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El Jefe Weizen Ale - Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub

Not Rated.
El Jefe Weizen AleEl Jefe Weizen Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

48 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 91
Avg: 3.56
pDev: 20.51%
Wants: 2
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
Hefeweizen |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cvschaller on 03-12-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of El Jefe Weizen Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 91
Photo of mactrail
3.69/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful pile of foam on golden beer in the tall narrow waisted glass. Quite a mouthful of suds. Lemony scent.

This is light and spritzy, less robust than a lot of Hefeweizens. There is a little malty sweetness, but this also has a sharper edge and finishes more dry. Wheaty and mildly aromatic with a touch of the German esters. More of a sour orange hint than banana, but there is a distinct whiff of clove.

Overall, a tangy and low-key Hefeweizen, but quite refreshing and gulpable. Light body with a malty sweetness on the lips. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at Safeway in Anacortes.

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Photo of Taybeh
3.94/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From my brother's garage refrigerator, a 12 oz can into a weizen glass

this was a very pleasant surprise...quite good (and markedly better than anything else I've had from these guys). Really smooth, great wheat, and nice balance of herbal bitterness, spice (which wins out in the end) and fruit (which provides some nice background support...I don't get much banana at all, but I do get some pear and some other kind of hard-to-pin-down orchard fruit).

I haven't found a lot of hefes in the PNW that I think are all that great, but IMHO, this one's a winner.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a weizen glass. Pours a medium straw amber with light gold notes with a thin white head that dissipates to patches. Aroma of wheat, mild citrus and banana and clove. Flavor follows with semi-sweet wheat, mildly bready and light banana and clove, developing more lemon citrus before a mild wheat, slightly tart finish. Light bodied with active carbonation. A good domestic take on a hefeweizen with a classic balance of flavors, but a bit on the light side; I was left wanting a bit more robustness in the pleasant flavors. The light touch made the slight tartness a bit more noticeable than it should have been. Still a good, enjoyable light hefe.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a growler into a shaker glass.

A- Poured a bright hazy golden color with white soapy head that dissipated instantly and left no lace.

S- Pretty traditional aroma of bubblegum, clove, and banana. Although not a very strong aroma.

T- Big bubblegum notes, banana, and clove. Pretty balances and traditional flavor profile.

M- Light bodied, prickly carbonation, and a slightly watery finish.

O- A very traditional tasting hefeweizen that does not differentiate itself much from others in the style. A little more body and aroma would have been nice, but a nice easy drinking beer.

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Photo of ssteakley
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Whoa! , First taste and I though mighty German but the finish was weak. It did remind me of a fine German Weizen I had several years ago introduced by a German Soccer player. A summer weizen perhaps, not sure where El Jefe is perhaps in Argentina?, No this one somehow is in the PNW.

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Photo of 1234Jack
4.08/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Smell out of bottle is primarily malty with subtle hops.

Nice yeasty, unfiltered look. Head that settles but never dies, floats on top.

Nice milky first feel, malty but zesty citric taste, but not too overpowering or too sour. Not too bitter.

Smell out of glass is more lemony.

Even though it's winter time now, I can tell this would be a spectacular summertime beer.

Subtle apple, but smooth and no bad aftertastes.

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Photo of hreb
3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into pint glass. Pale yellow and fairly hazy. Medium thick white head forms nicely.

Traditional yeasty citrus-wheat aroma. Big bubbles float up through the beer.

Flavor is dead on for an American/German-style hefeweiss. Very lemony/citrusy. Good wheat flavor, not just for show, and fresh. Moderate bitterness. A good bit of clove. The only fault I can find with this beer is that the lemon flavor is a little strong...I wonder if there's something added.

I should note that my bottle had a bunch of sediment firmly in the bottom -- agitating it produced a much cloudier pour with no damage to the flavor, while reducing the carbonation nicely.

Having moved to Seattle from Boston this could totally challenge UFO as my every day drinking hefeweiss.

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Photo of draheim
3.97/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottled (not bottling date) poured into a weizen glass.

Hazy yellow with a rich creamy head - good classic hefeweizen appearance.

Nose is banana, yeast, and spice. Really nice.

Taste is crisp and clean with a lot of banana, pepper and clove. A little more lemon too as I get closer to the yeasty bottom of the bottle.

Nice crisp mouthfeel with good carbonation.

Overall this is a pretty good local interpretation of a German classic.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.35/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bomber into a weizen glass.

Appearance: rich golden color with almost no haze. Head is two fingers of creamy white foam. The way I see it, there is not nearly enough haze and not quite enough head to be commendable as a hefeweizen. That said, it wasn't a hideous-looking beer; just not really to-style.

Smell: aroma is grainy with a little bit of a wheat component. Not much estery complexity or creaminess. Really, not that great.

Taste: citrusy and sweet. There's a little banana flavor here, but it doesn't entice me much. Not bad compared to other American attempts at the style, but it is not super hefeweizeney.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with OK carbonation. Not enough carbonation to make a nice creamy hefeweizen, but it's not horrible or anything.

Drinkability: not much of an authentic hefeweizen, but it is an acceptably drinkable beer in general.

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Photo of Seanibus
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light and refreshing and very wheaty, without lot of the phenolic funk you'd expect from a true Hefeweizen. Really, this is a slightly edgy version of an American Wheat, and if you go into it expecting that, I think you'll enjoy this beer more.

Pours a slightly hazy golden with a big white fluffy head. The aroma is very wheaty with a kiss of honey. The taste follows through precisely, with a super mouthful of wheat, with that bready, breakfast cereal character, and a finish of sweet honey. There is a little fruit in here, but muted - apricot, perhaps, some white grape. There is relatively mild bitterness without a lot of obvious hop flavor. The mouthfeel is fairly slick.

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Photo of Ghenna
4.29/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My wife brought this back from a trip to Seattle:
Pours a murky golden straw little in the way of a white head. Smells awesome- definite notes of banana and yeast; in a word, I would describe it as inviting and delicious.
Tastes also of bananas, with a little bit of bitter (though not hop bitter) at the end.
My only wish is that it were a little more carbonated, but this is an awesome brew. Many thanks to my wife for procuring it for me

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue III:

Pours out a hazy golden-orange brew, head retention is par for the style. Aromas of green bananas, pear juice and faint lime are mixed with an underlying breadiness and chalky yeast. Very smooth with a semi-chewy medium body. Lots of wheat and yeast on the tongue, hops and herbal phenolics drop a substantial smack of bitterness on the palate with a long linger. Light on the fruity esters with suggestions of pear, banana and kiwi. Hint of bubblegum in the middle right when the maltiness rises with some sweetness and breadiness. Finishes a little dry with lots of lingering flavor.

Impressive, this tastes like a fresh German Hefeweizen, fresh meaning right from the source and not shipped from another continent. Kudos to Hale's for getting this style right!

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Photo of ggddaaee1
2.23/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Serving: Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Color: Dark yellow/orange with a medium haze.

Smell: Some citrus and banana.

Taste: Sour with a slight citrus. The after taste reminds of what my mouth felt like after eating Sour Straws as a kid.

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Photo of froghop
3.31/5  rDev -7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

pours is a very cloudy orange, with a thin off-white head, lots of sediment, and not much lacing.

smell is of orange peel, coriander, spice, and a hint of ripe banana.

taste is crisp, wheat, spice, citrus, a little banana, and orange peel, end is a little dry.

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Photo of BeerSox
2.5/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle into 23oz Weizen glass. First bottle of this type for a Hefeweizen.

Pours a cloudy orange-yellow hue with an almost non-existant head. All that's there is a thin rim along the glass.

Just a touch of banana and clove, along with a bit of citrusy aromas. Very light.

A little more clove and banana in the flavor, and like the aroma, just a touch of citrus. Lighter bodied with high carbonation.

This one just wasn't impressive to me. It seemed to light, almost watered down. No horrible flavors, but just boring.

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Photo of pinotboy007
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Into a tall Paulaner glass: cloudy pale apple cider-like appearance with a modest but dense white cap and lacing.

S - Corriander, some banana, white pepper, and clove.

T - Pretty much as it smells, with the white pepper up front that fades to the spice, green apple and bannana hints. Finishes a bit sour.

M - Light carbonation and a bit creamy.

D - Nice drinkability - would be decent for warmer weather.

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Photo of brentk56
4.04/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear light amber color with a head of moderate size that leaves a few splashes of lace; frankly, looks more like a pale ale than a hefe

Smell: On the nose, there is no mistaking this for a pale ale; big waft of banana, coriander and clove

Taste: While it starts out like a hefe, with plenty of banana up front, the spice profile moves in a different direction; while there is some coriander/clove, there is also a lot of tart green apple and hoppy bitterness that was totally unexpected; after the swallow, the tart and bitter flavors persist and the memory of the hefe fades

Mouthfeel: Medium body with crisp carbonation

Drinkability: Not saying I didn't like this as I did, very much; I was just surprised by the unexpected twists and turns

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Photo of magictrokini
2.98/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A solid effort, but this does not come close to Franziskaner or even Paulaner. Pours hazy gold with a puffy white head. Good aroma of bananas and candied sugar, with some wheat. The taste is dominated by the wheat and yeast, but fades towards the back with the sweetness taking over. Enjoyable and worth a try, but you'll end up wanting to drop the same amount of money on a better beer next time.

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Photo of zeff80
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a cloudy, orange/bronze color with a foamy, bubbly, white one-finger head. It left faint trails of lace.

S - It smelled strongly of lemon with some citrus notes. Also, some clove, yeast and wheat aromas.

T - It tasted of a slight spice with hints of banana, clove, and wheat.

M - It was sharp and crisp. A light bodied anad easy-drinking beer.

D - This is a nice refreshing hefe. Not qute like a true German hefe, but it is still good.

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Photo of Dotcubed
2.9/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I got this in Colorado, no telling how old it might be.

Pours almost flat. very light bubbling from the bottom of the sam adam's glass. Good color, nice orange peel color. Smells sour, citrus, good impresion.

Unfortunately it's pretty much dead flat.

Nice taste, sweet, light with some gentle bitterness. I like it, except that there isn't any bubbles. Beer without bubbles is like mac & cheese without the mac. Cheese is good by itself but something important is missing.

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Photo of JayQue
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A "West Coast" Hefe. Pours the requisite Hefeweizen straw color with the standard big head with tiny bubbles.

Smell is very mild but there is cloves, bananas and astringency.

Tastes starts out the same as the smell. The hefeweizen flavors are more pronounced than the aroma....but wait, whats that at the end....?

A strong hops finish!!!

In all, it works fairly well. Somebody looking for a standard hefeweizen will be disappointed with the finish, but it is a pretty good beer overall.

Mouthfeel is rich. The switch from astringent to bitter at the end would be more pleasing to some than others and this would affect mouthfeel and drinkabiltiy.

I could enjoy several of these on a hot day. THose that don't fancy West Coast hops in their hefeweizen should look elsewhere.

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Photo of bosco7
3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy pale golden color. Decent fluffy little head.

Smell is pretty inviting. Lots of lemon zest, pepper, clove, white grape, and some earthy aromas present.

Starts a bit sweet with lemon and banana flavors. Pepper and hop flavors are pronounced. Hop flavors are spicy. Tartness comes in towards the finish. Ends bitter. Tastes pretty good.

Mouthfeel is really light and a bit prickly.

This is a pretty good beer. I wouldn't call it a Hefeweizen but El Jefe sounds so cool. I think if this was a tad less bitter I could drink a whole lot more of it. Still a good brew.

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Photo of RedDiamond
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thick lumpy gobs of whipped cream head trailing ivory lace in lumps and clusters. Paints a nice picture, yes? This is a pretty beer and as clouded as one might expect. And the El Jefe delivered more flavor than I anticipated. It has a pungent nose of virile clove with a strong showing of clove, nutmeg, and black pepper in the taste. The body is smooth but thin.

None too crisp and wheaty, but a tasty beer with authentic Bavarian styling and more assertive flavor than most Hale's beers.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.06/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A normal pour produces an almost four finger thick, frothy, light tan colored head in my 25cl tulip glass. The head clings well to the class, which creates a varied surface and a foam bridge in my glass as it slowly recedes. Sans sediment, the beer has a slightly hazy, full gold color to it & shows lots of carbonation bubbles swirling & streaming up through it when held up to the light. Tart wheat aromatics, touches of green apple, a touchy of grassy threshed grain and perhaps a touch of herbal hop character. The aroma is quite clean and characteristic of an American Wheat beer (despite any subtle references on the label that are contrary to this).

Lightly tart tasting, again with a green apple flavor to it. Grassy, grain-like flavors and some soda cracker flavors contribute to the grain presence of this beer. Very light feeling, though it has a nice, prickly carbonation. The beer does finish with a light, though persistent bitterness and perhaps a touch of herbal notes are all that the hop contributes to this beer.

This is a very easy drinking, typical example of a wheat beer fermented with a fairly bland ale yeast strain. There is perhaps a touch more green apple flavor here than should be, but at least this adds a notable quality to the beer.

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer after decanting the 22-ounce bottle pours a cloudy amber color with a prestigious creamy white head that settles leaving the lace to form a solid sheet on the glass. Nose is earthy, sweet with wheat, citrus like crispness, spicy, start is pleasantly sweet, decent grain profile; just a light touch of bitterness at the back, top is light to moderate in feel. Finish has a mild to medium acidity, the hops understated but present and accounted for, sweetness carries on until the end, fairly dry, and a nice clean and refreshing beer to start off a Sunday afternoon.

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El Jefe Weizen Ale from Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
81 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.