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Saranac Hefeweizen - Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

Not Rated.
Saranac HefeweizenSaranac Hefeweizen

Educational use only; do not reuse.

196 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 196
Hads: 293
Avg: 3.48
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 3
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Hefeweizen |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 10-22-2002

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 Saranac Hefeweizen Alström Bros
Reviews: 196 | Hads: 293
Photo of ljbrisson
3.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Yellow label with a painting of a rocking chair on a hill. Kudos to Matt Brewing for changing up the logos on their Saranac labels, even though they leave the bottlecap the same.

Pours an opaque yellow-gold into a weizen glass. Half inch of foamy head which reduces to a film and leaves a trace of lacing. The carb action, unfiltered opacity and beautiful color make this a sexy beer.

Aroma is banana, lemon, spices, banana, yeast, did I mention banana?

Mouthfeel is a little slick, with a light-medium body and medium carbonation. The chewy slickness reminded me of eating a slightly overripe banana. The carbonation enhances rather than distracts in this brew.

Taste is very similar to the nose. Very light, very summery, wheaty, a little nutty with banana and citrus characteristics.

Overall, although I am very new to this beer's style, I think this is a solid brew. I will definitely be revisiting this beer.

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Photo of MTNboy
3.23/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- This has nice authentic German Hefe look. It was a nice yellow with a bronze hue. Thick off white head and lace. Maybe not as cloudy as actual German Hefe.

Smell- I felt I had a good banana-clove aroma.

Taste- Mild banana, malt and citrus flavor are followed by mild hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Thin for this style.

Drinkability- It is refreshing and easy to drink.

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Photo of nasty15108
3.72/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Part of the Saranac Summer Beer Sampler.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a weis glass.

A - Poured a yellowish color with slight orange hues. Pour produced a small head of white foam. Good carbonation and faint lacing made this look a little more like a Pilsner than a Hefeweizen.

S - Yeast and slightly musty with hints of spice (clove) and banana.

T - Malty with a very slight hint of citrus and spice. Definite hits of banana. Finishes of slightly dry.

MF&D - Pretty much what I expected. Doesn't measure up to it's Greman counterparts, but not a bad effort. A good summer session beer.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a two-finger head that stuck around and left some lacings on top of a very cloudy orange body. A decent smell of spices and citric notes, but a little weak. Almost full-bodied, this beer was fluffy and a little sweet from the wheat and had both citric tastes (bananas and pineapple more than citrus) and spices, but the spices beat out the other flavors just a tad for me. This isn't just a summer beer, it's a great all year round beer even if it isn't the greatest hefe to have.

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Photo of pittvkyle7
3.76/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a cloudy light amber with a fastly fading white head. Just a ring is left.

Slight banana smell while pouring but it does not last. Mostly a hay and grassy smell.

wheat, hay, grass. pretty sweet, honey. Nothing really from the hops maybe just a little spicey note. The yeast is slightly nutty and reminds me of wyeasts bavarian wheat.

meadium body with plenty of bubbles.

a nice summer drinkable hefe. Good representation of the style.

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Photo of nrpellegrini
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the better unfiltered hefeweizens I've had. Smooth, light, and a creamy mouthfeel make it easy to drink this beer. Other unfiltered hefe's have been a lot heavier. This one was very appropriate for the summer. A couple spice and fruit flavors...
and a slight hop here and there. I'd say try it while you can.

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Photo of imullica
3.93/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle in Weihenstephan glass and tasted from slightly chilled to room temperature.

Appearance: Decent head with a decent lacing. Coloring is a bit too transparent without the classic, amazingly cloudy hefe look to catch the light.

Smell: Nothing mind blowing, very light scent.

Taste: Tastes of banana which grows stronger as the beer warms. Stays true to the classic hefe style.

Mouthfeel: Light on the mouth without overpowering you with flavor. Rather low traces of carbonation while sitting on the tongue so not to overshadow the flavor.

Drinkability. Subtler, lighter flavors with a smaller amount of carbonation allow for a higher drinkability (more so as the beer reaches ~20C).

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Photo of philbe311
3.47/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Golden orange ale... Livery swirling carbonation... Head quickly fades...

S - Banana & wheat... Smells like a text book Hefe...

T - Light clove following by strong banana... Banana taste lingers...

M - Light & smooth... Refreshing... Oily texture...

D - Easy drinking... Banana sort of overwhelms the entire brew...

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Photo of cvstrickland
3.57/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12-ounce bottle poured, swirled, and poured into a weizen glass yields a hazy orange-amber body capped with a thick finger of fine white foam that shrivels to a ring that leaves no lacing.

Smell is bananas, oh yes, oh yes-- plenty of them, and ripe ones, too, all atop a toasty note of wheat.

Taste is fruity and sweet with banana and clove flavors atop a rich and tangy malted wheat note.

Medium-bodied, fresh and tangy, Saranac's hefe tastes good and has great drinkability.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.5/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a tall weizen glass. Pours an cloudy unfiltered golden orange color with a creamy white head. The aroma features the typical Hefeweizen flavors with banana, clove, spices and yeast and maybe a hint of bubblegum. The taste definitely has some wheat flavors with some clove and other spices with the yeast coming out in the finish. This is a pretty solid at a Hefeweizen by an American brewer, and better than a lot of domestic versions, but it doesn't really compare to the classic German Hefeweizens. Nonetheless, it is a pretty good beer that is worth a shot on a hot summer day.

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Photo of gestalt162
3.42/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. brown bottle, again part of the summer 12 pack. tulip/hurricane style glass...

A: Cloudy, bubbly deep golden/orange hue, topped off by a (surprisingly large) 2 finger head that's slow to dissipate. Lots of little carbonated bubbles running up the sides of the glass. Lacing is almost non-existent, just a couple thick strands, and what there is of it slowly drools away into the bottom of the glass. Good looking enough, but for a hefe, not that impressive.

S: Banana bread, sweet wheat malt, and (another surprise) a musty, earthy grassiness. Interesting.

T: Hits you first with a classic banana/clove wheat malt flavor. Balanced by a touch of earthiness in the middle, not nearly as much as the aroma seemed to indicate, and a mild hop bitterness in the back. Ends with a clove-spiced wheat flavor. Pretty well balanced.

This brew seems weak on flavor, like they took a higher quality hefe and watered it down a little. As time goes on, it gets even thinner and more watery. Kind of depressing.

MF: Light, a little too light and thin, with no legs in your mouth. Impeccably smooth. Carbonation doesn't bite like I thought it would.

D: Light and drinkable, but suitable for summer armchair ammo only due to its thin and watery feel and taste.

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Photo of mlasher1
3.82/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Straw color pour with a single finger head which leaves no lacing. Very clear for a hefe.

S: Traditional smells of bananas and cloves dominate. No hop aroma detected.

T: Sweet with banana flavors present.

M: Light and crisp with lille lingering taste.

D: Definately drinkable on a warm summer day, ok in other situations.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.83/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Hazy yellow in appearance with some head but no lacing.

S. Sweet banana yeast. A bit of clove. The wheat is delectible and theres a slight sour hop profile.

T. A wheaty twang and the banana taste is there as well. Very tasty.

M. Crisp and smooth, light to medium bodied.

D. An excellent summer selection, as most Hefe's are.

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Photo of TheTrevor
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a cloudy gold with a two-finger head that didn't last long. The smell has the distinct aroma of banana with some wheat and spices also present. The taste starts off with some sweetness with some citrus and banana characteristic that gives way to some slightly spicy overtones. The mouthfeel is fairly thin with a decent amount of carbonation. I'd consider this beer pretty drinkable and wouldn't mind having a couple on a warm summer night. This is a good example of the style, it's a shame they don't make it all the time.

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Photo of generallee
3.97/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saranac's Hefeweizen has a cloudy golden color with a thin foamy head. The aroma of banana is very strong. There is also a hint of spice and wheat in the aroma as well. Its flavor is mostly sweet with very little hop presence. There is a heavy dose of banana and lemon flavors along with a wheat malt base and some spicy clove. All of this is wrapped up in a medium body with a smooth texture and a mild carbonation. Another solid offering from Saranac.

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Photo of PatrickJR
3.77/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into weizen glass.

A - Slightly hazy yellow with a nice 2 finger head. Pretty good retention, settles to a thick 1/4 inch cap with some lacing. Certainly better looking than most American hefes.

S - Great hefe smells of bananas and sour wheat. Some clove hiding in the background.

T - Pretty much like any decent German hefe watered down. Not bad really. Banana esters start and carry on into the finish, with phenolic character kicking in mid palate. Full wheat malt hits just as the clove does, getting increasingly sour throughout the finish. Sourness goes well with long lasting banana flavor.

M - The lack of carbonation (for the style) bugs me a little. The crescendo of sourness late palate would work much better with increased carbonation, though the banana would've likely died out sooner. It's a little thinner than I'd prefer also, lacking a certain yeasty creaminess.

D - Excellent drinkability. A great American hefe and one of Saranac's best.

Recently I bought a mix pack of Saranac's Adirondack Trail Mix as well as their Summer Styles, so I've had 12 different Saranac's to play with recently. Mostly I feel Saranac strattles the line of average, with some not so great and some decent offerings; nothing horrible or mind blowing. However, considering most American beers labeled as hefeweizens that I've had, this is one of the best, and perhaps for a second, if I didn't know better, I might guess this was a German offering.

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Photo of SIRIUS2
3.4/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. Bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pale gold in color, clear, with an uneven white head. Head dissipates slowly but eventually leaves a bubble film with a thick white ring. No notable lacing.

S: Smokey wheat chaff smell with a faint citrus hops.

T&M: Malty sweetness, classic wheat flavor, with a slightly fruity kind of overtone. Carbonation is light, lending to a creamy texture. The finish tends a tad watery and a toward dry, then lingering with that wheat chaff taste so typical in wheat brews.

D: Nice texture. Decent taste. Very...wheaty. Not a huge fan of wheat beer but this one is okay but nothing special.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.06/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is a honey clouded unfiltered gold, with a bright creamy textured white head forming thick above the rim of my glass. Sparse speckled lacing sticks to my pint as the head dwindles. Aroma is upfront with the banana esters and limitied on the clove and vanilla aspects more bubblegum and other candy like esters flow. Sharp citrus bite peaks through as well with a really sulfur like smell coming throuhg as well. Flavor wise the banana esters and vanilla cream with chammomile tea like qualities really coat the palate. Powdered yeast cakes and an undertow of citrus with a spicy feel really lay it on as well. Mouthfeel is medium bodied slightly stick and cloying at times but carbonation carries it decently. Drinkability I can't get over the sulfur and banana bomb in the flavor, seems like their in the right direction but miss the mark just a bit. Much better than the likes of a Sam Adams labeled hefe that is just an American Wheat.

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Photo of bboven
3.62/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy straw color, that's right on. The head starts out strong but fades to nothing with no lacing.

Mostly bubblegum, but not overpowering as the clove, banana, and yeast aromas are right behind.

A bit on the sweet side, but all the normal characteristics are there.

Carbonation is goo, there's a bit of drying and actually a bit of warming in the stomach as well. Not something you look for in this style, but not unpleasant.

A pretty good example of an easy beer to make that every brewery does. Nothing steps out as this one being great, but definitely on-par for what it should be.

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Photo of erosier
2.86/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a golden yellow with a fluffy and tall white head that settles fast and laces the glass nicely on the way down. It has the smell of sweet malt underneath a banana and maybe a bit of clove flavoring from the yeast. The taste delivers what the nose asks for which is nice. It tastes like sweet wheat malt underneath flavors of banana and some orange. Not much on the clove. It has a very smooth mouthfeel and is fairly drinkable. The banana flavor overpowers this one.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.97/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single, 12 oz bottle purchased for $1.50 from Super Saver in Somerville... Originally part of a Summer gift-pack from Saranac...
"Unfiltered wheat ale" on the front logo sticker...
Pours a hazy, and cloudy, straw-colored hue with a minimal frothy and foamy head that quickly receded and left a fair amount of lacing around the head of the glass...
Smell was very on-point, extremely sweet and bursting with citrus and floral notes...
Bubblegum taste with noticeable coriander, wheat, citrus, florals, lemon, and candy essences...
Creamy, sweet mouthfeel - not as thick as I was hoping for, but still pretty good overall...
Easy drinkability for a Hefe, with a modest 5.6% ABV...
Overall, not a bad stab at a German style from an American brewery...

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Photo of aerozeppl
3.05/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Slightly hazy orange color. Not nearly hazy enough for the style. Minimal white head.

S: All the Saranac beers I have had all have a common stale smell.

T: Banana dominates this one and I am not a fan of banana. The wheat is there nice and strong though. No clove. Not bad especially for the price.

M: Med body. Good for the style. Nothing to laud or complain about.

D: Saranac shines in the summer. Before then it can get iffy. These are great session beers however. While not as good as some other examples of the style.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
2.78/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very slightly fogged amber orange. Minimal head. Nose is a real harsh orange yeasty mix. Not very smooth at all it seems. Flavor is another mess of citrus, mostly orange, and weird hefe characteristics. Feel is sticky. Overall, not very good. Weird orange citrus characteristics. Odd sticky feel. Hits in all the wrong ways. More drain pour.

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Photo of mmmbeer
4.05/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with no freshness date. Brewed with winter wheat, 2-row malt, Tettnang, Mittelfruh, and German hefe yeast. It pours into the weizen glass a mildly-cloudy, toasted amber hue, with medium carbonation and an inch of medium-bubbled, tan head that leaves some nice lacing. Smells of banana pudding, lemon, nutty wheat, and hints of clove. The flavor is very much the same, with the addition of grassy/leafy/spicy hops that impart a mild bitterness, and some toasted wheat and malt that makes a nice addition. It has a light body with medium carbonation and a light and refreshing finish. Nice flavor and well-structured - one of the best from Saranac.

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Photo of RedChrome
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very faint haze to thee dark golden color. Head was limited to a small white sheen on the top. Lots of carbonation bubbles rising rapidly. Watery lacing rings.

Very light banana presence. Spiciness is subdued and unidentifiable as anything specific. Malt and yeast aromas hang in the back of the nose. Light plastic hint.

Watery flavors have a dominant taste of dehydrated banana chips. Fruit has a plastic like coating to the flavor. Hints of allspice and clove. Nice blend, but weak.

Watery body runs away from taste centers. Carbonation makes a quick pop on the surfaces and dies quickly.

Above average beer. Nice pairing for a more delicate German style dish. Nothing to go crazy for compared to others in the style. Decent to try out of the mixed pack.

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Saranac Hefeweizen from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
79 out of 100 based on 196 ratings.