1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Calabaza Blanca - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
Calabaza BlancaCalabaza Blanca

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

872 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 872
Reviews: 440
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 12.05%
Wants: 29
Gots: 59 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Witbier |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-25-2004

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (40) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 872 | Reviews: 440
Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Imaginative name and bottle. I liked this mellow wheat beer, but only as a share of a one-time bottle. Carbonation on tongue, with lemon and bitterness in there. Corriander, ginger and spices moderated by malt dose. Thanks to Wohlfs for shlepping to Doug Shoemaker's super tasting.

Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.89/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Haven Gastropub in Pasadena, CA.

Pours a hazy light yellow with a foamy white head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is slightly sour with malt, grain, fruit, and acidic aromas. Taste is much the same with sour grain, fruit, and spice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of GRG1313
3.2/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Artisan White Ale; Ale brewed with spices. Batch 547; Bottled 5-18-10

My opinion: very over rated. I can't help but think that this gets high reviews because people simply think it's supposed to get high reviews. The beer is remarkably uneventful and is not the "tart" beer it purports to be.

Pours a golden orange with a little haze and a short white head;

Nose is a light lime citrus with lemon hints; sweet vinegar undertones. Hints of white pepper.

Mouthfeel is rich and full.

Flavors are of green vegetables - lettuce, cabbage, and with a big celery character. Some white pepper in the mouth. Flavors are delicate and integrated; not really sour but "almost" there.

Short "green" finish.

This is like a beginner's sour. Supposedly brewed with oranges and corriander, neither is apparent in nose of mouth. Supposed to be a tart beer but doesn't get there; tastes a bit like mowed grass. Actually very drinkable in that it is refreshing but really misses the mark; a bit simple, thin and uneventful.

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.62/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle picked up somewhere a month or two back. Served in a SAVOR wine glass.

Pours a clear light golden color with a thin white head and some spotty lacing. The nose carries some really great wheat character along with a light touch of oak and funk. Slight acidity there as well. Reminds me a bit of a berliner. Flavor confirms that last point. The wheat and bugs combine for a really pleasing dryness. Great balance and supreme drinkability. Light body with crisp -- yet not over the top -- carbonation. Slight acidity to the finish. Extremely solid. Beautiful beer.

Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy pale yellow in color and poured with a thin film of bubbles covering the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of sourness in the nose along with some hints of citrus and spices.
T: The overall taste has a light to moderate amount of sourness with flavors of wheat and notes of spices.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink because the sourness is subdued. It’s a very light, easy to drink and refreshing witbier with a twist.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of brentk56
3.91/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a coudy golden color with tons of frothy white foam; icebergs rather than lace stick to the side of the glass

Smell: Surprisingly tart nose (almost like a Berliner Weisse); clear elements of wheat biscuit, coriander and, to a lesser extent, orange

Taste: Flavor burst of wheat, coriander and orange/lemon bitterness followed by a less sour, but more yeasty, finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied but full of carbonation

Drinkability: A very nice brew for the warmer weather; having picked this up on a recent trip to Orlando, I was hesitant to keep it until next Summer; a very intriguing wit from a brewer I will seek out in the future

Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very complex and experimental Witbier. A lot going on. Aromas are very spicy, citrusy, yeasty, bready, and musky with a touch of tartness that boarders on sour. Looks a hazy straw with an abundance of carbonation and laces very well. An alternating play of tart lemons and grapefruit with sweet oranges and wheat malt swirl around a solid dosing of hops. A moderate base of barley malt gives a bready, yeasty, and a light grain flavor. Spices of corriander and curraco play on the toung. High carbonation gives a creamy texture. Less thin than expected. Finishes dry and quite chardonay-like. Muskiness continues. Lightly sweet and bitter with a light grainy bite in the throat, still, refreshing. A very good beer.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.59/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Thebeercellar2 : Pour a yellow ale with some white haze and a big foamy head with perfect retention. Aroma of brettanomyces was overly dominant and left little space for the coriander and orange peel that were advertised on the label. Taste is also dominated by the brettanomyces with some hints of coriander and wheat. Body is definitely above average for the style and that made it pretty enjoyable. I’m not sure what to make of this beer since I’m not sure the brett was planned to be there but it didn’t stop my enjoyment of the beer.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Lightly foggy lemony amber with a huge number of bubble streams firing off the bottom of the glass. The head is cumulus cloud white, pillowy and very large. Despite the massive bubble barrage directed at its underside, the foam falls more quickly than it should. The surface is nearly featureless, indicating a lack of stickiness, also apparent in the complete lack of lace. Room for improvement.

The nose is decent for a witbier, but it doesn't overly impress. Sour orchard fruit is dominant with coriander as the most promient style-specific aroma. A faint suggestion of bitter orange peel is evident as well. While there's plenty of power, the nose isn't as integrated or as characterful as I'd like.

It's a little on the flavor-deficient side; an impression that is accentuated by an airy, ultra-light mouthfeel. The flavor profile is made up of tart, unripe fruit (green apple, pear), coriander and a bitter citrusiness that's as much lemon peel as it is orange peel. There isn't much malt sugar present either. The beer is as dry as they come and the back end is positively arid.

Calabaza Blanca is both evanescent (mild, fleeting flavor) and effervescent (reminiscent of Champagne). I usually have a fairly low tolerance for excessive carbonation, but this beer isn't as annoying as it might be due to the fine nature of the bubbles. The mouthfeel is active, but it's more of a low buzz than a soda-like fizziness.

If the body were any lighter it would cease to exist altogether. To be fair, it does acquire a fraction more gravitas once some of the carbonation has exhausted itself. It does, however, come dangerously close to watery on the swallow. The bottom (yeasty) portion of the bottle delivers more flavor, different flavor, but not better flavor.

Mild. Light. Highly carbonated. These aren't usually characteristics that find a great deal of favor with me. Having said that, this is a pretty refreshing beer and is insanely easy to drink. In the end, 'White Gourd' isn't as impressive as its (very impressive) bottle and label would lead one to believe. I still have high hopes for the other Jolly Pumpkin ales though. Thanks to deejaydan for the bottle.

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Always a favorite and welcome one to see on the wall. I could not resist grabbing a pint of this one again.

Wonderful pour, light golden yellow in color with great cloudiness to it. A big white head caps the the top of it nicely before settling down with nice lacing coating the sides of the glass. Aroma is light, slightly tart with hints of citrus and grassy notes, cloves and bananas. Really well done aroma as it seems to get even more complex the further into it you dive. Smooth, coating feel here. Not that crisp and clean feel you would expect from the style, it is fuller with a much more coating feel to it. Again really well done and just a great example of the style. Nice banana and clove flavors play off each other with light peppery spice and lemon zest tacked on for good measure. You could really just drink this one all day.

Overall this is one of the smoothest and easiest drinking beers you can find. Great job here,

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

a great friend described this beer as the most similar to what everyone else is doing of the jolly pumpkin repertoire. and while this came before many of them, i generally agree with him. this beer is fabulous, no questioning that, but its not as unique and distinct as their others. this is their take on a belgian wild wit, with coriander and orange peel over a pale wheat malt base with lots of classic dexter michigan funk and brightness. blonde beer with great white head, a nose of herbs, almost like a gin, and funky brett. the flavor is wine-like and fruity, with the orange adding quite a bit. complex and tasty, but indeed similar to other wits out there. some others of theirs, fuego and the special brown come to mind, are so entirely their own, while this one sort of flirts with other beers in the same style. its delicious and refreshing, but less separate. could use a touch more carbonation and maybe the same amount more body, this comes through on the thin side, even for a light style. but its yeasty finish makes it awesome. not critiquing this too hard, but their other beers impress me a bit more.

Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle from 2010

A: The beer pours a rather clear golden amber color with a massive white head that is very well retained.

S: A rather strong note of green apples and apple skins to the aroma. There is a light spice character to it as well as some musty oak and a little bit of grass and pear.

T: The flavor is sort of muddled. There are some of the same apple and pear notes with a light lemon zest tartness. Musty funk is there, as with almost all Jolly Pumpkin beers. Very light spice notes on the back end.

M: Light to medium in body with a rather high level of carbonation and a drying finish.

O: Good, but it didn't impress me as much as other Jolly Pumpkin beers.

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Murky and opaque blond with a tiny white head that dissipates pretty quickly.

Smell: Musty funk and lemony tang. Signature Jolly Pumpkin musty barrel aroma is present but in good balance with the spicy, zesty quality of the beer.

Taste & mouthfeel: Tangy, mildly funky, ultra light bodied and crisp. Flavors of lemon zest and spice at the forefront. No sweetness whatsoever here, nor is it particularly sour or acidic. This is a witbier with the Jolly Pumpkin twist, exactly what I was hoping for. I could drink a ton of this stuff on a hot Summer day, it's incredibly refreshing and light but still full of flavor.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 279.

Appearance: Pours out a cloudy, straw-colored body with a frothy, tall, white head.

Smell: Pleasant mixture of tangy wheat with tart-scented fruits, earthy, freshly-ground spices, piquant oak, and some punchy lactic notes.

Taste: Soft white wheat with a scant, brief honey-like sweetness. Tart fruity flavors of pears, white peaches, and, lastly, some tastes of sweet and bitter orange peel. Then, in comes the spice hints of coriander and powdered ginger. Relatively smooth, but still slightly puckering oak wood hints. There's sort of a ubiquitous lactic sourness throughout. Finishes rather dry with lingering, lasting touches of oak, spice, and tartness.

Mouthfeel: It's just a hair under medium-bodied. Well carbonated, no question there, and quite bubbly from beginning to end.

Drinkability: To help "set the mood" for this beer, I stepped out into the unpleasant, grotesquely humid, hot Atlanta weather for a few minutes. Though it ultimately lacked the body and creaminess of some witbiers, I felt it excelled surprisingly well in terms of both refreshment and enjoyment (at least with Batch 279). With some beers, clearing through a mere twelve ounces is a chore, but finding the end of this 750ml was a breeze!

Photo of biboergosum
3.62/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle. Honey, your ship seems to have come in - so, what's the catch? Ooooh, lemme guess - it's a big white pumpkin!

This beer pours a hazy, pale golden yellow colour, with a teeming tower of puffy, loosely foamy, and fizzy bone-white head, which leaves some random reaches of splattered sudsy lace around the glass as it slowly recedes.

It smells of gritty wheat malt, funky yeast, orange peel, lemon zest, dried coriander, white pepper, a hint of astringent barrel staves, and a slight earthy leafiness. The taste is rather thin grainy wheat, muddled black pepper and coriander spice, ethereally funky yeast, fairly tart lemon rind, a bit of weak salad vinegar, just-emptied white wine barrels, and a musty, leafy grassiness.

The carbonation is quite tight and well into the realm of frizzante, the body medium-light in weight, barely, and just a bit too fizzy to be deemed particularly smooth. It finishes mostly dry, the grainy wheat handing things off to the lingering yeast, spice, grass, and lemon.

An interesting enough witbier, the typically average sweetness perhaps lacking here, but the expected adjuncts doing well to blend and provide a balanced flavour. I'm not sure the funkitude of the yeast is all that welcome, though, by the style, and certainly not by this camper - kind of detracts from the ease of drinkability, I gotta say.

Photo of emerge077
4.11/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured very slowly into a pint glass, resulting in massive, pillowy foam. Multiple tiny streams of carbonation course through the liquid. Head is slow to fall, looks like a whipped merengue.

As the last dregs of wheat & yeast are swirled then poured, the body becomes increasingly opaque. Watching the yeast fighting against the upward carbonation is like witnessing some primitive chemical reaction.

Smells of coriander, earth, lemon, and fruit pastille candy. Taste is earthy belgian yeast, mildly tart citrus, not much hint of alcohol. Pretty zippy overall with the carbonation and citrus taste. Yeast/wheat delivers a smooth mouthfeel without being soapy or heavy. Tart, tasty, and thirst-quenching.

Ranks among the best and most unique US versions of this Belgian style, in my humble opinion.

Edit: The first time I tried this, I didn't think much of it. By the 2nd or 3rd time, it's subtlety was clearly it's strong suit, and I find myself returning to it again and again for a good thirst-quencher. This ale has expanded my understanding of this style.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Calabaza Blanca from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
88 out of 100 based on 872 ratings.