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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.
BA SCORE
80
good

47 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 47
Hads: 89
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 16.29%
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
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Reviews: 47 | Hads: 89
Photo of DogFood11
4.27/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber at bevmo in west hollywood. First time i've seen it there, and there seems to be a growing Hale's section lately. El Jefe has an interesting label with an older guy that has a moustache similar to Rollie Fingers of Milwaukee brewer fame. Poured into a Tulip it forms a large head which eventually falls to a thin ring like appearance and lacing is almost non existent. Cloudy and golden.

Generally speaking I'm not usually a fan of this style mainly because there is such a disparity between the "good ones" and the rest of 'em. This is one of the "good ones". Meaning its got some girth to it, while remaining very drinkable. Exotic fruits are lucious, banana comes through with flying colors. Digging deep you can get a touch of hops that help clean up, but in the end its the light citrus that finishes the bill.

This is a kick ass Hefe and the best I've had in recent memory. This style seems to be very hard to make a good one as there are so many that are just boring and uneventfull in the slightest. This one brings it. (1,053 characters)

Photo of BeerSox
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%
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. (528 characters)

Photo of magictrokini
2.98/5  rDev -14.9%
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. (397 characters)

Photo of draheim
3.97/5  rDev +13.4%
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. (443 characters)

Photo of Westsidethreat
2.8/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: Drab peachy copper color with some haze to it. Head is boring and quite low, just a small ring of buttermilk colored foam wraps around the glass. Whole lotta sediment at the bottom of this bottle...think I am gonna avoid most of it.

S: Spicy wheat, cloves, green bananas and copper.

T: Begins sour and grassy, a lot like how lemongrass juice would taste I suppose. Not as much banana in the taste as in the nose, but it does follow suit with the tastes being under ripe. Some minor butterscotch flavors coexist with the sour notes, but not enough to make an impact. Finishes sour and grassy.

M: Medium body with just a sting of carbonation. Probably the best part of the beer unfortunately.

D: Not really sure why I bought this beer, I know better. Guess I'm just dumb. Once in a while an American brewery will make a decent German style hefe but few and far between. This is drinkable, but barely... (917 characters)

Photo of froghop
3.31/5  rDev -5.4%
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. (262 characters)

Photo of RJLarse
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I bought a bomber of El Jefe while traveling in western Washington. Poured in to a weizen glass.

Pours a pale gold color and is hazy, with a little yeast residue in the glass. Many bubbles are seen rising through the beer. A rich, foamy white head forms, and is very resilient.

The smell is strong, sweet and fruity. There is a soft fruit aroma of pears and apples, Also a bit of spice aroma like cinnamon.

The taste is nice, a traditional clove and banana flavor, with a little bitterness with it.

Mouthfeel is light and dry. There is a bit of a dry paper feel to it.

A very drinkable and authentic tasting hefe. I would have this again, and I'd love to try it on tap. (675 characters)

Photo of Seanibus
4/5  rDev +14.3%
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. (680 characters)

Photo of Hoptometrist
3.7/5  rDev +5.7%
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. (594 characters)

Photo of cswhitehorse
3.37/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Mr. Jefe pours a rather clear Hefe-weizen. There was not much carbonation as the head disappeared rather quickly.

The smell was good as I got a hint of bananas from the odor.

The beer had less body in regards to taste as it was light like a lager.

The mouthfeel was all around but was a little to feather like.

It went down nice especially on this hot day. (369 characters)

Photo of hreb
3.9/5  rDev +11.4%
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. (773 characters)

Photo of theopholis
3.4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Reasonably cloudy gold/yellow with a decent, but not great white head. Head settles out VERY quickly, leaving no lace.

Aroma- Good, clean, failry sour aroma. Smells of fresh lemons. Not much in the way of banana or clove. Smells very tart. Hmmm...

Taste- Tastes fare more interesting than it smells. Fairly sour and tart with a bite at the back of the throat. Lots of green apple in the aft-taste. Hint of banana and clove. Not as much as some hefes. Kind of spicey for a hefe, but it's not unpleasant. Missing some things I expect in a hefe, but it's interesting enough to where I wouldn't mind trying another one.

Mouthfeel- Medium body for hefe, but not as chewy as you might expect. Good carbonation level. Nice CO2 bite.

Drinkability- Very refreshing. Still lacks something I expect in a hefe, including the clove and banana. But I would definately give this a whirl. (896 characters)

Photo of beertaster13
4.1/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very light yellow with white haziness. The head pours about a 1 inch thick creaminess, as the session progresses it turned into lacing at best. The smell is of light grain, the yeast is buttery and biscuity, hints of lemon cloves, a spring run through a forest. The taste has a specific belgian yeast characteristic that I love, citrus lingerings with a banana finish. The grains are noticable but not overbearing. Very nice with a salad or during lunch, light enough to keep you going. Very nice. (505 characters)

Photo of Padron4KM
2.6/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber w/ no bottled on or best before date.


Hazy golden straw, smallish head for a hefe, only two fingers high and rapidly dissipating.

Aroma is mildly banana and very light clove.

Flavor is mostly lemony with a slight spice finish.

I bought this because el jefe is my nickname, that's what I get for going for the gimmick. Probably wouldn't buy again. (373 characters)

Photo of rayjay
2.25/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Purchased from BevMo in Sacramento ("Beverages...More than we can sell"?) Not too impressive, a dissapointment from a good brewery. Hazy, but oxidized looking, leaving no lace, and indeed the foam disappeared before too long. Boring and thin, undercarbonated, with no real flavor virtues that I look for in the style. No clove or banana, but I can't take points off for that because it's not a German wheat, it's American. Under-attenuated. Sweet and sticky, not over the top but just enough to make it unappealing. I don't know if it's an old bottle or not--no date on the bottle. Two of us had trouble finishing just one bottle. The mild hops are one of the only things we enjoyed. This would not be refreshing on a hot day, so I can't say this fits the style very well. Sorry Hales, better luck next time. (808 characters)

Photo of czechsaaz
2.83/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Lots of tart wheat aroma with subtle spiciness. (not banana/clove, more like yeast/estery.) Smells a little like dried apricots. No hops in the aroma, which is right for most wheat beers. Deep gold color and cloudy. Big head fades quickly leaving a small white head.

Tart start, in fact tart is dominant. Not off or infected, but this can happen with a good amount of wheat in the grist. Pretty nice malty finish but again, tart throughout. Very little hop flavor. Not a whole lot of spice either.

I had this at the brewery a week or so ago and was WAY more impressed than the bottle version. I'm a bit surprised that I don't really care for this beer. Will take notes at the brewery and review again. Could be an old bottle as wheat beers must be consumed fresh imo. (773 characters)

Photo of Taybeh
3.94/5  rDev +12.6%
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. (564 characters)

Photo of bosco7
3.85/5  rDev +10%
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. (583 characters)

Photo of pinotboy007
3.6/5  rDev +2.9%
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. (413 characters)

Photo of Dotcubed
2.9/5  rDev -17.1%
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. (478 characters)

Photo of Ghenna
4.29/5  rDev +22.6%
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 (441 characters)

Photo of PhiloPsych
2.92/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

It was surprisingly clear for a Hefeweizen. The head was fizzy and dissipated quickly. The smell was quite yeasty and a bit alcoholic--reminded me a bit of La Fin du Monde. Taste was a bit odd. Some banana came through, most clearly in the aftertaste. It was not bad, but it was not good enough for me to really enjoy drinking it; so I had to mark it down for drinkability. (373 characters)

Photo of ssteakley
3.23/5  rDev -7.7%
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. (283 characters)

Photo of 1234Jack
4.08/5  rDev +16.6%
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. (421 characters)

Photo of jclzony
3.18/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle. Pours a hazed light amber color with a buttery head that leaves a lacey ring. Aroma is aromatic and pleasant with a balance of banana and citrus. The appearance is somewhat hazy golden-colored body with a large. Fizzy with a slightly acidic tang that contains mild fruit flavors. Finishes with a dry taste and more hopped than a typical Hefe. A full bodied version of an American wheat with a mild banana and clove essence. (440 characters)

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El Jefe Weizen Ale from Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
80 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.