Closes semi-dry, with light stickiness lingering across the palate. Very drinkable, repeatedly, exceptionally inviting here.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2013 06:16:24 | More by falloutsnow
Photo of jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A 330ml bottle with a BB of March 2013. Picked up as part of a 4-pack from a supermarket. This is a Belgian classic that I've been meaning to review for ages (AB-Inbev ownership notwithstanding).

Poured into a straight pint glass - the closest thing I've got to the chunky Hoegaarden glass. Swirled to resuspend the yeast. A very hazy pale straw colour with low carbonation. Yields a massive head of creamy white foam that lasts for a while before subsiding to a surface layer. Aroma of light, grainy malt with notes of banana, coriander, orange peel, faint clove, earthy yeast esters and mild spice. Nicely balanced - it smells great.

Tastes of yeast esters with a subtle fruity/spicy character and a dry finish. Notes of banana, coriander, spice, orange peel, mild clove, earthy yeast and light malt. Slightly sweet. A mild finish upon swallowing - no bitterness to speak of. Mouthfeel is smooth, light and tingly, with faint spiciness and good body for the style. Undercarbonated and rather flat; I was hoping this would be spritzier. Slightly astringent, with an aftertaste of fruity yeast esters and spice.

Nice - a decent Belgian wit that I find to be highly drinkable. It looks good, and the aroma/flavour have well-judged notes of fruit and spice. Was expecting higher carbonation, but this is a fairly trivial point. It is possible that Hoegaarden has become somewhat muted through AB-Inbev ownership, but it still comes across as well crafted. Would be perfect on a hot day, and deserves to be sampled.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 22:21:30 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of FLima


3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Hazy pale yellow color. Made a nice thick head with medium retention.
Nice banana yeasty aroma and notes of herbs, wheat and citrus.
Zesty flavor with hints of coriander and orange peel. A bit dry, sour and condimented aftertaste.
Light body and good carbonation.
Reliable beer. I always like the fact that this beer is not overly sweet, flavorful and still refreshing. And now it is easily available in Brazil at a decent price given Ambev distribution.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2013 22:57:50 | More by FLima
Photo of BeerKangaroo


2.48/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Into a pint glass:

A: pale yellow colored body leaving a decent sized white head

S: yeast up front but wasn't exactly balanced with the hops and malt

T: exactly the same as the smell, yet coming through in a bland way

M: medium with harshness pounding my tongue in every sort of way known to mankind, wow!

O: average for the style, but I never thought I'd ever come back to this, but it was free recently, so here's a better take on it since the last time I had it. I'm still not a fan.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2013 01:03:03 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of NovoAleMan


3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Pale yellow, one finger foam head. Almost lemonade like in appearance. I was not a big fan of it. 3.5/5

S: Lemony scent. Hoppy, but pleasant. Not bad. 4.25/5

Taste: Not a big fan of taste either. Up front, a bit watery, but hoppy. Lemon-y aftertaste however, which was decent. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Feels fizzy and foamy in mouth, but drinkable. Not swill, but not a rich, complex beer.

I feel this beer is a bit overrated.


Serving type: on-tap

01-17-2013 20:36:29 | More by NovoAleMan
Hoegaarden Original White Ale from Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
85 out of 100 based on 3,580 ratings.